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3 buddies, a cull and a personal best for BH........
Got a text from a friend ( D) wed about the opportunity to cull some fallow deer ravaging a chicory crop on a horse farm..........Teed it up for last night.
We worked out a plan that involved a late afternoon stalk, followed by an evening shoot with spotlights.
D, Bloodhound and I arrive, speak to the land owner, get tooled up and headed out.
Spotted an animal about 600m away and 2 ridges over so we stalked/crawled in to within 145 metres. D and BH had their 7mm08's, I elected to go with the 204.............
After seeing the size of the deer I bowed out and BH set up to take the shot........
Managed to snap this pic with my mob just before BH squeezed off.......
If you zoom in you can see the deer as a small brown dot on the first rise above the grass in front of BH.
The sound of the shot was echoed by the sound of a solid hit and the deers head slowly drooped. It then staggered to its feet and BH, not taking any chances sent a second round downrange. ( the close proximity to thick pines gave the deer an easy escape route) .........a third shot and it dropped and rolled.......
All three shots were within 3" of each other and struck at the top of the neck, base of the head
Fantastic grouping in my book with an animal that was moving for the 2nd & 3rd shots.
While Bh headed back to get the quad, D and I wandered over to the animal. We knew it wasnt a Fallow ( it was a Red Deer) and that it had a good head, but we didnt expect a 'Horse'.....
Here is a pic of where it dropped........
BH with the biggest head he has ever shot.
The genetics indicate that it is an escapee from a deer farm and had been living wild for the past couple of years. Although it is in velvet the antlers are hard and will scrape back to show a great trophy.
Unfortunately we were on a cull otherwise we would have probably left him for another few months.
It took the 3 of us to lift it onto the quad and even then we had to lift one end first and while I held it, BH and D manhandled the other end onto the bike. ( this was after it was field dressed and with the head off.) We then headed back to hang it in the shade of the pines and I took this pic of D with the deer.
D is 6' 3"...........................
(just kidding, he is only 5' 9")
A cold drink while we recovered from our exertions. It was interesting watching the bike traverse the terrain with the front wheels coming off the ground whenever BH hit a bump lol.
Got to watch the sunset while we planned the evenings activities.
We head back to the Chicory crop and disturbed a couple of deer when we arrived...but they didnt present a shot.
After setting up on the edge of the crop we waited for the deer to arrive.
30 mins later we heard a wire 'ping'and turned on the spotlights to sweep the field. 2 fallow deer ( a buck and a spiker) took off and Bh dropped them both on the run with shoulder/neck shots at around 90m.........Did I mention that Bh can shoot!!
We field dressed those 2 and then headed further into the farm.
I was rueing having the 204 cos the Leupold 6-18 scope with its narrow field of view didnt suit night shooting but was more for the daylight part of the cull.
Came up over a rise and swept the next paddock with the lights and saw 2 sets of eyes looking back at us.
2 deer about 100m away. We turned off the lights while I found a fence post to set up for tthe shot and when BH lit them up again I sent a 45gr sp into the base of the head of one of them dropping it on the spot.....The 2nd deer ran across the gully but I couldnt acquire it in the scope so it lived for another day.
Another big red down....( a hind)
We figured we had enough work to do so while the other 2 went to get the bike I field dressed the hind.
After collecting up all the animals we loaded the trailer ready to head home.
I think we need a bigger trailer lol.
The next problem was the chiller wasnt going to be big enough to hold the animals so we drove the 40mins up to Marks and hung them in the big chiller......Got to Marks at 3am and woke him up, told him he could have one of the animals if we could use his chiller........he mumbled something which I took as a yes lol.
Finally got back home just after 5am as the first rays of sun poked themselves over the horizon..
Still enjoying the trip of a lifetime and making the best of what I have.....