Arts and Entertainment

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Outdoors: The thrill of the Chase

In a beautiful Dorset valley, a centuries-old feud continues, but now it concerns a thoroughly modern issue: the green belt

Fury at homes plan in ancient deer forest

ONE OF Britain's most upmarket estate agents has become entangled in a row over plans to develop one of Dorset's finest estates, which is designated as an area of outstanding natural beauty by government heritage bodies.

Nature Watch

MOST SPECIES of deer give birth during the month of June, and by now there are thousands of fallow fawns, red and sika calves and roe kids dotted about the countryside, only a few days old. Mothers make a habit of leaving their offspring in what they consider safe places while they themselves go off to graze; thus it is common to see a fawn curled round in a ball and lying by itself in the undergrowth.

Why Japanese invaders face a Scottish cull

A FAST-BREEDING species of deer is facing a cull in Scotland because it costs the forestry industry millions and is threatening the native red deer with extinction.

Anyone for antler pie?

Now that venison has become a popular lean meat, what is the most economic, humane way to manage the deer? Duff Hart-Davis investigates

Outdoors: The deer that was mistaken for a lion

Could the tiny, fecund Chinese water deer, still rare in Britain, ever become a pest?

Rural: Why this year is a fallow time for deer

For anybody involved with the management of deer, a persistent aggravation is the way the price of venison fluctuates wildly from one year to the next.

Letter: Deer hunters

Sir: All field sportsmen and women regard their sport as a wildlife conservation measure. Where hunting is banned and the sporting value to the community of red deer is thereby destroyed, the animals are reduced to the status of vermin. Yet The Independent chooses to see the resulting slaughter as "a propaganda exercise" ("Bloody Revenge for stag hunt ban", 25 November).

Letter: Deer hunting

Sir: With reference to the report which claimed to show stress levels suffered by deer when chased . . . what else would do you expect? The animal is in fear of its life. Huntsmen are introducing no greater level of cruelty than that which nature has supplied. There are people who wish to reintroduce wolves to prey on the red deer, in order to restore our natural heritage. Do you think the deer will spot the difference?

Slaughter of stags shocks anti-hunt campaigners

Animal welfare groups and the National Trust are outraged by the killing of more than half the stags on the Quantock Hills. There is also anger at a photograph of their severed heads, says Nicholas Schoon, Environment Correspondent.

Trees: How to be a tree nationalist

The prevailing argument over planting trees native to Britain is a very modern debate, as Stephen Goodwin, Heritage Correspondent, explains.

Trees: Students plant acorns at medieval deer park

It doesn't take a tree expert to plant a tree. Average people across the UK are planting acorns and conkers in pots and parklandss to do their bit to save the nation's forests. Caroline Allen reports.

Letter: Job for cheetahs

Sir: On 7 October, your science page told us that cheetah numbers are in alarming decline, that cheetah cubs are vulnerable to large predators, especially lions, and that though cheetahs are perceived as savannah animals, they can live happily in woodland.

Red alert

A report from the World Wildlife Fund highlights the fact that slack management of deer is resulting in the destruction of acres of Scotland's forests. But that is not the only bad news: the now rutting red deer is diluting itself, reports Daniel Butler.
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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
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