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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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
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Air strikes? Talk of God? Obama is following the jihadists’ script

Air strikes? Talk of God? Obama is following the jihadists’ script

The President came the nearest he has come yet to rivalling George W Bush’s gormless reaction to 9/11 , says Robert Fisk
Ebola outbreak: Billy Graham’s son declares righteous war on the virus

Billy Graham’s son declares righteous war on Ebola

A Christian charity’s efforts to save missionaries trapped in Africa by the crisis have been justifiably praised. But doubts remain about its evangelical motives
Jeremy Clarkson 'does not see a problem' with his racist language on Top Gear, says BBC

Not even Jeremy Clarkson is bigger than the BBC, says TV boss

Corporation’s head of television confirms ‘Top Gear’ host was warned about racist language
Nick Clegg the movie: Channel 4 to air Coalition drama showing Lib Dem leader's rise

Nick Clegg the movie

Channel 4 to air Coalition drama showing Lib Dem leader's rise
Philip Larkin: Misogynist, racist, miserable? Or caring, playful man who lived for others?

Philip Larkin: What will survive of him?

Larkin's reputation has taken a knocking. But a new book by James Booth argues that the poet was affectionate, witty, entertaining and kind, as hitherto unseen letters, sketches and 'selfies' reveal
Madame Tussauds has shown off its Beyoncé waxwork in Regent's Park - but why is the tourist attraction still pulling in the crowds?

Waxing lyrical

Madame Tussauds has shown off its Beyoncé waxwork in Regent's Park - but why is the tourist attraction still pulling in the crowds?
Texas forensic astronomer finally pinpoints the exact birth of impressionism

Revealed (to the minute)

The precise time when impressionism was born
From slow-roasted to sugar-cured: how to make the most of the British tomato season

Make the most of British tomatoes

The British crop is at its tastiest and most abundant. Sudi Pigott shares her favourite recipes
10 best men's skincare products

Face it: 10 best men's skincare products

Oscar Quine cleanses, tones and moisturises to find skin-savers blokes will be proud to display on the bathroom shelf
Malky Mackay allegations: Malky Mackay, Iain Moody and another grim day for English football

Mackay, Moody and another grim day for English football

The latest shocking claims do nothing to dispel the image that some in the game on these shores exist in a time warp, laments Sam Wallace
La Liga analysis: Will Barcelona's hopes go out of the window?

Will Barcelona's hopes go out of the window?

Pete Jenson starts his preview of the Spanish season, which begins on Saturday, by explaining how Fifa’s transfer ban will affect the Catalans
Middle East crisis: We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

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Neanderthals lived alongside humans for centuries, latest study shows

Final resting place of our Neanderthal neighbours revealed

Bones dated to 40,000 years ago show species may have died out in Belgium species co-existed
Scottish independence: The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

Scotland’s immigrants are as passionate about the future of their adopted nation as anyone else
Britain's ugliest buildings: Which monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?

Blight club: Britain's ugliest buildings

Following the architect Cameron Sinclair's introduction of the Dead Prize, an award for ugly buildings, John Rentoul reflects on some of the biggest blots on the UK landscape