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Roe deer are distributed widely in Great Britain and are managed for a number of reasons including the reduction of impact on trees and vegetation and their exploitation as a game species. Population data, especially on survivorship, on which to base management plans, are difficult to obtain and have previously been unavailable. This Bulletin gives a brief account of roe deer biology, insofar as this affects their management. It proposes a management strategy and methodology, based on deer numbers, population dynamics and habitat changes, and measurement of their impact on trees and other vegetation. Examples of population models are presented to illustrate the considerable regulatory effect of juvenile mortality on roe deer populations. The high levels of juvenile mortality appear to have been under-estimated previously, and consequently culling levels aimed at preventing population increases have been over-estimated. It appears that culls of the order of 15-25% will prevent many British roe deer populations increasing in size.


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Publication owner
Forestry Commission