Our herd of fallow deer are often the reason people visit Charlecote. Beautiful, graceful and powerful – they have a long history here.
But what do we know of their history?
We’re very proud to be part of the AHRC-funded Fallow Deer project. This project is looking at discovering more about when fallow deer were introduced to the UK and their movement through Europe.
A fascinating film has been produced to look at what the team have discovered so far. Charlecote features at around 22minutes.
For more information on the project, please visit the Dama International website.
We see many of our visitors out with cameras all year round. Many who have visited over the winter tell us that they use their photos, particularly those of our deer, to make Christmas cards for friends and family.
But have our deer inspired any other Christmassy crafts? Here’s a few ideas from our team…
Simply made with brown tags and a thumb print of paint. Once the paint dries draw on the antlers, eyes and a button nose.
We’ve made labels showing the different colours of our resident fallow deer. Plus a Rudolph, of course!
If you’ve children, they might like to help create these cards. Following a similar method to our labels, only the deer head is a foot print!
Fallow deer peg decoration
Or how about using pegs to make a small deer decoration? These could be placed on your Christmas dinner table as name settings or put on the tree for all to enjoy.
We’d love to see any of your own Charlecote-inspired creations!
We have closed visitor access to West Park over the coming weeks to allow for the deer not to be disturbed during the rut.
This is a vital part of the calendar year for the deer as being continually disturbed will delay the rutting season and this delays fawning in June and fawns are born too late and are unable to go through the next winter with enough body weight. Also the males (bucks) are full of testosterone and they are trying to hold a group of females (doe’s) to something known as a “lek” which is an area of ground marked off by a buck by heavily scenting the area to deter any other bucks from coming in. This can mean that the bucks are unaware of people approaching and can be dangerous both to the deer and people.
The public footpath across West park will remain open but we do remind visitors that you must stay on the highlighted footpath and please do not disturb the deer. Continue reading
We love all the seasons, but there is something quite magical about autumn. The changing season changes the colour of the landscape quite dramatically. Golden yellows, burnt oranges and ruby reds, it really can be spectacular.
Another thing we start to notice is the deer get quite confident and come closer to the Gatehouse and the main drive. You also start to hear the characteristic bellowing* of the bucks.
The deer rut has started at Charlecote now and we’ve found that the paddock can make a good spot to view the deer because they seem to like the orchard. If you’re lucky, you might see the male deer taking each other on in a clashing of antlers.
Jana, our volunteer photographer, managed to capture this footage last year… Continue reading