Monday, 13 December 2010

Ashdown forest deer kill


The picture shows the remains of a young fallow deer carcase found yesterday on private ground deep in Ashdown forest by the landowner.After investigation by myself and another researcher who lives there we concluded that it,s the work of a bigcat.It would appear that the deer was ambushed as it crossed a stream and was throttled in the usual manner,there were 2 possible ambush points but the most likely was on the nearside bank and faint disturbance of the leaf litter underneath the fir tree to the right of the picture indicated that the cat could of lied in wait here for the deer to climb up the bank when it would of been at it,s most vulnerable and was killed/draggged to be eaten on the farside bank.There was no evidence of the deer being caught(ie.neck fur) anywhere else but on the nearside bank and it,s inconceivable that a cat would of caught it further in the wood and dragged it into the stream.A scat sample was taken for analysis and also a partial pawprint on the nearside bank, where we believe the deer was grabbed, was photoed and a cast was taken.The stream lies in a deeply wooded valley amongst an area of thick mixed woods mostly with an understory of copse,rhododenron or holly with free draining soil of sand intersperced with clay deposits with vast numbers of deer of all shapes and sizes,in other words prime cat country.There have been a multitude of kills in previous years,only in winter,have been mostly fallow and also killed by streams,it,s possible that the cat in question specialises in ambush techniques of this nature.To watch a video on this investigation go to You Tube and search "Ashdown forest fallow deer killed by bigcat by bigcatdetective".I shall keep this post short and sweet while i gather the rest of the information......

2 comments:

  1. Just to say I live in Nutley Ashdown Forest and I have twice seen a big black cat on the Crowborough road where the sheep and cows roam, yesterday evening around 8 my whole family saw a large black cat behind a deer, they both moved at great speed behind the trees, so as not to scare our younger ones we told them it was a calf, but these were the other side of the fence and cattle grid. No one seems to believe when you tell them, my dogs chased a lynx across peacehaven golf course very early one morning when I lived in Newhaven and my mum has seen a puma twice on the south downs at denton. I do not venture into the forest late evenings with my dogs it does not exactly scare me but I am cautious, my big dog is a natural hunter and idiot!! for that reason he seems to find the strangest of things and if there was one nearby he would be the one to find it. Just thought you would appreciate what we've seen. Cheers Theresa

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  2. just to say I didn't know how to put my e mail address. I'm not deliberately being annonymous and I cannot spell that either lol

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