Isle of Wight Deer Survey update(2)

An emerging picture

When we launched the Isle of Wight Deer Survey in 2015 we embarked on a voyage of discovery to learn more about the deer living in the wild on the island. Following on from what we learnt last year (see update 1) we have been pleased by the interest shown by the general public and have received some very good detailed responses and occasionally photographs as well.

Species present

Red and Roe, Fallow and Muntjac have all been seen on the island in recent years whilst Sika and Chinese Water Deer appear to be absent.
Sika are frequently seen along the western shores on the mainland side of the Solent, including Hurst Spit just a mile off our own shores. It was this species that colonised the Arne Peninsular after swimming across Poole Harbour from Brownsea Island.
Chinese Water deer have been seen in both the New Forest and near to Chichester on the mainland but unlike other deer species they are not keen swimmers.

Where they may be found

Wild deer continue to be seen dispersed across the island, both singly and in groups with immature and mature animals having been observed. Although not numerous Red and Muntjac deer are the species most often encountered.

Environmental impacts

Deer at modest densities are known to be  beneficial to the environment and increase biological diversity,  our survey has received no details of any adverse deer impacts on the island.

The survey

IW Deer Conservation would like to express their gratitude to all those that have chosen to participate in the survey so far. To help us to build up as comprehensive a picture as possible about the island’s deer further participation in the Isle of Wight Deer Survey from individuals, businesses and other organisations is most welcome.

For periodic updates please email deerwight@gmail.com, thank you for your interest and support

External links that you may find interesting:-
Background information on the island’s deer – Isle of Wight Deer
Photos of deer on the island – Isle of Wight Deer Album

Red deer yearling

Isle of Wight Deer Survey Update (1)

Isle of Wight Deer Survey Update (1)

Early responses

Subsequent to the establishment of IW Deer Conservation in 2015 we sought to engage with the general public, local businesses, other conservation groups and public sector organisations to discover more about deer in the wild on the island, which species are present and what impacts that they may be having.

Early responses have given an interesting insight regarding our island’s deer.

There have been sightings of both the native species, Red and Roe, and introduced Fallow and Muntjac have also been seen. There have been no reports of either Sika or Chinese Water Deer. Although non-native it should be noted that Fallow appear to have been present here from shortly after the Norman conquest until at least the end of the 18th century and may also have been present during the Roman occupation.

Deer have been seen both singly and in family groups with young.

Some respondents have only seen deer on one occasion whilst others have seen them more often, over a period stretching back from the present day (2015) to the mid-1990’s.

Some public authorities are reported as describing any deer seen on the island as “deer farm escapees”, irrespective of where the deer came from,  even for deer species that have never been farmed nor kept in captivity on the island.

No person or organisation has reported any adverse impacts from deer to the natural environment or their business on the island.

IW Deer Conservation would like to express their gratitude to all those that have chosen to participate in the survey so far.

Please help us to build up as comprehensive a picture as possible about the island’s deer, further participation in the Isle of Wight Deer Survey from individuals, businesses and other organisations is most welcome.

For periodic updates please email  deerwight@gmail.com, thank you for your interest and support

External links that you may find interesting:-

Background information on the island’s deer – Isle of Wight Deer

Photos of deer on the island – Isle of Wight Deer Album

Red deer calf in woodland

Red deer calf in woodland

Isle of Wight Deer Survey

The Isle of Wight Deer Survey

Wild deer are part of the Isle of Wight’s rich natural heritage, historically they are important as our special woodlands evolved in their presence. Areas such as Parkhurst and Borthwood were preserved for hunting by the nobility, without which these woods may have been cleared for agriculture. Isle of Wight Deer Conservation wishes to extend their knowledge of deer in the wild on the island in the modern era, so that we may record this for the benefit of present day and future generations of islanders.

If you have seen some wild deer on the island it would greatly assist us if you could take our short deer survey, don’t worry if you don’t know all the details, all too often all that will have been seen is a fleeting glimpse of a startled deer, viewed by an equally surprised observer!

Take the Isle of Wight Deer Survey here:- Isle of Wight Deer Survey

If you support the aims and principles of Isle of Wight Deer Conservation and would enjoy periodic updates about wild deer on the island please email us at deerwight@gmail.com and leave your name and contact details.

Thank you for your support