Whilst in France recently my friend asked what photography trips I had lined up for the rest of the year. So we started discussing the red deer rut and I mentioned I’d be off to Studley Royal to try and catch some of the action.
“Why don’t you got to that deer park in Stainland” he replied.
What deer park in Stainland!!!!”
A quick google and I discovered to my surprise that rather than driving an hour and half to Ripon I could drive ten minutes down the road and see red deer almost on my doorstep.
As soon as I got home I grabbed my gear and went for a look around, and sure enough there was a herd of deer exactly where he said they’d be. Unfortunately you can’t access the park as its private land but there’s a public path around the outside and if you’re lucky the deer are close enough to photograph. And if you’re really lucky you can see a family group snoozing in the woodland!
They are very curious animals and even though you might think you’re sneaking up on them, they know you’re there and they always have a wary eye on you.
There is quite a large herd in this deer park with a few big stags. Although there was no rutting there were a few roars which suggest its about to start but most of the time they tended to lie down. One was digging at the ground with his antlers trying to add turf to the antlers which help them look bigger.
The fawns though are adorable and extremely inquisitive, getting much closer than their mothers to have a look at me.
Hopefully when I visit again in the next week or so, there may be more rut action and hopefully some duelling stags to see.