Deer Species and Hunting Season

Deer Species in Scotland

Red and Roe deer are the only native species in the UK, although Fallow deer are considered part of our natural heritage. In the past 150 years Sika, Muntjac and Chinese Water deer was introduced as park animals but escaped captivity and settled in the wild. These six species differ in their geographic distribution, abundance, population growth rate, behaviour, and impacts. Only the four largest deer species are present in Scotland.

Today it’s estimated that we have as many as 2 million wild deer in the UK and increasing.

Open Season for Deer

SpeciesSexOpen Season in Scotland
Red DeerStag / Male1st July – 20th October
Hind / Female21st October – 15th February
Fallow DeerBuck / Male1st of August – 30th March
Doe / Female21st October – 15th February
Roe DeerBuck / Male1st April – 20th October
Doe / Female21st October – 31st March

Gamebirds, Hare and Wildfowl – Open season (dates inclusive)

Pheasant1st October – 1st February
Grey Partridge1st September – 1st February
Red-legged Partridge1st September – 1st February
Red Grouse12th August – 10th December
Black Grouse12th August – 10th December
Duck & Goose inland1st September – 31st January
Woodcock1st September – 31st January
Mountain Hare1st August – 31st January
Brown Hare1st October – 28th February



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