New Forest fallow deer are one of the easiest varieties of deer to photograph. They are the most common and don’t usually present much of a challenge to find and photograph. During spring and summer they are even fed regularly in full view of the deer viewing platform at Bolderwood.
In certain parts of the Forest, the bucks (males) can be found in big peaceful single sex herds while they grow their new sets of antlers during spring and summer. That all changes in the autumn when they disperse all over the Forest to fight over the does (females), and become much more elusive and not so easy to find. The white fallow make a good picture and are a colour variation in a small percentage of the herd and not albinos. Sight and smell are the deer’s primary senses and their eyes are developed to detect motion rather than clear focus from a distance – if you are upwind and not particularly stealthy they will detect you with their primary senses first.
One of the best times to photograph fallow bucks with impressive sets of antlers is during their autum rut when they make a loud belching roar to proclaim their territory and fight over the does. At this time of year they have bulked up, particularly around the neck and hind quarters, and look quite majestic. In view of the numbers of Fallow deer in the New Forest, it is not uncommon to see bucks fighting by locking antlersn asn they vie for the attention of the females. It is important not yto disturb the and a long lens is essential for a good shot while not getting too close. For more information check out my Photographing Deer page.
Click here for more general information on Fallow deer in the New Forest.