Rutting Red Deer Photography

Rutting Red Deer Photography
Rutting Red Deer Photography

I’ve always wanted to photograph Red Deer while they are Rutting and today I was lucky enough to make my first trip out to Woburn (in Bedfordshire) to experience first hand this amazing display. I was armed with my full camera gear (not knowing what I would need) and was kindly dropped off beside a footpath into the deer park before dawn had broken, and I headed off into what was one of the most amazing and if I’m honest frightening experiences of my life – Rutting Red Deer.

Rutting Red Deer Photography

Walking between to heavy duty fences up towards the park in the near dark didn’t quite prepare me for what it is like stood in an open field while you can hear bellowing stags all around you interspersed with the occasional crash of antlers, a sound that is much louder than you may expect as the echo from the thunderous clap reverberates around you, I will fully admit the first time it happened my heart skipped a beat.
As a virgin to this type of experience I was quite cagey at first always keeping an eye all around me as I wandered into the thick of it so to speak (I did give the animals a respectful amount of distance, but you can never be too careful, and in reality I only once felt threatened and that was when one Stag chased another away from his harem of hinds right towards me (they passed a safe distance in the end but I did step back a way just in case).

Rutting Red Deer Photography The photos

Anyway enough of my waffle, here are the best images of the day (a couple of videos to follow soon, probably tomorrow as well), I hope you like them all, please do let me know.

A few of the Early, sunrise shots:

 

Red Deer in Silhouette early in the morning (sunrise)
Red Deer in Silhouette early in the morning (sunrise)

 

Red Deer in Silhouette early in the morning (sunrise)
Another Red Deer in Silhouette early in the morning (sunrise)

 

Red Deer in Silhouette early in the morning (sunrise)
Closer Red Deer in Silhouette early in the morning (sunrise)

 

Red Deer in Silhouette early in the morning (sunrise)
By the water Red Deer in Silhouette early in the morning (sunrise)

 

Some Artistic Landscape/Red Deer shots:

 

Landscape of Red Deer
Landscape of Red Deer

 

Early morning mist and Red Deer
Early morning mist and Red Deer

 

Lots more Red Deer:

 

Female or Hind Red Deer
Female or Hind Red Deer

 

Red Deer Stag
Red Deer Stag

 

Red Deer Stag
Between the Trees – Red Deer Stag

 

Red Deer Stag
Red Deer Stag

 

Red Deer Stag
Look at the Camera – Red Deer Stag

 

Red Deer Stag
Red Deer Stag

 

Red Deer Stag
Inquisitive Red Deer Stag

 

Red Deer Stag Bellowing
Red Deer Stag Bellowing

 

Red Deer Stags
a few Red Deer Stags

 

Red Deer Stag Bellowing
Red Deer Stag Bellowing

 

Red Deer Stag
Lone Red Deer Stag

 

Red Deer Stag bellowing
Red Deer Stag bellowing

 

Bellowing stag Red Deer
Bellowing stag Red Deer

 

Protecting his harem stag Red Deer
Protecting his harem stag Red Deer

 

Bellowing stag Red Deer
Bellowing stag Red Deer

 

Bellowing stag Red Deer
Another Bellowing stag Red Deer

 

Stag Red Deer lying down
Stag Red Deer lying down

 

Stag Red Deer lying down and bellowing
Red Deer Stag lying down and bellowing

 

A Couple of Rutting panoramas (I didn’t get many actual rutting photos):

 

A Practice Rut between two young males
A Practice Rut between two young males (they later started practicing “other”things with each other)

 

The Real Thing - Red Deer Rut (bit distant)
The Real Thing – Red Deer Rut (bit distant)

 

Some Sika:

 

Stag Sika Deer
Stag Sika Deer

 

Stag Sika Deer
Another of the Stag Sika Deer

 

Stag Sika Deer
Stag Sika Deer

 

A Muntjac:

 

Muntjac Deer
Muntjac Deer

 

Pere David’s Deer:

 

Pere David's Deer
Pere David’s Deer
And for my mum, a Black Squirrel:

 

Black Squirrel (a grey really genetic anomaly in the Woburn area).
Black Squirrel (a grey really genetic anomaly in the Woburn area).

 

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23 Replies to “Rutting Red Deer Photography

  1. Absolutely stunning photographs! What an amazing experience that would have been! I lived in Banff, in the Rocky Mountains in Canada for a year when I was in my late teens. I was late for work one morning because of a rutting elk on my doorstep – a little too close for comfort! #UKbloggers

    1. Being one on one with animals that large and with huge weapons strapped to their heads is a lot less comfortable than I would have thought (in a car they are great, outside the car it takes getting used to).

    1. Thank you it was indeed an experience of a lifetime, I'm sure I'll do it again, but it will never be quite as thrilling as that first time I'm sure. May try Richmond park next time.

  2. An excellent post with super images Ashley, especially the landscape views.
    I can fully appreciate your thrill of experiencing this for the first time. I have been following the activity in Bushy Park for some years and I still get a tingle every time I see these beautiful beasts in action. I haven't seen any clashes this month but the posturing is always fun to watch from a respectful distance.

  3. Ashley, these are absolutely stunning photographs, so brilliantly captured. I particularly liked the sunrise shots and the one of the stag protecting his harem! Welcome to PoCoLo and thank you so much for linking 🙂

  4. Oh wow Ashley these photos are stunning, such amazing shots. I went to Wollaton Hall last year on a school trip and forgot to take my phone, the deer's were amazing and I wanted to go back. You just reminded me I need to go visit now!! thanks for linking up to the #weekendbloghop 🙂

  5. What beautiful photos, you can just feel the atmosphere pouring from them. I've never been to Woburn but now I want to go and witness the rutting for myself. Absolutely gorgeous photography Ashley.

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