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Poachers have little regard for the deer or the law often employing cruel and illegal methods, and leaving wounded or orphaned animals behind them.

These criminals can leave the public, farmers and landowners feeling scared and intimidated. Incidents often see offenders trespassing with firearms, shooting at an unclear target and against an unknown backstop. 

Considerable damage may also be caused to crops, property and other agricultural interests in the process.

In addition, dogs may also be used to chase and attack deer as well as the use of cruel snares and traps.

The amount of under-reporting of poaching and other rural crime means that it is important that anyone living in, working in, or simply visiting the countryside, reports all incidents.

If you see or are aware poaching is happening or any other rural crime, call 999 at the time.
Otherwise, use the 101 non-emergency number to report incidents.

What to do if you suspect poaching

To report a rural crime contact your neighbourhood policing team or specialist wildlife crime police officer. 

Call 999 if you or someone else is in immediate danger, or if the crime is in progress.

Call 101 to contact the police if the crime is not an emergency.

You can also contact Crimestoppers to report a crime anonymously and they will pass the information on to the police. Visit or call 0800 555111.

The British Deer Society actively campaigns against poaching and rural crime. Support our work by making a donation or becoming a member today!

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