Tribute to the Roe Deer
The time has come to return the Canon 500mm lens to Alex and to look back at my favourite photographs of my favourite land mammal — the Roe deer. With just one day remaining, I took the lens up to the West Sussex/Surrey border, hoping to see territorial bucks roaming the meadows. It was not long, before I spotted a pair of long ears protruding through the grass — a yearling doe — ruminating until grazing time. It would be at least an hour before she woke up, so I approached a mature buck grazing in an adjacent field carpeted with buttercups. In a show of mutually beneficial tolerance, the buck allowed Magpies to sit on his back, plucking ticks and mosquitoes. When the buck eventually detected my presence, he at first made a tentative approach, before gaining confidence and strutting back and forth. When the buck disappeared, I turned my attention back towards the neighbouring doe. I carefully selected a secluded thicket on the corner of an oak lined field to quietly observe the animals from a distance of just 30 metres. As a nature-lover, there are few sights more adorable than a Roe deer grazing in a traditional English meadow. To my surprise, three deer popped up out of the long grass within 10 minutes. The most inquisitive was a two-year-old buck, who felt perfectly relaxed about coming over to investigate, before sitting back down for a short break. I first saw the young buck in August 2011, when he was still a baby and I was absolutely delighted to see him alive and doing well.