Wife P found suspicious footprints in the garden, or to be more precise in what will be the garden, this morning. Yes, no prizes for guessing they were the Red Deer that we never see! So the decision was made that the top gate must be closed not only at night but also during the day. A bit of a bind but with friendly understanding neighbours (they have to open and shut the gate, as we have the cattle grid at our end. As the winter grips on there is less feed in the wild so the deer tend to be in the village longer mooching for food. Everyone has to take precautions to keep them out so they are always looking for the easy option. A low or broken fence will soon be dealt with by them, they are good jumpers so a 1.8 metre strong fence is the only answer with access through firmly shut gates. We have even had them jump our cattle grid; so that is being fitted with side bars to deter all but the most determined. Now you know why we like venison on the plate rather than deer on the hoof!
That said, when we are walking or driving on the island, we keep an eye open for them. Lo and behold, whilst walking today we saw one outlined on a ridge too far away to see whether a Red or a Fallow Deer. On the way home, however, we saw a Red Deer stag and what looked like a hind, happily feeding on flat land near Loch Spelve. We stopped and managed to get a few photographs before they ambled off as if to say, "that is your photo op for today."