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Volume 229: debated on Tuesday 27 July 1993

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To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) what assessment he has made of the behavioural pattern of roe deer in their formation of family groups between May and August; and what protection is afforded to families of roe deer during that period;(2) what plans he has to review schedule 1 to the Deer Act 1991;(3) what assessment he has made of the impact of the Deer Act 1991 on population figures for roe deer;(4) what protection is afforded to

(a) doe and (b) buck roe deer during the rutting season; and what assessment he has made as to whether the provisions are compatible with each other.

I have received no evidence to suggest that the Act is not working effectively, nor that the close seasons set out in schedule 1 are in need of revision. I understand that the population of deer of all species is rising. Protection for doe roe deer runs from 1 March to 31 October, which thus includes the rutting season. No similar protection is afforded to bucks, for which the close season runs from 1 November to 31 March.