myForest supports deer management

Land owners and managers can now use myForest to help manage deer populations. To activate the deer management functionality on your account click activate deer functions.

All of the deer management functions are found in Woodland Manager.

You must be logged in to activate the deer functions.

Create a Management Plan

myForest has embedded the Deer Management Plan template developed by The Deer Initiative. Deer Management Plans are an integral step towards the sustainable management of deer. myForest allows users to complete and store their plans online.

Store and report annual deer monitoring

Users can store cull data, impact assessment measurements, notes and photographs all in one place. The information can be used to automatically download data monitoring reports.

Sharing information with The Deer Initiative

myForest has built in functionality for you to share your deer management information with The Deer Initiative if you choose to do so. By sharing your information you will be allowing The Deer Initiative to assess deer impacts across a landscape allowing them to more efficiently target resources.

Deer Manager app

The deer manager app allows deer stalkers and managers to submit cull information without the need for paper records. Stalkers' submissions are imported into myForest after being confirmed by the myForest user. This will allow owners and managers to keep up to date with annual cull targets.

To use the app, you will need a login code which is connected to a myForest account. You can generate login codes through your account home page, under deer management.

Many woodlands in England suffer significant deer impacts, rendering them of low condition. Improving their condition requires collaborative, landscape-scale deer management.

The Deer Initiative, under grant aid from Forestry Commission England and Natural England, is working within five priority areas to promote and facilitate delivery of sustainable, landscape-scale deer management.

Management is required at landscape scales because deer do not respect landownership boundaries, and a given population may range over several properties. Agreement and collaboration between landowners is key to ensuring that deer impacts are managed sustainably.

Five priority areas in England have been chosen for additional help due to the impacts deer are having on sensitive environments, particularly woodland Sites of Special Scientific Interest. Heavy browsing and grazing by growing deer populations can reduce tree regeneration, physical structure and biodiversity within woodland.

The five priority areas are:

If you live, work or manage woodland or deer within one of the priority areas, The Deer Initiative can offer you support to sustainably manage deer and their impacts.

By monitoring trends in deer activity, impacts and management outcomes, it is possible to assess the efficacy of collaborative deer management and to justify further action if required.

The Deer Initiative and the Sylva Foundation have created new functionality within myForest to allow landowners and deer managers to create and store deer management plans and record monitoring data. The data remain the property of the original owner, but we ask that you share them with The Deer Initiative in order to help us prioritise our activities and assess their effectiveness across each priority area.

Within the priority areas The Deer Initiative is helping by:

  • Raising landowner awareness of deer-related issues.
  • Monitoring deer abundance, activity and impacts at key sites.
  • Bringing landowners, land agents and deer managers together.
  • Offering deer management advice, training and facilitation.
  • Providing help with deer management planning and coordination at landscape scales.
  • Signposting business support and grant funding opportunities.

Although this deer management functionality was developed to help owners and managers in the five priority areas, we hope it will be useful across England and indeed in Scotland and Wales.