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Stag Hill By Name and Now Stag Hill By Nature

Published on: 16 May, 2020
Updated on: 22 May, 2020

Roe deer, not in a forest clearing but the well-tended grounds of the University of Surrey.

Stag Hill is believed to be so named because it was on the southern end of Forest of Windsor, reserved in medieval times for royal hunting parties.

But since Guildford Cathedral and the University of Surrey were built on the hill in the last century deer, some of England’s largest wild animals and the former huntsman’s quarry, have been understandably absent. But things are changing.

The two most common species of deer in Surrey are, fallow deer, with white spots on their flanks, and roe deer. The deer in the photos are roe deer and are usually associated with the edges of woodlands and forests. They are also found in areas with copses, scrub and hedgerows and agricultural fields.

On patrol in the evening light roe deer exploring the campus where they would usually fear to tread.

According to the British Deer Society, “They are increasingly entering areas closer to our towns and cities as they take advantage of more urban habitats,” and with the lockdown in progress, it seems they were tentatively exploring areas where they would normally sense human activity made it too risky.

Not now though, these deer were spotted by the universities security team who took the photos.

A university spokesperson said: “I’m pretty sure someone on a conference call last week was talking about some hedgehog families moving in – which fits nicely with work we had already done to make ourselves a “hedgehog friendly campus” – but we’re not used to seeing deer nosing around the main campus.”

See also: Come On My Guided Walk to Discover Some of Guildford’s Hidden History (please note this relates to a walk conducted in 2012).

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test One Response to Stag Hill By Name and Now Stag Hill By Nature

  1. Marilyn Strange Reply

    May 17, 2020 at 7:31 am

    Poor things, pulled into a sense of security and quiet and then surrounded by the A3 and soon to be urban life again. I just hope they don’t meet with a sad and dangerous end.

    We think it’s lovely, but sadly they and many other beautiful countryside animals will suffer as the population moves back into place.

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