The 600-strong group is holding events at ranges all over the UK, and organising deerstalking outings for women.
Four admins run the group, run events and attend shows including the Stalking Show and the Game Fair.
“We use our combined connections and knowledge to bring stalking to ladies up and down the UK,” says group moderator Heather Taylor.
She says that Facebook is the ideal platform to expand interest in deerstalking. “Facebook gives us the best reach,” she says, “and it is what a lot of people are using now.
“Facebook gives us the opportunity to grow. We have overseas members, as well as UK members. Facebook allows us to reach a lot more people and find a wider community of deerstalkers.”
In December 2022, Rifleman Firearms ran a beginners’ ‘taster day’ for the group.
“The ladies do courses all around the country, which are open to beginners or more advanced shooters,” says Sarah Miles from Rifleman Firearms. “It’s just to get a group of ladies together to have a fun day and for them all to shoot.”
Heather, a former teacher, started deerstalking in 2018. “I went up to Scotland and I paid for a day’s hindstalking up in the Scottish hills.
“I took two deer that day and that was it – I was absolutely hooked.
“I went back up to Scotland on roebucks and have gradually done more through the years since then.”
Heather says that the Facebook group is growing strongly. It is gaining new members every day. “It’s a really good way for people to meet each other,” she says.
Gameshooting is easy to start doing compared to deerstalking. Shotguns are more accessible than rifles, and clay grounds easier to book. Ladies Deer Stalking UK aims to level up rifle and deerstalking sports.
“We have found a lot of ladies have linked up who wouldn’t have met otherwise, and it is helping to expand both the knowledgebase and the need for space for women, especially, to get into rifleshooting and deerstalking without necessarily having a male connection to the sport,” she says.
“We find that a lot of women get into the sport through their father, or they grew up on a farm or an estate or, like myself, they have a partner who stalks. Without that, they wouldn’t have had access.”