The Irish Deer Society has opposed the recent change to the deer hunting season.

Changes to the open season for hunting deer will allow for the continuation of hunting female and antlerless deer until 31 March 2024 and males until 30 April, 2024.

The 2024/2025 male hunting season will also begin at the earlier date of 1 August this year.

The society said that the change will do nothing to address excess deer numbers, but will in fact make the situation worse.


“In the short term there should be a moratorium or at least a severe restriction on the culling of males to ensure a concentration of effort on culling females. A very rough management ratio for deer management is, females and young deer to mature males,10:1 if anything at this time the reverse is the case.

“Both Minister [for Agriculture Charlie] McConologue and Minister [of state for nature Malcolm] Noonan should be held to task for the inevitable continuing increase in deer numbers until proper deer management measures are adopted,” the society said.