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Deer by John Fletcher

Sku: BookD73

£12.95

Veterinarian and deer farmer John Fletcher brings together the cultural and natural history of these dignified animals, describes the evolution, species, habitats, behavior and diet of the deer, as well as its portrayal in art and influence on popular culture, myth and song.

 

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Description

Veterinarian and deer farmer John Fletcher brings together the cultural and natural history of these dignified animals, describes the evolution, species, habitats, behaviour and diet of the deer, as well as its portrayal in art and influence on popular culture, myth and song.

The Celts called them ‘fairy cattle’ and the Greeks associated them with hunter goddess Artemis, but for most people, today deer are seen as cute like Bambi, or noble like the Monarch of the Glen. Deer appear on coats of arms, in fine art and in literature. In Deer, veterinarian and deer farmer John Fletcher brings together the cultural and natural history of these dig­nified animals.

About the Authors

John Fletcher was born in Yorkshire in 1946 but qualified as a vet from Glasgow University and has lived in Scotland ever since. His work on the Isle of Rum with wild and tame deer obtained him a PhD from Cambridge University and he became fascinated by deer, starting his own deer farm in Auchtermuchty, Fife in 1973. This was probably the first commercial deer farm in Europe and was developed with his wife Nichola Fletcher, MBE, a designer who makes jewellery on commission but who has also written several books on the cooking and preparation of venison, and on the history of feasting.

The deer farm developed through a very successful period during which Reediehill Farm Deer from Auchtermuchty were sold as breeding stock throughout the world. As a result of these exports the farm won the Queen’s Award for Export in 1990. Gradually the farm evolved into a venison production unit with a farm shop using deer killed and processed on the farm. This venison business was sold in 2012 and the farm returned to the production of breeding stock.

John has written several books: ‘A Life for Deer – a deer vet tells his story and theirs’ published by Victor Gollancz (2000) describes the difficulties of being a pioneer in agriculture and the ups and downs of deer farming. This book was updated and republished by Mercat Press, an imprint of Birlinn, Edinburgh, to include a chapter on John’s work as a vet in the Foot and Mouth epidemic and sold as ‘Fletcher’s Game – a vet’s life with Scotland’s deer’ in 2003. Both books are illustrated with photographs and vignettes by the artist Maggy Stead.

In 2011 John’s major work, ‘Gardens of Earthly Delight – the History of Deer Parks’ was published by Windgather, an imprint of Oxbow, Oxford. It received critical acclaim and stimulated much discussion and research on the role of deer parks worldwide.

 

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