We provide a wide range of training and assessment services across Great Britain. Courses can either be taken at our training centres or bespoke training at a location of your choice.
Pre Deer Stalking Certificate Level 1
Designed for newcomers to shooting or hunters who want to gain more experience and knowledge before progressing towards DSC1 accreditation. Rifles and ammunition are available to hire for those who do not yet have a Firearms Certificate or firearms.
Our experience in providing DSC1 Training has shown that the main concern of many novice hunters is the shooting element of the examination.
Candidates will spend most of the day shooting with the main emphasis being marksmanship, shot placement, different shooting positions and ranges.
Deer recognition, law, suitable firearms and ammunition are also covered.
Please contact us for details, prices, location and availability.
Deer Stalking Certificate Level 1 (DSC 1)
Deer Management Qualifications are recognised by many private and government organisations as setting the standard for deer stalking qualifications across Great Britain, ensuring hunters are safety aware, competent and comply with food safety standards.
Anyone who gains DSC 1 accreditation, is classed as a "Trained Hunter" and is legally entitled to provide venison for human consumption, directly or indirectly in limited quantities.
Both DSC 1 and DSC 2 are voluntary qualifications and, as yet, are not a legal requirement for holding a Firearms Certificate or authorisation to take deer with firearms.
Our main training centre for DSC1 courses is Barry Shooting centre, Barry Island, Vale of Glamorgan, South Wales. The range is range cleared for firearms up to .50 calibre. Facilities include an on site shop, prep room, conference room, firearms storage and 8 lane indoor 200 meter range with targets set at 50, 75,100,150 and 200 meters.
We can also provide mobile training. If you have a suitable venue and a minimum of six candidates, we can come to you.
There are two options available to attain DSC 1 accreditation:
Option 1 Three Day Course
The Modules include:
- Law relating to deer and firearms, deer biology, identification, characteristics, behaviour, disease, firearms and hunting safety.
- Food hygiene, game meat hygiene and carcass supply.
- Walked safety test. Deer targets will be positioned in various scenarios. Candidates have to identify the safe and unsafe targets and explain their choice. Candidates will also be questioned on safety practices during the walk.
- Shooting test, which is split into:
- Accuracy test, 3 shots 100m prone, all hits need to be within the 4 inch (10 cm) target of the zeroing target.
- 2 shots 100m prone at a Roe deer target.
- 2 shots 70m seated or kneeling at a Roe deer target
- 2 shots 40m standing off sticks.
- Any equipment that is normally carried whist stalking may be used during the test, such as shooting sticks, bipod, Roe sacks, etc.
- There is no time limit for the shooting test, and candidates are able to have up to three attempts if needed.
The first two days consist of lectures, demonstrations, discussions and slide shows. We like to keep our teaching methods friendly and encourage candidates to discuss topics, share experience and ask questions at any time. On the final day candidates are asked to arrive early so as to spend some time on the range before the assessments start.
All of the assessments are overseen by an independent, DMQ Assessor. The examination papers and deer identification pictures are brought from DMQ headquarters in a sealed envelope by the attending assessor.
The first written assessment consists of 50 multiple choice questions followed by an identification test, where candidates are shown 20 slides and are required to identify the sex and species of deer.
The final written test is the Game meat assessment which consists of 40 multiple choice questions.
Exam papers for each assessment day are generated by computer, randomly selecting questions from the DMQ question bank, which contains approximately 300 questions.
As course providers, we have no input or control of the questions selected.
Option 2 Assessment only
Candidates do not have to attend the full course and can elect for Assessment only. We advise candidates, including those, who are experienced to study using learning materials that are current and
include any recent changes to UK or European, firearms and / or meat regulations. There is a wide range of good learning materials available for DSC1 including on line learning, hard copy manuals and CD/DVD material.
It is also recommended that all candidates practice shooting from different positions and distances.
Course Results and resits
Once the assessments are complete, the papers are returned to DMQ headquarters, where they are marked twice to ensure consistency. The length of time between completing the assessment and notification of results can range from 6 to 8 weeks.
Candidates are notified by post. Any candidate that has not been awarded a certificate will be made aware of which module they need to resit. Candidates do not have to retake the whole assessment, only the module that was not completed.
Accommodation / Firearms hire and Storage
Accommodation is available close to the venue. We can supply a list of hotels and B&B's that are within walking distance. Secure rifle storage is available at £2:50 per rifle.
If you do not hold a Firearms Certificate or own a deer legal calibre, we are able to provide suitable weapons and ammunition. Rifles may be hired and any ammunition used is charged per round.
or check our News Items
Deer Stalking Certificate Level 2 (DSC 2)
Where as the DSC Level 1 provides the theory of stalking, DSC Level 2 is the practical application of everything learned through DSC 1. Unless candidates already have experience of stalking deer and feel competent gralloching and inspecting carcasses, we would suggest candidates do not register for DSC 2 immediately after receiving their DSC 1 Certificate. We always advise candidates to gain some experience through accompanying an experienced stalker, or paid stalks.
Once you have registered and have your portfolio, you are ready to begin. To complete the portfolio the onus is on you to provide sufficient evidence that you have reached the necessary standard to be awarded the DSC 2 Certificate.
This requires you to demonstrate that you have stalked, humanely shot, prepared and inspected deer ready for storage or transportation in a manner that meets the required standards to complete 3 Individual Cull Records (ICR's), on separate occasions whist accompanied by an Accredited Witness (AW).
Candidates do not have to use the same AW for each stalk, but every AW is required to ask the candidate a series of questions to prove competency. These questions and the answers given will be recorded in the portfolio and form part of the assessment.
Once all of the ICR's have been completed and checked, your portfolio is ready for submission to an assessment centre. It will then be assessed and the candidate will receive a telephone call, where an assessor will ask a few relevant questions. If the assessor is satisfied with the portfolio it is then sent to an independent third party who will check that the evidence is:-
Authentic - it has been produced by you without help
Current - it must have been produced in the three years prior to portfolio submission
Sufficient - there is enough evidence to cover all of the elements of the Certificate
Relevant - your evidence must match the quality requirements of the Certificate
You cannot 'fail' the Level Two you must simply continue gaining experience, knowledge and skills until you can demonstrate that you have reached the required standard.
What can we do to help you gain DSC Level 2?
- If you have your own stalking area. One of our AW's can attend by prior arrangement when you wish to stalk.
- Candidates may book individual dates to visit our stalking grounds and be accompanied by an AW.
- DSC 2 Package. We have access to ground and large parks, where there are high numbers of deer. This enables us to offer 2 or 3 day packages where the candidate is very likely to complete 3 ICR's quickly.
Please contact us for details, prices or advice
Gralloching and Lardering Course
This one day course is designed to help stalkers either, gain practical "hands on" experience or help prepare candidates prior to registering for DSC Level 2.
These days are held at deer farms or parks and form part of the annual cull.
Each course begins with introductions, short lecture on larder construction, operation and equipment followed by a demonstration of a suspended gralloch and field gralloch, carcass inspection, lymph identification and preparation for storage.
Participants will then be provided with a carcass to gralloch (under supervision) and prepare for storage. Participant numbers are governed by the numbers of deer available up to a maximum of 15 participants.
Venison Butchery Day
Depending on the location, there may be opportunity for participants to take part and purchase venison afterwards.
Food is available, usually consisting of freshly cooked venison, beef and boar burgers, steaks and sausages.
Once everyone is stuffed with food and spent out we hold our favourite, free to enter, competition.
- Any deer legal calibre
- only double sticks allowed
- DMQ Roe target at 100 meters
- All shots must be within the kill zone.
Here's the winner from a previous range day.
One that didn't win, even though it was the best 3 shot group of the day. (rule 4)
And the winner is (The smug looking one in the middle!!)
Details of the next range day, location and price will be posted on the news page. Please keep checking.