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Lady Hunter - Clay shooting and deer stalking

Jade was brought up in Cove, a south-east area of Aberdeen but now lives in a rural hamlet in Aberdeenshire, and loves the country life. She has two young children, and juggles being a fulltime mum alongside her passion for shooting. Her husband, Chris, also a keen shot, is very supportive and looks after their children while Jade is out deer stalking. 

“I recall I had to be out at 5am for one of the stalks, Chris took the kids to school, and I got home later with enough venison to fill our freezer full. It’s a great feeling and I love being able to provide for my family in this way.”

The first stalk

Jade Cruickshank in a game shooting day holding a pheasant
Jade Cruickshank enjoys game shooting too.

Six years ago, Jade got her shotgun licence and enjoyed shooting clays and game with her Baikal 12g. “Clay shooting is great for brushing up my skills, but my passion is for deer stalking and getting confident with a rifle.” 

Jade embraces the whole stalking experience and not just pulling the trigger, “you see things you wouldn’t normally see. I recall during one stalk, going through the long grass and we came across a hen pheasant sitting on her eggs, so we gave her a wide berth, and further into the stalk we saw a fox.”


“On my first stalk, we crawled through long grass and ended up lying in cow dung, to allow us to get in close to the deer for taking the shot. I was shaking with a mixture of nerves and excitement, the keeper said he could hear my heart pumping! I took a great shot at 100 yards, and that was the point I got the bug for stalking.”  Rifle shooting is high on Jade’s priority list, but it can be a difficult finding a local range. “I like the challenge of rifle shooting, and would like to build up my confidence and develop this skill."

Pheasants 
For hunting pheasants Jade uses her trusted Baikal 12g.

“On my first stalk, we crawled through long grass and ended up lying in cow dung, to allow us to get in close to the deer for taking the shot. I was shaking with a mixture of nerves and excitement, the keeper said he could hear my heart pumping! I took a great shot at 100 yards, and that was the point I got the bug for stalking.”  Rifle shooting is high on Jade’s priority list, but it can be a difficult finding a local range. “I like the challenge of rifle shooting, and would like to build up my confidence and develop this skill."

Attaining the DSC1 qualification is important to Jade, “it would allow me to have more confidence in identifying different deer and ensures I am trained from a welfare perspective to correctly dispatch the animal and process the meat without waste and I also like the credibility I feel it gives me as a huntress.”


Who is our author Linda Mellor?

Linda Mellor is one of Scotland’s foremost shooting, fishing and hunting female writers and photographers. She is the product Ambassador for Venator Pro, a premier hunting company and stockist of the European brand Hillman. With a lifetime of countryside experience, Linda’s passion, enthusiasm and respect for the outdoors and hunting is explored and shared across her writing and photography. 

For more information on Linda Mellor, please visit Linda Mellor's website, Twitter (LindaMellor) and instagram (linda_mellor).

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