Victimless venison? Deer poaching and black market meat in the UK

Tanya Wyatt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


The British Deer Society places the number of poached deer in the UK as high as 50,000 each year whereas only 335 incidents were reported to the police in 2009. This article explores deer as invisible victims of green crime and the motivations behind this poaching, drawing on the typologies of wildlife crime offenders developed by Nurse in 2013. In particular, the traditional profit-driven motivation of offenders is explored by attempting to uncover if there is, as suspected, a black market in venison. In order to do this, online questionnaires were sent to wildlife crime officers and gamekeepers asking questions about the scale and scope of deer poaching, who the perpetrators are and what is happening to the meat. From these data, it is hoped that a more detailed picture of deer poaching can be developed to further inform wildlife law and poaching prevention. This article also draws attention to the plight of poached deer and the potential danger to people of a black market in venison.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)188-200
JournalContemporary Justice Review
Issue number2
Early online date7 Apr 2016
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2016


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