Carsphairn Archive

Gamekeeping

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Shooting party. The two gamekeepers David McMath and James Hyslop are stnading at the far left and far right in this picture.

Gamekeeping

Gamekeepers were employed by the big estates in this area. In 1881 there were two gamekeepers, James Hyslop (seen in the photograph) who lived at the mines and Richard Dawson, who lived at Loch Muick Lodge.

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The extracts from the game registers show a meticulous record of all that was shot over the farms of:

  • Brochloch and Holm of Daltallochan - then owned by The Honourable Augustus Murray Cathcart;
  • Knockgray, Carminnows and Marscalloch - owned by Captain A W M Clark Kennedy
  • and Marbrack - a rented farm.

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Game Birds

The introduction of the Ptarmigan was unsuccessful. But the first pheasants were shot on Knockgray in 1891 and have become indigenous on the low ground around the village ever since.

Alas the grouse has become quite scarce now while the partridge is very rare indeed with the ending of cropping. Black game have also greatly reduced in numbers but some years a sudden flush still seems to recur.

Woodcock and hares are present in about the same numbers while rabbits, nearly wiped out by myxomatosis are now dangerously on the increase again.