In 1980, when I came to live here in Kurohime in the hills of northern Nagano Prefecture, we had neither deer, wild boar nor monkeys in this area because — so the locals said — there was too much snow in winter for them to find enough food to survive.

Well, perhaps there’s a bit less snow these days due to climate change, because Sika deer (nihonjika in Japanese) and wild boar (inoshishi) started to move in about 15 years ago, and now they are regular visitors to our 42-hectare Afan Woodland Trust, to the adjoining 27-hectare national forest we manage, and to surrounding farmland.

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