A group of 30 Ezo deer flee through a cold lowland in eastern Hokkaido. A frozen creek separates them from open farmland and the hope of escape. They hop between tall patches of long-dead weeds near the edge of the ice. Long-frozen, it proves no challenge for them to cross.

Up on a hill some 250 meters away, Eric Rose looks through the scope of his Browning A-Bolt shotgun.

“They don’t like the idea of dying too much, do they?” Rose tells me.