A bullet marked sign warns of deer on the road in Sutherland near Helmsdale. Deer management is a controversial subject in the highlands with the conflicting needs of sporting estates, foresters and conservationists. Deer numbers were low before humans were cleared off the highlands in the mid-19th century and the hunting of stags became hugely popular. The deer graze young deers and, in areas of high density. This optimum figure is disputed and ranges from 1 deer per km2 from conservationists to 20 deer/km2 on some sporting estates.