The coldest December for 100 years has taken its toll on the UK?s wild bird population and disrupted the wildfowling season. Both voluntary and statutory restraints were observed across Britain during the Christmas period, with fowling clubs imposing restraint beyond the officially designated periods.

Devon Wildfowlers chairman Nick Millman told Shooting Times: ?A decision was taken to suspend fowling on the Exe from 20 December. It did not resume until the morning of the 30th. The club has within its constitution the provision for the chairman, secretary and conservation officer to take this important decision. We look for three days of night-time temperatures above freezing before resuming, but we still ask members to monitor the condition of shot birds and for any concerns to be immediately reported. During the cold snap wild migratory duck sat and were reluctant to fly, obviously conserving energy.?

The rest of this article appears in 12th January issue of Shooting Times.

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