Chris Warren

Useful information on all aspects of gameshooting. Where to shoot, how to improve your gameshooting, guns for gameshooting and of course the different quarry, including grouse, pheasant and partridge.

the woodcock

The woodcock – so elusive

As both a challenge of shooting skill and a delicacy for the table, the woodcock is regarded by many shooters as an elusive and highly prized trophy. It is certainly one of the most mysterious birds among our quarry species. Most encounters with this secretive and interesting wader are of the bird on the wing. Disturbed from its…

keeper's day

Keeping everyone happy on keeper’s day

As the season draws to a close, talk among the beaters and pickers-up is of the end-of-season keeper’s days. For many gamekeepers, it is the only day of the year they get to shoot pheasants. Indeed, for some of them it might be the only day of the year they get to go shooting at all. There…

Game bird

What makes a game bird fly well on shoot days?

What makes our game birds fly well one day only to perform poorly the next? No one wants low birds that present little challenge and result in an inedible carcass along with a feeling of ‘really, what is the point?’ At the opposite end of the scale, the cruelty of excessive-range shooting is not only unacceptable but leaves a similar…

pheasant drive

What’s better? A big last drive or a big first drive?

Big last drive By Ben Samuelson It shouldn’t really come as any surprise that a lot of shooting folk are also worshippers at the gentle church of cricket. Both involve a lot of very civilised waiting around with the soothing balm of a glass or two of something being applied to ease the pain. Both…

game shooting at sunset

How to shoot more driven birds

At this time during the season, I tend to lose count of the number of times I hear Guns saying, “I got off to a really good start with my shooting, but now the wheels have fallen off …”. There are a few factors that cause this. Birds are now strong on the wing, the weather conditions…

sunrise in countryside

20 of the best UK pheasant shoots

TREGOYD, POWYS This stunning shoot just to the south of Hay-on-Wye is run by the ambitious team of Ben Brown and headkeeper Clive Hussell, and recent years have seen significant investment in the infrastructure of the shoot. But what has not changed is the quality of the shooting. The terrain takes care of itself but Ben’s attention…

Mark Osborne William Powell

Mark Osborne of William Powell in the hot seat

Mark Osborne was interviewed for the October 2016 issue of Shooting Gazette. Have you been out relentlessly since the Twelfth? “I was out on the Twelfth and have been out a fair bit since as we keep going as long as we need. As well as letting days, we also manage quite…

man shooting pheasants in field

Better pheasant shooting tips

The season is well under way and many of you will have no doubt already enjoyed your first outings. I’ve spoken with many gamekeepers and they are all singing from the same hymn sheet: pheasants have done well this year and in many cases have feathered up nicely too. There has been a lot of dogging-in on many…

preparing for the new season

How to prepare for the new season

If you haven’t already been busy shooting grouse and still need to get prepared for the forthcoming 2016/17 season, now is the perfect time to do it. What follows is my “hit list” of what to make sure you have covered before you head into battle. Lessons and practice This is the time to iron out…

release pens

How to manage release pens correctly

Time and again as I wander into the depths of a wood in my role as a Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust (GWCT) game adviser, I come across an embarrassment. The combination of tatty fencing, battered feed drums, broken drinkers, bags hanging from branches, and other mess is a dreadful advert for shooting. Add a bit of over-stocking to…

Water supply in pheasant pens

How to get the water supply in your pheasant pens right

It’s that time of year again. The release pens are looking immaculate, drinkers are sparkling clean and feeders brimming. The rides have been swiped and the electric fences checked and re-checked. This season’s poults will soon be delivered. With seven week-old pheasants nudging £4-a-piece, stock losses need to be minimised and every step has to be taken to ensure…

DIY shoot

How to start up your own DIY shoot

Can you recall a time when the roughshoot, that splendid amalgam of sport, offering the odd walked-up pheasant or perhaps a partridge, a snipe, a mallard and a brace of rabbits, was a readily available alternative to the organised driven day? If you can then you have reached a certain…

Biosecurity

How to improve the biosecurity on your shoot

Biosecurity is a set of preventative measures designed to protect a farm or rearing field from the entry and spread of infectious diseases. Disease can be spread a number of ways: through contaminated feed, water, equipment, vehicles or people; contact with other flocks or the wild bird population; via faeces and secretions…

Sir Nicolas Soames game shooting

Sir Nicolas Soames MP for Mid Sussex interview

Sir Nicolas Soames MP was interviewed in the May 2016 issue of Shooting Gazette. Robert Cuthbert: What was last season like? Sir Nicolas Soames: “It was fantastic, a bit patchy, but I did have an amazing grouse season. I was lucky enough to shoot some wild grey partridge, but they…

man shooting over dog

Shooting memories I’d rather forget …

Following a conversation I had with someone at a game fair recently, I realised that despite there being many thousands of gundogs working in the field not many of their owners have shot over their dogs – and I think there are a lot of people missing out on a…

Richard Ali BASC

Richard Ali BASC chief executive interview

Richard Ali was interviewed in the April 2016 issue of Shooting Gazette. Shooting Gazette: What have been BASC’s major achievements over the three years you have been in the hot seat? Richard Ali: “We’ve had a great deal of success but of course there is still a lot to do.…

Col. John Blashford-Snell

Col. John Blashford-Snell OBE interview

Robert Cuthbert: We’re lucky to catch you… you’re away exploring again soon, Colonel. Col. John Blashford-Snell: “I’m going to Colombia soon to work with the Wiwa Indians. They have been severely treated and have never really dealt with anybody from the outside world other than terrorists and paramilitaries. We are…

pheasants in pen

Golden rules for rearing gamebirds

With more than 200 gamefarms and business members, and a history going back to 1908, the Game Farmers’ Association (GFA) is in a unique position to share its wisdom with anyone thinking of going into game rearing. It won’t provide detailed “how to do it” advice; there are almost as many ways to rear…