A change of plan
It soon became apparent that the rooks were not going to play ball, and shooting corvids was on the cards for the day. Their approach to the nest was sheltered by the trees, so they could sneak in out of range. Before I could rearrange my set-up, the first bunch of jackdaws came sailing into the decoys, allowing me to get on the scoreboard with the first birds in the bag. I decided that the rookery was a lost cause. The main plan had failed, but a steady flow of carrions, jackdaws and the odd rook did come the right way.
The decoys were doing their job perfectly: all the birds that headed for the farm and neighbouring woods couldn’t resist coming in for a closer look. Together with the decoys, the combination of the Kicks High Flyer full-choke in my Beretta AL391 and a mixture of Victory whites and other cartridges was proving to be lethal. Some birds decoyed perfectly, allowing for some close shots, but odd birds made the foolish mistake of cruising past on the edge of normal range, which is bread and butter for the Kicks full-choke.
The plan failed because a lot of the rooks lived to fight another day, but I consider the secondary objective a success: the farmer was over the moon at the dent I put in the corvids.