JOHN BIDWELL says: Simply, what’s happened here is that you’ve lost your concentration and, instead of focusing attention on the next bird, you’re still thinking about the one that got away.

I know it’s easier said than done, but you need to forget all about what’s gone and concentrate on the next one out. Well, not quite yet?

Before calling for another target pause for a moment and reflect on why you missed the bird in the first place. If you missed it in front, behind, over the top or underneath – ask yourself how you are going to avoid making the same mistake again.

Thinking about a missed bird is actually a big positive because it naturally gets you thinking about the target to come ? not the one that’s just gone. Even if you miss another two or three on the same stand, don’t stop asking yourself the question, “Why?”

Missing a bird several times even after you’ve made what you thought were the necessary changes is a clear sign you miss-read the flight of the target. Don’t fret and worry about it ? even the best of shots can get it wrong from time to time!

Stay positive. Watch the target again and note how other people shoot it correctly. Make a note of how they stand, address the bird, and where they break it. Was any of this different to the way you tackled it? As I say, think positively about the birds you miss ? you can learn a lot from them.

Got a question? Contact: or Sporting Gun, PO Box 157, Stamford, Lincolnshire PE9 9FU