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Is it the right weather to go shooting?


Check the weather before going out in the field

Weather, 25 May

West Byfleet Weather


High: +17° Low: +7°

Humidity: 78%

Wind: SW – 26 KPH

London Weather


High: +17° Low: +9°

Humidity: 78%

Wind: SW – 22 KPH

New York Weather


High: +20° Low: +14°

Humidity: 44%

Wind: SSE – 19 KPH

Use this weather guide to judge what your shoot day is likely to be like in the area you are in.

The right weather for shooting of course depends on the type of shooting you are planning.

If you're out on the marshes wildfowling, then you'll be taking note of the direction of the wind, the temperature and the tides.

rifle velocity

Weather can affect accuracy in rifles

If you're up on the hill deer stalking then you'll be finely attuned to any changes in the breeze. (Read Bruce Potts on how cold weather affects rifle velocity.)

What about driven shooting? The classic day is cool, overcast and breezy. Gamekeeper Steven Fairclough describes his perfect weather for a shoot day as: “Rain the day before and through the night until about nine o’clock the next morning, then overcast with about 15 to 20mph winds.” He added: “If the weather is a little bit inclement, the keeper will always be happy. Bad weather keeps the birds in.”

shooter in rain

Make sure you know what the weather holds in store

Right weather for shooting

A cloudy day is better for seeing the birds than a bright sunny day, spent squinting into a dazzling sky. (Read what is the perfect weather for driven shooting.)

Flying into a good strong breeze lifts birds, bringing them over Guns at a good height, and a tail wind adds speed and excitement.

Although the terrain you are shooting in makes a difference too. If you're down in a sheltered valley or out on the moors, then the birds are going to behave differently depending on conditions.

What about pigeon shooting? Sporting Gun contributor Peter Theobald advises: " Roost shooting is completely dictated by the strength of the wind. I never shoot my little wood in anything less than a gale. Wind direction will also determine where we set up on any given field, so it pays to know what the prevailing wind direction is (generally southwest in this part of the country) and then being aware of a different wind will be beneficial." (Read more on what is the right weather for shooting pigeons.)

And what if the weather is just generally bad for shooting? As Richard Brigham says in his article on shooting in bad weather, it can make or break a shooting day.

(You might like to read our guide to the best waterproof shooting jackets.)

pheasant shooting

Many believe cold weather is a key ingredient for a good shoot day, as it helps to fill up the drives


And what weather do keepers favour? Liam Bell says: "If the weather is on your side when you put your birds out it makes such a difference. A nice run of dry days — when the birds can sit out, dust and sun themselves, followed by warm nights and sunshine  first thing in the morning to dry off any dew and perk the birds up a bit — is just about perfect."

(Read Liam's advice on how to deal with wet weather when you put your birds out.)

As Shooting Times contributor Lindsay Waddell says: "The weather will always have the final say. For better or worse, it depends what and where you are in nature’s scheme of things."

Use our weather forecaster above to help you decide if it's the right weather for shooting and what the conditions are that lie ahead.