What people are reading on Shooting UK

Are cats and dogs killing off our gamebirds?

Across more than 5,000 acres of rural Galloway, you’d expect there to be plenty of good spots to have a seat, but there is one particular heather-clad knoll on the periphery of our shoot that I visit at least once a week during the spring months. It doesn’t look like…

Using a birch broom in the 1970s

How grouse moor management has changed over the years

Land management has been carried out for centuries, producing upland landscapes that offer rich biodiversity and favourable habitats for an abundance of wildlife. My knowledge has increased somewhat over time and all the keepers working the moors today have a far greater skill set of how to conserve the environment…

Why fieldsports is the best pastime

Fieldsports means so much to so many people. I never cease to find it amazing how diverse it can be. For many, it is a hobby that gives us something to look forward to on days off, for others it is a way of life. One thing that all types…

shoot lunch

Are these the best shoot lunch ideas of all time?

The shoot lunch conjures up scenes of steaming plates, cottage pies and treacle puddings but in fact a shoot lunch on the grouse moor in August should be very different from the shoot lunch in mid December. Here are some of the best shoot lunch ideas for the cook and…

Grouse day in 1911

Why is game still stuck in a class divide?

In one sense, game today costs a markedly different amount depending on who you are. For a paying Gun, that brace of pheasants you take home at the end of the day will be one of the priciest foods you can buy. A person who shoots in their own backyard,…

walked up grouse shooting

Does the public really hate fieldsports?

When the Editor posed the question “Does everybody hate us?” to me on the phone, I laughed. At the time, I was visiting a friend called Angus who attends the Royal Agricultural University in Cirencester. His digs weren’t quite your typical student house. There were pigeon decoys on the lamp…

poaching

Why poaching has been part of rural life for centuries

Poaching has been part and parcel of rural life for centuries, usually carried out to procure food or as a means of making a slightly better living than other country people. The practice was particularly rife during the late Victorian and the Edwardian periods, when penalties were less harsh than…

control foxes

No guarantees with this most wily foe the fox

It will come as no surprise that foxes are the UK’s biggest predator of both ground-nesting birds and released game. Because we don’t have large apex predators to assist with their control, as they do in some other parts of the world, it is down to us. Reasons to control…

Five films for fieldsports fans to watch

You might be feeling frustrated at not being able to go out in the field at the moment or practise on the clayground. So we’ve taken a look around at a few films that bring the great outdoors into your sitting room whilst you’re stuck in due to COVID-19. We’ve…

trapping pests

New laws on trapping – keepers must tread carefully

It will soon be illegal to use 
a Fenn trap to catch a stoat, but where are we in our quest for its replacement? The list of traps we now have at our disposal is on the Government website for all to see. These traps have been through rigorous testing…

how to call a fox

Tracking foxes and how to stop them picking up YOUR scent

Patrick’s top tips for tracking foxes • Do your best to keep the wind in your face as that way you’ll be approaching from downwind • Avoid wearing anything perfumed, as it will signal your presence long before you arrive if it catches
 on the wind • Putting down smelly…

Using a pheasant crowner

Why every shooter needs a pheasant crowner

The very simple designs 
are often the best ones 
and this applies to a new game processor. I went 
to meet Dougie Bell, who invented 
the pheasant crowner, and John 
Relph of T. W. Relph and Sons Ltd, which markets it in conjunction with Solway Feeders. The shining machine, fixed…

dogs love an AGA

Why dogs love an AGA

Until recently I knew little about the extraordinary cast-iron cooker known as an AGA, but for the past three months I’ve lived in houses with AGA kitchens, so I’m now something of an expert. The AGA was invented in Sweden but since 1957 has been produced exclusively in the UK.…

Le Bab restaurant

Restaurant review: Le Bab

Shopping. Love it or hate it, sometimes you have to brace yourself and get on with it, especially in the run-up to Christmas. Personally I’m not a hobby shopper and one of the only things that makes a day of shopping bearable is the prospect of a delicious lunch. So…

beef cattle

How Extinction Rebellion is economical with the truth

London is now culturally another planet as far as this backwoodsman is concerned. Two lots of space cadets were there doing their level best to end life on planet Galloway: our elected representatives in the House of Commons and a bunch of misanthropes calling themselves Extinction Rebellion. I should have…