Dogs hunting rabbits

Roughshooting – point and shoot

Is there ever a good time to try to “squeeze in” a little sport? I suppose it is all dependent on the outcome. If it turns out favourably, then yes. If not, the domestic repercussions can, on occasions, be great! On this particular day, with strong gusting winds on the…

walked-up woodcock

The right way to walk-up woodcock

For many people in this country, walked-up shooting or roughshooting is how we started. It is the grass roots of our sport and, until driven gameshooting became more accessible, it was the only form of shooting that many Guns would experience. I remember as a Young Shot walking in a line with…

Turkey hunting in Michigan

Turkey hunting on Beaver Island

With another quiet chirrup, Al drew the two large turkey toms ever closer. We’d got into position before dawn, in the dark and, having slouched against the tree for a few hours with the shotgun perched on my knee, I watched spellbound as these huge creatures strutted their way towards us. The larger of the two was in range,…

Off-road driving tips

Off-road driving: Tips for shooting parties

For a large number of those who go shooting, whether to beat, pick-up or actually point a gun, one of the great joys of our sport is that we get to use our 4x4s for off-road driving, the purpose for which they were designed. For 300 and something days a…

roughshooting

The wonder of rough-shooting

Nobody doubts shooting is more popular than it ever has been. It contributes a mind-blowing £2billion to the UK economy annually. And more than 600,000 people use their gun on a regular basis. That equates to one per cent of the country’s entire population. However, independent researchers believe the actual number…

Phil Spencer game shooting

Phil Spencer talks game shooting firsts, mentors and heroes

Shooting Gazette: What was your first shotgun? Phil Spencer: “My first gun was an AYA 28 bore which was my reward for passing my Common Entrance exam aged 13.” SG: Where was your first shoot day? PS: “Two years later, on our family farm near Canterbury in Kent. The bag…

woodcock

Call for restraint shooting woodcock

In an effort to protect the woodcock population, several countryside organisations, including the Scottish Gamekeepers Association, are following the recommendation of conservationists by asking shoots to schedule any shooting until at least after November’s full moon, which falls on Wednesday 25th November. This will allow the declining resident woodcock population…

pheasant selfie

Pheasant takes a selfie

Flytipping is a scourge of the countryside. To crack down on the illegal dumping of waste in County Durham, the council installed hidden CCTV at known hotspots. But when they checked the cameras they discovered a culprit unlikely to be brought in front of the beak. A curious pheasant had…

pheasant

Sixty pheasants slaughtered in gruesome attack

The birds were decapitated and their heads impaled on fence posts at the Wasing Estate on October 10 after the attackers used catapults to knock the pheasants from their perches in the middle of the night. The estate belongs to documentary maker Joshua Dugdale, who is Prime Minister David Cameron’s cousin.…

Shooting insurance cover

Shooting insurance: what are your options?

Game shots have a unique relationship with the weather. While others cower inside, a line of guns will happily stand in the pouring rain, the familiar smell of damp tweed curling into their nostrils as they wait for the birds to fly over. Yet fortitude is not always enough, and…

New gamebird figures challenge RSPB claims

New BASC research has challenged RSPB claims that the shooting industry releases 50million birds into the wild each year. Real figure closer to 34.9million The paper, Impacts of gamebird release, says the real figure lies closer to 34.9million birds and describes the significantly higher estimate as being “based on unreliable…

grouse butt

Government comes out in favour of grouse shooting

Dr Avery’s petition is founded on his premise that: “Grouse shooting for ‘sport’ depends on intensive habitat management which damages protected wildlife sites, increases water pollution, increases flood risk, increases greenhouse gas emissions and too often leads to the illegal killing of protected wildlife such as hen harriers.” The shooting…

The world’s smallest shoot?

Back in the 1970s I made a couple of life-changing decisions. I resigned from a secure job in banking to become a full-time writer, sold my house in suburbia and moved with my wife and four children to live in a remote area of the Shropshire-Welsh border hills. Friends told…

beaters and pickers up

Cancelled grouse shooting “will hit rural businesses”

Many rural workers could be out of a job this season as up to 70 per cent of grouse shooting days face cancellation in some regions of the country, suggested the Moorland Association (MA) last week. Prolonged extreme weather conditions, described by the MA as “the worst breeding conditions in…

Glen Clova

Local grouse communities caught in the crossfire

The grouse shooting season is now in full swing – following the annual war of words between the anti-shooting lobby and country sports enthusiasts that it always ignites. However Scottish locals who live and work alongside the grouse moors and depend upon the sport for their livelihoods take a more…

Warter Priory shoot

Top 10 game shoots in Yorkshire

The vast county of Yorkshire with its varied landscape contains hundreds of good shoots so this list represents just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to driven shooting in the white rose county. Bolton Abbey This 30,000-acre plus sporting playground on the banks of the Wharfe is owned…

chef Tom Kitchen

Chefs and moor workers give public a taste for wild game

“Our group is about showing working life on the moors and at this time of the year, all the estate workers are really busy round-the-clock getting ready for the grouse season,” said Helen Savage, Co-Ordinator of the Lammermuirs Moorland Group. Fresh game is already supplied to the restaurants of Michelin…

grouse butt

It won’t be a vintage year for red grouse

Grouse moor keepers and sporting agents across England and Scotland are warning that this year’s grouse shooting season will be a disappointing one thanks to the bad weather that hit the first half of the hatching period earlier in the year. Keepers are reporting reduced covey sizes — in some…

grouse shooting infographic

BASC highlights “Glorious Twelve” benefits of grouse shooting

BASC has released an infographic pictured here to illustrate the benefits of grouse shooting. Chairman of BASC’s Gameshooting and Gamekeeping Committee Ian Grindy said heather moorland managed for grouse benefits conservation and wildlife. He said “BASC is highlighting the 12 benefits of grouse shooting so that people can make their…