Cavalier King Charles spaniel

Is a cavalier King Charles spaniel a gundog at heart?

I’ve always had a sneaking suspicion that inside many a cavalier King Charles spaniel there’s a cocker spaniel trying to get out. So I wasn’t really surprised when I read the following story sent to me by Debbie Grounds in response for my request for stories of 
non-gundog breeds that…

biodiversity from shooting

Shooters need to try harder to improve biodiversity credentials

Shooting is good for conservation, right? Yes it is, and if I were not convinced of that, I would not still be part of the GWCT advisory service. Helping shoots to deliver better conservation and biodiversity from shooting is what drives me after almost 40 years in this business. But…

Rizzini RB Regal 12-bore

Rizzini RB Regal 12-bore reviewed by Shooting Times magazine

The test gun this month is the Rizzini RB Regal 12-bore with 30in barrels — previously only available on special order. (RB stands for round body.) We tend to see 20-bore Rizzinis at the shooting school fairly frequently, and the occasional 16, but less so the 12-bore. So it will…

British Shooting Show

Why you should go to the Great British Shooting Show this year

A success story – the Great British Shooting Show It is no secret that running shows and game fairs, in the shooting sector, is a difficult thing to get right. Over the past 20 years, a number of events have struggled and sadly a few have closed. However, the Great…

Shooter with single-barrelled shotgun

One barrel is all you need

A single-shot, single-barrelled shotgun is not popular these days. The guns are looked down upon as somehow ‘less than’. When I began my shooting life under my father’s instruction, I was as excited as any 14-year-old could be. I had completed my three-year apprenticeship of various gun-, dog- and bird-related…

Eco Charger quad bike

Eco Charger Eliminator 2 quad bike on test

As someone who has admired Elon Musk’s Tesla cars from afar, I was delighted and a little excited to be offered the use of the new fully electric Eco Charger quad bike for a week to field test for Shooting Times. Things are moving on as far as the use…

grilled venison on skewers recipe

Grilled venison on skewers – a healthy and light recipe

I have recently discovered a new ingredient, pul biber, which has the perfect balance of chilli and spice. Originating in Turkey, along with the kebab, it has a fruity, rich perfume and makes an ideal seasoning for venison. Also known as Aleppo pepper or piment d’Alept, it is available from…

cocker spaniel with pheasant

We’re all cocker hoop

If you were planning to buy a puppy to train as a rough-shooting and beating dog, which would you get, a springer or cocker? It’s a question I was asked recently by a reader. My correspondent added that he had never owned a dog before and that it would be…

Shooting on beaters day

Beaters’ day – time to get back to basics

Top tips to do yourself proud on beaters’ day Get your shooting kit ready the night before Practise mounting in the mirror 10 times Count 10 breaths in and out before the drive starts Point your leading foot where you’re going to shoot the bird Don’t lift your head off…

smoked pheasant recipe

A recipe for smoked pheasant

I like the combination of the smoky pheasant breast with the sweet and tangy roasted squash, while the pickled cabbage lifts it up and the green sauce stops it being too rich or flat. The magic of this smoked pheasant recipe is curing and smoking the pheasant breast to produce…

Beretta 694

Beretta 694 – for competitions and high birds

Normally when a new product is going to hit the market you get the pre-launch ‘coming soon’ marketing. There’s no such approach with the new Beretta 694 — it’s as if Beretta has been running a black ops mission to design a new clay gun. The new gun is aimed…


Staggering ignorance

Deer management, 
an activity undertaken quietly and in solitude, enjoyed — or perhaps more accurately endured — a brief moment of national attention here in Ireland. An incident in Kerry raised questions regarding the management of red deer in the county. In late October a red stag was observed by…

duck breeds

Can you id that duck?

Identifying different duck breeds The question “What’s that one then?” should never be heard from the person who shot a bird, so knowing what the odd unusual duck looks and sounds like is a real benefit at flight. So, too, is knowing what to expect, so you don’t pass up…

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.…

cocker spaniel

Should there be random DNA tests for cocker spaniels?

You may recall sprockergate, the scandal that shook the cocker trialling world a couple of years ago. What brought the story into the tabloids was the accusation that HM The Queen owned a dog, competing in cocker trials, that was allegedly a sprocker (English springer and cocker cross). A sprocker…