The truth about pigeon damage

Perhaps this is a good time to pause and ask a question: do we really need to shoot woodpigeons? If the general licence fiasco has reminded us of anything, it is that for pigeons to be controlled, they must be doing not just damage, but serious damage. 
So is this…

Millet

The best cover crops for the part-time keeper

Cover crops can do many things to enhance a shoot: Provide options for early-season drives when the woods might have too much leaf on the trees to push pheasants out Link areas of land where there are no natural transfer points such as hedges or ditches Give more options in…

pigeon shooting on spring drillings

Spring drillings and pigeon

It’s been an interesting start 
to pigeon shooting on spring drillings this year. Many counties seemed like they would never get going but then, with an abrupt change in weather conditions, some farms decided to bite the bullet and start drillings, in some cases up to two weeks early. It…

grouse or pigeon

Walked-up grouse or pigeon over stubbles?

Walked-up grouse by Ben Samuelson For the real shooting cognoscenti, there really isn’t anything quite like a day of walked-up grouse. Some people will talk enthusiastically about a big pheasant day in the West Country, or partridge over hedges in East Anglia. Giles will even be having a decent go below at pretending he’d rather be shooting…

harvest shooting

Harvest shooting time and the pigeon is easy

Shooting pigeon over stubbles is the pigeon shooter’s easy time of year. The weather is favourable; it’s easy to get to the exact spot where you want to shoot because often you can drive right to it. The short, cold days of shooting over winter rape seem a distant memory and it is the pigeon shooter’s real…

Failed rape

Which crops should you shoot over for big bags in late spring?

For many a pigeon shooter, once the spring drillings have been completed and have started to germinate, and pigeon interest in them disappears, there often follows the slowest period of pigeon shooting. I am fond of this time of year, however, because it is now that, as a pigeon shooter,…

tractor on spring drillings

Spring drillings and pigeons

Sport on spring drillings is a real change from chasing pigeon around winter crops, competing with hard weather and farmers’ pigeon scare tactics. There is something exciting about seeing the drills in action and shooting in mild conditions over a perfect carpet of dry soil. Pigeon decoying should become easier…

Pigeon Shooting

Pigeon shooting over beans

September is the month when the harvest comes to a close. All the farmers’ hard work is now inside and, as usual, the last crops to come off are winter and spring beans. Farmers in my area have not had a happy end to the harvest, not because of grain prices, but due to a change in the…

Pest Cotrol

Pest control on covercrops drillings

After a very early alarm call I was up and on the drillings setting the decoys up, in anticipation about what the morning pest control would bring. Shooting over the drilled crops gives me a rare chance to get stuck into our limited supply of pigeons. However, enticing both pigeons…

pigeon shooting

Peas and pigeon shooting

It has been a very strange — and disappointing — couple of months with regard to pigeon shooting. From the start of the year I was having a pigeon-shooting bonanza, with good numbers being shot over winter rape and birds decoying brilliantly. The trend continued into the spring drillings. I…

Pigeon shooting on winter rape

Pigeon shooting: Late drilling means Pete has a bonanza day on rape – and he reckons the crop, for once, will produce birds right through winter.

Pigeon shooting: Decoying over laid cereals

Pigeon shooting: Decoying over laid cereals: In the blink of an eye we’ve gone from looking forward to the spring drillings to being on the brink of pigeons turning their greedy beaks to laid cereals.

Are static decoys good when pigeon shooting patchy rape?

Pigeon shooting: What’s the best way of decoying pigeons coming to small bare patches in standing rape – do I use a rotary machine and, if so, should I place it away from the area where birds are trying to drop in?

I have trouble pigeon shooting over pea fields

I went pigeon shooting over some pea fields for the first time last year and did reasonably well but, considering the numbers of birds continually being drawn to them, feel I should have done a lot better.