I joined Jdog earlier today, a few minutes in the car and we were suddenly in the middle of the Wolds. And what beautiful Wolds they were today. Not a cloud in the sky and a partial moon visible.
We set up at the bottom of a rather large rape field, in the far end was a good dip and a thick hedgerow. Behind it was another field of rape as well as bean stubble leading to a cover drop and a large wood much higher up than us that spanned the width of the two fields, some 800 yards long easily.
Jdog assured me he had seen birds every day at 1030 on the dot; piling into the field and stripping it bear. Having seen some rather large flocks flying over exactly that spot and from looking at the devastation in that little corner I had no reason to doubt him. The birds would be sheltered from the cold north wind that was blowing today so it made sense.
We set up and had a rotary some 45 yards out and up wind, a mixed pattern a touch closer with us hidden away in the hedge in 2 separate hides, from the rotary you couldn't see either of us, then we waited.
Now considering we had seen somewhere near 100 birds flying over in the short period we watched and confirmed Jdog's observations; this was odd to say the least.
The first bird came into the pattern from my left, it was high, really high, probably some 50 to 60 yards up. She closed her wings and banked round from my 11 o'clock to come in from behind us at a rate of knots. I dropped it at 45 yards out as it quartered from my left to right heading straight for the rotary. The second did something similar and met the same fate which made "the dog" remark I was on form today. He was right. I was, and so it turned out was he.
A large flock of some 200 odd birds came in from behind. I spotted them and called out to warn my companion. Ever the gent "You shoot first" he said. So I held off, then a little longer, they were nearly on top of us now. All of them coming into the pattern. Far to many really. I open up and dropped one and then missed two more as they scattered in all directions. Jdog did similar.
The remaining birds that came in all came in from a great height, many more flew over far higher than we could shoot them. On occasion one would present a target with JDog dropping a rather excellent bird that I wouldn't have attempted.
We didn't shot many in the following couple of hours however those we did shoot were all very sporting, I dare say the shoot taking place in the wood behind us would have paid good money for.