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DumfriesshireDucks

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  1. Thanks all. Really appreciate the advice. Lots of useful stuff. The pin that separates the bottom clay from the stack was taking a chip out of the clays. I got that sorted after a phone call from Bowman - very helpful guys. Clays still breaking though. I suspect the clays themselves are the main issue. Bowman use Laporte so I'm going to get a box of those and see how I get on. I'll get there in the end I'm sure.
  2. After many years of mucking about with a manual trap, I decided it was time to fork out for an automatic (a Bowman Supermatch One - picture below). Frustratingly, about 75% of the targets are breaking upon being launched. Is this usually due to the targets being fractured because of the boxes being handled roughly while they're being shipped? When opening the boxes, a few targets were broken but others looked fine. They are Nasta targets, environmentally friendly in theory, which I believe can make them weaker than regular "non eco" ones. Alternatively, is there anything that could be wrong with trap itself which is causing the targets to break? It all looks fine to the novice eye. I suspect that if the trap were at fault, every target would break but at the same time, it's hard to believe that 75% of them are broken due to them not being shipped carefully enough. Just wondered, if anybody who knows about these things has any thoughts? Thanks
  3. Evening all, For an article I am writing I am looking for some testimonials about shooting in Hungary? I was wondering if anyone has been and how they got on? Thanks
  4. Thanks all. Very useful info. I think I'll get some aquatic roundup and crack before it takes over and I lose my margins.
  5. About a year ago exactly I dug a new flighting pond. The four evenings I've had on it so far have been brilliant. Ranging all the way from the first outing when we shot 15, to a complete blank under the full moon a few weeks ago. The sides of the pond have naturalised very quickly and it looks as though it's been there for decades. Irritatingly, though, two of the sides now have too much grass and reeds at the water's edge, bringing the margins in as much a three or four feet in some places. Is there an intelligent way of getting rid of some of the greenery or is it just a case of getting the waders on every couple of weeks and rolling my sleeves up? Thanks
  6. Plenty of ducks do come in after I feed. I'm lucky in that it is very much an evening pond. I almost never see anything on it during the day or in the morning - they must leave very early. What I meant though is will the same ducks I put off it at say six or seven PM, come back later on after I'm in my hide or is it worth shooting them as they get off the pond?
  7. When I arrive at my pond to feed, which is most often between 6 and 7 in the evening, usually 7 to 15 ducks fly off. I am wondering if, when the season finally starts, I should stalk in and try and bag a few as they take off, or leave them to go, settle down for the flight, and hope they return, possibly bringing more with them. Thanks in advance for any advice and have a great season.
  8. Thanks for all the advice. I'll be near Glenborrodale so a number for Titch Maclachlan would be very helpful Andra. I'll let you know how I get on. Very much looking forward to it.
  9. I'm going up to Ardnamurchan in the West Highlands for a couple of days in mid-September. A bit of googling suggests there's quite a lot of geese up there so I'm planning on taking my gun with me. Has anybody done any wildfowling up there and are there any guides worth getting in touch with? It also appears that there's a Kilchoan shooting club but I can't find much about them. Thanks in advance for any advice
  10. As I was wandering around the margins of my pond today, throwing a few handfuls of barley down, a duck flew out to my right through the ryelock and a clutch of about 12 ducklings took off chirping across the pond. Unfortunately the duck seemed to injure herself on the fence and ran around the field for 30 seconds or so, struggling to get off the ground, before seemingly recovering and flying back over the fence onto the water. I hope she's ok. I wonder if anybody has any thoughts on carrying on going down to feed the pond while the ducklings are there - should I be leaving it undisturbed? I'm only feeding it at the moment because it was dug at the beginning of October and I would like to get a good head of ducks visiting regularly before winter rolls round again and the fields start flooding, offering other inviting places for them to feed. I would also like to know what the consensus is on geese on flighting ponds. There are usually a couple of Canadas on mine which hang around when I'm feeding. Is there a possibility they could hoover up all the barley before any ducks flight in at dusk? Thanks for any advice in advance.
  11. Fingers crossed. You always hear stories of people building ponds that ducks just don't take to but I doubt that will happen as we are about half a kilometre from a river and my splash a few fields over draws in loads of ducks. Every other pond in the area always draws them in, in good numbers too. It's shelves pretty gently away from the banks and the islands. It's probably 1.5ft at its deepest point but the margins are about 2 to 8 inches.
  12. Hi all, I just thought I'd send some pictures to show you how it turned out. Digging started last Monday and the final tweaking concluded yesterday. I'm pretty happy with it. It will take a bit of time for the spoil to bed down and the reeds to start growing again. I've started feeding it already. I probably won't shoot it at all this season. Perhaps once late on in the season if there's a big number coming in. Any thoughts on how long it takes for ducks to find a new pond? Patrick
  13. Cheers Scotslad. You certainly know your stuff. I'm seeing the driver tomorrow, so I'll map out a plan tonight and he'll hopefully get digging next week. I'm just going to take the spoil away from the pond into the field. I'll post some pictures when it's done. You're right about Dumfriesshire and ducks - it's amazing how many you can get coming in on a tiny body of water. It makes up for the lack of pigeon shooting we have anyway.
  14. Thanks all for the advice. I'm hoping it will be fine to run the edge of the pond in line with the fence - not with an entirely regular shore line but as you say Scotslad, it isn't big enough to start making little sheltered bays or anything like that. I'm going to try and maximise the water area - is grass space important or would birds be happy to graze the grass beyond the fence? There's a sort of natural raised rocky area so I'll probably keep that as an island and then build another in a cross shape. I plan to position butts at the bottom of the hedge as birds should come in towards the hedge, in accordance with the wind, so shooting in the direction of the fence over the pond. And yes, Henry, about 700 metres from a decent little river. There's a lot of ponds within a kilometre and a few larger lochs nearby too. So I'm hoping it works out well. Increasingly I'm thinking it's a bit of a lottery when building flighting ponds. Who knows if the ducks will or won't take to it but fingers cross it will provide a bit of sport!
  15. Hi all, After about two years of procrastination, I have finally got a fence up and cleared the area where I am going to get a pond dug out. The man with the digger has been to see the area and thinks that getting it to hold water will be fairly straightforward - a burn runs beneath the trees down the side of the area - it will be diverted. I wonder if any of you have any thoughts on the pond's construction, in terms of shape, depth and the number of islands I should include? I'm thinking two. There is a splash about two fields away that fills up in the winter. It draws in a good number of teal and some mallard but I would like something more permanent that I can feed year round and hopefully draw in more birds. Do you think there's any chance that geese will come in too? Many thanks for your insight.
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