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martinj

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  1. I go by appearance and my nose In the summer my nose tells me to change them more often, the old ones are left for the kites, they aren't too fussy.
  2. sometimes they have an agenda and you can't tempt them away from their planned route at all, occasionally they'll come in like lambs. Their behaviour can also change throughout the day, in the morning they don't decoy and in the afternoon they could be more easily tempted, I get the feeling they are more susceptible to the offer of an easy meal as it gets later in the day.
  3. Good point, I didn't tear any open but could feel a few grains, presumably barley in the one I did look at, let's say inconclusive.
  4. I went out around 22nd December, pushed about 200 birds off rape/barley stubble before setting up. Between 10am and 12-ish they came in from the direction they were pushed, in small groups. A few came from the opposite directions but not many. It was a dull day with not much (southerly) wind and it was all over by 12.30 If we had had a clear day with a breeze it would probably have lasted a bit longer. My bag was 36 and a mate shot 24 a mile away. Have a good day
  5. OSR was a disaster on my permission last year, the excuse given was the ban on Neonicotinoid insecticide which has allowed Flea Beetle to reach epidemic proportions. They don't plan to plant any more in the near future. Neonics are bad for bees so the (Neonics ) have to go.
  6. Thanks JDog, I wasn't sure if the target was Rape or the Barley stubble that it was planted in.
  7. good deal, I paid £56 less than a week ago
  8. Again I received an offer of a day's pigeon shooting In Hampshire just before Christmas, two of us would be shooting and my friend "the guide" would be pottering around doing a bit of maintenance locally. We were to meet Michael, the other shooter, at 9:00am near his allotted area, when we arrived there were a couple of copses surrounding stubble fields plus adjoining hedgerows all adorned with pigeons in the tree tops. The chosen spot was a line of telegraph poles surrounded by a game crop in the middle of a large field on high ground, it was a fairly still day with a gentle breeze coming from the south. The hide was built at the base of a telegraph pole, 300 or so pigeons were walked off - decoys were a whirly and maybe 20 dead birds, some on cradles to make them stand out, no horseshoe or fancy pattern, just a natural looking group. Michael was told not to let pigeons settle in the copses and hedgerows as they would become a greater attraction than the decoys, he was to wave a sack around and if that didn't work fire a shot. My spot was a couple of miles away, it was a field of stubble with sparse OSR a few inches tall, it didn't look that good at first but as we approached in the vehicle around 200 pigeons flew off, my setup was on the edge of the field with my back to a hedge near a sitty tree and looking north - a pigeon magnet and 11 birds were all I was given. I had to look out for birds landing in a far off copse and fire a shot if it became a distraction for the pigeons (which I did several times.) It was about 10am when I was left to it, a few pigeons passed wide and I wasted a few shots before I started to connect, they were coming from the direction the main flock had been pushed to when we arrived. As the number of decoys built up the pigeons got bolder and it became a bit easier. Things were going well until 12am when it tailed off noticeably and I was getting around one target every 15 minutes. At 2pm it was decidedly gloomy, the birds had stopped coming and I could see headlights on the cars on a distant road, I called and said I was ready to quit when convenient. The final tally was - me 36 and Michael 24 which was a good day considering it was probably the shortest day of the year.
  9. I think they do it because they can - then think up a reason why we should use it and pay for the privilege. Copper might have lubricating properties but so has lead, copper might be harder than lead but hardly in the thicknesses they apply. Lead is poisonous but so is Copper - copper sulphate was used for killing moss and algae, it's not good for plants full stop. Remind me again why I should be using it?
  10. this sounds like a typical reaction to pigeons eating beech masts -- it usually happens in a "beech mast year" which this isn't, not around here (Hants) anyway, if you have good crops of beech masts round your way that's your answer, its the right time of year for it. I don't know why this happens but it is thought that a reaction to the beech masts causes their throats to close up and they starve.
  11. I think the sentence is OK but because the cartridges will be plural BUT for the hard of understanding read on There was an accompanying letter recommending that I keep a fired cartridge from each barrel
  12. To be honest, and I don't know if anyone else has noticed this, once the Gortex or whatever waterproof layer you have is gone it doesn't matter what you put on your boots or waxed coat, they will leak. I have had many pairs of walking boots (not cheap ones) all of which leaked, some sooner, some later. You can rub in your waxes and potions but that will just last half an hour in wet grass or whatever, The same for Barbour/waxed jackets, I have a Barbour jacket which I re-wax, it looks pristine but after half an hour of heavy rain will start leaking . . . . purely from my own (and wife's) experience.
  13. Congratulations, if I give him my bank details do you think he can do the same for me?
  14. what LB said, I use a hot air gun (carefully) on my boots and barbour. If the layers are too thick you can wipe off the surplus while it is melted
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