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Nmb

Quarrybrae syndicate shoot

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Hello everyone.

 

We had our 7th formal day of the season on the 7th of January and the mild weather continued on from last year to make for a difficult days shooting.

 

First drive would be Hattonburn for my team and after seeing lots of birds there recently I was hopeful of a good start. Unfortunately the birds are getting wise to our beating manoeuvres and decided to fly the opposite way from the guns and across a main road to safety.

It isn't pleasant getting outsmarted by pheasants however I have a cunning plan for next shoot so watch this space!

 

Next up was Kilduthie which has been consistent all season and after a poor start to the day I hoped it would again provide some good sport. As usual the small block of willows were blanked in first which provided some very good flying birds for the low numbered pegs. It was then on to the wood itself and again there were some challenging birds which managed to beat the line and survive for another day.

 

After this it was the Containerwood for my team and unfortunately I had drawn peg 8 which is a fairly poor one. Today however it was the hot peg with one cock pheasant flying my way. After a sloppy first barrel miss I killed it cleanly with the second. This was one of only 4 pheasants flushed and the only one shot!

 

After an extended elevenses it was off to the Ruinwood which had a few Partridge and pheasants however things were really quiet which we found surprising given the 3 week rest from the last shoot. I also failed to connect with a goose when a good 200-300 were flushed over the beaters before the drive had started!

 

I was a walking gun at the Willows for the 5th drive which meant I heard the shooting without seeing very much happening. I didn't get a shot here so can't really say much about the drive however judging by the shots fired we should have had more than 2 pheasants!

 

Last up was Matt Steeles and I was really hoping it would boost the bag. We had noticed a healthy number of birds here when feeding and after the first half of the drive had been done we flushed 10-15 birds of which 3 were shot. Again it wasn't really as good as we hoped but there is so much more to the day than pulling the trigger!

 

It wasn't a great day in terms of bag however it is almost the end of the season so time to start planning for the next one!

 

Total bag

 

12 Pheasants

1 partrodge

3 pigeons

1 Snipe

Edited by Nmb

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Hello everyone,

 

A couple of us decided to try some decoying last Wednesday as there had been lots of crows and pigeons feeding around the shoot.

 

With this in mind we setup a hide near the Sunflower crop underneath a sitty tree. We put out about 30 pigeon decoys including a flapper and rotary. We also put out 24 crow decoys and a flapper to the side of the pigeons in the hope of attracting both species!

 

After we had set up and went back in to the hide I thought we would have to wait and let things settle for a while however within 5 minutes pigeons were committing to the pattern and the shot count quickly rose!

We had 115 shots for 20 pigeons, 2 crows and a jackdaw so shooting must get better haha!

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Hello everyone.

 

We had our last formal shoot of the season last Saturday and after a few of us had been shooting next door the day before we were hoping to get a few more pheasants to test us again!

 

First up was Hattonburn which we tried in the opposite direction. We flushed a few birds however yet again they missed the line of guns.

 

Next up was Kilduthie for my team which proved to have a few more pheasants than Hattonburn . One was added to the bag along with a pigeon I managed to shoot early on in the drive.

 

The container wood and the Sunflower crop were the next two drives and continuing the theme of the day there was a lack of birds however richard had the misfortune of having two pheasants and a partridge fly over his peg whilst reloading his gun! A few birds had been shot which meant the game larder wasn't completely empty during elevenses!

 

We headed back to the far end of the shoot for the next two drives which were the willows and Matt Steeles. These proved to be the best two drives of the day with birds testing both sides of the line. As a bonus a woodcock was shot from the willows which was only the 2nd of the season.

 

Ruinwood and the Big pen would finish of the day and after only one pheasant was flushed from the Ruinwood it was nice to flush a few from the Big pen to end on a relative high.This area has been better than last season however it has been noted that our netted pens in the far end of the shoot seem to produce much better returns than the non netted pens in this area.

 

The duck pond was frozen over so it was back to the bothy to count the bag.

 

Total bag

14 pheasants

3 Pigeons

2 woodcock

Edited by Nmb

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Hello everyone.

 

Time for the last shoot reports of the year!

 

I was shooting at a beaters day for the last mini formal day on the 28th of January so can't really give much of a report however yet again mild weather and wily pheasants made for a tough day for the 4 a side teams and only a bag of 7 was achieved during the day.

A better flight was had with a frantic 20 minute spell providing 4 Mallard and 4 Teal.

 

Next up was a walk day around the shoot on the 31st which Harrie, Iain and myself attended.

Harrie would be late due to work commitments so Iain and myself left the bothy and headed to the-sunflower crop and it didn't take long to bag a partrdige and a pheasant. We noticed several hundred geese lifting and landing several fields over so we decided to focus our efforts on trying to get some geese!

I have never shot a goose before despite having a few chances so I wasn't feeling confident. We both crept up a slight rise in the field towards a dike which the geese were at the other side of. To our surprise we reached it without being spotted and after a quick shout on the radio we sprung up and flushed a sea of the huge birds.

I fired the first barrel and to my great surprise two birds fell stone dead to the ground! My shots pushed them towards Iain who managed a left and right so a great start to our day and heavy game bags!

We met with Harrie and headed to the Snipe bog to see if we could manage to add a fourth species to the bag. We flushed about 30-40 birds and managed to shoot 4 between us with Harrie shooting his first and second ever Snipe.

 

After this we did some of the partrodge drives like the Ruinwood which I bagged a left and right at partridge in, Jaffreys and L-wood. There were plenty of birds to shoot at and by the time we had returned to the bothy we had all used almost all our cartridges.

 

After lunch we did matt Steeles which produced a few pheasants and afterwards decided to finish for the day as the rain had soaked us through to the bone!

 

Being the 1st of February we were restricted to pheasants and pigeons.

we quickly bagged our first pheasant in the splash followed by another two in the Red Moss.

After this we walked the Ruinwood and gamecrop drives before doing the Containerwood before lunch. The amount of birds on show was impressive and we all had plenty of shooting and started wondering just how high the bag could go!

After lunch we did Matt Steeles, Kilduthie, Hattonburn and Bohill which all showed plenty of birds and provided a fantastic if slightly tiring end to the season!

 

Total bag for the two days

14 pheasants

8 partridge

4 Geese

4 Snipe

3 Pigeon

1 Woodcock

Edited by Nmb

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So that's it for another season!

our AGM is next Saturday so time to get the plans in motion for the 2017/18 season.

With some land tax laws coming into play it will be an interesting year for Scottish syndicates so fingers crossed things go well!

I'm planning on trying to do write ups of work days, social events and clay shoots etc so will try and give everyone an idea of how things are progressing.

Finally thanks to everyone who has read and replied to the thread!

Nick

Edited by Nmb

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Hello everyone!

It's that time of year again already!

We had our first day of the season on the 30th of September and as always it's that little bit more exciting looking out all the game shooting gear for its first outing mixed with nervousness when trying to fit into tweeds which haven't been worn since January!

Luckilly everything fitted (just) and I was able to breathe which would be necessary as undoubtably I would need to bellow at my over eager trio of dogs who shared my enthusiasm!

 

I went around the ground seeing where everything was and arrived at the bothy about 30 minutes earlier I was shocked to see everyone assembled and eager to begin so for the first time ever we were on our pegs for the intended time!

 

The incredibly wet weather has resulted in many crops still standing which is a real pain for us and more so the farmers however we all knew the circumstances and it was great being on the peg with the game gun and dogs regardless of the amount of game present.

 

My team would be beating jaffreys first which had to be done slightly differently due to a field of oats running alongside the wood. The guns would normally stand here however they were all pushed further round towards our main pheasant pen.

The partridges were in abundance however it was all too easy to spill out over the dike and into the standing crop, we kept going and provided the guns with some decent sport along with some very tasty looking pheasants which teased the line on their return to the safety of the big pen.

 

Next up my team would be standing for the ruin wood and again we would be driving it slightly differently. It is essentially a long narrow strip of pine trees which has a grassy open area running alongside it flanked by a hedge running down a gentle hill towards a old ruin situated at the bottom.

Looking from the ruin up the hill is a grass field on the left and a barley stubble on the right which also borders the big pen. Our idea was to beat from both ends and try and push the birds out the side where they would hopefully rise and curl back over the trees towards the pen.

The wind was perfect and some great sport was had and more than once I made a gun shape with my hand and pretended to shoot a stunning pheasant only to see much of the line doing something similar!

I had a nice fast partrdige make a break out the side of me and despite being rusty instinct kicked in and I folded it cleanly before fern my black lab retrieved it for me which was nice!

 

The next few drives - the L-wood, farmyard and jaffreys game crop were all fairly quiet so I hoped the last drive the Containerwood would end the day on a high.

Like many of the drives we decided to beat it in the opposite direction which in this case was towards the duck pond and our newest pheasant pen. It was a quiet start as the birds tended to run through the open grassy areas and also the pine trees however as they started to build up on the riser fence near the end of the drive it was clear the guns were going to get a big showing of pheasant and partrdige!

Over the next 10 minutes a steady stream of both species headed over the guns with plenty shooting being had a bumper pick up needed after I had blown my horn to signal the end of the drive.

 

It had been a tough day however the weather was good and we don't shoot in short sleeves up here often so everyone seemed content. We had a BBQ and a few drinks to round off the day.

 

Next up is our let day on the 14/10 so a lot of planning to go for that!

 

Total bag

18 red leg partridge

3 woodpigeon

Edited by Nmb

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Sounds like a good start considering the crop situation.

It's crazy how much barley is still standing around here..Alot of stalks with little to no grain left on them!

 

Here's hoping the weather is kind for this season!

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Sounds like a good start considering the crop situation.

It's crazy how much barley is still standing around here..Alot of stalks with little to no grain left on them!

Here's hoping the weather is kind for this season!

It has been a really tough time for everyone up here and as our shoot is on low ground the pens were struggling to cope with so much water!

Good day thanks for sharing .

 

Thanks. Hopefully many more good days to follow!

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Hello everyone!

last season was a bit of a disaster for my updates so apologies for not keeping upto date!

We had a average season with a similar number of pheasants shot however due to bulgy eye disease we lost almost half our partridge resulting in a poor return from them.

in terms of this year it looks like we may have gained another 1099 acres which would increase the shoots area to almost 2,600 acres!

With this in mind we are planning on putting down 1600 pheasants, 200 partridge and 50 duck which should hopefully result in some cracking sport!

Our first work party is on Saturday (weather permitting) so I plan to write up what we get up to and try and explain how and why we do various things.

 

Edited by Nmb

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Good evening everyone.

We have been subjected to some pretty extreme weather up here since my last update resulting in any thoughts of work parties being halted last weekend. Despite this we made sure that the warm woods were well fed as well as the outer areas to help all manner of birds through the cold snap.

Once the snow had started to melt there was a lot of flooding around the shoot however we decided to have a work party yesterday to remove a partridge pen from gamecrop and also make a start with some broom clearing at the Containerwood. 

Its amazing how quickly broom spreads and we noticed last season that birds were managing to take cover in a huge block that must be nearly an acre in size! It felt like an impossible task but its amazing how quickly the chainsaws and loppers cut through it all leaving rides big enough for straw to be spread and quad access. We still have a fair bit to get through but I'm sure it will be worth it in the end. All the cut branches will be used to thicken up the pen near the pond and also jaffreys wood which is pretty bare and cold.

We will be holding another work party this coming weekend with some more ride cutting and pen expansion work being carried out.

I have photos of work that has been done but I believe photobucket doesn't work now? any tips on how to upload pics would be welcome.

cheers

nick

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Hello everyone.

I was out today clearing broom and also making a bridge over a ditch. I was glad to see one Cock and 3 Hen Pheasants sunning themselves in the ride we cut on Saturday so hopefully this will be a popular spot for them in the future.

I'm still trying to get my photos uploaded but no luck so far!

Edited by Nmb

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Good morning!

Just a quick update.

I thought I had mentioned already but having been looking back at old photos from when I used to rear some birds myself I decided to give it another go!

Some eBay searching later I had bought myself a new incubator and a dozen grey partridge eggs!

i have been taking a photo diary of setting everything up and hope to be able to post it here but at the moment we are on day 12 of incubation and have 11/12 growing well( 1 was infertile and removed at first candling stage).

I have some pheasants and more grey partridge eggs ordered so will hopefully manage to rear some healthy strong birds!

I realise that the chances of the greys breeding are slim however it has to be worth a try and if nothing else it will be nice to hopefully see some in the quieter parts of the shoot. 

Cheers nick 

 

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Hello!

Quick update before our first shoot of the season which is in 3 weeks! 

We have had our pheasants for about 3 weeks now and in general it has been a good period weather wise and the pheasants seem to be thriving. We released an additional 600 pheasants on our new bit of ground and unfortunately despite having two huge pens the little ******* seem to be wandering out of pens and all over the stubbles which is a concern with so many birds of prey about!

we released 80 ducks however lost 64 in little over a week due to an otter however they seem to have either lost interest or the ducks are too large for them now.

we incubated some grey partridge and some various strains of pheasants as an experiment but will have to wait and see how they get on!

A job which Iv just started again is making a feeding map using google and Microsoft word. I get a laminated picture of every drive and mark on every feeder and storage bin plus feeding rides etc. We then make a rota so that all 10 main drives are fed weekly but the 12 or so smaller ones are checked every 3 weeks which  saves us all a bit of time when feeding as we only have to check 14 drives instead of 22! 

Anyway hope everyone has a good season and I'll do my best to keep this upto date!

 

 

Edited by Nmb

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Hello everyone.

Our first shoot of the season was last Saturday and despite being short on numbers I think everyone had a few shots for their day!

Obviously we want to get a decent bag however it is also useful seeing where the Pheasants are and to see how they are flying. The first part of the day was walking stubbles behind our meeting place at the old bothy followed by a walk through the Snipe bog and Sunflower strip which runs beside it. The only thing spotted in the stubbles was a startled Roe doe however we had more luck in the Snipe bog with 4 being flushed all of which will live to fly another day and between 15-20 pheasants and a few Partridge being flushed from the sunflowers. Just as I feared a blank from the first part of the day a woodie thought it could sneak past us however I managed to dispatch it with my second barrel!

Next up was the Ruinwood which I was confident would have plenty of birds to keep the guns on their toes and it was clear early on that this was the case. Traditionally we take the drive down the hill towards the old Ruin which gives the drive its name but on the Partridge day we take it up the hill with flaggers at the top pushing the partridges out the side and down a grassy hill to the waiting guns. Within the first 50 yards birds were starting to flush and almost all turned as we hoped giving the whole line shooting and giving the dogs an early season test of steadiness which I was surprised they all passed! This continued for the next 10 minutes and as I blew the horn at the end of the drive I was hoping to have atleast filled one tray of our new game storage racks!

After this it was time for Jaffreys another good Partridge drive however for whatever reason the Partridges were much further back in the drive than normal and managed to almost escape unscathed apart from one solitary partridge which Don shot. It was disappointing especially after such a success at the Ruinwood however that's shooting!

The last two drives were blanks however plenty of Pheasants were flushed in all the drives and it looks like with some careful drive rotations we could be in for a good season.

Last up was a duck drive for my side as the majority of us hadn't had a shot all day however that soon changed as some challenging ducks gave us all the opportunity to open our accounts for the season.

A couple of us braved the long wait for a flight at night and were rewarded with some quick teal and a few large groups of Mallard rounding off our day nicely.

 

Total bag

15 Partridge

8 Mallard

3 Pigeons

shots - 97

 

Duck flight

6 Mallard

2 Teal

 

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On 29/09/2018 at 17:02, Konnie said:

Well done sounds like a great day and you saw birds so that's all that can be expected

Thanks for the reply.

I went out today along with Ian who is a captain in the A team to peg out and have a look to see where the birds were.

The birds were plentiful and looking in good condition so hopefully we will get some good shooting and I'm eager to see how the new ground performs after a disaster with the two pens there (600 birds dissapeared over the first couple of days).

The drives will be as follows.

Ruinwood

jaffreys

sunflowers

Baldaroch (new ground)

kilduthie

matt steeles

Some of these drives have been pegged out different to the norm with the theory being that even if some of the birds don't fly over the pegs there should be enough to give us some shooting.

Anyway happy shooting everyone and hopefully I will have plenty of things to speak about after the shoot on Saturday!

Edited by Nmb

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Hello everyone.

Our 2nd shoot of the season was held on the 13th of October and due to the heavy rain from mid morning it made for a difficult day for guns and birds!

The day started when my dad, Tom and I met at 07:30 to dog in the birds as they left roost. There were plenty birds on the go and the weather seemed to be better than expected so maybe it would hold out for the day! 

First drive would be the Ruinwood for my team (B). As I mentioned previously we had decided to do this drive in the opposite direction up the hill.

unfortunately one of the neighbours had decided to cut a fallen tree at the bottom of the wood so a number of partridges had been spooked.

despite this everyone had shooting and many had their first bird of the season. I was pleased to see the guns picking only the well grown birds and leaving the ones with short tail feathers.

Next up was jafreys which had been disappointing on our first day however as the beaters lined up along the back of the drive it was clear that plenty of pheasants were in and around the game crop at the back of the wood. The idea here is birds are flushed from the gamecrop and fly over the wood and waiting guns towards their release pen.

unfortunately  many of the birds didn’t quite have the strength to get over the wood and instead dived low into it.

it was a shame as I would guess there were between 80-120 birds here however they will be there the next time!

It was whilst picking a shot duck from the pond after this drive the rain started and it would be with us for the rest of the day so the rain jackets were quickly zipped up and we went back to the Bothy for elevenses.

After a quick heat up it was off to the sunflower game crop which worked fairly well with several high pheasants testing the guns numbering 1-4.

Baldaroch one of the woods on our new ground was to be christened and upon approach to the plantstion I could see several pheasants scrambling for cover. As before many of the birds struggled to gain enough height to test the guns and many were left to land in the pen wood behind the guns.

the last two drives kilduthie and Matt steeled were similar in that many birds were present however having never been flushed and being soaked they just couldn’t get enough height to give the guns much shooting.

There were old birds that gave us some challenging shooting and it was noted that many knew what was happening and went over the beaters heads and to safety!

i think we were all glad to get back to the bothy for a cup of something hot and the opportunity to dry out in front of the fire!

Total bag

35 pheasants

10 partridges

2 Mallard duck

shots 128

Edited by Nmb

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Good afternoon everyone.

Our third shoot of the season was on the 27th of October and after all of us getting drenched on the previous outing we were all hoping for better weather this time!

After the success of driving the Ruinwood in reverse last time we decided to try it this way again. Unfortunately having been flushed twice already the Partridges decided to escape early as the guns and beaters approached their positions. Despite the setback we beat the wood slowly and a good show of pheasants and Partridge offered the guns some shooting.

Next up was the Containerwood which we were all sure would be well stocked with pheasants, the only issue being this would be first time through for the birds. I was number 8 and I was expecting to be more of a spectator than anything else however countless birds curled back meaning myself and the end gun Iain had plenty of shooting! At the end of the drive we had shot 22 Pheasants and a Jay which surprised us all as we felt we had left the huge majority to pass us. This drive will be much better next shoot I'm sure so will be interesting to see how the A team get on!

It was the Willows now and again it would be the first time through so we weren't sure what to expect. This is a hellish drive to beat and today was worse than usual as the willows were still clinging to their leaves. its quite a challenge keeping a good line and also covering the huge area with enough beaters to stop the birds running back but despite our best efforts a few gave us the slip! Despite this plenty birds were flushed and a well done to Daves son managing to  bag his first driven Pheasant!

Baldaroch was to be the last drive for lunch and the first chance for my team to shoot this new ground drive. Their was a decent show of birds and despite being a walking gun a couple of older birds flying back over the beaters gave me a couple of shots. Despite the disaster of almost 600 pheasant poults almost disappearing over night upon release there seems to be a few pheasants in the area and 6 were added to the cart.  

During the first two shoots Jaffreys hadn't really worked so we all hoped it would be third time lucky today! A fairly heavy sleet shower had started before we started and I think the birds must have been heading back to the woods from the gamecrop as there was a huge flush of 40-50 pheasants which despite looking pretty impressive meant we didn't add as many as we would have liked to the bag. There was some good shots and watching the guns struggling to decide which bird to shoot was pretty entertaining for the beaters!

Last drive of the day was Matt Steeles which is usually a pretty reliable drive. Today was no different with plenty birds testing the guns however they are still not quite flying as strong as they will after a couple more shoots.

Overall it was a great day with a huge amount of birds on the ground but I feel that our next day will be much better as some of the birds aren't quite there in terms of flying strength.

total bag

63 Pheasants

1 Partridge

2 Pigeon

1 Jay

189 shots

Edited by Nmb

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Hello everyone.

Our 4th shoot of the season will take place this Saturday and I should hopefully manage to get some video footage of the day to show you all and also some pictures.

Heading up to the shoot  tomorrow to drop off some turkey feed to get them fattened up for our shoot Xmas meal so will take some snaps of them and of some pheasants( if there’s any)!

Will also be pegging out on Friday as it makes things a lot easier come shoot day!

Drives for Saturday are

Containerwood- A 

Ruinwood- B

Sunflowers- A

Willows- B

Matts Broom- A

Jaffreys- B

swapped a couple of drives out from the last shoot to rest them and trying the Matts Broom drive for the first time since 2014 so will be interesting to see what happens!

 

Edited by Nmb

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