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Monday came and it was my long awaited day out with Matt Cole Leicestershire Pigeon Shooting. Paid for a fully guided day with Matt, as although I have been shooting for a few years I thought it would be good to go out with a professional and pick up a few tips.

 

Met Matt in a field, I was wearing camo etc, Matt looked like he was going to the pub even wearing a pair of loafers! . We trotted all around some of his perms covering a few miles and never saw a bird. When we did find a field with a few on we though OK lets give it a go - then found out he had no real birds to use on the spinner or decoys!

 

Gave it an hour and with no birds coming anywhere close I said that's it and gave up.

 

Matt was gracious enough to offer me another day but in the back of my mind I wonder whether he was saving a good field somewhere for the team from Malta flying in today or that he was just not to bothered on the day and had other things to do?

 

Either way I wont be driving that far again when I can shoot birds on my perms 15 mins from home and I think my approach is more professional than his was on the day.

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I have been fortunate that for most of my shooting life I have had a lot of ground to shoot over, I could have made a packet from people wanting pigeon shooting, although I have taken plenty of people shooting I would never dream of charging them.

Few years back I was talking to a young chap that had booked a day on the winter rape with two of his mates, they arranged to meet at a motorway junction and followed the chap to two fields of rape, the guy took their £25 each and said you can setup anywhere on these two fields and its been blue with pigeons, he then went on his way, needless to say they did not see a pigeon all day, but what gets me is the amount of young shooters waiting in the wings that are willing to pay for crop watching and the amount of people willing to rip them off.

 

I know there are some good guides out there but they are few and far between.

 

Don't pay for pigeon shooting go and find your own, with the right approach, there is still plenty of shooting to be had but it takes time and a lot of meeting and talking to the right people.

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Monday came and it was my long awaited day out with Matt Cole Leicestershire Pigeon Shooting. Paid for a fully guided day with Matt, as although I have been shooting for a few years I thought it would be good to go out with a professional and pick up a few tips.

 

Met Matt in a field, I was wearing camo etc, Matt looked like he was going to the pub even wearing a pair of loafers! . We trotted all around some of his perms covering a few miles and never saw a bird. When we did find a field with a few on we though OK lets give it a go - then found out he had no real birds to use on the spinner or decoys!

 

Gave it an hour and with no birds coming anywhere close I said that's it and gave up.

 

Matt was gracious enough to offer me another day but in the back of my mind I wonder whether he was saving a good field somewhere for the team from Malta flying in today or that he was just not to bothered on the day and had other things to do?

 

Either way I wont be driving that far again when I can shoot birds on my perms 15 mins from home and I think my approach is more professional than his was on the day.

hello, i think you paid for a fully guided conman

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I have been fortunate that for most of my shooting life I have had a lot of ground to shoot over, I could have made a packet from people wanting pigeon shooting, although I have taken plenty of people shooting I would never dream of charging them.

Few years back I was talking to a young chap that had booked a day on the winter rape with two of his mates, they arranged to meet at a motorway junction and followed the chap to two fields of rape, the guy took their £25 each and said you can setup anywhere on these two fields and its been blue with pigeons, he then went on his way, needless to say they did not see a pigeon all day, but what gets me is the amount of young shooters waiting in the wings that are willing to pay for crop watching and the amount of people willing to rip them off.

 

I know there are some good guides out there but they are few and far between.

 

Don't pay for pigeon shooting go and find your own, with the right approach, there is still plenty of shooting to be had but it takes time and a lot of meeting and talking to the right people.

Wise words.

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hello, i think you paid for a fully guided conman

I don't want to comment as I know 'of' this chap, he's local to me and has HUGE swathes of land around here.

 

I hear good things and I hear terrible reports, he must be doing alright to be pulling Europeans in to shoot.

 

He's got a website, he's open and honest with what he does.

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I often wonder what credentials do you need to be classed as a professional pigeon shooter ? , all the pigeon shooters I know would hate the thought of being classed as a professional , all are very keen amateurs who never stop learning .

 

I would say the op was ripped off as the ( pro ) should of weighed up where to go before the paying guest got there , if you are charging people to shoot pigeons you should at least have a lot of land that hold pigeons and invite them when there is plenty of opportunities like now , with new stubbles coming along each day and maybe old ones left alone till the paying gun arrives . plus having a plan A , or B and even C if nessasary .

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Many members have posted good reports of "guided" pigeon shooting days and a few have not been so lucky.

It can be unfortunate if the birds don't play the game, but to be offered a free "try again" day seems fair to me.

I don't think its fair to condemn a Guide on their choice of footwear. :)

 

For shooters who haven't got the time to look for shooting permissions, or do reconnaissance, then a guided day can be the answer.

Its not much different from guided wildfowling, deer stalking, game fishing, or even barbel and carp fishing (yes, honestly).

You pays your money and takes your chances, but where wild creatures are involved nothing can be guaranteed.

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I worry when I am taking out friends who know exactly what the score is with pigeon shooting. Sometimes they just do not come out to play.

 

These 'professionals' must have either nerves of steel or no conscience when it comes to a day which disappoints a paying guest.

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I worry when I am taking out friends who know exactly what the score is with pigeon shooting. Sometimes they just do not come out to play.

 

These 'professionals' must have either nerves of steel or no conscience when it comes to a day which disappoints a paying guest.

He has nerves of steel...

 

He's 'very' local to me.

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Malta !!!! is that where they shoot anything with wings,

Hi oldpigeonpopper.. before making such a statement why dont you stop followong Chris Packham for a while and whenever you want we can sit together for a beer and i will tell all you want to know about hunting in Malta. You will realise how lucky you are to be in such a tolerant country such as the UK..

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Having been a brick layer most of my working life , I have got a good idea what hard work is , but when I was asked by the estate manager if I could take four Frenchmen pigeon shooting for four days , in comparison laying bricks seemed a doddle compared with the amount of work involved trying to find enough pigeons for four people for four days .

 

First I was given three dates and was asked what dates in my opinion would be the best , the first was the last week of June , mid July or the last week in July , June would be to early , mid July I would have rely on laid barley whereas the last week in July the harvest should have started so there should be some barley stubble to go on and maybe the Beans might be getting near shootable.

 

So the end of July it was , for two days before they came I spent riding around the estate looking at likely places to put up two hides holding two people , I found two stubble fields for the first day , first I had to see the people living in the nearby converted barn to tell them two people will be shooting on the field next to there house and hopefully not towards it , I gave the lady my phone number and told her to ring me if they were shooting towards there property . next I had to see the tenant farmer to make sure the bales were going to be left on there on the day they were shooting .

 

This went on for four days and I used over £80 worth of Petrol , my day started at 8am and with the help of another boy who is slightly disabled , we went and put the hides up and decoys out , then after a cuppa we went up the hall to meet the French guys at 10am , they then followed us in one motor to the first hide , drop off they gear which was guns , cartridges food and beer. then moved a mile or so to drop off the other two . all of them had my number and if we didn't hear from them we would be back at 5pm to clear up and make the same arrangements for the next day , after that it was going home for a 7.30 meal.

 

We filled our day in by looking around and try finding a few pigeons for the next day and again seeing the different people who could put a spanner in the works , the weather was on our side as we didn't have any rain during the daylight hours .

 

By the fourth day I was cream crackered , and wasn't sorry when we cleared them up for the last time , a few pound notes crossed our palm and they gave me the pigeons which was just over 300 , it seemed a lot but it only worked out just over 75 each day and even though I worked my socks off and done my best I didn't know weather they expected more, or if it was more than expected as the only French I knew was swear words :yes:

 

Would I do it again ? , certainly not for four days and with four people , two people for a day and who can speak English at this time of the year then yes I would .

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I might be biased from personal experience and that of my friends as not having access to shooting land we have to resort to 'professional' guides or anyone who would set us up on a field with the opportunity of having a go at pigeon. Woth ups and downs, out of 3 guides experienced in essex, oxfordshire and Matt in Leicestershire I think Matt was always the preferred option. While he might not be the most organised person with decoying gear (some battries not fully charged and all equipment ontop of each other in the truck) he always makes his best to put people on the best field to shoot and when doesnt work out either offer another day or other quarry therefore increasing the odds of having a good day out.

A friend of mine been up with a guide in oxfordshire meant to be one of the best and been doing it for years for 4 days paying 1000 pounds (250/day and not 25 mentioned above) and blanked on 2 of days!

Whilst i now have my own little perms, i wouldnt have a problem recommending Matt.

Guides work well when time and opportunity are absent or limited

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