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Which weather is best?

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Hi Guys, 

I am new to this forum and new to pigeon shooting, so excuse my nieve questions!  I just wanted to know what weather conditions do you find best for pigeon shooting?  I was out in Surrey on the weekend on a field of newly sown rapeseed, however, I didn't get anything and only saw a dozen or so birds throughout the morning.  The weather was cold, overcast and blustery with light drizzle turning to rain (perfect for Ducks!)

I didnt help that I put the wings to my enforcer flying decoys on incorrectly!

Anyhow, despite the blank it was great to be out, and all part of the learning!

So, my question is - what are the best weather conditions you find to get the birds moving and coming to your decoys?

Thanks in advance,



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I prefer shooting in dry conditions with only a light wind. Pigeons will normally feed in any weather conditions.

I would have thought your issue was no birds using the field you were on. You will not shoot pigeons if they are not coming to your field. Reconnaissance is important.

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3 hours ago, Trenta said:

Unfortunately, I am not spoilt with choice when it comes to shooting venues, and that is all the permission I have.  Guess I will have to get used to pleasant days out in the field.  What time of year do they head to the rapeseed?

The seed itself is shot over just after harvest which is normally at the end of July to the beginning of August , this year was slightly early due to the long hot summer and it might vary a little on depending where in the country you live .

As for your rape field(s) , by all means keep a eye on it , but as far as shooting pigeons , dont expect to shoot any till around Christmas time and even then it might be a bit early , all down to the amount of pigeons in your area and what other food is available at the time . 

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Wind direction
Wind direction will also determine where we set up on any given field, so it pays to know what the prevailing wind direction is (generally southwest in this part of the country) and then being aware of a different wind will be beneficial.
I remember sharing a day on peas with the great pigeon fanatic, Will Garfit. A large field of peas had been badly hit all along one side, the flighting birds arriving from behind the hedge line, to sideslip into the prevailing wind to land. It was going to be awkward, to say the least, but with no urgency to tackle the situation, we decided to monitor the weather to see if any change of wind direction was likely. Sure enough, there was a day coming up where the wind picked up and veered north. This had the effect of pushing the flight line into the field from where they turned upwind into the pattern. We set up either side of a prominent oak, shooting 350!


Dry and cloudy
 We need the weather to be dry, ideally with a bit of cloud cover, so neither you nor the pigeons are blinded by the sun. Most of the books I have read advocate trying to set up with the sun behind you, the theory being that the birds will not spot you getting up to shoot if the sun is in their eyes. This ignores the fact that if they can’t see you, there is every chance they can’t see the decoys either! For me, the ideal situation is where approaching birds have the sun behind them, meaning the decoys show up like beacons. I generally have no problem organizing the hide so that I keep out of the sun, keeping still as pigeons approach, and wearing sunglasses when appropriate.


source: https://www.shootinguk.co.uk


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  • 2 months later...
21 minutes ago, Lloyd90 said:

When you say this what do you normally do to recon a field or spot? 

See it the week before? The day before? The hour before? 

Depending on what crop or time of year, I may check certain fields at different times of the day. I will see what spots they are favouring and from where they are coming from.

I may check (crop dependent) what food is left on a particular field - no food left will probably mean no pigeons, even when the field was blue a couple of days before.

This only scratches the surface, but you get the idea. The more you are around where the pigeons are, the more you will learn their habits.

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21 minutes ago, wymberley said:

Ever seen a pigeon with muddy feet? If you're in a field where you're picking up a lot of mud of your boots you may as well go elsewhere as you'll be on your own. You may not mind, but the birds don't like it and won't settle.

Not always true but agreed pigeon don’t like getting their feet muddy.

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My ideal day is a moderate wind , hazey sun and if possible with the wind from right to left. The birds would be side on and not looking directly at me as they approach, the decoys would show up well and the birds would not be blinded by a strong sun.

With respect to when you shoot, view the field are the birds down feeding hard? No birds, no shooting. My rule of thumb is you should be able to shoot half of the birds feeding on the field i.e. 200 feeding ,100 bird bag.

Remember we are all pigeon " Experts " 

Definition of an " Expert". A drip under pressure!!!!!!

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