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Seeing big numbers on rape

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Well the weather this week seems to have put the pigeons onto the rape in biggish numbers, seeing 1000+ on some fields and feeding hard, Monday shot 82 and today (Thursday) on the same field 78, the wind was bitterly cold although it was nice being out and it was surprising how well the fields have dried out, nice easy walking. :)

Anyone else seeing similar pigeon movement?

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The only trouble with big numbers is the farmers also spots them and out come the gas guns, and why is it they always put them in the best place to decoy the pigeons? Then the bloody pigeon start dropping in and feeding within 50 yards of the lane where there’s nowhere to setup.

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Up until last weekend the rape have been virtually untouched by pigeons , some fields are still eighteen inches high after very little frost to reduce the height and now the sugar beet campaign is at its peak the pigeons I have seen have been on beet tops .

I agree with how the fields soon dry out now the wind is turning cold and coming from the East , this year is following the trend of other years where very few pigeons are shot on rape this side of Christmas .

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I have seen a few on the rape in my part of the world over the past 10 days, however none of the birds I have shot have had rape  in their crops. Mostly Hawes and some grain from feed rides and hoppers.

 

JDog and I had a little foray this evening and the 3 birds we shot were stuffed full of ivy berries. An hour or so earlier we did spy around 600 tucked out of the wind in a corner of rape but it was a bit late in the day to set up and decoy.

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Large stream of pigeon coming off the roost north of Atherstone this morning but could not see their destination. A few, 50 or so, dropped in on some feed hoppers in the copse I was about to cull some tree rats in.    Seeing very large groups about all of a sudden.

Edited by Walker570

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2 minutes ago, Walker570 said:

Large stream of pigeon coming off the roost north of Atherstone this morning but could not see their destination. A few, 50 or so, dropped in on some feed hoppers in the copse I was about to cull some tree rats in.    Seeing very large groups about all of a sudden.

Temperature is dropping!

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been on the rape around here for 6 weeks, it varies from region to region 

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Very few on the rape around here. Seem to be mainly in the hedgerows on ivy berries. Last few that I shot in the week all were stuffed with ivy berries with no rape whatsoever.

OB

 

 

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I ventured out on Monday last to a small field of beet tops, took 30 on a very blustery wind but those that came in were in larger groups of 20 or 30 birds, the colder weather seems to have turned them onto the rape as well, a couple of rape fields on one of my perms had around 300 birds on them the other day, I walked them off and sat watching but they didn't come back while I was there.

There are a lot of birds still in the trees collecting holly berries and whats left of the hawthorn, I just need the weather to pick up a bit before I go out again as these days I am definitely a fair weather shooter, preferring the warm fireside and a mug of tea to sitting in a howling gale at near zero temperatures,

Yesterday I dropped off a large bottle of whisky to the farm manager and had a chat about the 2019 crop plantings, they have seeded more rape than usual this year which sounds good but a lot is in small fields and well spread out so we are out after Christmas on a tour to find it all, the estate rents large areas of land each year and it is a real problem keeping up with the locations, much of it is under game shoot control until February but once they finish its a full time job trying to keep the pigeons off, not a bad job for an old codger like me, 😀:good:

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Carrying on with the thing about bangers, whilst walking the dog this morning, I watch a hundred or so pigeons feeding on rape, on Salvation Army land, next to a nature reserve, with public walks and railway lines. Needless to say, there would be no chance of gaining permission to shoot there. The field had two bangers positioned about 180 yards apart and each time the banger's went off, the birds lifted a few feet, then settled back down unperturbed. The crop is just about trashed and as Iscanned the field I imagined setting up there, even without the afore mentioned restrictions, there were no trees, no hedges, no bushes, just a small river one side, train track the other and two cleared shallow ditches either end. It would be challenging.

It showed that banger's don't always work and farmers need us.

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There's a lot on the rape two field's away from where I can shoot, the farmer says he has people already shooting but I never see or hear them until the weather warms up. Its a five minute walk from my home so I see them every day when out with the dog. 

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12 minutes ago, getthegat said:

Carrying on with the thing about bangers, whilst walking the dog this morning, I watch a hundred or so pigeons feeding on rape, on Salvation Army land, next to a nature reserve, with public walks and railway lines. Needless to say, there would be no chance of gaining permission to shoot there. The field had two bangers positioned about 180 yards apart and each time the banger's went off, the birds lifted a few feet, then settled back down unperturbed. The crop is just about trashed and as Iscanned the field I imagined setting up there, even without the afore mentioned restrictions, there were no trees, no hedges, no bushes, just a small river one side, train track the other and two cleared shallow ditches either end. It would be challenging.

It showed that banger's don't always work and farmers need us.

Most of the gas guns on the fields I see seem to work well, its only after they have been going off for weeks that you get a few brave pigeons dropping in but they are usually a good ways from the gas gun and close to a road.

Do farmers really need us?

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10 hours ago, kenholland said:

I don't have problems with gas guns I just switch them off shoot the field switch them back on again when I have had enough .

 

 Me too!

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Just been around the shoot this morning feeding the pheasants, and haven't noticed any pigeons about yet on the rape, hopefully they start coming in soon..

 

I have got  a field that was soya beans last year which is attracting them at the mo 

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On 15/12/2018 at 11:22, getthegat said:

Carrying on with the thing about bangers, whilst walking the dog this morning, I watch a hundred or so pigeons feeding on rape, on Salvation Army land, next to a nature reserve, with public walks and railway lines. Needless to say, there would be no chance of gaining permission to shoot there. The field had two bangers positioned about 180 yards apart and each time the banger's went off, the birds lifted a few feet, then settled back down unperturbed. The crop is just about trashed and as Iscanned the field I imagined setting up there, even without the afore mentioned restrictions, there were no trees, no hedges, no bushes, just a small river one side, train track the other and two cleared shallow ditches either end. It would be challenging.

It showed that banger's don't always work and farmers need us.

Wait until they begin manoeuvre's,  them tamborines can make a heck of a noise  !   😉 

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On 16/12/2018 at 12:35, keeperdan said:

Just been around the shoot this morning feeding the pheasants, and haven't noticed any pigeons about yet on the rape, hopefully they start coming in soon..

 

I have got  a field that was soya beans last year which is attracting them at the mo 

They have just started o the rape now on the shoot, will have to wait until next Saturday before i can shoot them as we are shooting on Friday and the field they are on is right next to 1 of the best drives, really looking forward to it now 

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3 minutes ago, keeperdan said:

They have just started o the rape now on the shoot, will have to wait until next Saturday before i can shoot them as we are shooting on Friday and the field they are on is right next to 1 of the best drives, really looking forward to it now 

Worst thing you could do. :no:

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ive done this only today hundreds on the fields the other day now not seen any birds there for 2 days not one try and get on there while their there I wont make same mistake again

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17 minutes ago, shawn9914 said:

ive done this only today hundreds on the fields the other day now not seen any birds there for 2 days not one try and get on there while their there I wont make same mistake again

Its not like it was years ago (well most of the time) when you could watch a field and let them build-up and then go and shoot it, nowadays you find em, walk em off, sit in car and watch, if they start coming back and with a bit of luck you go and shoot em, don’t leave em till tomorrow because tomorrow the little tinkers will be somewhere else.  

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well i will see if i can go monday

18 minutes ago, shawn9914 said:

ive done this only today hundreds on the fields the other day now not seen any birds there for 2 days not one try and get on there while their there I wont make same mistake again

 

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did my rounds yesterday , just starting to hit the young cabbages , in an awkward corner by some houses , so out comes the 4/10 hushy +subsonics  19g 6's ,trouble is it will have to wait till xmas, is over, hope they will still be there , with a bit of luck.

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