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Trenta

Where did they go?

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    I was shooting over OSR on the weekend, got there at about 0930h and set up where I saw the birds (which there were plenty) - they moved around the corner while I was setting up, and never came back. 

    I did stalk after them, but they ******** off completely after the first shot...  there was not even any flying close by that could have looked at my decoys - very frustrating.  

    What was I doing wrong?  There were plenty of birds when I first got there, but then I was left with nothing?

    In the picture you can see where they were feeding, which is where my decoys were - but nada?

    IMG_0620.jpg

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    Welcome to the world of winter rape shooting  !  It has happened to me countless times over the last 60 years or so, birds in flocks of 100 plus, one shot and they have gone. I used to have better results flighting them to and from the feeding areas. On their flight path, but away from their chosen feeding point, especially in a good wind.

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    Too much choice I’m afraid, guess that’s not the only farm with OSR in the area. As Westley I get more luck flighting than decoying in winter. 

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    Your lucky you have some rape fields to set up in there is virtually zero osr fields in north somerset this year. And non on my perms .i havent had any decoying since the last stubbles in sept .

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    you have done nothing wrong it happens on winter rape , done it myself just before xmas looked good worth setting up and played me like a fiddle. just waiting for the game season to finish and I,ll be 100 % into them 

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    If you know where they are feeding get their before thy do ie in the dark, set up and wait till light about 08.15 am, you will get a few shots in but it will not last long.

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    Yes, that is what I was thinking - setup before dawn.  How soon after / before dawn do the birds normally become active?

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    9 hours ago, Ultrastu said:

    Your lucky you have some rape fields to set up in there is virtually zero osr fields in north somerset this year. And non on my perms .i havent had any decoying since the last stubbles in sept .

    Same here just Nth of Bristol. OSR on part of one farm only but criss crossed by footpaths so a no go. Another area where OSR was planted was devastated by flea beetle and is now wheat. My farmer friend has given up on OSR. That aside there are almost no pigeons. Those that can be seen are in the hedgerows and trees.  I shot two roosting last week and they were full of Ivy berries. V frustrating.

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    12 hours ago, Ultrastu said:

    Your lucky you have some rape fields to set up in there is virtually zero osr fields in north somerset this year. And non on my perms .i havent had any decoying since the last stubbles in sept .

    +1 even blacks are in short supply. 

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    plenty on rape here, but they dont hang about, one shot and the big flocks are gone, they come back in ones and tos and thats it for a while,

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    IF you can find an ivy clad tree that pigeons are coming to for feed, set up your hide and give the old air rifle a go. Being a lot quieter than a shotgun, it can often be more rewarding.

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    Was the op in to much a hurry to start shooting without doing any homework before hand ?

    To save lugging all the gear across a muddy and wet field and then ending up with a wasted journey, why not walk them off and go back and sit in your motor for half an hour to see what happen , if you don't see any come back in that amount of time , then it would be a strong possibility they have found another food supply and are not likely to come back .

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    A very high percentage of pigeon shooters dive in without watching a field for returning pigeons thus wasting their time. 

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    As I only have the one permission, if they fly off, they fly off, and I am stuck with the fields I have.  It is not a case of being in a hurry to start shooting, more like the only option I have at the moment to shoot on.

    Birds or no birds, being out in the countryside is just a bonus for me.

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    7 minutes ago, Trenta said:

    As I only have the one permission, if they fly off, they fly off, and I am stuck with the fields I have.  It is not a case of being in a hurry to start shooting, more like the only option I have at the moment to shoot on.

    Birds or no birds, being out in the countryside is just a bonus for me.

    I can fully understand with you only having the one field to shoot why you are prepared to hope for the best and pray they return , rape is a godsend for the pigeons survival throughout a long cold winter but is a nightmare for pigeon shooters in trying to learn why they prefer one field and not another a few fields away , so with you enjoying a day out in the countryside, why not try and find where they end up once you put them off , then seek out the owner and tell him while you were shooting pigeons on your own patch you noticed quite a few going on his field , then come out with the crunch question , Is there any chance in me having a go at them ? 

    You never know , you are then having a day in the countryside and as a bonus going home with a new permission. 

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    That is a great idea, I will give that a go next time I am out - strike while the iron is hot huh

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    3 minutes ago, Trenta said:

    That is a great idea, I will give that a go next time I am out - strike while the iron is hot huh

    You are already on the first step of the ladder by having somewhere to go , use your permission to good effect when seeking new places to go , once you start adding to the one you have got you will find the more names you can give to new land owners the more likely they will let you go , everyone on this forum more than likely only started with one permission and then over a period of time built up a lot of land in the same area so they can end up going where the pigeons want to go and not relying on a small piece of land for all there pigeon shooting .

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    12 hours ago, marsh man said:

    You are already on the first step of the ladder by having somewhere to go , use your permission to good effect when seeking new places to go , once you start adding to the one you have got you will find the more names you can give to new land owners the more likely they will let you go , everyone on this forum more than likely only started with one permission and then over a period of time built up a lot of land in the same area so they can end up going where the pigeons want to go and not relying on a small piece of land for all there pigeon shooting .

    Very good advice from one who knows.

    OB

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