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Shearwater

Where do I find the legal answer to this?

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Where do I find the legal answer to this?

Today we were all out in the field and the head keeper said after a complaint we were no longer to cross a certain boundary fence; note taken on board we went about our day and at elevenses the topic of legal/permitted entry came up when a shot bird lands over our boundary either dead and pricked!

There was a few of us with lots of experience who all had a slightly different take on what was/wasn't allowed. . . . Now 20 years ago common sense would have prevailed, however, we all thought it would be best to find out the current law, so my question to you guys is where is the official legislation available to read?

Cheers

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I’m afraid I don’t know what the letter of the law states, but have experience of picking up dead birds on land which isn’t ours, and if the owner says no, then it’s a no, with or without the presence of your shotgun. 
I believe any pheasant is the property of the landowner on who’s land it is on, whether dead or alive.

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I would think your shooting org would be your best bet.

my understanding is if it falls on someone else's land it is theirs and you have no right to retrieve it, if you did it would be theft. 

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5 minutes ago, Scully said:

I’m afraid I don’t know what the letter of the law states, but have experience of picking up dead birds on land which isn’t ours, and if the owner says no, then it’s a no, with or without the presence of your shotgun. 
I believe any pheasant is the property of the landowner on who’s land it is on, whether dead or alive.

Your view was mentioned this morning along with slight variations of it ( shot but not dead ), however, like yourself non of us actually knew the letter of the law. . . . . maybe someone on here knows what the law actually states so we can all read it?

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15 minutes ago, Shearwater said:

Your view was mentioned this morning along with slight variations of it ( shot but not dead ), however, like yourself non of us actually knew the letter of the law. . . . . maybe someone on here knows what the law actually states so we can all read it?

You are perfectly entitled to shoot any pheasant on your property as it is by being present on your property, lawfully yours. I can’t think why that wouldn’t apply just because you shot it and it landed on someone else’s property. 
When out beating or shooting, we do not collect any birds which fall beyond our boundary without the express permission of that landowner.
My nephew called it a day on his syndicate after last season due to neighbouring landowners being difficult when it came to this very topic, including that of spent shot falling on the neighbours property. 
If it was lawful the shoot would still be ongoing. 
As others have said, for absolute clarification contact your organisation. 

Edited by Scully

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A copy of "Fair Game the law of country sports and the protection of wildlife" by Charlie Parkes and John Thornley on the shelf inot a bad idea although keeping an eye out for possible changes in the law after publication is advisable.

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3 minutes ago, Scully said:

You are perfectly entitled to shoot any pheasant on your property as it is by being present on your property, lawfully yours. I can’t think why that wouldn’t apply just because you shot it and it landed on someone else’s property. 
When out beating or shooting, we do not collect any birds which fall beyond our boundary without the express permission of that landowner.
My nephew called it a day on his syndicate after last season due to neighbouring landowners being difficult when it came to this very topic, including that of spent shot falling on the neighbours property. 
If it was lawful the shoot would still be ongoing. 
As others have said, for absolute clarification contact your organisation. 

  • The spent shot subject also came up and one guy said the spent shot was considered as 'trespassing' in the eyes of the law
  • Another one voiced over a drink and a slice of pie was. . . rabbits are no longer classed as vermin

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6 minutes ago, dipper said:

I’ve always sent the dog.

Me too and always have ( this was the source of the latest complaint as one of our spaniels was sent to collect a pricked bird) BUT evidently that's not allowed either and the responsibility lies with the landowner even if it's not dead. . . . imagine an elderly person with no dog catching a winged bird!!

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6 minutes ago, Shearwater said:
  • The spent shot subject also came up and one guy said the spent shot was considered as 'trespassing' in the eyes of the law
  • Another one voiced over a drink and a slice of pie was. . . rabbits are no longer classed as vermin

I really couldn’t say with any certainty, but I would think if it were lawful then the question wouldn’t arise. 
As for rabbits, they certainly aren’t classed as game, so I don’t know what they would be if not pest/vermin. 

3 minutes ago, Shearwater said:

Me too and always have ( this was the source of the latest complaint as one of our spaniels was sent to collect a pricked bird) BUT evidently that's not allowed either and the responsibility lies with the landowner even if it's not dead. . . . imagine an elderly person with no dog catching a winged bird!!

It’s the responsibility of the landowner to despatch a wounded pheasant on their land? 

Edited by Scully

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Just now, Scully said:

I really couldn’t say with any certainty, but I would think if it were lawful then the question wouldn’t arise. 
As for rabbits, they certainly aren’t classed as game, so I don’t know what they would be. 

The rabbit answer is. . . they certainly not game nor vermin but the guy couldn't remember the official answer which got me to thinking to pose the post on here!

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14 minutes ago, Scully said:

I really couldn’t say with any certainty, but I would think if it were lawful then the question wouldn’t arise. 
As for rabbits, they certainly aren’t classed as game, so I don’t know what they would be if not pest/vermin. 

It’s the responsibility of the landowner to despatch a wounded pheasant on their land? 

Yes was the answer today

25 minutes ago, wymberley said:

A copy of "Fair Game the law of country sports and the protection of wildlife" by Charlie Parkes and John Thornley on the shelf inot a bad idea although keeping an eye out for possible changes in the law after publication is advisable.

Thanks and like most of us we have had parts instilled into us from boyhood, the problem is those updates/changes and in a nutshell we are all guessing but it must be written down on a government website somewhere but I can't find it

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25 minutes ago, Shearwater said:

The rabbit answer is. . . they certainly not game nor vermin but the guy couldn't remember the official answer which got me to thinking to pose the post on here!

As regards rabbit, I recall there used to be a law of “trespass in pursuit of coney” I don’t know whether it is repealed?...........As opposed to a law of “trespass in persuit of game”.....coney are rabbits!

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15 minutes ago, Shearwater said:

Yes was the answer today

Thanks and like most of us we have had parts instilled into us from boyhood, the problem is those updates/changes and in a nutshell we are all guessing but it must be written down on a government website somewhere but I can't find it

In many cases where the law is described in the book, the specific legislation is referenced in the margins should you need more info'.

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Although my copy of 'Fair Game' by Charlie Parkes and John Thornley is the 1987 version and I am sure that there is an updated version available,  I have looked up the following. Any Game shot legally on your side of the fence and landing on land belonging to your neighbour, becomes the property of your neighbour, dead or otherwise. (The Game, NOT the Neighbour  ! ) Should you cross the boundary to recover any game, you commit the Offence of Trespass. IF you should take your gun with you, you commit the Offence of Armed Trespass (for which there is a Power of Arrest). You also commit the Offence of Common Trespass, if you send your dog to retrieve any shot  Game, although you are not held responsible IF the dog enters that land of it's own accord (ie:- Run's in  ?). Although Rabbit's are NOT Game, they are covered by the Game and Night Poaching Acts, so the Offence of Trespass on Land in Pursuit of Game applies. With regards to the issue of shot fired from your land and landing on the land of another,  the act is considered to be a Trespass, even though no physical entry has taken place. 

With regards to the book, 'Fair Game' it is written by 2 ex Police Officers, both of whom were Police Wildlife Liaison Officers in Derbyshire.  I believe that EVERY shooting syndicate should be in possession of a copy as it can solve a lot of problems that can arise. I speak from experience.

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  • Gundogs must not be sent to retrieve game that has fallen beyond a shoot boundary without the prior consent of the adjoining landowner or occupier; to do so constitutes civil trespass.
  • If the bird falls dead over the boundary it belongs to the neighbour, even though it may have started off on your land.

    If you try to retrieve it you are technically poaching and if you were to cross the boundary with your gun you would be guilty of armed trespass.

    Ideally shoots should come to an agreement with their neighbours about what to do in these circumstances and the rules should be made clear both to Guns and pickers-up.
  •  
  •  
  • Rabbits are deemed as pests, not vermin or game.
     
Edited by Perazzishot

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36 minutes ago, CharlieT said:

Rabbits are legally classed as Ground Game and as such are covered by the Ground Game Act.

https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/Vict/43-44/47/contents

https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/Eliz2/2-3/68/contents

Starts an interesting debate that they are covered under 2 different acts as game and pests. One banning lamping and traps, while the other demands the use of camping and traps to control otherwise risk forced control measures.

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unless its changed the law on bunnies is,,if you take them on land legaly they are vermin/pests,but if you take them illegaly ie,by poaching/trepass etc they then become classed as game and you will prosecuted accordingly.

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44 minutes ago, Muddy Funker said:

Phone the feo. 

I'm not sure that would help, many of them don't appear to know the law on firearms licensing and choose to interpret to suit their own agenda, why would we expect them to know  about trespass. 

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