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Old Boggy

A week missed

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As title, I was unable to get out shooting last week. The reason being was that my wife decided that she wished to go on a cruise and maybe stop off at an island somewhere to achieve a couple of items off her bucket list.

On the way to the 'cruise terminal' we stopped off at the lovely city of Chichester, which just happened to have a gunshop, Chichester Armoury. How often do we plan visits to towns that 'happen' to have a gunshop and how often do we 'happen' to 'need' something, mainly as an excuse to have a browse. The exception to this I've found is the many visits to Beccles in Suffolk to have a look in Tilney's gunshop only to find it always shut and yet it looks a wonderful place to browse. Anyway on the way to Chichester Armoury down West Street we passed the lovely cathedral and were delighted to see a peregrine falcon perched on a lower part of the building. Don't get to see many peregrines in my part of the world. I learnt later that they'd taken up residence, bred successfully and now are a common sight around the cathedral. I then had a short browse around the gunshop and always feel obliged to buy something. Not necessarily a new gun or even a slab of cartridges, but this time I 'needed' another 16g phosphor bronze brush. 16g unusually, for this shop, were out of stock so I ended up with yet another 20g one for one of my other guns and a can of spray gun oil. Leaving Chichester we soon arrived at our 'cruise terminal' and within the hour saw us on a ferry to the Isle of Wight !! Well we did go by boat and it is an island, so in my book it ticked two items off my wife's bucket list :lol:.

Now you're probably thinking 'He certainly knows how to spoil a woman' and of course you're right. My thinking is that you cannot do too much for a good woman. Finding one of course is a another matter. Anyway, I thought that if the I.O.W is good enough for Queen Victoria and Old Farrier, then it's certainly good enough for me and what a lovely island it is. I bet there are not many islands, tropical or otherwise, where one can see the beautiful red squirrel and we were lucky to see a couple in the grounds of Osbourne house.

So back to this week.  Stourboy and myself chose yesterday to try our luck once more in one of our ready made hides on the edge of our little wood, as the forecast was for a dry day with a strong Westerly wind. Last time out we noticed that the few pigeons that did come in were choosing a sitty tree which was midway between the two hides, but just out of range of both of them. We had previously been aware of a couple of favourite sitty trees but the hides had been positioned where there were a minimum of overhanging branches, thus allowing clearer shots. Our plan this week was to try a couple of lofted pigeons to the left of but in range of our hide. We've found previously that hoisting five decoys to approximately 25 or so feet (standard set of poles) with the hook arrangements not only takes time and even longer retrieving, but also for our wood are too low and do not stand out enough. We therefore took eight 5 ft poles with a home made wire spreader holding just two decoys. The spreader and decoys were lodged into the top section of five 5ft poles which were raised from the horizontal to rest on a branch. This was gradually raised up through the branches with one pole added at a time from the base. This then achieved a height of 40 feet with the decoys appearing fairly visible. This was completed in just a few minutes, unlike hoisting five separate ones which takes at least 20 minutes. The theory being that just two visible decoys were better than five not so apparent ones.

No sooner were we back in the hide than a pigeon came in, but with guns not yet out of their slips, this one left unsaluted. Things looked promising. However, we had a long wait for the next few to arrive which resulted in some bad missing. Our excuse being the strong wind cause them to jink erratically. That's our story anyway. Better and quicker shots than us would have been more successful. 

The frequent quiet spells found us discussing varying topics, one of which was Ditchman's recent incarceration in the PW virtual reality prison and the several cries to 'Free The Cantley One'. Marshman's very gallant effort to stand naked on a five bar gate in Cantley until Ditchy's release did not present a very pretty picture even less so in this cold weather:no:, but we admired his committment to a fellow Norfolkian.

A few pigeons came in during our short trip, some were shot in true snap shooting style, while others were missed most embarrassingly. Decker the dog retrieved each one impeccably and remained alert throughout, unlike us who's concentration waned, missing several opportunities.

One item of note this week was a kestrel that swooped in and landed a few feet outside our hide and remained there for many minutes, even allowing us to walk outside the hide to get a closer look at her and still not fly off. We looked afterwards and she perhaps had seen one of our shot pigeons land in the spot, evident by quite a few feathers on the ground and thought that maybe a free meal was on offer. The same kestrel sat on a bush about 125 yards away completely oblivious to the occasional shots. Again presumably in the hope of a free meal.

We finished our day with just 10 pigeons, but it was debatable whether the lofters had added anything to the bag as the gusting wind had the birds flighting in from all directions and consequently pretty unpredictable. Some of the crops had new wheat in so somewhere there is drilling requiring further reconnaissance to establish where. We were told by our farmers that their ground is currently too wet, so further afield perhaps. Yet another good day that cannot be taken away from us.

Oh, and for anyone remotely interested, our 'tucker' this week comprised peanut butter and cheese & pickle sandwiches, pork & pickle pies, apple pie and current buns. No wonder we lose concentration !

Thanks for taking the time and effort to read my latest ramblings.

OB

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A stellar report OB. A real treat for the rest of us although the thought of those sandwiches really makes me lose my appetite.

Keep 'em coming.

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I prefer peanut butter and jam, or cheese and jam, either with a pork pie or not.  Loads of orange squash to wash it down or even strong black tea.😁

Love reading your reports cos theres just nothing round here.

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13 minutes ago, WestonSalop said:

A stellar report OB. A real treat for the rest of us although the thought of those sandwiches really makes me lose my appetite.

Keep 'em coming.

I had better explain that the peanut butter and cheese & pickle were separate sandwiches, not all in one.

 

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1 minute ago, Old Boggy said:

I had better explain that the peanut butter and cheese & pickle were separate sandwiches, not all in one.

 

In which case sir, you are forgiven.

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pity on your way to or from the ferry you didn't pop in to Portsmouth Gun Centre usually a good stock of stuff ,nice write up though

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Like your humour you had me on the cruise bit.cheese and apricot jam for me.

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Great stuff OB! Land still waterlogged round there. What rape there is looking very poor! If you in to fishing, there's loads of fish get in in Beccles cut this time of year if you are that way.   NB

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4 hours ago, Old Boggy said:

As title, I was unable to get out shooting last week. The reason being was that my wife decided that she wished to go on a cruise and maybe stop off at an island somewhere to achieve a couple of items off her bucket list.

On the way to the 'cruise terminal' we stopped off at the lovely city of Chichester, which just happened to have a gunshop, Chichester Armoury. How often do we plan visits to towns that 'happen' to have a gunshop and how often do we 'happen' to 'need' something, mainly as an excuse to have a browse. The exception to this I've found is the many visits to Beccles in Suffolk to have a look in Tilney's gunshop only to find it always shut and yet it looks a wonderful place to browse. Anyway on the way to Chichester Armoury down West Street we passed the lovely cathedral and were delighted to see a peregrine falcon perched on a lower part of the building. Don't get to see many peregrines in my part of the world. I learnt later that they'd taken up residence, bred successfully and now are a common sight around the cathedral. I then had a short browse around the gunshop and always feel obliged to buy something. Not necessarily a new gun or even a slab of cartridges, but this time I 'needed' another 16g phosphor bronze brush. 16g unusually, for this shop, were out of stock so I ended up with yet another 20g one for one of my other guns and a can of spray gun oil. Leaving Chichester we soon arrived at our 'cruise terminal' and within the hour saw us on a ferry to the Isle of Wight !! Well we did go by boat and it is an island, so in my book it ticked two items off my wife's bucket list .

Now you're probably thinking 'He certainly knows how to spoil a woman' and of course you're right. My thinking is that you cannot do too much for a good woman. Finding one of course is a another matter. Anyway, I thought that if the I.O.W is good enough for Queen Victoria and Old Farrier, then it's certainly good enough for me and what a lovely island it is. I bet there are not many islands, tropical or otherwise, where one can see the beautiful red squirrel and we were lucky to see a couple in the grounds of Osbourne house.

So back to this week.  Stourboy and myself chose yesterday to try our luck once more in one of our ready made hides on the edge of our little wood, as the forecast was for a dry day with a strong Westerly wind. Last time out we noticed that the few pigeons that did come in were choosing a sitty tree which was midway between the two hides, but just out of range of both of them. We had previously been aware of a couple of favourite sitty trees but the hides had been positioned where there were a minimum of overhanging branches, thus allowing clearer shots. Our plan this week was to try a couple of lofted pigeons to the left of but in range of our hide. We've found previously that hoisting five decoys to approximately 25 or so feet (standard set of poles) with the hook arrangements not only takes time and even longer retrieving, but also for our wood are too low and do not stand out enough. We therefore took eight 5 ft poles with a home made wire spreader holding just two decoys. The spreader and decoys were lodged into the top section of five 5ft poles which were raised from the horizontal to rest on a branch. This was gradually raised up through the branches with one pole added at a time from the base. This then achieved a height of 40 feet with the decoys appearing fairly visible. This was completed in just a few minutes, unlike hoisting five separate ones which takes at least 20 minutes. The theory being that just two visible decoys were better than five not so apparent ones.

No sooner were we back in the hide than a pigeon came in, but with guns not yet out of their slips, this one left unsaluted. Things looked promising. However, we had a long wait for the next few to arrive which resulted in some bad missing. Our excuse being the strong wind cause them to jink erratically. That's our story anyway. Better and quicker shots than us would have been more successful. 

The frequent quiet spells found us discussing varying topics, one of which was Ditchman's recent incarceration in the PW virtual reality prison and the several cries to 'Free The Cantley One'. Marshman's very gallant effort to stand naked on a five bar gate in Cantley until Ditchy's release did not present a very pretty picture even less so in this cold weather, but we admired his committment to a fellow Norfolkian.

A few pigeons came in during our short trip, some were shot in true snap shooting style, while others were missed most embarrassingly. Decker the dog retrieved each one impeccably and remained alert throughout, unlike us who's concentration waned, missing several opportunities.

One item of note this week was a kestrel that swooped in and landed a few feet outside our hide and remained there for many minutes, even allowing us to walk outside the hide to get a closer look at her and still not fly off. We looked afterwards and she perhaps had seen one of our shot pigeons land in the spot, evident by quite a few feathers on the ground and thought that maybe a free meal was on offer. The same kestrel sat on a bush about 125 yards away completely oblivious to the occasional shots. Again presumably in the hope of a free meal.

We finished our day with just 10 pigeons, but it was debatable whether the lofters had added anything to the bag as the gusting wind had the birds flighting in from all directions and consequently pretty unpredictable. Some of the crops had new wheat in so somewhere there is drilling requiring further reconnaissance to establish where. We were told by our farmers that their ground is currently too wet, so further afield perhaps. Yet another good day that cannot be taken away from us.

Oh, and for anyone remotely interested, our 'tucker' this week comprised peanut butter and cheese & pickle sandwiches, pork & pickle pies, apple pie and current buns. No wonder we lose concentration !

Thanks for taking the time and effort to read my latest ramblings.

OB

Do you think the lofted ones helped? I've been up the same road with 25 footers, a nightmare to position/retrieve and look stupid in full-sized trees. I too have made a spreader but never tried it out..

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46 minutes ago, kitchrat said:

Do you think the lofted ones helped? I've been up the same road with 25 footers, a nightmare to position/retrieve and look stupid in full-sized trees. I too have made a spreader but never tried it out..

As I said, it’s debatable whether they did help even though they were 40 feet up (8 five foot poles)and quite visible. I think that with the strong wind, the pigeons came in from all directions and not necessarily towards the lofters. So in all honesty, no they probably didn’t.

In a different situation I think that they can work well.

OB

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Nice to read of your exploits :)

I had a quick session yesterday afternoon, dusting off the lofters for the first time this year.  I chose a known spot: the leeward corner of a wood on the edge of a small quarry where the tree canopy kind of curves down into the quarry.  I put 5 lofters up into the branches so they were clearly visible to incomers, spread apart about 20yds.  Without cobbling a hide together, being out of sight is a problem in this place but I managed to tuck myself into a reasonable spot.  Must have been reasonable as the first customers were a pair of crows, one of which didn't make it home that evening.

However, the fun stopped there really!  There were the odd ones and twos passing, swooping very fast across the wind in front of the decoys, but none came in as intended, they either didn't notice them or didn't consider the spot their "mates" had chosen was a very good one.  Very surprising as I'd reccied them coming in to that exact spot only a few days earlier in exactly the same wind conditions.  There just weren't the number birds coming in to the wood this particular day I guess, nowhere near as many as at the weekend.

Anyway the reason I posted was to say I've noticed a significant effect on occasion in the past with lofters, and other times like yesterday zilch!  I'm yet to get my head round it but keep trying on occasion, despite it being a bit of a faff.

Chin up!

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As for reporting on your days out with Stourboy  , in league terms your reports will put you in the Premier league and at the moment on top of the leader board , that kept us entertained and was well worth reading .

I think the high light of the day is when the sarnies and cake come out for the mid session break , if that was me , I would turn off the magnet and remove the cartridges so I am not tempted while I am enjoying the eats , all ready looking forward to what will be on the menu on your next day out together .

As for bring back ditchy campaign , I am just waiting for the cold wind to die down a bit and then I will be there with just the bear essentials :lol: 

 

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Great stuff OB really enjoying your post's, keep em coming,  you might like to try peanut butter and jam sandwiches [peanut butter on first obviously.] pork and pickle pie sound proper though... :good:

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should have put all that grub out for the birds, then you might have doubled your score , still you made the effort and got a result , well done.

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14 hours ago, Jim Neal said:

Nice to read of your exploits

I had a quick session yesterday afternoon, dusting off the lofters for the first time this year.  I chose a known spot: the leeward corner of a wood on the edge of a small quarry where the tree canopy kind of curves down into the quarry.  I put 5 lofters up into the branches so they were clearly visible to incomers, spread apart about 20yds.  Without cobbling a hide together, being out of sight is a problem in this place but I managed to tuck myself into a reasonable spot.  Must have been reasonable as the first customers were a pair of crows, one of which didn't make it home that evening.

However, the fun stopped there really!  There were the odd ones and twos passing, swooping very fast across the wind in front of the decoys, but none came in as intended, they either didn't notice them or didn't consider the spot their "mates" had chosen was a very good one.  Very surprising as I'd reccied them coming in to that exact spot only a few days earlier in exactly the same wind conditions.  There just weren't the number birds coming in to the wood this particular day I guess, nowhere near as many as at the weekend.

Anyway the reason I posted was to say I've noticed a significant effect on occasion in the past with lofters, and other times like yesterday zilch!  I'm yet to get my head round it but keep trying on occasion, despite it being a bit of a faff.

Chin up!

Our day was similar to yours where they were coming in from all directions due to the gusting wind making for some very tricky shooting. I think honestly that we would have had the same result without the lofters, but you have to try. I had occasions on small spinneys where there's no doubt that they work very effectively. Just another one of the vagaries of pigeon shooting I suppose.

OB

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