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So my mate and i had a go at a new wheat stubble this afternoon..umbrella hides(rainy ) and a wide decoy pattern was set .we both had a .410 each and a fac air .22 .

We thought it best to get a few down a bit quick to set up some real birds on cradels and  flapper .so the .410s made short work of the nicely decoying birds .

Then we had a bit of time with one of us with an airgun and the other the shotty.

If it looked like the bird would touch down , it was left for the airgun .or if a pige landed beyond  30 yds the air gun was used .the close crossers  were  for the .410. There were many birds that hovered just above the deeks that didnt quite touch down for the rifle .

We wondered if it is possible to shoot one in the air with the airgun .???? Well i was on my bsa  ultra  and a pige floated across the pattern (we had a very safe downwards shooting angle so all backstops and angles were excellent ) and on 4x  i gave him a touch of lead and fired .the pige dropped and crumpled on the deck at about 15 yds 

Wow .first  attempt, first  shot .and i nailed him  .

Guess that answered that question .

Rest of the afternoon  was using just the airguns (we put the .410s away ) as the birds kept coming in . (We didnt try any other flying shots ) and we had a great time taking birds from 15 - 60 yds ..

If we had stuck to the .410s im sure we could have doubled our count of 18 birds easily , but for 2.5 hours with mainly airguns we were very pleased .our sport was cut short by a guy driving into the field and setting up a tent in the corner .

Anyway its not all about big bags .airgunning pigeons brings a whole different set of challenges from  shotgunning and stubble time is the best time  


Edited by Ultrastu
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Many moons ago probabaly close to 70yrs. I had an old BSA air rifle which was seriously worn but I basically I learned to hold slightly off to the left on house sparrows on the grain store roof(they where a serious pest back then). I was walking a hedgerow one day and a woodpigeon dropped out of the hedge about 5yrds infront of me and flew directly away along the field headland. Instinctively I picked the rifle up and fired and it fell stone dead. I could not believe it. It was probably about 20yrds away when I fired and the 177 pellet entered alongside the back bone and hit the heart.

My grandfather did not believe me until he had done the autopsy. 

That sounded like a most enjoyable few hours.

Edited by Walker570
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On the shoot I worked on a few years ago, there would be about a group of 40-50 ferals but mostly white as that's what he wanted keeping. The piebald and browns were fair game for his son to practice on, but he didn't use a shotgun, I'd watch him regularly, whilst flocking about the farm, pick and choose which bird, and nail it with his 22 falcon fn19. Not very often he missed. 

In a good murder of crows I've hit the odd one out, but admittedly it's by pure fluke as rarely I didn't even aim

Edited by strimmer_13
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As a 14 year old in the sixties I had a Mk 1 Meteor with the 2x plastic ‘scope. Several times I managed to shoot crows flying directly overhead.

They would be maybe 20/30 feet up, coming over the house roof. The 2x scope made seeing a bit of lead quite easy.

Edited by London Best
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Yup, I’ve been decoying with the HW100 on pea and wheat stubble for last two weeks, 6 or 7 a night is enough. It’s challenging but entertaining, set out the deeks near a sitty tree or wait for them to land and give them the good news.

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  • 2 weeks later...

30 years ago there were countless articles about decoying pigeons in for air rifle hunting. Sitting a full bodied on the edge of a water trough was meant to be productive.  It certainly makes for an exciting afternoon's sport if you can get the birds to land in your pattern ! 👍

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Have shot running rabbit with Webley Vulcan thirty years ago. It's possible so long as you don't engage your brain and let instinct do it.

Sounds like you had a good time, a nice couple hours out in the field 

Edited by figgy
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My uncle always decoyed pigeons with his .22RF. He said a pigeon wasn't worth the cost of a shotgun cartridge.

He was a real country man cost was everything but he was good at what he did. He chose his spot so he had rising ground behind the shot and took them on the ground. A 22 RF can (sometimes) take one pigeon on the ground without putting up the others.

My uncle never kept the pigeons he just sliced off the breast meat and put it in a plastic bag. 

This was Warwickshire fifty odd years ago, the pigeons just kept coming in endlessly, you never see that these days. I put some of that down to the lack of disturbance caused by the 22.

Then as the evening drew in the rabbits would appear along the hedgerows. No matter how many were out he only took two

Happy memories

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Vince only taking two for the pot, that's the true country way. Leave some for next time, everything in balance. .22 rim subsonic or air gun, it's surprising what don't get bothered by the sound we hear off the gun,animals and birds dont, they hear the thump of pellet or bullet hitting feather or fur.

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