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23 hours ago, JDog said:

What were the fields drilled with? If it was rape it isn’t surprising that there were no pigeons.

I have shot four or five pigeons in a minute several times but never in Norfolk.

A question for JDog, why don't pigeons munch rape seed? Too fine or bitter to the pigeon's palate?

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8 minutes ago, Balotelli said:

A question for JDog, why don't pigeons munch rape seed? Too fine or bitter to the pigeon's palate?

They do. What do you think they are feeding on in rape stubble? However when rape is drilled the seed is too deep for them to find.

The bigger question is why pigeons do not feed on tender volunteer rape leaves after seed on a stubble has germinated yet they will feed on the older leaves in winter and spring.

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22 hours ago, Balotelli said:

Well, JDog, you are spot on it was stubble drilled with rape. But there has been no pigeons on fields and fields of stubble, whether freshly cut or not,  standing crops etc etc. Clearly, I'm looking in the wrong places. Maybe I need to invest in a drone! Save an awful lot of pointless driving about. It's odd that the farmers very seldom say that there is a pigeon issue and leave it to the shooters to find them.  

Leicestershire/Derbyshire border

I rarely get called by farmers to tell me about pigeon problems, but I do ok from my own observations and experience. 

As far as I am aware, the counties you mention are quite well stocked with pigeons. 

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20 minutes ago, Balotelli said:

A question for JDog, why don't pigeons munch rape seed? Too fine or bitter to the pigeon's palate?

I would rarely consider shooting on a freshly drilled rape field, unless it was direct drilled and the old cereal grains were left behind (and obviously the pigeons were also interested). I had a nice bag of around 250 about 6 years ago in those circumstances. 

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25 minutes ago, JDog said:

They do. What do you think they are feeding on in rape stubble? However when rape is drilled the seed is too deep for them to find.

The bigger question is why pigeons do not feed on tender volunteer rape leaves after seed on a stubble has germinated yet they will feed on the older leaves in winter and spring.

That was the conundrum that I was faced with. Surely there must be some spillage from the drilling. In terms of pigeon behaviour there seems to be so many unknowns. Without sounding too corny it seems that the more that I see of pigeons the less I understand the blighters. Trackers attached to pigeons would solve some of the mysteries. 

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22 hours ago, JDog said:

They do. What do you think they are feeding on in rape stubble? However when rape is drilled the seed is too deep for them to find.

The bigger question is why pigeons do not feed on tender volunteer rape leaves after seed on a stubble has germinated yet they will feed on the older leaves in winter and spring.

Berries and the like? There are plenty about at the moment and some of the pigeons that I have autopsied are rammed with elderberries. Berries will diminish over the autumn winter months to leave little more than rape to scoff.

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I think that I might have cracked the reported big bags of pigeons. It's a Playstation game simply called Pigeon Carnage. It allows you to choose a gun from a drop-down  list , Beretta, Benelli,  Hatsan, Rizzini, AYA and as many makes as you can think of. Secondly you select a cartridge of your choice, again a long list of makes, together with weight and shot size. Next you select the range of the pigeons or even the numbers flying in. to the decoys. There are so many options, which decoys that you wish to use, flappers, rotaries, static, bouncers etc. You can choose on where to set up a hide on a field,  options are stubble, ploughed field, standing crops etc.. Next up, select the breed of dog, spaniel, retriever, setter etc. There are a few wrinkles to be aware of, for example if you set-up too close to a footpath your cartridge options will be limited. Choosing the appropriate vehicle can be a trap for the unwary player as if there is thick mud a basic 4x4 will get stuck and this will reduce game time in extricating the vehicle. Get it right and massive bags are a cinch, make a blunder and your game time will be curtailed with small bags of 20 or so.   

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One of my best ever days was with a shoestring of kit as I’d been to the zoo in the morning with my children and popped in on a perm heading back. Just a net and a few plastic decoys that are now 20 years old. So I think it is more like Pontoon or Roulette, just got to get lucky by rolling that dice. 

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3 hours ago, WalkedUp said:

One of my best ever days was with a shoestring of kit as I’d been to the zoo in the morning with my children and popped in on a perm heading back. Just a net and a few plastic decoys that are now 20 years old. So I think it is more like Pontoon or Roulette, just got to get lucky by rolling that dice. 

You can get lucky, but hours of driving and watching will always pay off in the end.

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On 25/08/2020 at 14:56, marsh man said:

we took up the hobby of Pigeon shooting for the sport so why do the people who can shoot put a barrel across a easy one that come and sit amongst the decoys , or at best they shout to give the pigeon a ( sporting chance ), I will tell you why , simply to boost the numbers up .

Because pigeon shooting is pest control. That is only reason we are allowed to do it with general licence. We'd be our own worst enemy if we start to class it as sport 

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34 minutes ago, BenBhoy said:

Because pigeon shooting is pest control. That is only reason we are allowed to do it with general licence. We'd be our own worst enemy if we start to class it as sport 

Well I am sorry to say that I shoot pigeons for the sport , I could find a lot easier ways in keeping the numbers down when I am roost shooting in February , so why am I roost shooting ? , for the sport it offer , no point in lying , we have already had posts on the forum asking members what they would do if they could no longer off load the pigeons they shot to an outlet or game dealer and some of the top pigeon shooters said they would stop shooting them , so are they purely doing it for pest control or the sport pigeon shooting can offer ? , we are lucky in pigeon shooting where we can get very good sport while at times carrying out pest control , but pest control is not the only reason we do it .

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4 hours ago, marsh man said:

Well I am sorry to say that I shoot pigeons for the sport , I could find a lot easier ways in keeping the numbers down when I am roost shooting in February , so why am I roost shooting ? , for the sport it offer , no point in lying , we have already had posts on the forum asking members what they would do if they could no longer off load the pigeons they shot to an outlet or game dealer and some of the top pigeon shooters said they would stop shooting them , so are they purely doing it for pest control or the sport pigeon shooting can offer ? , we are lucky in pigeon shooting where we can get very good sport while at times carrying out pest control , but pest control is not the only reason we do it .

Thank you for your honest comments MM. Unless carrying out pigeon shooting commercially for pest control, most, if not all of us, would not do it purely to appease our farmer friends if we did not enjoy it.

Regards exaggerated bags, you’ve only got to look back at my previous posts to realise that my meagre bags of between 5 & 30 have not been exaggerated, far from it. Those who exaggerate their bags or kills to cartridge ratio are only kidding themselves, so there’s really no point.

OB

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17 hours ago, motty said:

You can get lucky, but hours of driving and watching will always pay off in the end.

In essence that really is what it’s about....but you can’t tell people! 
If you don’t take the time to drive round and look on a regular basis you’ll never shoot good bags often, end of story. Too many people want to just set up on a field of stubble and shoot 100 pigeons without doing the homework! 

Edited by Wilts#Dave
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1 hour ago, Wilts#Dave said:

In essence that really is what it’s about....but you can’t tell people! 
If you don’t take the time to drive round and look on a regular basis you’ll never shoot good bags often, end of story. Too many people want to just set up on a field of stubble and shoot 100 pigeons without doing the homework! 

I agree entirely with what you are saying , I have found the homework nearly as enjoyable as the the shooting itself , weather you got a small bit of land to go on or a few 1000 acres you still need to keep an eye on what is going on , unless you are very lucky you wont shoot many pigeons by leaving it a while and then pulling up to the crop expecting good shooting for the rest of the day , it can happen but I never rely on it , yes it do take time and for some they might not have much of it , but if you want something bad enough you have to make time .

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1 hour ago, Old Boggy said:

Thank you for your honest comments MM. Unless carrying out pigeon shooting commercially for pest control, most, if not all of us, would not do it purely to appease our farmer friends if we did not enjoy it.

Regards exaggerated bags, you’ve only got to look back at my previous posts to realise that my meagre bags of between 5 & 30 have not been exaggerated, far from it. Those who exaggerate their bags or kills to cartridge ratio are only kidding themselves, so there’s really no point.

OB

Very refreshing and pretty well my experience. For some, the variable multiplier of 10 kicks in for bags up to 3, for slightly larger bags a reduced multipier is used to ensure that a decent bag is reported probably topping out with a double multiplier applied to a bag of 50+. Bit cynical as maybe, but I've seen it too many times for it to be fiction. Clearly, not directed at the Forum members. I'd still be interested what becomes of the mega bags of pigeons that apparently nobody wants.

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20 hours ago, marsh man said:

Well I am sorry to say that I shoot pigeons for the sport , I could find a lot easier ways in keeping the numbers down when I am roost shooting in February , so why am I roost shooting ? , for the sport it offer , no point in lying , we have already had posts on the forum asking members what they would do if they could no longer off load the pigeons they shot to an outlet or game dealer and some of the top pigeon shooters said they would stop shooting them , so are they purely doing it for pest control or the sport pigeon shooting can offer ? , we are lucky in pigeon shooting where we can get very good sport while at times carrying out pest control , but pest control is not the only reason we do it .

Don't get me wrong; I enjoy doing it, I bloody love it, still find it exhilarating & imo one of the most challenging unpredictable birds we shoot. But as soon as we start classing it as sport then we open ourselves up to seasons & contravene the GL. Im not having a pop at anyone. Just wondering if a public forum is best place to offer up quotes such as those. 

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13 hours ago, Wilts#Dave said:

In essence that really is what it’s about....but you can’t tell people! 
If you don’t take the time to drive round and look on a regular basis you’ll never shoot good bags often, end of story. Too many people want to just set up on a field of stubble and shoot 100 pigeons without doing the homework! 

Agree. I think that sums up point of the original frustrated  post. Things change every day if your not familiar with your farms you'll not be doing much at all. You'll always spend more time looking than shooting and that's a fact. 

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5 hours ago, Balotelli said:

That doesn't quite square the circle of shooting 20-30 pigeons a day.

It's nothing to do with numbers it's doing a good job. I have two large estates and more than a dozen farms in three areas non of which I make sure get over shot. Incidentally picked up another small farm this week as so called pigeon shooters only want to come at white trainer time (harvest). There history now.

So easy to loose a permission with some farmers just leaving a gate open will do it when he's having a bad day. 

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27 minutes ago, mellors said:

It's nothing to do with numbers it's doing a good job. I have two large estates and more than a dozen farms in three areas non of which I make sure get over shot. Incidentally picked up another small farm this week as so called pigeon shooters only want to come at white trainer time (harvest). There history now.

So easy to loose a permission with some farmers just leaving a gate open will do it when he's having a bad day. 

I find it hard to accept that the raison d'etre for going round permissions is to do a "good job". We like shooting.  To do a "good job" we can just walk the field and save  the cost of cartridges. Doing a good job is coincidental and not some moral charitable act. I agree that the fair weather shooters are useless apart from maybe keeping pigeon numbers down for next year. I suspect with so much shooting available to you, you will find it hard to do a "good job" tending all of your permissions. You seem to do very well in acquiring  permissions,  clearly a member of the charm school. 

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12 hours ago, BenBhoy said:

Don't get me wrong; I enjoy doing it, I bloody love it, still find it exhilarating & imo one of the most challenging unpredictable birds we shoot. But as soon as we start classing it as sport then we open ourselves up to seasons & contravene the GL. Im not having a pop at anyone. Just wondering if a public forum is best place to offer up quotes such as those. 

I am of the same mind as marsh man. We are allowed to do it because pigeons need controlling. If it were a case of firing a net over a field to catch and then kill them, I don't think many would bother! 

I shoot pigeons for the same reasons I shoot ducks, geese or pheasants. The fact that pigeons are on the GL is of no significance to me - it is all about sport/enjoyment .

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6 minutes ago, Balotelli said:

I find it hard to accept that the raison d'etre for going round permissions is to do a "good job". We like shooting.  To do a "good job" we can just walk the field and save  the cost of cartridges. Doing a good job is coincidental and not some moral charitable act. I agree that the fair weather shooters are useless apart from maybe keeping pigeon numbers down for next year. I suspect with so much shooting available to you, you will find it hard to do a "good job" tending all of your permissions. You seem to do very well in acquiring  permissions,  clearly a member of the charm school. 

Major member of the charm school and respect what I've acquired over a very long period. I love my shooting wish I could get away with 7 days a week but 4 or 5 will have to do. Final salary retirement helps. 

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On 01/09/2020 at 21:34, JDog said:

They do. What do you think they are feeding on in rape stubble? However when rape is drilled the seed is too deep for them to find.

The bigger question is why pigeons do not feed on tender volunteer rape leaves after seed on a stubble has germinated yet they will feed on the older leaves in winter and spring.

I don’t think pigeons like rapeseed leaves- it just keeps them going when nothing else is available in winter. When rape stubble has greened up - there are  better options to eat.

 

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3 hours ago, motty said:

I am of the same mind as marsh man. We are allowed to do it because pigeons need controlling. If it were a case of firing a net over a field to catch and then kill them, I don't think many would bother! 

I shoot pigeons for the same reasons I shoot ducks, geese or pheasants. The fact that pigeons are on the GL is of no significance to me - it is all about sport/enjoyment .

I simply fear that comments/admittance like these play into the hands of wild justice and their type. 

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