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Talk to me about wildfowling (on the Severn?)


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Hi all

So I've been interested in the idea of wildfowling for a long while, and I'm very seriously considering joining (at least the waiting list) for the GWCA. 

I was just wondering what fowling is "like" on the Severn specifically in terms of the quarry, the terrain, etc. And more generally aside from trawling the Internet are there any good books on the subject of wildfowling? 

Golden rules for fowlers? 

Must-have gear? (real must-haves, not just fancy stuff from magazine adverts!) 

 

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Once you have been bitten by the wildfowling bug ,you will never want for anything else.

It's the best way I can think of welcoming the day and saying goodnight at the end.Sights and sounds to stir the sole,and if your very lucky a nice feed as well.

 

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21 minutes ago, greylag said:

Once you have been bitten by the wildfowling bug ,you will never want for anything else.

It's the best way I can think of welcoming the day and saying goodnight at the end.Sights and sounds to stir the sole,and if your very lucky a nice feed as well.

 

Sounds good! 

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we have the 2nd biggest rise and fall in the world for tides ..That with the mud can be very treacherous ,So you need to learn the patch 

ideally a good strong dog that can potentially pick a Canada goose off a flowing tide carry it through mud and up a riverbank

But some people have smaller dogs and have to pick they're shots so its not a deal breaker 

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On 13/12/2020 at 21:25, greylag said:

Once you have been bitten by the wildfowling bug ,you will never want for anything else.

It's the best way I can think of welcoming the day and saying goodnight at the end.Sights and sounds to stir the sole,and if your very lucky a nice feed as well.

 

Absolutely agree and why I now live on the Solway. First went age twenty and now over sixty. Still love it and not just pulling the trigger as you suggest.

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7 hours ago, iamspuddy said:

we have the 2nd biggest rise and fall in the world for tides ..That with the mud can be very treacherous ,So you need to learn the patch 

ideally a good strong dog that can potentially pick a Canada goose off a flowing tide carry it through mud and up a riverbank

But some people have smaller dogs and have to pick they're shots so its not a deal breaker 

Yes, I imagine learning the ground is hugely important for safety and also for any hope of being in the right place at the right time for a shot at something. 

As for the dog, I've never asked her to do anything like that so it's a bit of an unknown. But I don't imagine I'll be getting out by myself for a couple of years at least, by which time she might be showing her age a bit and not up for sitting out in the cold. In which case I'll have the perfect excuse for adding another dog to the family! 

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On 13/12/2020 at 21:25, greylag said:

Once you have been bitten by the wildfowling bug ,you will never want for anything else.

It's the best way I can think of welcoming the day and saying goodnight at the end.Sights and sounds to stir the sole,and if your very lucky a nice feed as well.

 

In the ideal world every morning and evening flight would be as you say , but with wild fowling it is a Winter sport and you have to accept you are going to be out in all conditions , not just seeing nice sun rises but wet , cold and windy ones , along with the evening flight , this past season have been a very wet one and many times I have been out in the dry and got home with a empty bag and had to hang up most of my clothing to dry off.

If a new member come into the sport and last three seasons then it's a possibility he might be in it for the long haul , but how many times do you hear a person when asked if he had been reply with the words , no I haven't had the time , or I will wait till it get colder .

One example I remember well was several years ago when I was still working , that day was also a Christmas Eve and we were told we could pack up from dinner time , I told a mate of mine who liked his fowling to be round mine at three o clock and we will go for flight on my marshes , the day in question was wet and windy and when he came round it was raining fairly hard , we had a cuppa and then made our way down the marsh , we had a fair bit of water on the grazing fields and with the wind blowing strong from the North I was sure we would see a few duck come on for shelter with the estuary being a bit on the rough side .

Anyhow we arrived in good time, with the light now fading we went on two different marshes and settled down near a good splash of water , my legs were in good nick then and I knelt on my game bag and shot from a knelling position , duck were coming in well and my bag was getting near double figures when it got to dark to see , I packed up and met up with my mate on the way back , getting home I tipped my bag out and I had nine Widgeon , my mate only had two , when having another cup of tea I said to Bob , that was a good flight we had , he turned round and said , yea it was , pity about the rain though , up until then I hadn't even noticed it had been been raining  :lol: happy days .

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1 hour ago, marsh man said:

In the ideal world every morning and evening flight would be as you say , but with wild fowling it is a Winter sport and you have to accept you are going to be out in all conditions , not just seeing nice sun rises but wet , cold and windy ones , along with the evening flight , this past season have been a very wet one and many times I have been out in the dry and got home with a empty bag and had to hang up most of my clothing to dry off.

If a new member come into the sport and last three seasons then it's a possibility he might be in it for the long haul , but how many times do you hear a person when asked if he had been reply with the words , no I haven't had the time , or I will wait till it get colder .

One example I remember well was several years ago when I was still working , that day was also a Christmas Eve and we were told we could pack up from dinner time , I told a mate of mine who liked his fowling to be round mine at three o clock and we will go for flight on my marshes , the day in question was wet and windy and when he came round it was raining fairly hard , we had a cuppa and then made our way down the marsh , we had a fair bit of water on the grazing fields and with the wind blowing strong from the North I was sure we would see a few duck come on for shelter with the estuary being a bit on the rough side .

Anyhow we arrived in good time, with the light now fading we went on two different marshes and settled down near a good splash of water , my legs were in good nick then and I knelt on my game bag and shot from a knelling position , duck were coming in well and my bag was getting near double figures when it got to dark to see , I packed up and met up with my mate on the way back , getting home I tipped my bag out and I had nine Widgeon , my mate only had two , when having another cup of tea I said to Bob , that was a good flight we had , he turned round and said , yea it was , pity about the rain though , up until then I hadn't even noticed it had been been raining  :lol: happy days .

Sounds about perfect to me. 

I came into shooting firstly as a deer stalker and that's still my biggest interest but with no deer to speak of on my little bit of ground it's an expensive hobby. 

Anyway, I've been out plenty of times with the rifle, up at daft o-clock into the cold and not seen hide nor hair of deer. Never stops me going back. Likewise with fly fishing, I used to get out with my dad and we'd have days where you didn't touch a fish, but that makes the days when you get a few all the better. 

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4 hours ago, SimpleSimon said:

Sounds about perfect to me. 

I came into shooting firstly as a deer stalker and that's still my biggest interest but with no deer to speak of on my little bit of ground it's an expensive hobby. 

Anyway, I've been out plenty of times with the rifle, up at daft o-clock into the cold and not seen hide nor hair of deer. Never stops me going back. Likewise with fly fishing, I used to get out with my dad and we'd have days where you didn't touch a fish, but that makes the days when you get a few all the better. 

I fully agree with what you are saying where you have to take the good and the bad days , to get the best out of fowling you need to live on , or very near to your shooting ground so when conditions are favourable you can stop what you are doing and get to where you think you will get a shot or two .

Making arrangements well ahead of when you intend to go can be very hit and miss , up until yesterday we had if anything to much water on the marshes but you could still get a shot at the duck that were using the quite splashes , then yesterday the heavens opened up and it did not stop raining hard , at one time the local emergency services had over 300 phone calls about flash flooding , today just about every marsh is flooded with the rivers overflowing along with the dykes , so now unless we get a good frost to freeze the water we will have to revert to plan B  or     C    or      D , this might mean giving the duck a miss and weigh up the geese flight lines , this is all part of the fun of wild fowling , roll on Boxing Day .

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