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A call to the barley drillings, but where are the birds


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The car was packed and ready for another day on the rape, but 10 minutes before I was going to leave the house the phone rang, the farm manager was asking me to go out to a huge field drilled with barley two days ago, I got the directions and headed out, on arrival I drove around the area but there were no birds on the field or nearby drillings.

Still I'm there now so set up in a corner on the top of a rise, good vision all round, put out 25 dead birds and another 15 crow decoys ( the manager wanted some dead crows to hang out ) , it was slow at first with a couple of pigeons and one rook, after 4 hours it was even slower, only 5 pigeons and the one rook so I called it a day.

I think I missed them by one day, lots of tractors working, several drilling new areas and the few birds that were about had already found the newly drilled fields and had moved on from my field, ah well, better luck next time. 

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At seven in the morning last Friday I received a text from Clodhopper telling me that there were lots of pigeons on drillings in one of my fields. I went to look twice that day and never saw a pigeon.

On Saturday morning I had another look but not a bird was seen. On Saturday afternoon I had a call from Ginger Cat telling me that there were lots of pigeons in the very same field.

On Sunday afternoon Jacko and I cruised by the field which was devoid of birds.

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1 hour ago, captainhastings said:

Big field of bean by me all laying on the top and not a single pigeon on them. A few in the hedges well 2 but nothing in the air. Come august there will be loads 

Fingers and toes crossed they will show up eventually, till then I will still be out and about trying to find a few.

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I am surprised you setup before the birds showed you where they wanted?

This area at the minute has some biggish numbers on direct drilled beans and barley, one farm as put 75 acres of beans in, I have shot it twice in the last week, first outing produced 38 and yesterday (29 march) 78, the amount of beans on the top is unbelievable, think there is possibly another day to be had on those beans if it stops dry, maybe tomorrow. :)

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5 hours ago, old'un said:

I am surprised you setup before the birds showed you where they wanted?

This area at the minute has some biggish numbers on direct drilled beans and barley, one farm as put 75 acres of beans in, I have shot it twice in the last week, first outing produced 38 and yesterday (29 march) 78, the amount of beans on the top is unbelievable, think there is possibly another day to be had on those beans if it stops dry, maybe tomorrow.

Some good bags there old'un , and when crossing the half ton they become very good bags , if you had the same weather as we did yesterday it was easily the warmest day this year , I was shooting on a rape field with just a jumper on , the only downside was the pigeons only came in dribs and drabs with longish gaps in between , and the upside was my dog enjoyed a few retrieves out of the rapidly growing rape .

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29 minutes ago, marsh man said:

Some good bags there old'un , and when crossing the half ton they become very good bags , if you had the same weather as we did yesterday it was easily the warmest day this year , I was shooting on a rape field with just a jumper on , the only downside was the pigeons only came in dribs and drabs with longish gaps in between , and the upside was my dog enjoyed a few retrieves out of the rapidly growing rape .

Here we had a mixture of sunshine and clouds and a strong south westerly wind, it was bloody cold when the sun went in, the pigeons were coming in well but I did not like the strong wind directly behind me, much prefer the wind coming from the left or right and slightly behind, but I had to setup where the pigeons wanted.

The only problem with shooting more than 50 now is carrying them back to the car, I am not 25 anymore, I was knackered by the time I got home, needless to say I slept well.

One thing I did notice and that was about a third of the birds were in poor condition (body weight) you could feel the breast bone and lack of weight, the rest were like Christmas turkeys.

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