Jump to content

Pigeon shooting calender


Recommended Posts

im sure at one point or another everyones read "the pigeon shooter" by john batley, and have gone over his pigeon shooting calender where he covers every month what hes shooting on and how and what kind of numbers he sees/shoots.

my question is this was written in the 90s does it still hold up  becasue i must admit for me its getting more unpredictable and  harder every year. granted ive never taken huge bags but still. im curious whats the modern 2022 calender look like with the folks who get out regular and regularly do well?

becasue on my few perms last few years the spring drilling has been done so well it didnt really get any intrest when sown and its plowed in after harvest within a day or two same with the peas.  roost shooting has been done for some time since the trees are in leaf and now that the rape has flowered ive waited for them and now some how missed them. only thing they have been on in any quantity is the clover on the livestock fields.  i now theyre wild animals but they arnt playing by the rules its outragous :D

this standard crack or am i just really bad at this?

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Quite a bit have changed since John Bately wrote that book , for a start , around here the Spring drilling is now a non event , the drill itself is so much more efficent than the ones used in the 90s with very little seed left on the surface , we now shoot the o s r a lot longer than we used to and would normally give it a miss when the whole field is in flower , Peas were a very good crop to shoot over and on the right fields we often shot Pigeons on every stage of growth and then had good bags off the Pea stubble , some years through weather conditions the vinners sometimes left a whole field to go to seed as they went ripe before they had a chance to lift them , this was a bonus and very good bags were often made .

Moving on to the grain fields , in the 90s the stems on Wheat , Barley and Rye were a lot longer and would often get knocked about with the first thunderstorm when it was in a milky stage , now the stems are thicker and shorter so a lot less of the crop get laid , then as soon as the crop is combined the first fields are drilled for next years rape and I would think as much , or even more rape is grown now then back in the 90s

So quite a bit have changed since John Bately wrote his book , but 30 odd years later we are still shooting Pigeons and have adapted as well as the Pigeons have done .

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think the pigeon feeding habits have changed somewhat since JB wrote his book.

No new crops have been introduced locally- however as MM mentioned spring drillings are more of a miss than the hit they used to be.

Winter rape, peas & stubbles make up 90% of my pigeon shooting- roosting is the other 10%.

As an aside - does anyone know if  John Batley still shooting pigeons? 
Also another author called John Grey wrote an excellent book on pigeon shooting back in the 80’s - again is he still with us and hopefully still shooting.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I would say very little as changed from 90s, the pigeons are still hitting the rape during the winter, also spring rape, they are still hitting badly sown fields, spring and autumn sown, they are still hitting laid corn and then the stubbles, the problem is the same as its always been and that is finding an area with a good head of pigeons and next finding the field they want, although I have seen fields with tons of seed on the top but not a pigeon in sight.

I will add that most sown fields now don't have a lot on the top due to the drills being more efficient and the use of more direct drilling, although I did have some cracking shooting last spring on a badly direct drilled field of beans.

Also I don't see the big numbers on winter rape that I did during the 70s, 80s, and early part of the 90s, when I say big numbers I am talking 5000+ pigeons.

There is another thing that as changed over the last 20-30 years and that's the weather.

Edited by old'un
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 27/04/2022 at 15:18, old'un said:

I would say very little as changed from 90s, the pigeons are still hitting the rape during the winter, also spring rape, they are still hitting badly sown fields, spring and autumn sown, they are still hitting laid corn and then the stubbles, the problem is the same as its always been and that is finding an area with a good head of pigeons and next finding the field they want, although I have seen fields with tons of seed on the top but not a pigeon in sight.

I will add that most sown fields now don't have a lot on the top due to the drills being more efficient and the use of more direct drilling, although I did have some cracking shooting last spring on a badly direct drilled field of beans.

Also I don't see the big numbers on winter rape that I did during the 70s, 80s, and early part of the 90s, when I say big numbers I am talking 5000+ pigeons.

There is another thing that as changed over the last 20-30 years and that's the weather.

Some of the changes since the 90s that affect Pigeon shooting is farm practices , the crop rotation have changed quite a bit , we no longer grow Lucerne , a very good crop to shoot on , Linseed , another good crop , kale for the cattle , again a good crop in hard winter weather , some of the farms have versified and more or less put paid to Pigeon shooting , one good farm I went on now do tours of the farm , school parties go and watch the lambing , the Maise field is now a huge Maze that change designs each year , a outside cinema , a big farm shop and so on .

In the 90s we sometimes had the whole field of Winter wheat or barley go down as flat as a pancake , and if it had gone down in patches in the middle of the field I would very often knell in the tram lines and shoot some very good bags without a hide , now my knees could never do that again and the height of the crop is only half to two thirds of what it once was .

In the 90s you had some Pigeons in the towns and villages but not on the same scale as now , our village is full of Pigeons and they easy out number any other bird that come to our bird table .

If we are honest about it , a lot of ( us ) didn't know , or didn't give the G L must of a thought , this was brought to life when a few people virtually put a full stop to Pigeon shooting overnight and for a short while it was all put on hold , even now it is still a Grey area with flight line shooting , roost shooting and shooting over stubble's , and I believe it come under prevention to stop Pigeons causing damage :hmm:, the G L is reviewed from time to time and it wouldn't surprise me if the day come where you can only shoot Pigeons on the field where they are doing damage , after non lethal methods have already been tried .

Another problem we will have before long is the non use of lead with non toxic shot only , for the time being I am not over worried will continue to use lead as long as I can.

Now we come to the demand for Pigeons , in the 90s we never dream't the day will come where you cannot give them away , the price from the hey day might have gone down just a little but every dealer around my area wanted Pigeons , both fresh and frozen , those days will not return.

Yes the weather is a big factor , take today for instance , we have been irrigating our Winter wheat for the last couple of week and the rain fall is down by 70% from a average April, irrigating this early in the 90s was virtually un known

Where Pigeon shooting and other forms of shooting will be in the next 30 years we can only but guess , I know one thing for sure is, I certainly won't be about to find out .

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 hours ago, marsh man said:

Some of the changes since the 90s that affect Pigeon shooting is farm practices , the crop rotation have changed quite a bit , we no longer grow Lucerne , a very good crop to shoot on , Linseed , another good crop , kale for the cattle , again a good crop in hard winter weather , some of the farms have versified and more or less put paid to Pigeon shooting , one good farm I went on now do tours of the farm , school parties go and watch the lambing , the Maise field is now a huge Maze that change designs each year , a outside cinema , a big farm shop and so on .

In the 90s we sometimes had the whole field of Winter wheat or barley go down as flat as a pancake , and if it had gone down in patches in the middle of the field I would very often knell in the tram lines and shoot some very good bags without a hide , now my knees could never do that again and the height of the crop is only half to two thirds of what it once was .

In the 90s you had some Pigeons in the towns and villages but not on the same scale as now , our village is full of Pigeons and they easy out number any other bird that come to our bird table .

If we are honest about it , a lot of ( us ) didn't know , or didn't give the G L must of a thought , this was brought to life when a few people virtually put a full stop to Pigeon shooting overnight and for a short while it was all put on hold , even now it is still a Grey area with flight line shooting , roost shooting and shooting over stubble's , and I believe it come under prevention to stop Pigeons causing damage , the G L is reviewed from time to time and it wouldn't surprise me if the day come where you can only shoot Pigeons on the field where they are doing damage , after non lethal methods have already been tried .

Another problem we will have before long is the non use of lead with non toxic shot only , for the time being I am not over worried will continue to use lead as long as I can.

Now we come to the demand for Pigeons , in the 90s we never dream't the day will come where you cannot give them away , the price from the hey day might have gone down just a little but every dealer around my area wanted Pigeons , both fresh and frozen , those days will not return.

Yes the weather is a big factor , take today for instance , we have been irrigating our Winter wheat for the last couple of week and the rain fall is down by 70% from a average April, irrigating this early in the 90s was virtually un known

Where Pigeon shooting and other forms of shooting will be in the next 30 years we can only but guess , I know one thing for sure is, I certainly won't be about to find out .

 

Cannot disagree with any of that, John.

The only thing that I would add is, that in our area there are acres upon acres of maize having been drilled over the last couple of weeks (for biofuel) with plenty of treated (pink) maize on the surface and not a pigeon to be seen anywhere. They just don’t like it. Perhaps it’s what it’s been treated with that doesn’t appeal. This might be a different matter if the crop, when ripened, is laid by strong wind and heavy rain and the combines failed to pick some up. This happened three years ago and provided brilliant shooting for weeks even when the direct drilled wheat was well up. They were still finding the cobs on the ground.

A small field of peas nearby has not attracted a single pigeon. Normally, as we know,  peas could be shot over from drilling right through to harvest, but no so this field it would appear. 
The only pigeons that I’ve seen have been on buds in the hedgerows and no doubt in the woods or in my garden.

All of the rape is in full flower with a bit of activity on any hammered patches. One of my pals set up on one such patch yesterday having seen a few down feeding but didn’t have any return and didn’t fire a shot.

I think that we have once again hit the quiet period as previously mentioned until such time that the combines roll once more, some wheat or barley is laid, but as MM rightly pointed out above this is becoming rarer due to the shorter stemmed varieties being grown, or the pigeons find ripened beans in the tramlines once the pods start splitting just prior to harvest. This appears to be the scenario in my neck of the woods anyway, but I’m pleased for anyone who is still finding and continues to find a bit of shooting.

OB

Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 hours ago, TIGHTCHOKE said:

Perfect for having picnics in the countryside!  :good:

My pal Stour boy and I have had to curtail our hide lunches until there are a few pigeons to shoot. Once the weather gets warmer, perhaps a trip down river in his boat + wives and a pub lunch at the Dog and Duck at Plucks Gutter.

OB

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...