Will game shooting go ahead this autumn?

flowerpot

Member
I was wondering this the other day. People I know rear 100,000 birds, but they come from France, so will they be able to import these chicks?

It is ironic - the farm above enters environmental competitions and wins prizes, has lots of wildlife. We on the otherhand do no shooting, and have basically very little wildlife apart from pigeons, badgers and pests. The shoot next door put seemingly 100s of ducks on our pond, which doesn't seem all that environmentally friendly to me, especially when they waddle across the fields up into the farm yard - I thought ducks were supposed to fly?
 
Perhaps a season to return to just a friends and family only shoot, relying on what nature provides as we did years ago.
Not many birds but not much expense either.
If you have gamekeeper/s to pay you have a financial problem, so no comment if you are in that situation.
Totally agree
 

Hampton

Member
Location
Shropshire
I was wondering this the other day. People I know rear 100,000 birds, but they come from France, so will they be able to import these chicks?

It is ironic - the farm above enters environmental competitions and wins prizes, has lots of wildlife. We on the otherhand do no shooting, and have basically very little wildlife apart from pigeons, badgers and pests. The shoot next door put seemingly 100s of ducks on our pond, which doesn't seem all that environmentally friendly to me, especially when they waddle across the fields up into the farm yard - I thought ducks were supposed to fly?
The one benefit of ducks is that they eat all the snails which as my neighbour will testify has stopped the need for flukicide. It can however be very tricky to keep several thousand ducks out of cattle feeders though...
 

Brisel

Member
Location
Dorset
I was wondering this the other day. People I know rear 100,000 birds, but they come from France, so will they be able to import these chicks?

It is ironic - the farm above enters environmental competitions and wins prizes, has lots of wildlife. We on the otherhand do no shooting, and have basically very little wildlife apart from pigeons, badgers and pests. The shoot next door put seemingly 100s of ducks on our pond, which doesn't seem all that environmentally friendly to me, especially when they waddle across the fields up into the farm yard - I thought ducks were supposed to fly?
There's the irony. Shooting means conservation and many other species benefit. I know that's getting off topic & I have no answer to your question on importing chicks from France. The French rear them in captivity for meat, so gathering them up is easier.
 

Cripper

Member
I can only speak for the large shooting estate where I live. The aim is to shoot as many Pheasants as possible in the shooting season. If you leave large numbers they are a disease risk for the tens of thousands of Pheasants reared in pens. Most of the dead birds are dumped in large pits away from sight. A few are served in the restaurant they have. Grouse shooting is elitist. Pheasant shoot not so much. Obviously you need money but you get quite a few criminal types who like guns and have plenty of cash in hand for the keepers
 
Ive worked on a game farm (from lay to hatch and beyond) and in terms of drugs used it was piffling. Spend on disinfectants, detergents and hot water though must rival any food processors.

Anyone dumping game birds they have shot is shooting too many and should leave the sport and take up golf. Its that simple and you will get the sport banned.
 

Barleycorn

Member
Location
Hampshire
We are going ahead as usual with our 150 birds and a few people turning up in the yard on shoot days for a glorified walk. And the chap that does the game keeping in his spare time has just been laid off work with 75% pay, not much need for engineers to make formula 1 engine parts it seems
He could make ventilators like the Mercedes team.
 
You must have some big shoot near you to be getting such a big bag for so little out lay...
No only buffered with a bit of successful hatches of left over hens. We still have feed in feeders for birds that made it through the season. We had 52% 2 years ago and 48% this year.
our typical bag for December/January would be 25/30 pheasants 6/8 duck 5/8 woodcock and same snipe. Few pigeons/magpie/jay and odd squirrel.
That’s on 1400 acres with lots of woods and 3 mile of river valleys that get rotated so only get shot every 4 weeks. Same with duck ponds. All fed with auto feeders but rotated so only shot every month.
 
well, we had best season ever last year, on our small, 200 poults, family shoot. Shot 175 total, and usually see between 50/60 hen birds in the cubicle sheds every day ! So, if we can/not get any birds, we will have a shoot !
But, I do think it would be a good thing, if everything was scaled back this year, small shoots, family/farmers shoots, can justify themselves, on environmental and moral basis. I am not sure some of these massive commercial shoots can. A break, might not be a bad idea.
 

mayos

Member
Location
South
I love shooting game, it’s my passion, but you are looking at it through rose tinted specs.
I edited my last post with regards to a pheasants life and think it is apt in this point.
I’m fully aware that not all farms are perfect, but I also know how gamekeepers work. I can tell you that the best game rearers in this area tend to be diversified farmers as they understand livestock.
It’s also common knowledge that stressed livestock don’t fatten in the same way stressed crops don’t yield which is why all farmers should aim for the highest welfare they can.
Again, I reiterate, your arguments on pheasants being high welfare appears to be totally related to the fact they are “free”. This is despite that fact that thousands are reared together before being moved to release pens. They are then repeatedly chased by dogs and shot at. At the end of the season, if they are still alive, the males are rifled from their roosts and the hens are rounded up for laying. Sounds like a fantastic life!
Do you think that stressed low welfare game birds are going to give the best sport? As with everything i think the people who look after these creatures are always going to try do the best for them. Everyone (i hope) tries to aim for the highest possible welfare whatever their chosen "crop".

I still reckon i'd rather that than being an intesively reared broiler. Welfare is subjective though isn't it? 100% chance of being killed after 90 days in a broiler house or 50% chance of being shot (rifle or shotgun)/eaten/etc. or make it through the season. Reckon i'd rather take my chance.

As to wether or not shooting will continue this year i hope so. I think that the numbers will be reduced, i think a lot of people will have to tighten their belts and i think fewer birds will be put down.
 

An Gof

Member
Location
Cornwall
Oh please!
Just because cattle and sheep are going to die, doesn’t mean their welfare is lower than a pheasants.
anyone who has been near a game farm knows that they can’t touch a well run beef or sheep farm in terms of medication used.
It’s true that many sheep and cattle are wormed, but fec tests has reduced this dramatically. Vaccines are used, but antibiotics are now much more rare. I would estimate less than 1% of my spring lambs will require antibiotics or wormers.

with regards to not high percentages of pheasants getting shot, this is true, but at the end of the season on big shoots, the keeper will go around shooting the cock birds with rifles (This is very common, mainly whilst roosting) and the hen birds are largely rounded up and used as layers.
Again, your knowledge of game farming and livestock farming has many holes in.
Your argument on welfare standards of pheasants appears to be based on them being free range. It tends to ignore that they are chased by dogs, shot at repeatedly over 3-4 months, herded around to the drives, then at the end of the season when the sport finishes, males are rifled and hens are caught, oh and the feeding stops for those left out.
Doesn’t seem quite so rose tinted now does it?
I take it you’re not a fan of shooting :ROFLMAO:
 

Agrivator

Member
No only buffered with a bit of successful hatches of left over hens. We still have feed in feeders for birds that made it through the season. We had 52% 2 years ago and 48% this year.
our typical bag for December/January would be 25/30 pheasants 6/8 duck 5/8 woodcock and same snipe. Few pigeons/magpie/jay and odd squirrel.
That’s on 1400 acres with lots of woods and 3 mile of river valleys that get rotated so only get shot every 4 weeks. Same with duck ponds. All fed with auto feeders but rotated so only shot every month.
I was impressed with your post until you mentioned Snipe. Why would anyone want to shoot a Snipe, particularly when you can buy delicious plain or spiced chicken wings form ASDA.

The alternative would be to make a good catapult from a bit of hazel, a bit of inner tube, and some tongue from your worn-out brogues, and to get your underkeeper to fire a few stuffed objects that resembles a snipe into the air. Or use a clay-pigeon trap. (y)

Or you could come here and shoot some bloody Canada or Pinkfoot geese.
 

Hampton

Member
Location
Shropshire
Ah, I have read a bit further, you are a Shooting fanatic(y)
I am just defending the livestock industry against many shooters view (Clive included) that game is the purest form of meat. I think he claimed earlier than it was the closest to vegan? Anyway, I have a close friend who argued the he was going to reduce all meat from his diet apart from pheasant as it was a cleaner free range type of meat. I put forward the same arguments I have today, particularly with regarding meds and welfare.
 
I was impressed with your post until you mentioned Snipe. Why would anyone want to shoot a Snipe, particularly when you can buy delicious plain or spiced chicken wings form ASDA.

The alternative would be to make a good catapult from a bit of hazel, a bit of inner tube, and some tongue from your worn-out brogues, and to get your underkeeper to fire a few stuffed objects that resembles a snipe into the air. Or use a clay-pigeon trap. (y)

Or you could come here and shoot some bloody Canada or Pinkfoot geese.
There’s usually a good old fight over the snipe and woodcock. I like eating both.
We get lots of snipe here. They seem to love the fertile pastures especially if they had dung on recently. it’s usually the walking/beating guns that get them as we walk across fields to get at the pheasant drives and often 20/30 will get up. Don’t often particularly target them.
 

MrNoo

Member
Arable Farmer
Location
Cirencester
Good year to get enthusiastic about grey partridge conservation methinks. If you have gamekeeping assets focus on predation and habitat.
All well and good but these commercial shoots flood the local area with French things that dont fly and they push the poor english off. We have quite a few wild coveys but they're competing for food and nesting sites etc. I gather the one next door is not running this year thankfully, large surplus of birds still about from last season but I suspect we'll put our usual 150 down for our 5 days.
 
Always the best way.

'How did your shooting go yesterday?'

'No idea: got a big headache this morning though....'
We swap round the local pubs for supper each shoot day to That’s how it normally ends up :ROFLMAO: :ROFLMAO:

Honestly tho I’d never pay to shoot on a peg and eat sandwiches in a 4x4 does not appeal to me atall... much rather walk some rough ground with my terrier and a side by side
 

ZXR17

Member
Location
South Dorset
What will be the implications of a shoot that puts several thousand birds down on a relatively small area , in the hope that everything will carry on as normal , only to find that restrictions remain in place and shoots are not allowed to operate ?
Obviously financial costs will be high but what about crop damage , and would the birds have to fed right through to the following season ?
 

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