Sunday, 17 January 2010


Well all can i say is ."Well done pops" at last he got his first fox with the 22-250.
It has been our third outing now for my old man to bag a charlie with his .22-250.The first two outings we did manage to get a shot off for him but his confidence wasn`t very high with the new toy and he did miss it.So it was back to the range and get him used to all the routine needed to pull the shot of relaxed and 100% sure he will kill the fox.
Well he was comfortably hittin 1 1/2  inch groups at 100 yards so we decided to go out as it had forcast a break in the snow.
We pulled up on the ground at about six o clock and pulled up on the top of a bank with the wood behind us so we didn`t stick out like a sore thumb in the light conditions.We could get a good view of a couple of field here and the shot was down hill so there was no question that an unsafe shot was going to happen.
Well i got  the squeaking job and was sent out in the now started again snow fall to try and call one in.The old man smugly looking through the window of the vitara all nice and warm.I had been calling for about 10 mins and had a scan across the fields when i noticed the diamond eyes of a fox about 150 yards,the only problem was we had a 50ft oak tree between us and a shot just wasn`t possible,i called the old man out who was nearly asleep as it was that warm in the car to get ready and showed him where charlie was.
After another 15 minutes of calling the fox finally came into the middle of the field and sat looking at us.This was it my old mans first charle.
No it wasn`t ,the fox had turned just as the trigger was pulled and it resulted in a clear miss,i could have cried,i had been out in the bloody freezing cold ,i looked like a bloody snowman and for all my effort he missed it.Me old man could have cried i could have clubbed him with the gun,but hey we dont hit everything do we,if it was that easy we would all give up shooting as it would be boring.
Well after the dissapointment of the miss and 30 fags later while i was getting warmed up we moved on to another part of the shoot.I had called been calling for a good 30 minutes and nothing showed here so off we went again and drove to roughly where the first charlie had been.The snow had started again now so as before the smug git stayed inside to keep warm while i was at the calling game again.
Bingo it didn`t take long this time , i found eyes shining back where the first fox had ran to when it was missed,could this be the same one.Ten minutes had passed and the eyes had dissapeared back into the wood ,he was having none of it,we could have had a shot but i wasn`t comfortable with the old man shooting into the wood as you cant see what branches could be between him and us ,so i gave it 5 minutes and started calling again.As i was scanning with the lamp i noticed in the trees some 80 yards from where i had seen the fox his eyes again.I called a little quieter this time and it did the trick, he came out onto the edge of the wood and settled looking straight at us.
The old man resting on the truck took aim and let the bullet fly,I didnt hear the plop as you usually get when the bullet hits so i wasn`t holding out for this one but up came a pair of eyes right where he had been and this confirmed he wasn`t going anywhere.We got up to where he was and we were greeted by a dog fox in lovely condition lying stone dead.Now my old man was beaming he had finally got his first kill, i couldnt be more happy for him,all the range work had finally paid off.

Inspecting the fox i found it had been hit just under the eye and had a nice clean exit wound out its back,it wasn`t going anywhere in hurry.Now we are looking forward to our next outing, me feeling more confident in the old mans shooting and even more excited as its my turn to shoot at last.

Yesterday i had been invited on a small pheasant shoot that one of the beaters on our shoot runs,Paul puts about 50 birds down and has three small walkups through the season with his freinds,Its a nice little shoot and only lasts around two hours but i was just happy to get an invite.We had three drives, me and paul did most of the beating and take any birds going back while 3 standing guns did the rest.Going on the two previous shoots 42 of the 50 had already been shot so with what was left and stray birds from another shoot that may have come in we was hoping for ten.The first drive paul had managed to shoot a crow and a squirrel on the way and i had managed a pigeon but no pheasants showed in range for the standing guns,so off to the next drive.The guns only need to move round a little on here so it didn`t take long to get going again.A couple of minutes into the drive two hens broke and went hell for leather over the guns, and kept going passed the guns,these were fast birds and a slight chuckle to myself we carried on.
The next ten minutes produced a few birds from the thickest cover and although there weren`t alot of birds they flew like propper end of season missiles and some good shots were pulled off.I had managed to pull two great shots off at range but also missed the easiest bird of the day.The final walk had paul walking the hedgerows upto the cars while we waited in the field infront of the pen,we managed 4 birds on this drive and i had managed two more hens where i was stood.
Drive over we met back up at the cars and counted eleven birds for the morning,now considdering only 50 were put down a return of 53 is better than any shoot i know.
Pictures couldn`t be supplied as i left my bloody phone in the car but ater a thanks to paul and goodbye to the other lads i decided to go to my local shoot.
It was still early and the thought of going home before dark was unthinkable so off me and dee went in search of a squirrel or two.In the first hour i had managed to kill three squirrels and miss two pigeons,there wasn`t alot about so decided to call it a day.On the way back through the bottom wood dee put a rabbit up,as there is alot of close trees here it was a shot to nothing and hope i could get it,two barrels later it carried on running through the wood but not fast,i thought i had it on the second shot as it slowed a little but maybee not.
Dee had been sent to some brambles where i last seen it go but she couldnt find nothing and decided to go out onto the field along side the wood.Calling her back she turned fast and headed down a hedgerow,i thought she had winded a pheasant and started to call her off it but this time she never come back.It was a first for a long time that she refused to come to the whistle so i started off after her to give her a ticking off, i wanted to get to her before she started to come back.Thirty yards down the hedge out she comes,ready to give her what for i could only praise the little girl.Out she came, rabbit slumped in her jaws looking smug as hell.

 I was suprised how far this rabbit had traveled so i decided to skin it and look where it had been hit,the inspection showed two shot in its neck and its heart and lungs were hit  with another couple.I was lucky ,but it was a hard shot with the cover between us.

Well that was it for the day and home i went.The next trip will hopefully produce a fox for me so will keep you updated on our progress.

Sunday, 10 January 2010


Well as promised i got a picture from my buddy dusty from the rapid7oc from the day out we had.
To start off we decided on the shotgun approach,as the weather isn`t at its best it gives us the oppertunity to at least get something.I took dusty to a small wood that has produced a few squirrels lately for me and the old man, so confidence was at a high.We split up to make the most of spotting something and it wasn`t long before i seen dusty doing the 100m sprint after a tree rat,he took a couple of shots at it but as he was knackered from his run he didnt connect with anything apart from a few branches,all i can say is when you get to your late 40s early 50s dont run and shoot.The next 30 mins was bleak , nothing showed at all and i was getting worried i wasn`t going to give my mate a day worth driving up for.The next wood was going to be different i knew this would definately throw up something ,dusty was to my left in this wood and we decided on letting the dog work between us and hopefully any rabbits or squirrels on the ground would be moved by her to at least give us some sport.
Dusty was the first for some action,dee had broke a rabbit from cover and it took off behind dusty,a good turn and equally good shot seen him take the rabbit clean out.
Next it was my turn,I noticed a squirrel run under a log and never showed behind it,i walked upto it and gave it a kick and who els but our freind tree rat scarpered out towards a big chestnut tree,i gave him a chance to get half way up the tree for a more sporting shot and that was it ,curtains for him.
While i was retreiving my squirrel dusty had seen another in some trees to his left so off he went,not running this time and got that one,this was more like it.
Due to someone working in the other wood we had to settle for a walk around the fields and hope for a shot or two.
We had noticed some pigeons back and forth to a sitty tree while we was having a cuppa so we decided on a stand and wait approach and hopefully get one or two.After pushing about 20 pigeons out the tree we got stuck in tight between some holly trees about 30 yards from them.we must have been ther 20 minutes before one came right towards us, i picked the gun up to take a shot but dusty was to quick, he nailed it before i even sighted it up,maybee your reflexes dont go so quick at that age just your breath.Well nothing showed for another 30 minutes so we decided to go into the little wood and have the last hour in there.
We stood 60 yards apart in the hope that anything crossing over the wood would be covered and i know this wood can produce squirrels late on in the day , fingers crossed.
Dusty was the first to take a shot,i didn`t know what at but i hadn`t heard a thud of something hitting the ground so i presumed he had missed .The next chance was mine , a squirrel came from the top of a conifer towards me,he must have took refuge when i got in place and thought i had gone .I had stood quiet for 20 minutes and this was to be his downfall as he came nicely in range and took him out just as he was about to jump to another tree.
Ten minutes had passed when dusty got two shots off,i had seen a squirrel heading towards him 5 minutes earler so i knew that it must be him dusty was shooting at,as dusty had took his shots a pigeon that i hadn`t noticed landing in a tree right above my head took off,it took two shots as it was more like a snipe dodging through the trees but all the same i got him.
It was getting dark now so we decided to give it neck and have a cuppa before we gave the foxes a go.
Well i could go into detail here but i wont,to cut a long story short we seen four foxes in the next two hours but couldn`t get one within range or within a safe shot,it was quite light but not enough for us to see them without a lamp so they will be there for another time hopefully.

Yesterday i decided on going out with the rapid.Its been a while since i was last out with it and to be honest i had missed it.As it was snowing quite a bit on and off i decided to go to my local farm and take a look at settling down for some pigeons.As most will know they dont like flying in snow so they will sit up for most of the time and that gives the air gunner a good chance to bag a few birds.I had a walk around the ground and noticed a few settling in some oak trees bordering to the pig farm next door.
As there is food with the pigs getting fed i thought it was going to be the best place to go and luckily there is more cover for me to get in tight and stay hidden.I had just got settled when the snow came down quite heavy, within minutes four had come in right at the top of the tree, i settled the crosshairs on one of them right under the wing and dropped him stone dead.The other three took to the wing but one came back and landed just where i had shot the one from.I took the same shot and he joined his mate under the tree.
Twenty minutes at least had passed when i heard a magpie,he was working down the hedgerow towards me,so i kept an eye on him untill he got 45 yards from me.As i have mildots on my scope i knew the first dot below my cross was spot on for that range so one dot to his chest and an inch for wind sent the magpie tumbling to the deck.
The next hour produced further flurries of snow and i managed three more pigeons before it got to late for them and they had gone to roost,i was also freezing my nuts off so decided to go home.

We have to draw the line somewhere dont we.

Tuesday, 5 January 2010


Firstly i would like to wish all the viewers a happy new year and hope 2010 brings plenty of shooting opertunities for you.

Thank god its all over,back to what we hunters do best and rid the farms we protect with our lives of pests that eat into the farmers profits and render them paupers,not likely.

Well to start this session off, me and the old man had a call from the owner of the woods we have been culling the squirrels in.He had invited us to a walk around the bounderies and take a few pheasants for the good work we had been doing last month,now not one to kick an opertunity in the teeth we was on our way before the phone hit the docking station.
With a  bottle of my old mans vintage brandy slipped quietly in my pocket we set off to meet the farmer and find out our route for the day.When we pulled up he came out smiling wishing us a happy new year and gracefully i slid the big bottle out of my pocket and wished him the same and hoped he would have a good drink on my old man and of course myself.Looking at his little map of the farm he showed us the best route to take and hoped we could get on a few of the wild birds that had stayed on and bred, since the shoot had finished some years ago.Well off we went guns in hand and a belt full of shells each,oh and  me old man still kicking me for giving one of his best brandy`s away to the first part of our little pheasant day.I had decided to take my little springer x lab called Dee with us on this trip as she is great for those tight sat birds and is a must in my book just incase we do prick a bird and decides to go on a mile sprint once he hits the deck.
The first field we walked round was a little bare under the hedgerow so i wasn`t holding out for anything here and as thought we seen nothing,The next field leads upto one of the old pens and still has a good covering of dead grass and bracken mixed in.Within 30 yards of this walk a cock bird had broke out on my dads side and was motoring across him , as this was his first pheasant shoot i thought he would struggle a bit with understanding how fast these birds are actually going ,but he didn`t dissapoint and hit it square on and dropped like a brick.The next bird broke out his side again , it was a hen this time and in a nice calm manner he dispatched this one stone dead a good 30 yards away.
Feeling a bit peed off at the jammy git getting the most out of my dogs hard work we proceeded to the next field,this runs along one of the woods so i walked in the wood with the dog and dad stayed on the field.The first oppertunity fell to ,you guessed it dad again,it was a woodcock,unfortunately for dad it was faster than his old frame and he nicely avoided both barrels.Now it was my turn,Dee had put two birds up fifteen yards in front of me ,i took the right bird going away from me just over the tops of the trees with the first shot,as i was swinging  to take the second bird DAD took it out ,with a middle finger swinging freely aimed at dad i went to collect my bird while Dee fetched the second bird.We was doing well now so we had a break as we didn`t want to shoot loads we was just enjoying the chance to bag a brace or two for the freezer.

Now fully refreshed we took on the last field that we could get both sides of the hedge.It started off well this time as Dee pushed a rabbit out from the hedge and instead of running up the line it tried to circle round me, bad mistake  it was rolled over in true fashion as rolling rabbits go.Half way round the field we stopped to nip in the small wood,dad had spotted a squirrel and was in hot persuit so i took the other option of a slow walk and go for a closer on he had scared while running after that one.It didn`t take long for me to hear the shot from dad and another,and another , he must be onto a couple i thought  and luckily for me his shots had turned my squirrel straight back at me. I took mine with a single shot ,it wasnt hard it was running right overhead on a thin branch and took the full brunt of a 30grm no5 so i went over to dad to see what he had shot,it was only the one,it had give him the runaround but he got it all the same.The squirrel had fallen in another of the old pens so  Dee was sent to get it,i thought it would be a good time for her to practice a blind retrieve and she didn`t dissapoint me.

Well time to get a last pheasant before we had finished we thought,we wasn`t to be kept waiting , Dee sent three bursting out from under some blackthorn, all three came my side so i took the one furthest out with my first shot then missed an easier one for the left right.Just as i was cursing my shooting dee had sent another hen up and dad took it out no problem straight over his head going over some conifers.That was to be the end for us as i didn`t want to take to many as it was nice of the farmer to offer us a good bit of sport,however we did manage a pigeon each and another two squirrels on the way back through the wood to the car.

Well i will sign off now as i am waiting for some pictures of my outing yesterday with  a freind from the rapid7owners club,all will be revealed asap.

ps.I dedicate this post to David Stonecold, as with all this snow about i have been informed that he has been forced to read my blog just to relieve the boredom.Catch up soon buddy .lol.