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Thread: Has this years weather effected your stalking/game shooting?

  1. #1

    Has this years weather effected your stalking/game shooting?

    I'm sure that most if not all of you will agree that the weather we have been having since before Christmas (Well it feels that long anyway with gale force winds ad constant heavy rain in many areas) has been nothing short of terrible.
    With so much almost constant rain and high winds how has it effected your stalking/game shooting?
    Have you managed to get out stalking/shooting as often as you would have liked to?
    How has it effected the movement of the deer/game on your permission(s) or shoot(s)?
    If you have managed to get out stalking or game shooting how have you managed in these almost gale force winds and heavy rain?

    Just a talking point as I am interested to hear how others have fared or managed in different parts of the country.

  2. #2
    It's been rubbish. About half of our shoot days were abandoned or cancelled, similar impact on stalking & on the occasions I actually made it out pheasants & deer were rarely where I would have expected them to be.

  3. #3
    Yes this season has been a complete washout, the ground has been so wet feeding birds has been a nightmare, pest control has also been very hard and I have many nights of lamping to catch up on. The deer have also been sticking to the dense woodland much more than usual due to the mild conditions.

  4. #4
    we had our best ever year on the pheasants. Only a wee DIY shoot where we put 200 birds down - but shot 130.

    I put it down to the crappy weather and the fact the birds were in the woods to be beaten out, rather than going walk about to the neighbour (who doesn't put any down and has feeders right over the fence )

  5. #5
    I've been running days on a big commercial shoot , getting the guns about has been an absolute nightmare .The shoot bus was ditched early on and we relied on two or three Kawasaki mules to move around the shoot (5000acres ) without churning it up to badly , but even these got into enough trouble ..Glad it's over !
    Stalking has also been a problem on our other ground , again just so wet the deer have stayed in the dence cover were its been impossible to get at them , I have left them alone for nearly a month rather than chase them around getting nowhere , with a bit of sun the other day they were out in numbers again so I've started to catch up on the cull which is way behind ..

  6. #6
    The prolonged rainfall has made it difficult to access many parts of the estate due to burns being uncrossable, the mildish conditions taking the deer well out . Due to the ground being saturated we have to check the forecast for rain , because if we now get rain even just for a few hours the burns come back up quickly, leaving you stranded. Could have done with snow instead of the rain , but then the tracks would be drifted in. I suppose we are never happy with the weather ! bring on the sun.

  7. #7
    Relatively little movement on the farms near us - sodden clay soils mean I can see the odd tracks but nothing like usual. Rabbits aren't about at the usual times too much, either.

  8. #8
    1. Can't get around to feed well.
    2. Mild temperatures mean birds have natural food everywhere and just wander off.
    3. Wind caused tree to fall onto pen fence.
    4. Absolutely soaked pretty much every time out shooting.
    5. Landowner decided to dig out then build wall bordering best wood. Pheasants didn't like tractors, digger and chainsaw and buggered off never to return.
    6. Did I mention we got soaked all the time?

    Other than that - brilliant.

  9. #9
    It's been a bloody nightmare! It's been so mild that the cover has hardly died back and much of it continued to grow! People even cutting their grass here during the Christmas break!! The deer haven't really needed to leave cover to look for food. Those I have shot have been laden with fat which they would normally have used by now. Every time I go to a particular new estate it seems to rain sideways and tomorrow is looking to be no exception! The ground is absolutely sodden wet. I used to dislike the extreme cold, but I'd much rather have a normal cold winter than this one which hasn't really seemed like winter. Haven't even had the ferrets out once as there have been young rabbits everywhere constantly! I can't really think of one plus side to it all - it's not good!
    Saying that though, I remember around Christmas time feeling particularly down in the dumps over the weather as I'd had a couple of poor trips out. I then sat and watched the news only to see some poor woman watch her sofa float off down the road away from her badly flooded house! (Third time it had been flooded recently too!) All of a sudden, my life was put into perspective and didn't seem too bad after all. Shooting has undoubtedly suffered, but is insignificant compared to the human misery endured by so many this winter. I feel quite lucky in that respect.

  10. #10
    Pros and cons all round. Biggest plus for me is that the rats have stayed out in the fields so we have used virtually no bait in the feed barn or chicken sheds and stayed on top with regular shooting which can take place despite wind and rain.

    Think this might be why no trouble from foxes this winter on the chickens, not picking them up nosing around on the trail cams or seeing eyes when lamping as usually do. Am sure we are going to pay for this in the long run though as I usually hear a lot of foxing going on around us.

    The wind is great when lamping at night for the rabbits, easy to get within 30 yards and use the leeward side of hedges for relatively calm shots with the .22 and subs. Have not seen them this fat for a few years.

    The squirrels have been active all winter - much to their detriment.

    The active deer tracks have been relatively easy to spot with tracks in the soft ground showing up clearly and the leaf litter is now sodden and much quieter. The downside has been shots not taken due to wind buffeting making it harder to get completely steady, as was the case yesterday morning, but off out now with plan b in mind.

    As MS has written the weather has been much kinder in Suffolk than for many and I understand that everyone in the West is being hammered yet again so thoughts are with folk suffering hardship.
    Last edited by N1mr0d; 07-02-2016 at 05:49.

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