culling cormorants

keith rippin

Well-Known Member
I have a NE licence to cull cormorants on a local fishery and I was proposing to use a 17 HMR, shooting the birds when they surface after catching a fish at which time they are unlikely immediately to dive again or take off.
I have seen correspondence which suggests that you have to use a shotgun for the purpose but there is no such restriction on my licence and (on a cursory reading) I can find nothing in the Wildlife and Countryside Act imposing any such requirement.
If there is anything making a shotgun compulsory please can someone quote me the relevant authority or direct me to it.
Thanks in advance and a happy new year to all on this forum.
Keith
 

countrryboy

Well-Known Member
Also will ur fac conditions allow it?? Worth checking?
Possible issues with the whole non toxic shot thing, but it does not appear to be an issue with geese on the English GL.

Shotgun pellets will also richoet off water so u just got to be careful wotever ur using.
 

LuckyEddie

Well-Known Member
I was told a story of a guy who got a license to cull cormorants.
He was allowed to take 5 which, once culled, had to be examined to ensure they were eating trout.
Well after shooting 100, the last 5 of which he managed to get before they sank out of sight! He decided that was enough for the year.
I’m sure he used either a .222 or a .223
 

keith rippin

Well-Known Member
Thanks so far guys - I have excellent backstops (fishery is in a hollow with high steep banks belonging to the fishery on both the far sides) - my FAC is as "open" as Avon & Somerset issue and it is up to me to judge whether the shots are safe and appropriate. My NE licence does not stipulate any particular gun and my FAC states "...17 HMR (and moderator) and ammunition shall be used for Vermin control and for zeroing on ranges or land over which the holder has lawful authority to shoot"
So no restrictions so far of which I am aware but please do let me know if anyone can refer me to limitations on guns that can be used for the cull.
 

Tom D

Well-Known Member
Unless its stipulated on your licence and is not specifically outlawed in some other legislation then its simply a case of not causing unnecessary suffering. I would say the HMR would do inside 100 yds.
 

Uncle f

Well-Known Member
If that’s your conditions you WILL be breaking the law. Cormorants are not vermin nor ground game. I had a Similar issue with regards to Canada geese and as mentioned on a different thread on here I had to have the condition added to shoot birds as part of a controlled culling operation undertaken as a professional pest control company.
Be wise you will be easy fodder for NE if you breach the FA act. I would also urge caution with regards to back stops on water using a .17hmr as it could (all be it unlikely) skim off the surface of the water.
For me when I do cormorant culling i always use non toxin shotgun cartridges.
I would really examine your FAC conditions and ask as I did to add a condition for the use of birds etc etc
Best advice speak with your FEO
 

pop1

Well-Known Member
Licence restrictions for goosanders on my local river require the use of steel shot only
 

AGR

Well-Known Member
I have a NE licence to cull cormorants on a local fishery and I was proposing to use a 17 HMR, shooting the birds when they surface after catching a fish at which time they are unlikely immediately to dive again or take off.
I have seen correspondence which suggests that you have to use a shotgun for the purpose but there is no such restriction on my licence and (on a cursory reading) I can find nothing in the Wildlife and Countryside Act imposing any such requirement.
If there is anything making a shotgun compulsory please can someone quote me the relevant authority or direct me to it.
Thanks in advance and a happy new year to all on this forum.
Keith
I hope you have a dog to retrieve them. Damn cold swim in January!
 

Heym SR20

Well-Known Member
I would suggest that cormorants on the water represent a very small target. Cormorant's feathers are not waterproof like a ducks so they do spend a lot of time sitting on trees, branches, posts etc. I would try and indentify these, then move yourself into a good position where there is a good backdrop and wait.

In terms of authority, I would n't relie on Internet hearsay, I would go back for clarification from those in NE who granted the licence if you at all unsure. Unless specifically instructed then use your best judgement as to the most appropriate tool.

I have on occasion needed to shoot wounded ducks and geese that are on the water - in the ealry days of non-toxic shot when out wildfowling. They sit low in the water and really the only target is the head. A small shot size is far more effective than a load of number 3's or 4's.
 

Pedro

Well-Known Member
Not too sure why you would want to use a rifle to be honest. A shotgun is made for shooting wildfowl and gives you the potential to make a kill should the bird decide to take off as you mount or is already in the air as well as on the water. There’s always the danger of ricochets on water and at least with shot, the pellets won’t travel so far. Another advantage is that you haven’t got the faff of your rifle conditions. Just use non-lead shot.
 

tozzybum

Well-Known Member
Yep member of our shoot has a "comorant" license and its for a total of 17 a year on 2 fisherys using shotgun As Pedro said with non toxic shot .Lets face it steel shot is cheap , and kills just as quickly
 

shakey jake

Well-Known Member
i saw a license for greylag geese, it stated the firearm you could use, if you have aolq on a rifle and the license says rifle fine, the geese could only be shot with 12 or 20 bore i think few years ago now but definatly no rifle.

any one tried cormorant?
 

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