Rural Sports

The pending autumn and an uneventful day pigeon shooting!

September 15, 2014

In Anticipation of Autumn & The Noble Pigeon – by A Country Lady’s guest writer Matt Limb OBE.

Shooting Dog Spaniel

I sat this month waiting for that moment of transition; for the leaves to start and turn, for the days to get cooler and for the night to draw in.  But only one has noticeably happened; the nights have started to draw in, and draw in fast, but the leaves are holding out and we appear to have hit an Indian summer, with temperatures far higher than August!

It was against this background that I had an invite to set off and shoot pigeons on some large stubble fields; a quick visit promised a great day, with pigeons flying along a well established flight line every few minutes.  The plan was set and an early morning start, just time for a bacon sandwich before jumping into the 4X4 with the dogs and boxes of cartridges – my great fear is always to run out half way through the day –  soon after the sun came up I met up with my colleague.

Shooting Dog

A hasty scurry to get onto place and then sit and wait.  And Wait.  And Wait.  Sat on a step in a dry drainage dyke on the edge of a very large stubble field I watched the early morning mist clear over the decoys and a wonderful sunrise light up the sky behind them; but where were the pigeons?   A couple of hours passed and still no sign of our quarry in any great numbers, yes the odd one flying across, but nothing like our previous visit.

A quick chat with my colleague and the plan was for him to have a drive around and I would hold the fort.  Soon after he went a few did fly over and I did connect with some; about an hour later he returned.  On the other side of the river, which ran down the edge of our stubble field, they had the previous day harvested the last of their wheat, which was now almost blue with, to use his quote, millions of pigeons!

Hearing the news lunch was eaten rather quietly and soon after a few did start to appear.  But by mid afternoon we both decided we were beaten, out went the spaniels to pick up the last few birds and a quick pint on the way home.  Our bag for the day?  Not even double figures!  Was it a good day out?  Of course it was; as was the lunch the following day of pigeon pan-fried with mushrooms.

Shooting Dog

Matt Limb OBE is a freelance photographer and writer based in England, with a love for the outdoors and the English countryside.  He travels the length of the country with his photography commissions covering a wide range of rural activities, industries and pastimes. To see his Shoot Photography Images – Click Here


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