The ideal shoot

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reidller
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The ideal shoot

Post by reidller » Sat Jan 05, 2019 7:54 pm

It's early days but there's a chance I may be able to take over a shoot next season. If it works out I'd look to have it as a walked up rough shoot, aiming to shoot a dozen or so pheasants fortnightly with the emphasis on dog work.
I'm just wondering what the right mix of people would be in regards to guns and dogs ie a couple of non dog working guns etc. I have a retriever, so would need at least one decent spaniel person there, or maybe two? Just wondering if people have been on similar shoots in the past and what ratio of people worked?

Springfield Pointers
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Re: The ideal shoot

Post by Springfield Pointers » Sat Jan 05, 2019 11:11 pm

How long is a piece of string?

Springcopse spaniels
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Re: The ideal shoot

Post by Springcopse spaniels » Sun Jan 06, 2019 1:18 pm

A lot will depend on the topography of the site and size of the plot.
Too many variables to be honest.
As a one man band, I've 40 acres I can play on. With three dogs to train i can do the entire plot in an hour.
With two handlers and up to four dogs 45 minutes.
How many people do you want in on the ground?
How many birds are you putting down/ feed costs?
Who is doing all the work?
What ground rent costs are involved.
So many variables
A well schooled dog will open doors, a poor one closes them quickly.

Nickheref
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Re: The ideal shoot

Post by Nickheref » Sun Jan 06, 2019 5:30 pm

More of the same,I shoot alone as much as possible and there is a reason for that and it is not because I am a miserable sod!! If you are trying to spread the cost I would seriously consider breaking the bank in the first season to keep it yourself and ask anyone you may want to join you as a guest initially as a one off so if they don't pan out (or their dog isn't as good as they made out) you can get rid of them without causing offence then make your pick.
2 good men with good dogs who know what they are doing will potentially kill more game than a small army with crap dogs.
As an example I have shot some ground with a group for the last 25 years, their dogs have got progressively worse and consequently, although they cannot see it, bags have declined, all of the dogs except perhaps one would contribute more to the day if they were in a hole with 3 foot of soil on top of them. It reached the stage last season where I was so annoyed at the behaviour of some guns, shooting birds that in my view they should have left simply because they have walked for 2 hours without a shot etc and are fed up, that I wasn't bothered if I shot there again even though it is a lovely bit of ground to hunt a dog. They blamed their lack of success on lack of game, not the simple fact that birds will avoid being shot if at all possible and shouting and pointlessly whistling at a dog all morning clears the ground ahead of you. I could not go for the first day but heard it wasn't good and actually got a phone call mid morning asking where I was as they needed me!! So I came up with a cunning plan and mysteriously couldn't make either of the other two days, (we can only shoot it 4 days a year under the agreement as it is an SSSI). On the last day 7 men and assorted dogs walked for 3 and a half hours to see and shoot one pheasant. They have given up the ground and I will be shooting it alone in the future. Last time I shot without the awful dogs last season (Six of us had got a last minute invitation to a driven day which I declined) two guns without dogs and I as a non shooting dog handler shot it trial style and had 7 pheasants before we got so cold the guns had had enough and we hadn't done all of it, (it was brutally cold - well by English standards anyway before I am called a complete wimp :lol: ).
So choose you companions very carefully and don't believe them about their dogs unless you have seen them, if there is a farming tenant make sure you get them on board (a bottle never hurts at Christmas), if you upset them they can easily make sure there isn't much game about by letting their sheepdogs have a run around before you get there.
Apologies if this is teaching my grand mother to suck eggs but less if very often more!!

reidller
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Re: The ideal shoot

Post by reidller » Sun Jan 06, 2019 6:19 pm

That's given me plenty to think about, thanks. I don't think I could afford to do it by myself, but was thinking of having one or two understanding guns who don't have dogs, then one/two people with decent spaniels and one/two with Retrievers. One of the reasons I'm trying to get it is because I'm sick to the back teeth of other people's dogs. I'm not a fan of picking up on the big commercial shoots, and the smaller 'relaxed' syndicate shoots I can go are all full of untrained dogs running wild, and the owners couldn't give a toss.

Springcopse spaniels
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Re: The ideal shoot

Post by Springcopse spaniels » Sun Jan 06, 2019 6:27 pm

Very true Nick,
Here we have limited ground, with a footpath/ bridle path cutting right through the middle of it.
I put birds down last year as a trial venture as I was undertaking 6-8 training days at 80pd. I bought all equipment, wire drinkers, feeders etc and 150 poults for £1100.
This year I have a pen and put down 200 at cost of poults only.
I can can shoot or train when ever I want right out my back door so have no travel costs, no one else to please( except my wife and her dog) and anyone who is invited. That however is rare.
I've been working away, I came home yesterday after 4 days. Went straight out this morning with my youngster, had 11 flushed one a wood cock off the nose.
I went out this evening, 5 more flushes.
As Nick said, noise is your greatest enemy and you will loose birds like water through a sieve, but I wouldn't change my 30 acres, unless my landlord asks us to leave his house 😂
A well schooled dog will open doors, a poor one closes them quickly.

Springcopse spaniels
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Re: The ideal shoot

Post by Springcopse spaniels » Sun Jan 06, 2019 6:30 pm

reidller wrote:
Sun Jan 06, 2019 6:19 pm
That's given me plenty to think about, thanks. I don't think I could afford to do it by myself, but was thinking of having one or two understanding guns who don't have dogs, then one/two people with decent spaniels and one/two with Retrievers. One of the reasons I'm trying to get it is because I'm sick to the back teeth of other people's dogs. I'm not a fan of picking up on the big commercial shoots, and the smaller 'relaxed' syndicate shoots I can go are all full of untrained dogs running wild, and the owners couldn't give a toss.
As I just said, depending on what you have available and ground rental my entire shoot first year was £1100 excluding my time for building the pen.
This year it was about £500 for birds. You will be surprised when you look in to it how cheaply it can be done
A well schooled dog will open doors, a poor one closes them quickly.

Nickheref
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Re: The ideal shoot

Post by Nickheref » Sun Jan 06, 2019 6:55 pm

reidller wrote:
Sun Jan 06, 2019 6:19 pm
One of the reasons I'm trying to get it is because I'm sick to the back teeth of other people's dogs. I'm not a fan of picking up on the big commercial shoots, and the smaller 'relaxed' syndicate shoots I can go are all full of untrained dogs running wild, and the owners couldn't give a toss.
I am not the only miserable sod then!!!! :lol: :lol:

reidller
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Joined: Thu Feb 14, 2013 7:46 pm

Re: The ideal shoot

Post by reidller » Sun Jan 06, 2019 8:45 pm

Nickheref wrote:
Sun Jan 06, 2019 6:55 pm

I am not the only miserable sod then!!!! :lol: :lol:
Nope, every season I tell myself I won't go back, but despite being complete pains in the backside as far as their dogs go I get on well with most of the syndicate and in spite of their dogs I still enjoy the day out (just).

Naj
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Re: The ideal shoot

Post by Naj » Sun Jan 06, 2019 11:38 pm

I thought it might be churlish of me to say so earlier but I have to agree with my learned friends NickH and SS. My ideal shoot is me, my dog and my gun. And I went to extraordinary lengths to ensure that. I can invite a friend if I want company but that’s very rare. And while you’re at it, get a good HPR and you’ll find even more game unless you’re feeding them in over the boundary in numbers or putting so many down that a spaniel can easily knock them up. :-D

Naj

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