After our troubles in September, when half our shoot was vandalised by saboteurs angry at the badger cull (Letters, 4 October), we didn’t know what to expect when we had our first shoot on the 28 October. All our syndicate members understood that it was completely out of our control and we had to make the best of the season ahead.
We headed to the first mini drive where we all knew there would be birds as the release pen was still intact. We flushed a few pheasants, which sailed over the Guns to fight another day. But we had some great sport at this drive as birds flew out to the fields over the Guns then flew back over our heads.
We split into two groups and surrounded one of the vandalised pens. There were a lot of pheasants around and the Guns had some great shooting. We moved on to the last vandalised pen, which funnels birds down over the Guns. When we stopped for a bite to eat, we counted 30 birds. I don’t think many of us could believe it, but we’d all had a great morning and there were a lot of pheasants still around.
We made a quick trip to another bit of land, where our partridges flew out in every direction. At the end, we had 42 pheasants and six partridges — our best day ever.
M. Rowe, by email Walked-up pheasants on a gorgeous shoot in the heart of Dorset. Pursuing the world’s largest deer in the birch woods of Finland. What makes the impressive red stags of Galloway so enormous? ... Shooting times & Country magazine • 13