Fieldsports Britain - Wicked Mr Squirrel + kids go shooting + pigeons

Uploaded by fieldsportschannel on 22.03.2012

Welcome to Fieldsports Britain.
Coming up:
Andy Crow's protecting not his crop, but his face from pigeon attack. We're here at the
Oxford Gun Company watching schools from all over England shooted out for top gun. First
the mighty Roy Lupton is on Icklebaby Songbird patrol saving eggs from evil Mr Squirrel.
It's never straight forward going out with Roy. Today we are supposed to be going after
squirrels before the leaves make the drays and impossible runners difficult to see. Roy
and his friend Jim are armed to the teeth with air rifles, full boar rifles and shot
You can never be over gunned can you, so we've got some air rifles this morning, some shot
guns and a rifle as well. We have been asked to come down and control the squirrels. It's
our yearly squirrel bashing so we've got to try and keep the numbers down here as obviously
they do a lot of damage, one to the woodland and also to the nesting birds as well. So
we just need to remove quite a few of those. So we thought while we are down here and as
we were getting up at some ungodly hour we thought we would make the most of it and see
what else we could account for.
Before the grey we're after reds, don't panic we are talking foxes.
The shepherds been saying that a couple of foxes have been coming in and the lambs are
due out so we are going to tuck up down there and what I want you to do, I'm going to be
facing out this way I want you to look back up the bank because one might come along from
a standing briar further up so if you're ready when they come along there.
For some reason a herd of deer are scooting around us, but they don't stay still enough
for a shot.
They are coming down here.
I don't know why but I am guessing a dog walker has come in along the top and the dog has
probably chased them and spooked them.
Roy repositions just in case they cross the bottom of the valley. Again they are not stopping
for anyone, especially Roy.
See I got into position but they weren't going to stop were they.
Couple of young bucks in there.
They were definitely spooked. I don't know quite what has been going on up there, but
something has come through and disturbed everything in there. Now we've probably ruined the foxing,
but you should never deviate from the plan.
Back to plan A and foxing, but for a change the call doesn't get a response. Roy wants
to head to the other side of the estate for another squeak before the dog walkers really
start getting the wildlife on edge. This time its the air rifle out of the slip, but it's
the pigeon giving Roy the slip. Eventually he stays still long enough for a shot. Finally,
there is something for our efforts.
Now in woodlands the shotguns make an appearance. We see at least half a dozen dreys as we stalk
through it.
Now we have got to get on with the main job which we came here for this morning which
is having a go at the squirrels. It's a shame actually because we were going to try and
do quite a few with the air rifle before we started off with the shotguns, but as we were
stalking through the woods this morning you could see that the squirrels were just up
and away. Again they were just very very jumpy this morning so we're going to go and do some
drey bashing and see how we go.
You can do it one of two ways you can either have a drey poking pole which if you are flushing
squirrels for birds, yeah, I mean you can fly female red tails and some fly Harris hawks
on them if you are poking them out like that and it can provide really good sport, but
you do have to be incredibly careful if you are flying squirrels with a bird of prey as
they do bite quite badly, so this morning we've not brought the drey poker with us because
all we're going to do is put a shot through the drey, that either kills the squirrels
in the dray or at least flushes them and when they start flushing and running through the
trees we'll pick them off so this is just purely a pest control operation this morning.
We have just got to try and get the numbers down before the leaf gets up on the trees.
No nobody home.
Nobody home
Nobody home in that one. That looked quite promising though didn't it? That was a nice
fresh one.
Roy allows Jim to have the first shot and he is there to deal with any runners. Not
all dreys have anyone at home, but for some there is a rude awakening.
Jim is pretty tentative picking up the squirrels much to the amusement of Roy.
I can't believe that you have been manned out by David.
I didn't see it, David found it.
Why are you holding it like that? Honestly it's dead it's not going to hurt you mate.
Honestly look, see? This squirrel won't hurt you.
Yeah, lovely.
But with these rodents, once bitten twice and thrice shy and he has the scar to prove
Are you traumatised by that, it must have hurt a lot.
You've no idea and next time you say a squirrel won't hurt you I'll wince in pain cause I
know he will, little whatsit!
The other thing to remember when you are doing this sort of work is that obviously if we
left it any later then the birds would be nesting and there's a chance you could mistake
a drey for a nest up in one of the trees or something like that so really you want to
do it before any of the birds have started laying and just run through. So we are sort
of pushing it now. In another few weeks you really wouldn't want to be doing it.
The most Roy has had out of the wood is 15 so, for a short morning we haven't done too
badly, especially as Jim has all his fingers.
For more on air rifles tune into Team Wild TV because they have a new film this week.
Just click on the angry buck.
[stag roars]
Now from one furry woodland friend to another. It's David on the Fieldsports Channel News
This is Fieldsports Britain news.
Shooting grounds and clubs are being encouraged to sign up to run an event during National
Shooting Week to help bring new blood into the sport.
This is the sixth annual event aimed at bring newcomers into shooting sports. In the Olympic
year National Shooting Week will run from the 2nd to the 10th June. Sign up at
Another major shooting UK event on the horizon is the opening of the roebuck season on the
1st April. North of England stalker John Robson also known as Youtuber Yorkshire roe stalking
has already been out to have a look at what might be available visit
for more.
This year's Mitsubishi Motors world series clay shooting championship kicks off at Kelmarsh
Game and Country Fair on the 21st and 22nd April. Qualifying rounds which will be contested
over a 50-bird sporting layout will continue at the fairs Highclere, Sussex and Lowther
before the final at the Midland Game Fair. A Mitsubishi L200 Trojan worth more than £20,000
is up for grabs. To enter visit
And finally there is a new romcom out and it's about salmon fishing. Salmon Fishing
in the Yemen staring Ewan McGregor, Emily Blunt and Kritsin Scott-Thomas is a BBC film
that's already launched in US cinemas. The story is about a fishery's scientist who is
drawn into a scheme which is hatched by a fly-fishing obsessed Yemeni Sheikh who is
who dreams of achieving the seemingly impossible, introducing salmon to the wadis of the Yemen.
You are now up to date with Fieldsports Britain news.
Stalking the stories fishing for facts.
Thank you David. Now kids and guns. What a great mixture we are at the first event of
the 2012 Schools Challenge.
More than 180 children and youths from schools across England are here at the Oxford Gun
Company competing for £12,000 worth of prizes today. Here's one of them, Megan Bates, from
Bredon School in Gloucestershire.
It would be nice to be in the prizes, but it's the second one I've done so far so hopefully,
I have had a couple of lessons and that's good.
So this is all about taking part?
Yes, yes.
It's very big of you. I was expecting you to say no, I want to win
It would be nice to win, but it's the taking part that counts and it's just nice to come
out and meet people within the shooting industry and get to know people around the course.
Megan's brother is punchy about his chances.
It's my first School Challenge competition, but I have shot a lot recently so I am hoping
to put the team up and hoping the team will win.
How do they prep you for all this? Do you have shooting lessons at school?
I have been shooting at school for four years now and I have been shooting since I was tiny
and coming up here since last July with David Florent having lessons and previously I have
been here on Monday practising hard, ready for the day ahead now.
Last year's winners of the two main schools challenge events are Millfield school and
Warwickshire College. These lads from Seaford College in West Sussex reckon they are in
with a chance.
I think a good chance not too bad, yes.
Millfield and Warwick College, both winners from last year, are you worried?
We beat them one year so we can beat them again.
They have always been our main competitors, but I think as Ali just said years ago we
beat them so I think we can do it again.
Are you happy with the way you have shot so far?
We only shot one so we'll see how we do on this one.
It's not all private schools. Kineton High has produced schools challenge winners. There
are lots here like Megan who are interested in the competition for individual glory.
Now we are in a shocking situation because Charlie you are on 35, Alex you are on 45.
Should you be quite proud of that score?
No he shouldn't. He should have straighted it, he shoots every day of his life.
Alex is that true? Should you have straighted it?
Uh, yes, really because the ones I dropped were silly mistakes, all of them.
Now you are on the edge of your seat because one of these guys could score, 46, 47, 48...
...And that would be bad because then you wouldn't win.
But you reckon you are in with a chance to win?
Yeah, hopefully
And do you hope that Alex will win, Charlie?
Yes I do, yup, yup, he's a team mate, so
He's a team mate even though he is from a different school?
Just because we're from.....
Brilliant, all right, well good luck this year. We'll see how it pans out.
But the best reason to be here is for the fun of it.
Are you off to shoot the Rabbitmania now?
Yes, we shot it this morning, but we're going back to have a go at pool shooting in the
rabbit mania.
OK fantastic. This is a fun day isn't it?
You're here to enjoy yourselves.
Yes. It's great. We're back because we like it, we love it.
Now, a prize pot like the one assembled by the Oxford Gun Company is only possible with
the generous help from sponsors. Rather than get them to explain their products to you
we have set them our own Fieldsports Channel challenge. In a TV game show format taken
straight from a Gilbert and Sullivan operetta we have asked them to pair up and change roles.
First up is a gun maker and a clay pigeon trap manufacturer.
All I have got to do is flick that and press the button. Yup, ready,let's go.
On your marks. Have you got a cartridge? Get set. You haven't got a cartridge have you?
Browning clearly ahead of Bowman. Now its the turn of the insurance and car sales man.
Nice of you to turn up.
Thanks Charlie.
Explain to viewers what you do with your job.
I am an NFU Mutual insurance agent and the local group secretary for the Aylesbury branch
of the National Farmers Union.
Terrific Martin what do you do?
I look after the Land Rover dealership in Cheltenham.
Right that's where you are both wrong because you Simon are going to look after the Land
Rover dealership by riding this Land Rover bicycle up that hill and you Martin are going
to explain the benefits of NFU insurance to Simon while he does it. Are you ready?
On your marks, get set, go.
Right then Simon life insurance, health insurance..
Health insurance definitely
Oh that's it.
I think we have a winner in Martin. Right back to your original positions Simon's from
the NFU and you Martin are going to get up that hill in the manner that most typifies
a Land Rover driver.
Does it mean its going to break down half way up?
Go! Oh Martin!
Land Rover of Cheltenham a winner there! Derek Barnes of Sporting Shooter magazine finds
himself giving a shooting lesson to the Oxford Gun Company's Doug Florent, while Doug tries
to sell advertising to Derek.
Hello Mr Florent I am Derek Barnes from the Oxford Gun Company. Welcome to my shooting
ground have you been shooting before?
No? You haven't Are you married?
I think I am going to leave these two to get on with it.
Have you got children?
Er no.
Unfortunately that would have helped.
I am actually a bachelor. I am actually advertising for a wife at this moment.
Are you trying to pitch me some advertising space.
No not at all.
Well don't do that now I'm trying to teach you how to shoot.
We'll call that a draw. Meanwhile back to the schools challenge and Doug's son David
is racing around organising the clays.
So 185 kids today. Is that a success?
Yes, my aim is to try and beat 180 and we beat 180. That's what we wanted to get in
for each of the events so that's a success and the best thing that's done today is we've
had probably three or four of the schools are new schools first competition they have
ever come into, so that's what the sixth Schools Challenge is there for. And we have also had
individuals we have had an increase of individuals coming on their own which has only just started
as well, so some of the old schools haven't come because it's been full, but it has come
up with new schools that have never shot before. Can't really argue with that. That's what
it is there for.
One of the UK's top junior shooters is Amber Hill.
It should not have gone well for you should it because you are moving to another sport.
Not exactly yes. I am doing Olympic skeet now, because I've just gone to Italy and got
a new gun with my sponsors for it, so I have been practising with that.
And how did you do today?
I didn't shoot too bad I thought I would do worse than I did. But I got a 46 I think out
of 50 I think.
A 46, well that's not bad. Do you think you could be in with a chance?
Well I think Taylor Hedgecock has got a 47 and he did really really well so, but hopefully
for the ladies I'll have a chance.
Well that's not bad considering you are training now in Olympic skeet.
Yeah I was really happy with it.
At last the prize giving. Will Ford is prep winner with Isabella Ford ladies prep winner.
Top ladies team is Millfield in Somerset while Amber Hill wins the ladies individual prize.
Boys winner is Taylor Hedgecock from the Soham Village College in Cambridgeshire and Bloxham
School goes away with a senior team prize.
From fledgling shots to a fully grown crow man. It's Andy Crow with Sporting Shooter
editor Dom Holtam.
Today we are going to make some noise before we get anywhere near a shotgun. This string
of bangers is hopefully going to keep those pigeons moving around the farm and deny them
a quiet place to settle away from our hide.
You can buy these. We get them from our local agricultural supplier they usually go off
every 20 minutes half hour, depends on the wind and where you put them really. I usually
put them back out of the wind so they don't burn too quick. Sometimes I even cut them
in half, cut the strings in half.
I just cut the strings in half and hang them up together so that they go off more regularly
or have two strings running. But today we are not going to need the whole string so
I shall probably cut off the bottom, the four off the bottom and that will keep us going
for a couple or three hours we'll be shooting, but you must remember to keep them dry otherwise
they don't start.
You just want to hold it into the wind to make sure it does get going.
You can see it's glowing now. It's getting up there. It's getting a bit of ash on there.
The plan is to get over the other side and get set up before the bangers start going
Of course you should never hang a string of explosives near any footpaths or public rights
of way. Andy recommends that you never use them in the summer when the vegetation is
dry. He has got enough to deal with without setting his crops on fire. When the charge
is set it is time to get ready on the wheat field beneath some favoured sitty trees and
for a change he is using a mix of decoys.
I tend to use fresh, not all the time. People I haven't always got fresh. I have been given
these by A1 Decoys. They are flock coated and to tell you the truth they don't look
too bad. The problem with old plastic decoys they used to shine all the time, but as you
can see with these they have got like a velvety feel to them. One thing I will say you wouldn't
want to get them dirty. You would not want to chuck them in a bag with dirty stick and
that. You want to look after them. They are the sort of decoy you want to look after.
But they do look real, I put some out amongst the real ones cause they are a bit lighter
than the real ones, hopefully they will see them a bit better. No I'm quite impressed
with them.
With a distant boom going off every 30 minutes or so the woodies are being pushed around,
but so far they are not decoying well. The stock doves on the other hand are coming in
a treat.
Yeah there are quite a lot of stock doves coming in here. They see the eating birds
and are probably coming in to pick the last chips of these acorns there's been quite a
few of them here, there's been lots of pigeons here. Pity the pigeons have been a bit scarce
today. Bit of a Mark Gilchrist day today. Haven't shot too many. Rock doves is another
one which is protected, I dare say there would be someone who would tell me otherwise but
they are protected. But there are not the number of those as there are wood pigeons.
Where wood pigeons you get thousands of them you'll probably get 20 or 30 stock doves.
Andy doesn't just shoot he enjoys another great passion of mine, fishing and he's off
for the first day of the trout season at nearby Bewl Water, the reservoir of choice if the
news wants to show how little rain we have had.
Hopefully we shouldn't get pestered by bank anglers because they won't be able to wade
through the mud.
No. It's more drought than trout.
Do you do you fish up there often?
No, it's too expensive. I'm not rich like you. GBP65 for a boat isn't it?
That's a fair old wodge of dosh.
When you think my favourite water up north is GBP3 for a day ticket and me and a mate
have caught over a 100 trout before lunch there before.
What was that with a net?
No he was called Alistair.
There is plenty more where that came from. Anyway back to the pigeons and Crowman shifts
up a gear.
The speed and agility of these birds means most shots are a challenge, especially when
you are leaving them late for the camera.
Andy nearly takes this one on the chin and when they are coming in at that speed they
can really hurt.
With birds on the ground but with no dog by his side, Andy unleashes his other pedigree
retriever, incredibly pigeons are still feeding on acorns which would normally be hovered
up before Christmas. At least at the moment it is diverting their attention away from
the crops, but that won't last for very much longer.
Well, we are back next week and if you are watching this on Youtube don't hesitate to
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This has been Fieldsports Britain. From the Oxford Gun Company, good bye