Sporting Gun April 2021

Sporting Gun is the leading monthly magazine for clay, game and rough shooters. With editorial offices in the Lincolnshire countryside, it can justifiably claim to be at the heart of the shooting community. Monthly features range from gundog training to pigeon shooting, game shooting to wildfowling – along with sound, practical, advice on equipment and techniques to help the beginner, intermediate or experienced shot get more enjoyment from their sport. Sporting Gun is a must for anyone who invests time in and money on their shooting.

United Kingdom
Future Publishing Ltd
USD 5.50
USD 44.02
12 Números

en este número

1 min.
opening shot

The eyes have it What makes a great gundog portrait? A great portrait, for that matter? The eyes. We are drawn to these apertures and so it is important that they are perfectly in focus when you take a shot. This, of course, is far from easy, especially during a retrieve. However, Nick Ridley – who is a gundog photographer as well as a trainer – has found an excellent solution for ensuring that the eyes are right every time. His new Canon R6 camera offers ‘animal eye detection’. The result? Wonderfully engaging images such as this of pup Percy bounding through the marshes on a retrieve. Of course, being a great photographer helps, too.…

1 min.

Getting a pup is a big decision for anybody. Buying a working dog adds a complication to the mix as you want to be sure of its qualities. You may opt to pay a premium for a trained or partially trained dog. Both are expensive, with prices for spaniel pups currently topping the £2k mark. Finding a reputable breeder is also hard work. Most of us only search for a new dog once every 10 to 14 years and a lot changes in that time. Word of mouth is usually the best way to go because, with the decline of small ads in the shooting press, many people are at the mercy of the internet with such vagaries as ‘POA’, where you can assume the breeder wants to make as much money…

6 min.

Individual licences draw criticism The National Gamekeepers’ Organisation (NGO) has indicated that it may take legal action following a recent announcement by Natural England concerning the issue of individual licences for the control of corvids. Natural England, the Government’s adviser for the natural environment, recently published a letter to stakeholders saying that it will not automatically issue individual licences to control predatory birds such as crows and magpies where that control was not covered under the general licence, namely GL40. In other words, green-listed songbirds such as the blackbird and chaffinch will no longer be offered automatic protection under the individual licence scheme. In the letter, Dave Slater, Natural England’s director for wildlife licensing and enforcement cases, said that “where predation may well be a natural activity which does not have a population-level impact…

2 min.
news in brief

Northern Shooting Show cancelled The Northern Shooting Show has been cancelled for the second year running as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to disrupt country sports. The organisers of the Harrogate show issued a statement saying that the current landscape was “far too uncertain” for it to take place. The show, which had been scheduled for the weekend of 8-9 May, has been postponed until the same weekend in 2022, 7-8 May. The organisers said tickets bought for this year will be valid for next. BGA expands membership The British Game Alliance has announced the introduction of a new ‘Associate Membership’, widening access to BGA membership to smaller shoots. The move comes amid growing recognition of the value of self-assurance to protect the future of shooting. Previously many small shoots felt unable to join…

6 min.
keeper of the flame

Talking to Alex Keeble you get the sense that the future of the countryside is in good hands. For starters, he has accumulated a wealth of experience at a relatively young age and betrays a stolid wisdom. I spoke to Alex on the day a survey instigated by BASC was published, which highlighted the increasing difficulties gamekeepers face going about their job and the harassment and abuse they suffer. He mentioned that he had given feedback to the survey and was unsurprised by its findings, though phlegmatic about them. George Eustice, the Environment Secretary, said in response to the survey that: “Gamekeepers do vital work as custodians of the land. They play an important role in the shooting industry, which delivers significant benefits to rural economies.” You don’t need to tell Alex Keeble…

4 min.
the plot thickens

“The onslaught from crows starts at first light and doesn’t let up until dark” Here we go again. Things had calmed down after Natural England helped stoke anger over the general licences two years ago, but it has heaped coal back on the fire. Back then it was Wild Justice that threw a spanner in the works, helping to strip vital protection from endangered curlew, lapwing and other red-listed birds during the nesting season, leaving them at the mercy of carrion crows and magpies. The group’s legal action against the licences – just as the birds started breeding in 2019 – sent Natural England (NE) into a spin. The governmental body suspended permission to trap and shoot corvids, provoking outrage among shooters, conservationists, farmers and the public. The outcry over NE’s handling of…