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Shooting Times & CountryShooting Times & Country

Shooting Times & Country


Since its launch in 1882, Shooting Times & Country Magazine has been at the forefront of the shooting scene. The magazine is the clear first choice for shooting sportsmen, with editorial covering all disciplines, including gameshooting, rough shooting, pigeon shooting, wildfowling and deer stalking. Additionally the magazine has a strong focus on the training and use of gundogs in the field and, because it is a weekly publication, the magazine keeps readers firmly up-to-date with the latest news in their world.

United Kingdom
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52 Issues


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rspb and predators

I recently drove to GWCT HQ to chat to Dr Mike Swan about curlew conservation. Mike, a stalwart Shooting Times contributor, has been at the trust for almost four decades. Those who spend a long time in the fraught intersection between fieldsports and conservation can often end up jaded and angry. Mike, however, is resolutely optimistic. The conversation turned to the RSPB and predator control. The RSPB admits it controls species but tends to do so apologetically. Its chief executive admitted in a blog that “many predator control contractors will have links to the shooting community”. Shocking, isn’t it. We are living at a time when badgers, foxes and crows are on the rise; three wonderful species but their ascendance is set against the decline of curlew, lapwing and capercaillie. Mike feels…

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packham attacks scientist

Chris Packham has accused a university of being “bought”. In an email to the vice chancellor of the University of Northampton, the television presenter also attacked the work of Dr Mils Hills, a professor at the university, who wrote an article about grouse shooting for the Huffington Post. The article was supportive of grouse shooting, cast doubt on the number who attended Mr Packham’s Walk 4 Wildlife in 2017 and suggested that his opposition to grouse shooting was motivated by ideology not science. In the 2017 email, Mr Packham attacked Dr Hills, saying: “Having done some cursory research it is clear that Dr Mils Hills has no professional or academic expertise in this subject and his compunction to write about it betrays staggering ignorance. Why has this man chosen to perpetuate…

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our gamekeepers “do a fantastic job”, says mp

Thirsk and Malton MP Kevin Hollinrake has praised gamekeepers and estate owners, saying they “do a fantastic job”, while calling for a much better understanding of the countryside. Mr Hollinrake spoke to keepers on the Bransdale and Pennyholme estate, saying he “totally understood the estate’s concerns after Natural England revoked three of its general licences”. He also recognised that farmers were left unable to “prevent the devastating impact crows and rooks have on lambs, piglets, domestic poultry, game birds, wildlife and wildfowl”. Championing shooting he added: “The estate supports hundreds of local jobs.” Shooting Times asked Mr Hollinrake how the general public could understand the countryside better. He replied: “I would certainly urge all those involved in maintaining estates and moors to do everything they can to highlight their efforts.” Mr Hollinrake is…

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could reintroduced wildcats control grey squirrels?

Wildcats could be reintroduced to rural Cornwall, Devon and central Wales after an absence of centuries. Ecologist Derek Gow has set up a wildcat breeding facility and told Shooting Times: “It’s a conversation that is starting.” Commenting on the benefits of reintroducing wildcats, Andrew Gilruth of the GWCT advised: “The basic concept is sound in that we will have a more diverse landscape if we rebuild species. However, we have to ask whether wildcats can survive in a changed landscape. They may start off well if there is an abundance of rabbits.” However, Mr Gow believes that wildcats may become a useful predator of grey squirrels. “They spend a lot of time feeding on the ground and they’ve never met a predator like this,” he said. “I think wildcats could cut significant…

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to do this week

CHECK Make sure your pens are pristine before moving poults into them. Give them a good clean, then clear out any vermin by running a line of beaters and dogs through so that anything unwanted moves out. To make doubly sure of capturing any lingering pests, place traps along each side. Check currently approved species traps at po.st/Approvedtraps. Finally, border the pens with an electric fence and, after a couple of weeks of inspecting the traps, you can be fairly sure that the pens are clear and ready for the poults. APPLY Forty-nine out of 50 people say they have never met a gamekeeper. This week, consider contacting teachers at local schools and colleges to arrange a school or estate visit so that pupils can see gamekeepers at work and gain a better understanding…

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jobs lost due to licences fiasco

Jobs are being lost and sales are significally down due to revocation of general licences, the gun trade reports. The failure of Defra to resolve the crisis and shooters’ lack of confidence in the law has begun to impact trade. Both retailers and manufacturers are reporting sharp declines in sales. “If it wasn’t for healthy Europe sales, I wouldn’t be sitting here” Chris Phillips, European account manager at pigeon shooting specialist UK Shoot Warehouse, got in touch with Shooting Times after his company was forced to lay off a member of staff. He described the decision to let go a member of the despatching team as “horrendous”. However, the company felt it had no choice after sales dropped by 80 per cent compared with the same time last year. Chris said that the effect…