My first real shoot! Advice please....

Discussion in 'Shooting, Hunting and Fishing' started by commzmeanzbombz, Sep 18, 2009.

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  1. Good Morning Gents,

    Towards the end of October I have been invited to attend my first ever shoot and to that end I am seeking a bit of advice. (I know it is a while away but as you know time spent in recconisance is rarely wasted!)

    Are there any traditions, rules or formalities I should be aware of?

    What should I wear?

    How much ammunition should I take?

    Will I be ok to turn up with my Miroku MK38 Sporter which is primarily a clay gun and also which chokes should I use?

    I went to my first hunt a few years ago and managed to do the wrong thing at just about every turn and I would like to turn up at the shoot without making a complete Arrse of myself!

    Cheers Fellas,

  2. Open chokes for a start. 1/4 will do fine unless you're an absolute crack shot of the first order.

    Without knowing the nature of the shoot you've been invited to it's hard to say. It could be a high end driven shoot in which case you'll look a little under-dressed in moleskins and a tatty wax jacket or a walked up rough shoot with a handful of mates in which case plus fours and best tweed might look a bit over the top.

    Have you tried asking your host for guidance on dress?

    Ammunition - take a case of 250 and carry at least 50 on you at any time. Running out of ammunition would be terminally embarrassing. Don't forget it should be fibre wad and no.6 shot for birds, No. 4 shot for ground game, if there are duck to shoot at take some bismuth (lead free) shot too - a box of 25 will probably do.

    More answers will follow shortly from the others. :)
  3. Buying "Shooting Times" between now and then will provide a few pointers if you'll excuse the pun. :D
  4. Greet the Shoot Captain straight away and introduce yourself to the other members. The amount of ammunition depends entirely on the day and what the expected bag will be, ask the chap who invited you.

    Clothing; breeches & socks with either boots with gaiters or your best Barbour green wellies depending on the weather and/or country, shirts country with sporting tie, jacket/fleece/shooting coat depending on the weather/temperature and flat cap.

    Listen carefully to the safety brief, never shoot if you are in any doubt or after the horn (end of the drive), gun in its slip between drives and unloaded when crossing obstacles. Don't shoot anyone's dog (and don't confuse a red setter with a fox!). Find out whether you need to take your own lunch and how much the cap (charge for shooting/tip for the keeper & beaters) is and finally thank your host, the shoot captain and the keeper.

    Have a great day!
  5. Alsacien

    Alsacien LE Moderator

    What are you shooting, pheasant/partridge/duck/grouse?
    How many drives/how big is the bag/how many guns?

    No camo.
    No coloured goretex.
    Anything green is fine, wellies are good - if its formal then tweed and ties may be in order.
    Unless you know you will have high birds or will be flushing go 1/4 and 1/2.
    Keep it sleeved until you get to your peg :wink:

    Bring cash for tips - ask other guns how much for beaters and gamekeeper on your particular shoot.
  6. Alsacien

    Alsacien LE Moderator

    BTW what are folks paying in England?
    I am in jockland for birds in a few weeks - 250 quid for 200 birds with 8 guns twice.
    In a couple of weeks I'll be in Gloucestershire - I was offered a day for 1895 quid!!! Jesus christ!!!
  7. Ravers

    Ravers LE Reviewer Book Reviewer

    There is a good article in the latest issue of The Field which dictates acceptable behaviour at a shoot and gives some very decent tips on how to be invited again.
  8. Alsacien

    Alsacien LE Moderator

    Hey - the guy top right is wearing a Musto Whisper jacket - I have one of those!!

    ...and you cannot beat Le Chameau wellies 8)
  9. I'm pretty sure sawn-off's are a no-no (except in Essex).
  10. Fronty

    Fronty Old-Salt Book Reviewer

    Also, no semi-autos or pumps. Most shoots I know frown on these modern contraptions. Bonus points for using a hammergun of some sort though.

    Last shoot I went on from an invite was a syndicate job and I turned up in standard green wellies, dark green moleskins, standard shirt and Barbour. Turns out I was over dressed, but only slightly.

    Oh yes, remember ear protection. It might not look cool, but it will prevent you doing a "Rocco" in later life.
  11. A tie makes all the difference even if you are in Tattersall and moleskin. Keeps the drafts out too! :)
  12. The article is based on How to be asked again. Maybe a good investment?
  13. I would be tempted to buck the trends on my first shoot if I were you.

    Dark 2 piece suit, white shirt and black tie rounded off with Chelsea boots and black Armani shades. A black mohair overcoat with puma fur lapels, draped over the shoulders will answer if it's parky.

    When it comes to hardware you might as well give yourself an edge so ditch the sporter and get something that’ll do what it is say’s on the tin.

    Don’t bother with Holland & Holland like all those other Sloanies ; they’ll ask for all sorts of ‘licenses’ and stuff, charge a huge amount, and certainly rip you off. They’ll probably try to fob you off with one of their Italian ‘over-and-unders’ – the quickest way to earn scorn at a proper shoot.

    Instead, head to Hackney, there’s a couple of derelict houses next to the shell garage. Knock four times and say ‘Salaam’ to the seven-foot Nubian who answers the door. His name is ‘Meat’. Tell him Bigeye sent you. He’ll set you up with a couple of Franchi SPAS 12s to stick in the boot of your Ferrari.

    Shove a handy 9mm in your waistband for finishing and you’re tooled up.

    Don't forget to load a few cartridges with rock salt - in case the host's dogs cross your guns and frighten those 'close' birds.

    Choose an able loader while you are about it. There's a great little escort agency in Knightsbridge that will set you up with a curvy bint who’ll know her way round a shooter.

    Remember: you've got to get your money's worth so any bird is fair game. Never mind if it's slightly over the head of the next peg - go for it.

    If someone tells you that they can see what no. shot you’re using, they’re sarcastically suggesting you're a little cavalier with your drills. Don't take this - give the nonce a frightener - right between his boots should do it.

    Don’t forget ear protection: Make sure to load your ipod with some decent rock – this’ll blot out the bangs – and – the whining from the beaters as you lay down heavy fire into the bushes.

    Tip everybody from the host downwards: a crisp Hawaii should do it.

    It’s considered impolite not to try it on with host’s wife at the end of the shoot – after a few nips out of the flask she’ll start to look right. Keep the Franchi loaded and close to hand in case there any misunderstandings.

    Finally - don’t forget to line up a receiver to unload all those birds on, there’s a bloke at Smithfield who’ll see you right.

    – Happy shooting.
  14. Brilliant advice, cheers fellas, especially you big-eye!