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Not as daft as she looks.

An old friend telephoned me yesterday to say that his grandson and family were visiting for a few days and asking if I could take the grandson, who is a clay pigeon shooter, but has never shot live birds, out pigeon shooting while they were here.
Now he knows I don't like taking inexperienced people shooting with me, so he was calling in a few favours to make the request.
I agreed immediately and suggested a time to meet up today and we would try to give him a few shots.

The most effective way to get reasonable bags of pigeons is to shoot over decoys from a hide.
However,its my experience that newbie live quarry shooters are like little kids going fishing.
You have to keep them occupied constantly, or their attention wanders and they get bored.
So as there can be long quiet periods when hide shooting, plus I won't shoot two to a hide(so I wouldn't get any shooting), that ruled that approach out.
I decided we would flightline shoot and when a flightline dried up we could just get up and walk/drive to the next one.
All we needed to carry were folding seats and our guns.

I picked him up at the appointed time and suggested he leave his gaudy clay shooting jacket with all the badges on it behind and borrow an old green Barbour coat from his Grandpa and he also borrowed a shooting stick seat.
As we were about to leave, my friends old retired labrador got excited and wanted to come with us, she must have smelt the gun oil on me.
She was a good gundog, but hadn't worked for over four years and was no longer at her best working weight, but as we would be do nothing too strenuous , I suggested she came along.

First stop was the hedgerow surrounding a 60+ acre field of ****, the birds usually entered and left the field at two specific points, one marked by a large oak tree that stood higher than the hawthorns and the other spot was where a line of electric poles entered the field.
We went to stand in the hedge by the oak first and had a few easy crossing birds, but they spooked off quickly and with a change in the wind direction I decided we should move to a nearby wood.

We were on the lee of the wood, which was adjacent to another large field of **** and the main flight line from the field to the wood and back, was over a narrow part of the wood that jutted out into the field about 50 yards.
We sat back in the tree line and were soon quite busy with passing birds.
The wind had increased and was helping to mask our shots, so incoming birds still kept coming.

At this point I should mention that the grandson is a high flyer in international finance in the City of London, a very highly qualified and as it turned out, a very pleasant young chap.
I continued to impress him by shooting all the easy birds and missing little and he was doing OK, but struggling at times to judge the lead required on some of the birds, usually missing behind.

He eventually got the hang of things and near the end of the day he took down a very high bird, which in the wind dropped the other side of the narrow spit of trees we were standing alongside.
The old lab wandered off, as she had been doing all afternoon (and returning with a bird), but was gone for some time.
The grandson suggested he should go look for her and off he went.

He returned after a while and said that she was just sitting down with her nose in the air and wouldn't move.
Grandpa had said that the old dog had become a bit eccentric at times lately and the grandson was convinced she was exhibiting the symptoms now.
So we both went after her.
She was indeed just sitting by the tree line with her nose in the air, casting her head about.
I asked him had he noticed that her eyes were either side of her nose, he laughed and said "of course", I then asked him what he thought she was looking at, when he looked up there was the dead pigeon, caught in a branch 40ft above her head.

"How embarrassing" I laughed, "City Whizz Kid shown up by an old retired labrador".
He laughed and said, "not shown up too badly, she could never have shot that high bird".
"Only because I wouldn't lend her my gun " I replied.
Then we went home.


  • BayBobBayBob Senior Member Posts: 865 Officer
    Great read as usual, thanks for sharing. What is a "field of ****"?
  • CranfieldCranfield Senior Member Posts: 1,584 Captain

    Pigeon will eat the leaves of the young plants and the hearts (which kills the plant) and when the crop is ripe and produces the pods, they will eat the "crop", which is the **** seeds.
  • micci_manmicci_man Senior Member Somewhere in FLPosts: 15,001 AG
    **** is a seed that some plant in deer food plots.

    Nice read Cran :beer
    Common Sense can't be bought, taught or gifted, yet it is one of the few things in life that is free, and most refuse to even attempt to possess it. - Miguel Cervantes
  • tk's joytk's joy Senior Member Canton, GA/Mexico Beach, FLPosts: 2,490 Officer
    The fields of **** are just absolutely beautiful when they are in bloom and sometimes go for what seems like miles, uh, make that kilometers.

  • SaltygatorvetSaltygatorvet Senior Member TallahasseePosts: 5,807 Admiral
    Almost positive **** seed oil is canola oil( Canada oil) because **** oil didn't sound good to those marketing it
    You should have been here yesterday
  • jcbcpajcbcpa Senior Member South GeorgiaPosts: 2,560 Captain
    Some of the farmers here used to grow it in the late 80's and early 90's. I think that primarily the reason they stopped was the availability of suitable markets. Not sure about that, but I think that's what I remember.
    They have started back to growing it a little in Decatur and Seminole counties. There is a company there, Meridian, that's using canola oil in a manufacturing process. It's pretty interesting.

    "Winners take responsibility, losers blame others"

    Megyn Kelly

  • GANDERGANDER Senior Member MichiganPosts: 396 Deckhand
    Delightful tale! Old dogs can teach us a lot of tricks.
  • Spanky DunlapSpanky Dunlap Senior Member HootervillePosts: 703 Officer
    Thanks for taking the time to write and post that. Very enjoyable.
  • SaltygatorvetSaltygatorvet Senior Member TallahasseePosts: 5,807 Admiral
    You do paint a wonderful picture. I shot pigeons for the first time in Argentina a few months back. It took a little getting used to
    You should have been here yesterday
  • skyway andeskyway ande Senior Member St. petePosts: 3,807 Captain
    My mother was just speaking of the fields of ****.
    Her recent trip to Argentina.
    Excellent report Cranfield,
    That end is terrific!
    God, save the South!
  • hooknredshooknreds Senior Member Redfish PointPosts: 2,461 Captain
    The old girl still had it!
  • SaltygatorvetSaltygatorvet Senior Member TallahasseePosts: 5,807 Admiral
    ferris1248 wrote: »
    It is a genetically modified version of rapeseed oil. And you're right about the name.

    As for the beauty, if you'd been traveling through the Dothan area years ago, you'd see hundreds of acres of canola, tall yellow blooms. They were beautiful to see.

    I don't know why they stopped growing canola there. OD may know.

    I grew up in Dothan, lived there from 79 until I graduated high school in 92. I've never heard of anyone growing it there and don't remember seeing any. Plenty of peanuts, soybeans, cotton and some corn, but I don't remember seeing or hearing of it. Particularly for hunting over. Maybe before or after my time there, but I still visit family frequently. Very likely I wasn't paying attention and missed it. Love to hear what OD has to say about it.
    You should have been here yesterday
  • tk's joytk's joy Senior Member Canton, GA/Mexico Beach, FLPosts: 2,490 Officer
    For those who've never seen it, here's a link. I first saw it in Austria on a day trip between Vienna and Prague. It is beautiful.****+flower

  • dewyafishdewyafish Senior Member Posts: 5,025 Admiral
    Excellent read.

    I was told the problem with canola in the coastal plain is the humidity made if not very cost effective to get to market.
    The tiny seed would spoil if you can't get nearly ALL the moisture out. Drying a trailer full of peanuts is a lot different than drying what looked like a trailer full of dirt.
    THe air just won't circulate through it enough.

    I have NO first hand experience with this crop, but was told this by someone that worked with Pineland Seed Corp, which is a division of Pineland Plantation that was actually growing the crop.
    There's nothing more enjoyable than suprise morning sex...
    Unless you happen to be in jail at the time.
  • Old DogOld Dog Senior Member SE ALPosts: 560 Officer
    Enjoyed the read Brian. Good job!

    As for me knowing anything about **** agriculture around Dothan I'm afraid I'm not much help. I'm a city boy and my knowledge of vegetables extends no further than the salad section of the grocery store. :(
  • SaltygatorvetSaltygatorvet Senior Member TallahasseePosts: 5,807 Admiral
    ferris1248 wrote: »
    Coming through Headland, 10-12 years ago, there used to be hundreds of acres covered in a yellow blooming plant about 3-4 feet high. An old timer in "Bob's Famous Boiled Peanuts and Novelties" told me it was canola. He may of been pulling my leg. If so, I don't know why he'd pick canola. Could of been soybeans.

    Your probably right. I don't remember seeing any but that certainly doesn't mean much. 431 towards Headland was the road I traveled least. 231 n and s and 84 e and w were my more traveled roads. Thanks
    You should have been here yesterday
  • dewyafishdewyafish Senior Member Posts: 5,025 Admiral
    Your probably right. I don't remember seeing any but that certainly doesn't mean much. 431 towards Headland was the road I traveled least. 231 n and s and 84 e and w were my more traveled roads. Thanks

    It was around 95 or 96 when Pineland tried it.
    There's nothing more enjoyable than suprise morning sex...
    Unless you happen to be in jail at the time.
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