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Huntin, Shootin & Fishin

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Huntin, Shootin & Fishin

Old 14th Sep 2019, 12:40
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Huntin, Shootin & Fishin

In RL I occasionally have a very loose connection with the game shooting industry. It really is quite large and does bring some income into the countryside and subsidises & diversifies other farming activities.

In my ignorance I didn't realise that the birds were bred in large numbers before being released into the 'wild' a few weeks before the start of the sporting season, to be hunted down with guns that have mostly come up from the city and who are paying many hundreds even thousands of pounds for a days sport. As an aside, I agree with the comedian that observed that "if you didn't do the activity at school it wasn't a sport"

Now, as a committed carnivore I believe that you should know that the tasty cut on your plate was once a living animal and also I think, deep down, that if you do eat meat you should, if necessary, be prepared to kill it yourself.

I had a discussion this week with a farmer who said that he no longer shot and that, after standing behind the guns, realised that quite a large number of birds were not killed but badly injured and presumably flew away to die in pain. However I'm sure that they keep the local fox population in food for the winter.

I have always consoled myself that at least the birds that were killed outright would end up on the plates of country kitchens and top restaurants in the cities. However the ex-shooter said that he suspected that a lot of them were simply destroyed as the effort in preparing them versus their value just wasn't worth it, meanwhile the 'sportsman' had perhaps paid 50 for the privilege of bravely killing it,

I hate to see waste of any kind, but when was the last time you saw a pheasant or rabbit hanging up in a butchers (perhaps it's illegal now) and most will not know how to prepare game or even be bothered with the faff.

Despite its popularity, I think that the days of game hunting in this country are numbered, the march of the veggies is well underway with planted stories in the media that eating meat will destroy the planet etc. I no longer pay to be indoctrinated by the 'public service broadcaster' but when I did, hardly a day went by without them reporting that 'experts' are predicting the imminent end of the world. I just hope that, for the good of my own health, I will still be able to buy meat for the few years I have left on this planet.
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Old 14th Sep 2019, 13:00
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Time to leave the wild animals alone. (fish may be a necessary exception)
Mankind has developed plenty of other ways to get the required meat for carnivores. Hunting is hardly a "sport".

I sometimes wonder if I could set up a company that organizes trophy hunting of trophy hunters.
I see it as being very similar to any dangerous being hunting another dangerous being.
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Old 14th Sep 2019, 13:39
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[color=left=#000000]Time to leave the wild animals alone. [/color]
With no natural predators what would you do with the expanding deer population? Should we leave rabbits to breed to their natural destructive population? What would vegetarians eat if we left grain and fruit to nature? All of this soft thinking comes from populations too far removed from the land. I think wild animal meat is probably more ethical than factory farmed meat. Just a shame it's so difficult to find a good supply of game in the cities.
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Old 14th Sep 2019, 13:46
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Originally Posted by meadowrun View Post
.......... Hunting is hardly a "sport".
By and large, particularly as practiced these days, you are correct.
But until you've trudged the tops of some distant mountain range in NZ in pursuit of deer (introduced vermin) and then carried out a carcase, then you have little idea what hard work really looks like.
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Old 14th Sep 2019, 13:59
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Originally Posted by Dan Dare View Post
With no natural predators what would you do with the expanding deer population? Should we leave rabbits to breed to their natural destructive population?
.
Very much agree Dan..

I don't like the Trophy hunting business and I don't like the way our local Chasse here in France behave, but we learnt our lesson about rabbits and deer when living in East Anglia many years ago and trying to grow veg for the pot. We discovered even the best anti deer and rabbit fencing in the world was porous, most supposedly huggy fluffy animals can become a serious pest if numbers are left unchecked.
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Old 14th Sep 2019, 14:12
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An estimated 60 million non-native game birds (pheasant & red-legged partridge) are introduced into the British countryside each year, many coming from France as young chicks. Ecologically they can do a lot of damage to habitats. Once released the 'owner' has no responsibility, so if one hits your car or you on a motorcycle causing damage or injury then there is no come back on the owner.

The shot birds that do enter the food chain (and many are just dumped) aren't as healthy as one might think as they have been shot with lead shot which may fragment and is difficult to completely remove.

Like topradio as a meat eater I think that one should be willing to kill ones food (and prepare it) at least once.

Shooting of deer is quite different to game birds as they haven't been introduced in order to be shot and certainly do need to be culled.
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Old 14th Sep 2019, 14:20
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But until you've trudged the tops of some distant mountain range in NZ in pursuit of deer (introduced vermin) and then carried out a carcase, then you have little idea what hard work really looks like.
Long way to trek for common vermin. None around sea level?
Typically, smart hunters will butcher the meat onsite and carry out the cuts.

As for hard work....I fondly remember unloading boxcars of 100lb sacks of dry chemicals ,outside, -20, no gloves (no grip), on my own.
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Old 14th Sep 2019, 14:40
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Originally Posted by meadowrun View Post
Long way to trek for common vermin. None around sea level?
Typically, smart hunters will butcher the meat onsite and carry out the cuts.

As for hard work....I fondly remember unloading boxcars of 100lb sacks of dry chemicals ,outside, -20, no gloves (no grip), on my own.
Indeed it was. That's why, for me, it was definitely sport.
Immense challenge coupled with hardship and commensurate levels of exhaustion and pain.
It's also why I don't do it any more.

When I say 'carcase' I mean semi-dressed.
Fallow or small whitetail you can make into a back pack. It's a bit harder with a 200 kg red deer.

See if you can find the nearest road to -46.007407 166.971686.
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Old 14th Sep 2019, 18:56
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We have regular local shoots. Beaters are rewarded with game. One beater, either too many of too squeamish passes some to a local Dutch woman who is grateful for free game.

In the past our terriers would catch rabbits and retrieve them. Now, I believe, it is against the law of you have more than one dog.

One year, in Cheddar, it was poetry in motion. Our 3 Scotties ran into impenetrable gorse thicket as if it was grass. Rabbits fled left right and centre. There pair of Jack Russels couldn't believe it, rabbits everywhere.
​​​​​i
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Old 14th Sep 2019, 23:50
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Originally Posted by meadowrun View Post
Time to leave the wild animals alone. (fish may be a necessary exception)
Mankind has developed plenty of other ways to get the required meat for carnivores. Hunting is hardly a "sport".

I sometimes wonder if I could set up a company that organizes trophy hunting of trophy hunters.
I see it as being very similar to any dangerous being hunting another dangerous being.

A tangent of your spoof, just what is a trophy animal?
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Old 15th Sep 2019, 09:02
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All
Well I tick all the box's here, as I have shot and fished since being a boy, fishing from the age of about 7 and shooting from about 12. My fishing started on the local rivers , dams, canal's and moved up to Game and Fly fishing. Shooting was at first target, then Clay, then Game, and during a short spell with HM Forces bigger game ! I have to say that with regards to fishing all of my fish have gone back, even before the current mandates on Salmon, the only fish I do take are when game fishing when we take Yellowfin Tuna, Kingfish, Wahoo, all Sailfish are tagged and released, also same for GT,s but no tags, but Barracuda are usually taken. As for shooting I have shot Deer , Pheasant ,Duck, Partridge, Grouse, but will not shoot Woodcock , all my shooting has been in the UK apart from when working in US when I went Deer shooting with my colleagues - totally different experience to UK and one I did not repeat. As for what happens to the shot game on the shoots I am on, as others have said, a Brace to each gun as well as to Beaters the rest to the Game dealer. You will see Phesant in the supermarkets where there is a note on packaging about shot being present. The % as to what is shot and what gets away, or is predated on, are quite startling, as the majority of birds put down are not shot ,but escape to either run wild, get taken by fox, or hit by cars trains etc. Deer gain when stalking you are told exactly which Deer you are going to kill and it will usually be an older stag who would not over winter or selective killing of Hinds to manage population. Again the meat goes into the food chain. This industry does support a lot of jobs in areas of the UK often where there are little in the way of alternatives, and manages the land as well for all to enjoy. I do think with some truly wild birds, like Woodcock and indeed Grouse that are not bred for the sport it is more difficult to defend, and indeed with Woodcock it is a protected species in Western Europe but is classed as a game bird in UK and Ireland, hence me not shooting them if they come my way. We eat all the game I bring home in the season, with none wasted, and I think as indeed others have said you need to know where your food comes from and understand what has to be done. We are also lucky to have land at home in Yorkshire where we rent out our fields for beef and sheep, and are paid with said products, so we are well aware of its provenance, which can only be a good thing in the coming days of Chlorinated chicken unfortunately.
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Old 15th Sep 2019, 09:53
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I hate to see waste of any kind, but when was the last time you saw a pheasant or rabbit hanging up in a butchers (perhaps it's illegal now)
Butchers need a licence to deal in game, I guess most don't think it worthwhile to go through the procedure. I get my small game from a friend who has regular shoots on his farm, and venison from a professional culler. I can get feathered game plucked and dressed locally when I am too busy to do it myself for a quid a bird. I butcher the venison myself to get the cuts the way I want them.
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Old 15th Sep 2019, 11:00
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Originally Posted by UniFoxOs View Post
Butchers need a licence to deal in game.
Not in England and Wales since c 2007 for Pheasant, Partridge etc, not so sure about venison.
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Old 15th Sep 2019, 11:51
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Rather sadly reminds me of being in our local rural pub one autumn evening. In comes local affluent businessman, fresh from a shoot, with a brace of pheasants. He then starting asking around and offering them gratis to anyone who wanted them as he had no need of them. What a waste of life. Hunt for food by all means. To kill for sport is another.
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Old 15th Sep 2019, 13:18
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I was talking to my butcher the other week about rabbits hanging up: he said something bout hygiene regulations preventing it now. But I haven't seen a decent size rabbit in the wild in 40 years - and I am in the wilds!. We have a number of wild rabbits around down around the railway embankment, but they are all miserable little runts. Even the butcher said that to get decent size rabbits, he has to get ones bred for the table and the flavour is nowhere near that of a wild rabbit.
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Old 15th Sep 2019, 13:42
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Originally Posted by topradio View Post

I had a discussion this week with a farmer who said that he no longer shot and that, after standing behind the guns, realised that quite a large number of birds were not killed but badly injured and presumably flew away to die in pain. However I'm sure that they keep the local fox population in food for the winter.

I have always consoled myself that at least the birds that were killed outright would end up on the plates of country kitchens and top restaurants in the cities. However the ex-shooter said that he suspected that a lot of them were simply destroyed as the effort in preparing them versus their value just wasn't worth it, meanwhile the 'sportsman' had perhaps paid 50 for the privilege of bravely killing it,

I hate to see waste of any kind, but when was the last time you saw a pheasant or rabbit hanging up in a butchers (perhaps it's illegal now) and most will not know how to prepare game or even be bothered with the faff.

Despite its popularity, I think that the days of game hunting in this country are numbered, the march of the veggies is well underway with planted stories in the media that eating meat will destroy the planet etc. I no longer pay to be indoctrinated by the 'public service broadcaster' but when I did, hardly a day went by without them reporting that 'experts' are predicting the imminent end of the world. I just hope that, for the good of my own health, I will still be able to buy meat for the few years I have left on this planet.
Lived in Shropshire beside a shoot, had to keep dog locked in when such was the stuff going on. Farmer threatened to shoot the dog if on his land but gamekeeper took it out for a day, put it in a pen with lots of birds to see what it would do. brought dog back and said dog will not be shot if wanders because not a threat and told his boss the same. Farmer changed attitude after that. Gamekeeper would often then bring dog out after that when he was walking his own, as not from area we found doors opened because we had no objections or issues.

At that time it was 250 for a days shoot including Lunch, they did police it well and I was aware that the stripped a gun from a Judge who was imbiding from his hip flask too much. He stopped protesting when told he would be banned from all shoots in the county and no amount of legal eagling would change it as he would be designated a danger.

I don't object to hunting if used for food but if it is for some tosser to show off then have a different view.

In relation to culling of herds well either you allow culling or animals will eventually starve when food sources gone. In most cases on a cull then food will find its way into the food system, be in goats in Somerset ending up in Bordesley Green in Birmingham or Venison steaks elsewhere. When nature lovers see the consequences of not culling and the whole population at risk they moderate their objections.

In truth I have found that majority who hunt do favour conservation and proper manangement and they have zero time for Jonnyshotgun who blasts at anything.

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Old 15th Sep 2019, 18:38
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I absolutely love fishing and I go at every opportunity. Mainly Trout and Salmon fishing but I also do a fair bit of Pike fishing. Almost everything I catch is returned to the water and will only keep a fish that has been deep hooked or foul hooked through the gill. The great thing about fly fishing is that 99% of the time you will hook the fish cleanly through the lip or just the inside of the mouth which means the hook can easily be popped out and the fish returned with minimal fuss (after a quick pic as proof of course ) . Most serious anglers return their catch because we know that a large female Salmon or Trout will breed the next generation we will be catching 2 years down the line.

For me fishing is not just about catching fish, it's also about getting out into the beauty of peacefulness of nature. My wife likes it too because it is not an expensive hobby at the point of use (I don't tell her how much I've spent on fishing tackle ) Fishing takes you to some of the most beautiful places on earth. Even standing in waders in a river that runs through the suburbs of a city can seem like another world within the city and there are plenty of fascinating, hidden things to discover along the river bank.

As for hunting, I don't see any problem with it if the animal will be used as food. I have a mate who goes Deer and Rabbit hunting twice a year then takes the carcasses to the butcher and pays same to cut them up. The meat then goes in the freezer and feeds his family for months. Tasty stuff it is too, I always enjoy going to his place for a BBQ.
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Old 15th Sep 2019, 19:14
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Originally Posted by West Coast View Post



A tangent of your spoof, just what is a trophy animal?
Taking this at face value, I think the main trophy animal would be a male lion, a tiger, leopard, a stag with large antlers, a grizzly bear, a fox or wolf.

Any lesser version, any big cat, any deer. I can't see a Gorilla, ape, cat, dog, snake, alligator counting.
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Old 15th Sep 2019, 19:35
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Originally Posted by Pontius Navigator View Post
Taking this at face value, I think the main trophy animal would be a male lion, a tiger, leopard, a stag with large antlers, a grizzly bear, a fox or wolf.

Any lesser version, any big cat, any deer. I can't see a Gorilla, ape, cat, dog, snake, alligator counting.

Fair enough. How do you go about assigning a higher value to one animal over another?
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Old 15th Sep 2019, 21:40
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I'm guessing that a trophy animal originally referred to those which were to be stuffed and mounted (that reminds me of a joke, for another thread) post mortem.
And that is something with which only single men or those with a trophy wife can get away.
Stuffed animals and tanned hides don't really fit in with post-Victorian decor.

I have pretty much gotten over the hunting bug but still fish whenever I have the chance. That which isn't to be eaten (under-size, female crabs carrying roe, etc) is returned.

Those which I would readily dispatch, if the opportunity should arise, are any feral animals. In Oz, and including NZ, that means rabbits, foxes, cats, dogs, camels, horses, deer, goats, pigs, stoats, hares or any of the other multitude of species that the Acclimatisation Societies found useful in building their idea of heaven on earth.
I'm a bit selective about which of those I'd eat or discard.

I also have little objection to culling any wild animal that is already part of a commercial food chain. I won't lose sleep over shooting a kangaroo or two per year for dog food when they are culled commercially by the millions for the same purpose.
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