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SCOTLAND

Hunting in Scotland

Pigeon shooting in Scotland normally takes place on farmland. Scottish farmers grow many crops that pigeons love to eat, including barley, peas and oilseed rape. This means that pigeons can be found on different crops at different times of year.

In Scotland we have the Greylag goose and the Pink footed goose as regular residents. They visit Scotland in the winter time, and then range throughout the Highlands with concentrations in the Central belt and up the east coast.

Scotland is one of the most challenging activities and it is best enjoyed by experienced hunters. Often found in pheasant woods, they feed nocturnally around streams, pasture fields and on boggy ground, but prefer dense cover during the day. The resident population in Britain is increased by a large over-wintering migrant population. It is thought by some that the bulk of this migration coincides with the first full moon in November.

Scotland has a vast deer population that is spread across the country throughout a variety of different terrain types. Because of this, the Highlands represent the perfect setting for anyone who is looking to pursue hunting and deer stalking in Scotland. At Mirani Hunting, we arrange deer hunting within a number of designated Scottish deer forests and woodlands throughout the year, with the host season being largely dependent upon the species of deer in question.

Pigeon Shooting

Hunting season: All year

Spring pigeon shooting is over spring sowing of barley and oilseed rape, summer pigeon shooting is over barley and oil seed rape stubbles.

Pigeons are usually hunted in one of two ways:

  1. Using decoys around crops: Your guide will have investigated where the pigeons are feeding before you arrive, and he will then build a hide for you. This could be using branches and vegetation from the area, or by using a camouflage net. Once you are in your hide, your guide will lay pigeon decoys out in the field. His experience will decide on the exact hide position and determine how the decoy layout should look. The secret is to let the pigeons come in close to the decoys before getting up to take the shot. Shoot too soon and you will keep the pigeons out of range. Your equipment is of top quality and will include items such as rotary magnets, flappers and floaters along with modern decoys, cradles and dead birds.

  2. Roost shooting: The other way to take part in pigeon shooting in Scotland is called roost shooting. This involves your guide investigating where pigeons are going to roost at night. There may well be a line of bushes along the edge of a field that run towards the wood. Pigeons like to follow these lines into a wood, and your guide could station you there, or in an open area of the wood where the pigeons drop into the trees.

 

Pigeon shooting in Scotland is therefore very good for helping a hunter become a better shot and, as our pigeons are truly wild birds, you will have to use all your hunters’ skills to be able to shoot them. We keep a close relationship with all our farmers to get up to the minute information on pigeon movements, drillings and harvesting. This combined with constant reconnaissance provides you with the best fields to shoot at any given time.

Greylag goose

We operate in the Aberdeenshire, which is according to us, the best area for shooting geese. Geese like to use an area to roost (sleep) overnight. These are normally areas that have been used for many years, and because of this they will be used by large numbers of geese. With this kind of movement back and forth, some territories will set hunters up on the flight line in, or out, of the roost site.

 

Hunting methods:

  • Geese hunting in Scotland is normally conducted a good distance away from the actual site, so that the birds are not disturbed so much that they will leave the area altogether. This kind of hunting largely depends on windy weather keeping the birds low and, of course, the chance that the geese come your way.

  • We also make use of decoys. Your guide will be watching the geese feeding areas before you arrive, and he will then take you to the best areas to set you up in a hide with decoys already in the field. Then it is a matter of waiting for the birds to come. Remember this is conducted in the winter time and can be very cold, so make sure you have warm hunting gear on and good shooting gloves. You will hear the geese long before you see them, and if everything works out right they will then come to your decoys and give you a shot. Hopefully the geese will come in many groups, thereby giving you better shooting.

Whichever way you choose to get involved with geese hunting in Scotland the sound of the geese approaching is very exciting. Your guide will have spoken to you beforehand and given you advice on where they may come from, and when it is best to shoot. The geese are all wild birds, so remember to keep well down until they are within range.

After shooting geese we go rough shooting in the afternoon, pheasants, hares, partridges, rabbits, woodcocks and then evening flight on ducks and geese. The main type of duck hunting in Scotland takes place around flight ponds. The gamekeeper for the area will feed these flight ponds every day. The ducks do not live on these ponds, but fly in from the surrounding countryside as the day comes to an end. The flight pond will have butts set in place around it, with hunters sitting in these butts as they wait for the ducks to start “flighting in”.

Duck hunting in Scotland can be an exciting evening of sport, as the targets will be coming from all directions. Some might already be flying fast, but once a shot is fired they will accelerate even more to get away. A hunter has to be a good shot to bring down a duck and, depending on the locality, “flighting” can produce different species of ducks in a single evening.

Woodcock Shooting

Hunting season: November-December-January 

 

Woodcocks rank amid the most fascinating game birds in the world, as they migrate all across Europe and the surrounding areas. Woodcock shooting in Scotland is extremely difficult because the birds are small and fast moving, and they typically break very late when disturbed. This provides quite a challenge at close to medium range, with incredibly fast reactions being needed to bring down such an elusive quarry. Woodcocks take their name from their preferred habitat, requiring hunters to be positioned in tactical locations, while a select part of the team focuses on drawing the birds out. Walked-Up woodcock hunting in Scotland and Snipe Shooting is also available, on our exclusive areas both on the West Coast, Argyllshire and Bute, and on the East Coast, Aberdeenshire and Moray.

We are at your disposal for any kind of information that you wish to request, so don’t hesitate to ask for your personalized program!

Grouse

The undisputed king of game birds, the red grouse is the only one that is unique to the British Isles.

They can fly at speeds of up to 90mph with the wind at their tails and give the hunter a true challenge. Found on moorlands in Scotland, traditionally the better region, driven grouse shooting is normally reckoned to be the pinnacle of driven shooting, a potent mixture of stunning scenery, deep rooted tradition and the ultimate shooting challenge.

Grouse shooting in Scotland takes place on carefully tended grouse moors that are mainly situated in the Highlands, Angus and the Borders.

Although the season does not open until 12 August (known as “The Glorious Twelfth”), the gamekeepers work throughout the year to ensure that the best possible conditions exist for the grouse to rear their chicks, as well as building or repairing the butts that are used by the shooters.

Grouse are hunted in 3 main ways:

  1. Walked up with retrievers and shot as they flush

  2. Walked up and shot over pointer dogs

  3. Driven by beaters to a line of 8 or 10 guns

 

The bags on driven days can reach between 50 and 100 brace (a pair of birds) per day in Scotland.Teams of 8 to 10 guns are usual and such teams are often groups of friends but sometimes we take individuals from many sources to make up a team. This allows people from all corners of the globe to come together and shoot grouse and from such beginnings lifelong friendships are often forged.

Walked up grouse, with or without pointers, allows small teams to shoot grouse with as few as 2 guns shooting over a pointer and as many as 8 walking in line abreast with spaniels and labradors. Bags of 5 brace per day to 30 or 40 brace are possible with 3or 4 brace per gun per day being typical. Those who wish to walk up grouse must be fit as the hills can be steep and the ground underfoot is uneven and often wet and slippery.

 

However, for those with the right constitution there is nothing more satisfying than a day with the dogs walking up grouse.

 

We are at your disposal for any kind of information that you wish to request, so don’t hesitate to ask for your personalized program!

Deer hunting

Species of deer:

  1. Red Deer Stags: the Red Deer is the largest land mammal within Britain and, with no natural predator, it roams across the hills, mountains and glens of Scotland with relative impunity. The harsh Scottish winters are the biggest threat to this magnificent animal, and many herds are decimated by cold weather across the higher areas of Scotland. Red Deer survive through carefully implemented conservation measures that endeavour to regulate the population to self-sustainable levels; an undertaking that is actually assisted by our services for deer hunting in Scotland.

  2. Red Deer Hinds: conservation has recently demanded a more rigorous culling process for Red Deer Hinds. This type of deer stalking in Scotland is often carried out during challenging winter conditions, requiring high levels of fitness and precise levels of vigilance in order to select a suitable target that does not place the best breeding hinds in jeopardy.

  3. Roe Deer: in contrast to its larger cousin, the Roe Deer prefers the more sheltered woodlands of the lower ground. This increased accessibility means that Roe Deer stalking in Scotland is very popular, with most ventures taking places against the atmospheric background of dawn or dusk. Certain hunting locations generally require a high vantage point to be utilised, such as a tower or tree, as the Roe Deer themselves can often take some time to make their presence known.

  4. The challenge of deer hunting in Scotland has attracted a wide range of sportsmen (and women) to the Highlands for many generations, and your appointed deer stalker will guide you across the landscape to find the favorite haunts of each deer in question.

Once you are in prime position amid the cover of boulders, heather or peat-hags, you will be encouraged to select your target using a telescope. Approaching your target from a suitable downwind direction, you will take your shot with or without any adequate assistance, depending on your own preference.

We also allow the deer stalker to remove and prepare any trophies that you may require, so do not hesitate to let us know how we can better meet your needs.

Travel

There are plenty of options when it comes to air travel to and from Scotland. Scotland’s principle airports are situated at Edinburgh, Glasgow and Aberdeen, and they are all served by flights that are scheduled on a daily basis from many cities in Europe.

 

Accomodation

We accommodate our customers in a 4 stars hotel in Boddam, Aberdeenshire

www.buchanbraes.co.uk

The food is really good, rooms are big, the staff of the hotel is very friendly and our hunters are very welcome. The hotel provides breakfast even at 4 o’clock in the morning, when we get up for going to shoot geese, and they serve dinner also when we come back late at night from the evening flights at the ducks.

Fishing is a fantastic way to spend some free time, as it can offer some of the tensest moments and most relaxing experiences within any hunting sport.

We offer a wide range of fishing trips in Scotland, allowing you to enjoy catching many kinds of fish including Salmon, Arctic Char, Pike, Brown and Rainbow Pike and more.

Whether you want to enjoy a fast flowing fishing trip, or a quiet venture by a mysterious and silent pool, all of your tastes can be catered for through a variety of fishing trips in Scotland.

For those individuals that are well used to travel on a sea-bound ship, a range of exciting sea fishing trips around the wandering coasts of Scotland can also be easily arranged, enabling you to catch a wide variety of salt water fish: cod, haddock, mackerel, ray and black cod. Sea fishing can contribute to some most thrilling fishing trips of all, with a wealth of experiences on offer that are simply excluded from land based fishing in Scotland.

Our expert advice and guidance will always be easily accessible through one of our professional instructors, so you can also be sure of receiving any assistance that you might need.

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