Things to do...
Make sure your release pens are fit for purpose and ready for the arrival of your birds. The electric fence should be on two weeks prior to birds arriving and the pen should have been thoroughly flushed through to ensure that there are no unwanted tenants.
Review your predator control – GWCT research on the fate of released pheasants demonstrated that 23% were predated or scavenged before shooting commenced, with foxes being the most significant predator.
Part-time keepers Book your place on our Part-time Keepers Course from the 13-15 September. For both amateur and professional keepers, this three-day course provides the latest best-practice advice and guidance on game management and is based at the Allerton Project’s highly acclaimed small shoot at Loddington. www.gwct.org.uk/ptkc
Monitor your cover crops on a weekly basis to keep an eye on weed burden and any signs of damage from pests. Be prepared to act quickly, whether it be spraying for flea beetle or employing bird scarers.
Out and about...
Clean your feeders and drinkers and check you have the right quantity in your pens - one per 20 birds released.
Complete any maintenance work such as mending gates, before your birds arrive.
Delpoy Mink rafts on the waterways around the shoot. Mass kills by mink in your release pen are worth avoiding.
Consider growing quick catch crops such as fodder radish and forage rape to enhance your plots.
Improve the ground cover in your woodlands by using brash piles and dead hedges.