2013-07-26  facebook twitter rss

Good Prospects for 2013 Grouse Shooting Season

With less than three weeks until the start of the Grouse Shooting season; Ewan Harris of Wooler based Sale and Partners, who work with a number of estates across the Borders and further afield, is gearing up for the busy times ahead.

Early indications are that there are good prospects for the 2013 season with some encouraging reports from keepers in the northern Pennines and Lammermuirs. This is a welcome improvement on last year, one of the wettest in history.

Ewan Harris

Ewan Harris

Shoot managers on the country’s grouse moors will begin to undertake formal counts of stocks in the coming weeks so this will give us a more definitive picture.

Despite the horrendous wet weather last year the Autumn grouse stocks that were left have performed well. Some struggled in the spring with the frosts and late snow and understandably broods were 2-3 weeks late in hatching out. Brood sizes are smaller than usual but the dry mild summer has meant that survival rates of these broods have on the whole been excellent.

There are some concerns that the stocks will not have reached maturity in time for the Glorious Twelfth so we may see some shoots postponing until later in August.

Grouse grow up in their natural environment on the moors and rely on young heather as a food source and fresh water. We are currently in the hottest and driest period in almost a decade, which is making it very difficult for the birds to find water on the dry moors. Keepers are concerned; lack of water is becoming a real issue, and only time will show how far these birds have wandered in search of water.

As always so many people will be looking forward to the Glorious Twelfth. This is the pinnacle of the sporting calendar and for many it is their own personal highlight of the year. Without a doubt the 2013 Grouse season will be enjoyed by many on the 459 Grouse Moors across the UK and let us hope that for a short while during the next three weeks we do see some rainfall to ensure that it becomes a truly memorable season.

Based in Northumberland, Sale & Partners with a dedicated sporting department specialises in the sale and purchase of Estates, Farms and Residential Properties, land management, accounting, and tax and design services.

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