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The Hunters Chronicles - Thursday 23rd August 2012

Earlier in the year, I woke at dawn and went to bed at sundown. I enjoyed the rhythm and the feeling of being 'in tune'. Of course, it was a lot easier then when the Sun rose at 06:00 and set around 18:00, getting to bed by 20:00 was straight forward, and most pleasant!
Now the days are getting shorter, and the Sun is starting to rise at a respectable hour, I thought I would try again.
My ulterior motive was to endeavour to reverse my frustrations in hunting the woodpigeon. This species is rapidly becoming my 'Moby Dick'.
So it was that I woke with the alarm at 05:00, boiled a cup of joe and set off, full of anticipation and salivating at the thought of the breasts that would materialise in the 'sitty' tree.

 Mist in the valley on a dry, promising morning.



In spite of the fine morning and the glorious sights seemingly gifted to me alone, it took mere paces for my heart to sink.
Wet boots. Soaked through from the heavy dew.
I cursed myself vehemently for failing to wear my wellington boots.
Still, onwards I strode, boots squeaking, socks squelching and feet cold. I entered the second of the three fields.


No rabbits spotted. Nothing. Nadda. Zip. It has been a long time since my last visit, and then it took over two hours for one small young survivor to emerge. Still, my remit was extermination, and it would appear that my task is complete with the aid of the foxes and myxomatosis. Thankfully, rabbits were not my target.

I holed up in my usual hedgerow hide and sat on my game bag amongst the nettles.
Traffic on the road rumbled in the distance as the first yummy pair of meaty treats alighted in the tree.
The other side of the canopy.
Darn it.
I was cooed at, and my rumbling stomach set my legs to purpose. I inched and stalked underneath the thick foliage through the water logged knee to waist high grass. I was super careful, yet he melted into the ether.

My audience, mighty racing beasts, suitably unimpressed.
I took up a new, dryer, more comfortable ambush site, and for the next three hours got nothing more than a crick in the neck.
I dejectedly wandered the hedgeline scanning the treetops. Plenty of delicious nutrition flew overhead, but straight on to the chosen site of theft and pillage.
As I wandered back, two playfully landed on the roof of a small storehouse. Another on a telegraph cable. All out of range, and the two playmates didn't loiter.

I was not the only one suffering poor sport this morning. Riding the unseen thermals and elements in the sky a Buzzard incessantly and repeatedly cried his mournful and frustrated call.
 As I sat and summoned the energy to return home empty handed, he too, rested in a tree screeching piercingly over the valley.

That helped me a great deal. I'm forever grateful that hunting is at present a hobby not a necessity, and when I do hunt,

It isn't with my mouth.

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