PREPARATIONS ARE underway for the start of the shooting season in August, despite uncertainty about the duration of the current lockdown.

Game shooting in the UK attracts a large overseas contingent, so some shoots are taking steps to push back the start of their seasons in the hope that travel restrictions may be lifted later in the year.

The British Game Alliance conducted a survey of its members in order to gauge what shoots are planning to go ahead. So far 332 of them have responded and 70% have confirmed that they plan to shoot and have begun preparations to begin as early as August 12.

The survey also revealed that 25% of those shooting are running a full shooting calendar, with the other 75% running a reduced operation, with an average drop of 35% in numbers of birds being released.

When looking at grouse moors, 90% plan to go ahead, but several expect to push back the start of their season, noting that overseas clients were proving reluctant to commit to deposits and days.

BGA shoot account manager, Sam Adams, said, “With all the uncertainty in the industry, it’s great to see that 70% of our members will be shooting this year. The average drop in numbers released of 35% stacks up with other sectors in the supply chain from game farms to feed mills. The BGA continues to encourage guns to support their shoots by paying deposits, enabling them to continue in some capacity.”