Focus On Partridge
Partridge shooting can be fast and furious. It can also be extremely challenging. Historically, when talking about Partridge we would have been referring to English or Grey Partridge. Quick, nimble and agile they were driven over tall hedgerows and to shoot them well and to shoot them consistently required great skill and fieldcraft.
Regrettably, changes in farming led to the loss of their essential habitat and so today, nearly all estates now will offer French Partridge also known as ‘Red legs’. Many shoots still drive Partridge in the ‘traditional style’, not least those estates in the famous partridge counties of Lincolnshire and Norfolk. However, as the demand for higher birds grew, many shoots started to drive Partridges like Pheasants. Choosing to push them across valleys, gullies and combes, to great effect. No matter how they are presented, Partridge shooting, with the season starting on 1st September, is hugely enjoyable and The Royal Berkshire Sporting Agency are able to host days to suit all preferences.
Grey Partridge numbers have reduced by 80% in the last 30 years – with habitat loss and increased predator populations being partly to blame.
Partridges are notoriously attentive parents and there have been stories of parents viciously protecting their young from predators (including snakes).
The distinctive rasping call of the grey partridge, invariably uttered when the birds are flushed, is the easiest way to tell a grey from a red-legged partridge.
Our Top Partridge Shooting Tips
As mentioned, the season starts in September when, hopefully, it is much warmer. With this in mind, you will not want or need a heavy shooting coat or thick breeks. Instead consider a shooting waistcoat, lightweight breeks and a suitable shooting shirt (avoid bright or vividly coloured shirts).
We love this all season shooting vest from Schoffel, priced at £159.95.
These lightweight, technical tweed breeks from Purdey are perfect for September shooting and are priced at £450.00.
With the days hotter and the ground drier, you may find it more comfortable to shoot in ankle boots rather than heavier wellingtons. These men’s Chameau-lite Stalking Boots are made with environmentally friendly ‘Terracare’ full grain leather and are priced at £299.00.
Finally, always pack sunglasses for early season Partridge, as it is especially challenging to try and shoot well when staring into the sun. These Oakley Holbrook Mix sunglasses will protect your eyes from the Autumn sun and are currently for sale at the discounted price of £149.00.
Are you ready for the start of the season? Visit our Country Store to shop the items featured above as well as our wide range of clothing, footwear and accessories from brands such as Purdey, Schoffel, Musto, Le Chameau and Barbour.