Red grouse are entirely wild birds unique to the British Isles with strongholds in the uplands of northern England and Scotland. Unlike other members of the grouse family, when they are flushed, they will fly a very long way at speeds of 40 to 70 mph depending on the winds. They also fly low, presenting a challenge like no other game bird. This is in part due to their famous moorland or heather habitat which has no trees or bushes to encourage the birds to land. It is their willingness to fly these long distances at speed which makes driven grouse shooting possible and so special.
It is possible to take single days shooting but days are generally let in pairs with bags ranging from 75 to 150 brace (pair of birds) per day on average shooting single or double guns with larger days often possible. A line of guns is usually eight or nine guns shooting four or five drives per day.
Accommodation is either at a local hotel or private house or on the shooting estate itself depending on personal preference and availability. Frontiers will help and advise on choice of accommodaion at the time of booking. Accommodation will always be required to offer secure gun storage.
A grouse moor has very changeable weather. Key requirements are: ear protection, eye protection (required) dull coloured hat which will stay on in the wind. Dull clothing including light and heavier rain jackets, layers, rain trousers, range finder, midge/insect repellant (Skin-so-soft) and gloves.
The grouse season itself is from 12th August (Glorious 12th) to 10th December. The best time to plan is October of the previous year. Grouse shooting is in high demand so to leave planning until later is not advisable unless you are prepared to gamble and hope there are excess grouse which need shooting late season but this can be weather dependent. While finding single guns to join a team is possible, full teams of eight or nine guns are easier to assist. Grouse are completely wild birds therefore a successful year does depend on a good breeding season during the months of May to July.
With different bag sizes and different accommodation options, as well as opportunities for single, double or even multiple days, all grouse shooting is subject to quotation. Frontiers are also happy to quote for preparational shooting practice and tuition, transport, cartridges, gun storage etc.
The Glorious 12th in much of Yorkshire will sadly not be glorious due a lack of rain at a key time. Things were looking outstanding in mid-May with an incredible bloom of cotton grass which put the hen birds in peak condition. However, come late May and early June there was a severe lack of rain for an extended period which was bad for the heather and the grouse and their chicks as well as insects which virtually vanished at a critical time. ...