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Snipe Hunting at Derry Quay Lodge

Hunting 180At Derry Quay Lodge, the traditional method of snipe shooting is walking up a snipe bog with dogs at heel and the guns flushing the resident snipe as they make their way across the bog.

The snipe is an unmistakable bird, both in flight and in the sound it makes when flushed.

This slender, bird is easily identified by its long bill, pointed wings and characteristic cry.

When it is flushed it springs quickly, and is fast, erratic, and zigzag flight makes it a testing shot.

January 2011 013The snipe is a very common bird in Ireland and the hunting ground of Derry Quay Lodge

The populations of snipe in Ireland are quite large, with as many as 150 snipe seen on most shooting days at Derry Quay Lodge. The snipe is a difficult bird to shoot when in flight and is best taken just after it is flushed.

There two main species of snipe found at Derry Quay Lodge but it is the common snipe that is the most numerous. Jack snipe are found in parts of our hunting ground but are now afforded protection to ensure their numbers remain steady.

January 2011 014When shot, snipe will often bury into cover at the base of rush or long grass and with their body giving off very little scent, they can be difficult for even the best dogs to scent. Fortunately the dogs at Derry Quay Lodge are adept at locating shot snipe and very few escape the bag.

After we return to the lodge if you wish the snipe may be prepared for the following evening’s dinner by Siobhan.

When you have tasted this beautiful game bird it will remain with you as one of your favorites.      

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