The Field

Our love affair with quarry

GROUSE loaders are hardened to dealing with odd types but I sensed an eyebrow twitch when mine watched me collect the nearest bird after the first drive of the season, give it a long sniff and inhale the summer scent of fresh-cut hay and scrubbed skies. It’s a smell they share with pigeon shot over stubbles and a fortune awaits those who can bottle it – perhaps as Chanel No 5 Shot?

I completed my pick up while my loader collected the grouse behind with his old yellow labrador, one of those paddy-around, never-miss-a-bird hounds

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