Episode 70: Field Sports with Matt Cross

As regular listeners to the podcast might remember, in episode 47 we hosted Matt Cross, a field sports journalist, writer and blogger. At that time, we talked about yet another unlawful killing of a hen harrier. That episode was specifically focused on the issue of raptor persecution and we didn’t have a chance to tap into Matt’s vast knowledge about field sports.

Today we’re going to fix that as we discuss a number of topics including grouse moors management, rewilding, the ethics of field sports, the difference between the terms “shooting” and “hunting” in the UK context, and the move away from using lead in shooting. I’m sure you will enjoy our conversation.

Episode 59: National Association of Regional Game Councils with Dan Curley

A few weeks ago I published a series of videos on YouTube (and this website) regarding the proposed EU ban on all lead in shooting and fishing. At that time, Dan Curley, the chairman of NARGC, helped a lot by providing me with the information and documentation regarding this issue.

In this episode, I met with Dan in person to discuss what has happened since. And a lot has happened. In fact, you should check Dan’s appeal here regarding the action you ought to take if the issue of lead use in shooting and fishing is something you care about.

But the ban on lead is far from the only thing we discussed in this podcast. We discussed the work and role of NARGC, the scientific projects NARGC is involved in, the state of the countryside, woodcock population research and predator control issues.

Timing on the coming ban on lead ammunition

The proposal by the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) to restrict the use of lead-based ammunition and fishing tackle containing lead is looming. In this video, I discuss the timeline of coming events that will lead to approval or rejection of the proposed restrictions.

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Shooting for Hunters

Following on the success of our HCAP video series, I decided to extract the shooting positions footage and present it in the form of a few separate videos. I hope that these can be found more easily and used by people interested in shooting in general. After all, shooting is an outdoors activity! So there you have it.

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Swarovski Optik

Before we start, this is not sponsored content. I am not being paid by Swarovski in any way or form. I simply want to share my thoughts after having had an opportunity to try a variety of Swarovski binoculars and scopes in the field.

Swarovski might seem like very expensive gear, but it represents something that is scarce these days and what I like to call “the old-days quality”. Way too often, we get conditioned to the disposability and the poor manufacturing and material quality of the devices we are using in our daily lives.

When we buy a Swarovski product, we are most likely buying it for life. Quite likely, the device will last beyond our own lifetime and will be passed on to our children and grandchildren. So you might be spending €1000 instead of €300 or €400, but the unit you are purchasing will last decades. In most cases, this makes the initial cost of purchase much more justifiable. It is worth mentioning, as well, that Swarovski’s support team pride themselves in taking good care of their products after sale. They will support their customers if they need their optics to be serviced, refurbished or, on rare occasions, fixed.

All of the above makes for low depreciacion in value over time, meaning that a pair of Swarovski binoculars, for example, can be sold after a long time very close to its original purchase value. In fact, there is a substantial market for used and refurbished Swarovski optics. All of the above paints a picture of a unique and high quality product brand.

To learn more about Swarovski products, listen to episode 9 of Tommy’s Outdoors podcast. If you like it, please rate us and subscribe on iTunes, Stitcher, or any other platform where you aggregate your podcasts.