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The Glorious Twelfth

Bloomberg

It’s known as the Glorious Twelfth, the start of grouse season, and a key date on Britain's social calendar, when some of UK's wealthiest and best-connected take to the moorlands for a day of shooting with family and friends. You can buy your way into a shoot as part of a syndicate, which can run upwards of £75,000 ($96,000) for a small group, but the best option has got to be an invitation onto land belonging to someone with a title.

We came along to see a shoot on Egton High Moor in Yorkshire, a five-hour drive north of London. Grouse season in England and Scotland runs from Aug. 12 through Dec. 10.

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weapon of choice for grouse is the shotgun, such as this Heritage 20-bore shotgun (aka 20-gauge), manufactured by Browning. The higher the bore/gauge number, the smaller the shot. A larger bore may be easier on your shoulder, but the smaller, more powerful bore will be a better shot,
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The moorlands used for shooting are carefully managed every year by gamekeepers, such as the one watching the shooters here. The gamekeepers have to control the growth of the heather, by burning various sections of the land, to make sure conditions and the height of the heather are just right for grouse to make their nests, eat and take shelter.
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Back to the Bentley
Traditionally, the shooting party will take their game quickly back to a kitchen to eat the grouse at its freshest. This shooting party was lent a Bentley Flying Spur for the occasion. Depending on the light and the weather, the day will wrap up at about 4 p.m.
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The dogs that come along on the shoot are known as pickers up, because that’s their job: They run along and pick up birds that have been shot down. On “driven” shoots, people referred to as beaters will walk ahead through an area to rustle up the birds near where the shooters are positioned.
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