Using Game Bird Attractants

With the shooting season started, losing pheasants and other game birds to neighbouring grounds can be infuriating for any gamekeeper. To keep birds, and attract new ones, game bird attractants are the best bet for keeping numbers consistent throughout the season. Game bird attractants have always been an important part of gamekeeping with most recipes being a closely guarded secret and passed from one generation to the next.

Deriving from the anise plant, aniseed provides some of the best results when attracting game birds. With its pungent smell and liquorice-like flavour, commonly used in drinks and dishes around the Mediterranean, pheasants go wild for it with its scent attracting them from far afield. Donald used an aniseed based product on an area he’d only ever seen 3 cock pheasants and was surprised by the results it yielded.

“It worked very well; I mixed some aniseed in with some regular feed and spread it over the patch of ground where I'd seen a few before. I hoped to attract more birds to the area and by the next day their numbers had tripled! More and more showed up over the next week or so. They got quite excited by the aniseed in the feed.”

Solway Feeders produces and sells a range of Solway Game Master brand aniseed oil based products specifically designed for the attraction of pheasants, among others birds. Starting at 100ml of concentrated oil up to 5 litres of mixed solution; aniseed oil can be mixed into food, with 1 litre doing up to a tonne of feed, to keep game birds coming back. Some choose to mix 1 litre of aniseed oil with 5 litres of vegetable oil to make it last even longer and without losing its effectiveness. We also supply Gamekeep Bird Puller; a secret blend of herbs and spices with proven success globally.

While these work well as an attractant, they are not a food substitute and should always be mixed with feed. Due to both its price and high level of performance, many find these to be a very cost effective way of keeping flocks well stocked.