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A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME 
LAWS 



A PRACTICAL GUIDE 



TO 



THE GAME LAWS 



BY 

CHAELES KOW 

SOLICITOR, NORWICH; SECRETARY TO THE EAST ANGLIAN 
GAME PROTECTION SOCIETY 



LONGMANS, GREEN, AND CO. 

39 PATERNOSTER ROW, LONDON 

NEW YORK, BOMBAY, AND CALCUTTA 

1907 



PREFACE. 

THE reader should understand that this book 
is not intended as a work on the Game Laws 
for legal practitioners, but simply one in which 
an attempt has been made to illustrate what 
may be considered interesting as well as some- 
what instructive to preservers of game and 
sportsmen generally on questions affecting them 
from time to time under such laws. Undoubtedly 
many people are interested in sport and their 
rights arising in respect of it, and a hazy con- 
ception of what the law on the subject actually 
is, very often causes some anxiety, coupled some- 
times with a certain amount of vexation which 
might with a little consideration be avoided if 
reference were made to a practical work on the 
subject. 

As gamekeepers and police also are often in 
serious doubt as to their respective powers, 
rights and possibilities under the Game Laws, 
in view of their rather complex nature, fre- 
quently having to act on the spur of the moment, 
it is hoped that a perusal of this small book may 
be of some little assistance to them also. 

The Editor desires to tender to E. R. Pratt, 
Esq., of Ryston Hall, Norfolk, his sincere thanks 

9S4751 



vi PREFACE 

for the many valuable suggestions kindly offered 
by him, and for allowing to be embodied much 
information written by him for the Game Guild 
and other Associations with which he is so in- 
timately connected. 

Also to acknowledge the indebtedness to, and 
assistance received from, the learned Editors of 
Stone's Justice's Manual, and Oke and Warry on 
The Game Laws, for the many references made 
to their valuable works. 

1 REDWELL STREET, NORWICH, 
August, 1907. 



CONTENTS. 



PAGE 

THE GAME LAWS GENERALLY 1 

LICENSES TO KILL GAME, ETC 11 

DEFINITION OF GAME 18 

SPORTING BIGHTS . . . . . . . . . .18 

GAME PROTECTION SOCIETIES 22 

TRAFFIC IN GAME EGGS 31 

GAME FARMS AND GAME FARMERS 36 

INDICTABLE OFFENCES UNDER GAME LAWS . . . . .43 
SUMMARY OFFENCES. TRESPASS IN PURSUIT .... 46 
TRESPASSES COMMITTED BY FIVE OR MORE TOGETHER IN His 

MAJESTY'S PARKS AND USING VIOLENCE 57 

X^OACHING PREVENTION ACT .58 

SPRING TRAPS AND POISON 62 

SPORTING AT UNLAWFUL SEASONS AND KILLING DURING CLOSE 

TIME 65 

SPORTING WITHOUT CERTIFICATE 67 

SELLING HARES DURING CLOSE SEASON 70 

SELLING AND BUYING GAME WITHOUT LICENSE . . . .71 

TAKING HARES OR RABBITS IN WARREN 75 

EGGING 76 

TENANT TAKING RESERVED GAME 84 

X^TIGHT POACHING 85 

GROUND GAME ACT OF 1880, WITH AMENDMENT ACT OF 1906 . 87 

AGRICULTURAL HOLDINGS ACT, 1906 93 

WILD BIRDS' PROTECTION ACTS AND ORDERS .... 94 

CRUELTY TO ANIMALS, BIRDS, ETC 110 

SEIZURE OF GAME FOUND ON POACHERS, ETC 119 

ARREST 120 

AIDERS AND ABETTERS 124 

JUSTICES' JUSTICE 125 



viii CONTENTS 

PAGE 

OUSTER OP JURISDICTION OP JUSTICES 127 

ANOMALIES OP THE LAW 132 

GUN LICENSES 140 

^>6fAMEKEEPERS AND POACHERS 143 

COMMONS 157 

OVERSTOCKING 158 

PIGEONS 159 

GREAT BUSTARD 160 

DEER 168 

SWANS 171 

A FEW GAME CASES 172 

LEASING OP SPORTING RIGHTS 204 

PRECEDENT FOR SAME 204 

THE GAME ACT OP 1831 207 

THE GROUND GAME ACT OP 1880 235 

THE GROUND GAME (AMENDMENT) ACT, 1906 .... 238 

AGRICULTURAL HOLDINGS ACT, 1906 . . . . . 239 

TABLES OF OFFENCES 247 

INDEX 253 



THE GAME LAWS. 

BEFOKE dealing with the present Game Laws, it will 
perhaps be well to give a short history of the Game 
Laws of the past, so far as they affected this country, 
partly because they are of interest, and because the 
condition of the country under old laws has com- 
pletely lapsed from the memory or knowledge of this 
generation. 

When William the Conqueror established himself 
here, he undoubtedly brought with him the fondness 
for sport in which he had been educated in Nor- 
mandy, and which has been transmitted to English- 
men in a more moderate form down to the present 
time. With a cruel indifference for the rights of 
individuals, he did not hesitate to depopulate whole 
tracts of country in order to add to his royal chases, 
Succeeding kings pursued the same course of tyranny, 
and King John carried the principle still farther, when 
at Bristol, in 1209, he laid his total prohibition on the 
pursuit and destruction of all game, and, in the language 
of Matthew Paris, Capturam avium per totam Angliam 
inter dixit. 

The Game Laws and the rights attaching to them 
were, however, viewed by other authorities in various 
lights, and Sir William Blackstone, when dealing with 
the subject (2 Bl. Com., 415) stated : " That upon the 
Norman Conquest a new doctrine took place : and the 
right of pursuing and taking all beasts of chase or 
venery, and such other Animals as were accounted 
Game, was then held to belong to the King, or to such 
only as were authorised under him : and this as well upon 

1 



2 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

th^:'grinci|)les;of. the Feudal Law, that the King is the 
nltiin'alte Proprietor of all the lands in the Kingdom, they 
being all held of him as the Chief Lord or Lord Para- 
mount of the Fee ; and therefore he has the right of the 
universal soil to enter thereon, and to chase and take such 
creatures at his pleasure ; as also upon another maxim 
of the Common Law which we have frequently cited 
and illustrated, that these animals are bona vacantia, 
and having no other Owner belong to the King by his 
prerogative. As therefore the former reason was held 
to vest in the King, a right to pursue and take them 
anywhere, the latter was supposed to give the King and 
such as he should authorise, a sole and exclusive right." 

In the seventeenth century there was practically little 
or no shooting by the owners of lands personally, such 
owners being apparently contented to remain indoors, 
and to pay small sums from time to time to their 
vermin-killers, or any one else who could shoot, trap, 
or snare partridges, wild-duck, snipe, woodcock or land- 
rail, that were brought in from the manors, a larger 
sum being paid in the case of a "Feasant". 

Notwithstanding what has been before stated, there 
would appear to be strong authority for showing that 
there was not in the king that exclusive right to all 
game which is contended for. It is admitted that 
from the Norman Conquest all lands were considered 
as holden of the king as the ultimate proprietor, also 
that the early kings had a large portion of the lands 
of the kingdom in their power, consisting generally 
of waste-ground, woods, etc., and that it was within 
their province to create forests from the waste lands. 
If they made forests they would undoubtedly have the 
exclusive right to the game therein. But according to 
the Sporting Magazine: "Not satisfied with this they 
were accustomed in the exercise of an arbitrary and 
despotic tyranny to appropriate to themselves the lands 
of their subjects for the purpose of making new forests ; 
and to increase the extent of the old-established forests, 
by including within their boundary lands the private 



THE GAME LAWS 3 

property of individuals that happened to lie contiguous. 
It was one of the main objects of our ancestors, in 
struggling for the Charter of Forests, not only to put 
an end to similar acts of oppression, but to procure 
the restoration, or, as it is usually termed, the dis- 
afforestation of these lands. They were disafforested, 
and the ground so included as being near the old forests 
were after disafforestation called ' Purlieus '. Now, Sir 
Edward Coke, whom the lawyers look up to as the 
highest authority upon all points of law, says, when 
speaking of these purlieus : ' We find no authority in 
law that we remember against our opinion herein, 
therefore we proceed and do hold, that in any purlieu 
a man may as lawfully hunt to all intents and purposes 
within the purlieu within his own grounds, as any 
other owner may do on his grounds that never were 
afforested at all '." 

There would appear here a declaration of a person 
having the right to the game on his own land, long 
after what was supposed to have been introduced by 
the Norman Conquest, and further that the king him- 
self ceased to have any property in the game from the 
moment that such game quitted that forest, and arrived 
on the ground of a private individual. 

Brooke in his Abridgement states "that when the 
wild beasts of the king go out of the forest, the property 
is out of the king. The king has property in them 
while in the forest, for the soil makes the property of 
such beasts." 

A " Forest," though a royal possession, was capable 
of being vested in a subject, and a grantee from the 
Crown would have the franchise of a forest to the full 
extent, which is somewhat different to a right of Com- 
mon, which issues out of the soil. 

A " Chase " is a franchise granted by the Crown em- 
powering a subject to keep for his diversion therein 
wild animals of chase, but the authority to establish 
Forest Laws would not apply. 

" Free warren " was a franchise granted to a subject 

1 * 



4 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

by the Crown, for the preservation of beasts and fowl 
of warren, such as hares, rabbits, pheasants, partridges 
and other birds of game (not grouse), woodcock, mal- 
lards, herons, etc. 

There appear to have been restrictions as to the 
manner in which game could be killed in those days, 
as 2 James I. c. 27 prohibits the use of guns, bows, 
setting-dogs, nets and snares for that purpose. The 
object, no doubt, was to favour hawking, a favourite 
sport, and to protect it. The Act has since been 
repealed so far as shooting hares is concerned, and 
perhaps so far as shooting the other classes of game 
mentioned in it. 

As far back as the reign of Henry VIII. the buying 
and selling of game was prohibited. The 32 Henry VIIL 
c. 8 subjected a person who bought or sold any pheas- 
ant or partridge, unless he were an officer of the royal 
household, to certain penalties, and in the second year 
of the reign of James I. an Act increased the serious- 
ness of matters by making the penalties to apply to 
every person who sold or bought to sell again any deer, 
hare, partridge or pheasant, except partridges and 
pheasants reared or brought up in houses or brought 
from beyond the seas, and in William and Mary's 
reign and Anne's further Acts were passed for the more 
effectual prevention of offences committed in respect of 
the unlawful destruction and sale of game. 

So far as the qualification for killing game was con- 
cerned, this was referred to in many statutes down 
from Richard II., but the main one was that of Charles 
II., from which it appears that only those were em- 
powered to kill game who had an estate of inheritance 
in real property of the clear yearly value of 100, or an 
estate for life or for ninety-nine years or more of the 
clear yearly value of 150. To these were added sons 
and heirs apparent of esquires or of persons of higher 
degree, owners of certain franchises, as forest, parks, 
chases and free warrens, and lords of manors. 

From the various Acts on the subject down to this 



THE GAME LAWS 5 

period, it is quite apparent that the main objects our 
legislators had in view were the prevention of persons 
of small means wasting their time in idleness and 
sporting, or eking out a living by poaching on the 
lands of others, and, of course, to stop the wholesale 
destruction of game by trespassers. 

In 1828 a Committee of the House of Lords made a 
report as to the desirability of amending the Game 
Laws in regard to the sale of game, the possession of 
it by certain persons, and many other matters affecting 
game. The following is a copy, from which it will be 
seen that the Game Act of 1831 embodied the chief 
suggestions, though, so far as night poaching offences 
were concerned, the 7 & 8 Viet. c. 29 (1844) extended 
the Act of 9 Geo. IV. c. 69 (1828) to taking game or 
rabbits on any public road, highway or path, or the 
sides thereof, or any opening, outlets or gates from 
any such land into any such road, highway or path. 

1. That the laws as to the sale and purchase of game 
were inefficient for their purpose, being constantly and 
systematically evaded and set at defiance, 

2. That these laws ought to be repealed, or so altered 
as to permit game to be lawfully sold, under certain 
regulations. 

3. That the laws which confine the right of sporting 
and possession of game to persons having certain quali- 
fications by birth or estate, were unjust and should be 
amended. 

4. That in order to give additional facilities to a 
regular supply of game to the market, by qualified 
persons, in case of the sale and purchase of game being 
permitted by law, and also to place the law with regard 
to qualifications upon a more reasonable and just footing, 
all persons occupying ten contiguous acres or more of 
land, should be deemed to be qualified to sport on 
such land in their occupation, with the consent of the 
owner of such land, and that all owners of ten con- 
tiguous acres should be deemed qualified to sport upon 
such land. 



6 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

5. That all persons qualified by law to sport should 
have the right to permit any person, whether qualified 
or not, to sport upon the lands of such qualified per- 
sons. 

6. That all lords of manors should have the right to 
permit any person, whether qualified or not, to sport 
upon the waste or commonable lands within their 
manors. 

7. That inasmuch as the legal sale and purchase of 
game will necessarily invest that article in some degree 
with the character of property, it appears to be just and 
reasonable that it should be protected from trespassers 
under the pretence or for the purpose of sporting, by 
some more effectual and summary means than at 
present exists, and that such trespassers, whether quali- 
fied or not, should be subject to a punishment by way of 
a fine by a magistrate, always excepting such trespasses 
as may be committed in coursing and hunting in recent 
pursuit, the existing remedies for which might be con- 
sidered sufficient. 

8. That the proposed alterations in the law should 
not be permitted to interfere with any existing forestal 
rights, or rights of free warren or free chase, or manorial 
rights whatever. 

9. That the practice of going out by night to poach 
in large gangs has very much increased of late years, 
and has in very numerous instances led to the com- 
mission of murder and other grievous offences. 

10. That the only statute which specially refers to 
this practice is that of 57 Geo. III. c. 90, which ap- 
pears not to have been effectual, and should in the 
opinion of the Committee be revised. 

At this period undoubtedly much more illicit traffic 
in game prevailed than at the present time, from the 
fact that the landlords were not empowered to sell 
game, also from the increasing number of persons 
sufficiently wealthy to buy game, and desirous of buy- 
ing and supplying their table with the same luxuries 
as the landlords themselves. In consequence nearly 



THE GAME LAWS 7 

every stage coach that went from the country to 
London or other large cities, was utilised by poachers 
along the route, who handed in stolen game, to be 
forwarded to the urban dealers. To such an extent 
did this prevail that it is recorded that quantities 
were seized by the authorities and ordered to be de- 
stroyed as unfit for human food, and on one occa- 
sion about 2,000 partridges were consigned to the 
Thames. 

The condition of the Game Laws with regard to 
the right of shooting is very amusingly illustrated 
by Colonel Peter Hawker, in his well-known Diary, 
(vol. i., p. 12), in which he gives the following account 
of a shooting expedition on the 3rd day of October, 
1808 : 

"Went from Ipswich with a party amounting to 
near twenty, besides markers and beaters to storm a 
preserved cover belonging to Parson Bond, because he 
never allowed any one a day's shooting, and had man- 
traps and dog-gins all over his wood. I had made out 
a regular plan of attack and line of march, but our 
precision was frustrated by the first man we saw on 
reaching the ground, who was the keeper; we there- 
fore had no time to hold a council of war, but rushed 
into cover like a pack of fox-hounds before his face. 
Away he went, naming every one he could, and we 
all joined him in the hue and cry of ' Where is Parson 
Bond ? ' 

" In the meantime our feu de joie was going on most 
rapidly. At last up came the Parson, almost choked 
with rage. The two first people he warned off were 
Pearson and myself ; having been served with notices we 
kept him in tow while the others rallied his covers and 
serenaded him with an incessant bombardment in every 
direction. The confused Rector did not know which way 
to run. The scene of confusion was ridiculous beyond 
anything, and the invasion of an army could scarcely 
exceed the noise. Not a word could be heard for the cries 
of ' Mark/ 'Dead,' and 'Well done,' interspersed every 



8 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

moment with bang, bang, and the yelping of barrack 
curs. The Parson at last mustered his whole establish- 
ment to act as patriots against the marauders, footboys 
running one way, ploughmen mounted on carthorses 
galloping the other, and every one from the village 
that could be mustered was collected to repel the mighty 
shock. At last we retreated, and about half -past four 
those who had escaped being entered in his doomsday 
book, renewed the attack. The Parson, having eased 
himself by a vomit, began to speak more coherently 
and addressed himself to those who, being liable to an 
action of trespass, were obliged to stand in the foot- 
path, and take the birds as they flew over ; at last so 
many were caught that the battle ceased. Though a large 
number of pheasants were destroyed, the chase did not 
end in such aggregate slaughter as we expected, and 
not more than one-third of those brought down were 
bagged, in consequence of our being afraid to turn off 
our best dogs ; we brought away some of the Parson's 
traps, one of which was a most terrific engine, and now 
hangs in the mess room for public exhibition. Only 
one dog was caught the whole day, and whose should 
that be but Parson Bond's." 

What must naturally strike one at the present day 
is the very different laws which governed the active 
shooting party as above described. 

It appears that Parson Bond owned the manor, but 
he was quite unable to prevent any one shooting on it 
till he had "named them," and given them formal 
warning that this was a private manor, and that they 
had no business there. 

If the gunners could escape being named, "served 
with notice," they might continue to kill and carry 
away as much game as they could. It seems, however, 
that after "notice had been served," they were lying 
under the ban of trespass, and then in order to carry 
on their depredations, they had to stand on the footpath, 
and take the pheasants as they flew over. 

This we understand then was the position: Persons 



THE GAME LAWS 9 

being either landowners or sons of landowners, with 
the necessary qualification, as mentioned in a previous 
page, could shoot anywhere or on any land provided it 
was not denned as a manor. If it was denned as a 
manor, that is, preserved land, their sport could be 
stopped by the "naming" of the trespassers, and the 
" serving of a notice " of the existence of the manor as 
a preserve. 

This condition of things was put an end to by 1 & 
2 Wm. IV. c. 32 (1831), which provides imprison- 
ment and fine for those wilfully and unlawfully in- 
fringing the provisions of that statute. Close seasons 
are also wisely provided for, during which no person 
may kill or take game, and for the protection of eggs 
of birds of game without incurring penalties for such 
violation. 

In addition to the above-mentioned Act, the follow- 
ing are some of the more important statutes affecting 
game : 

The Night Poaching Acts, 9 Geo. IV. c. 69 (1828), 
and 7 & 8 Viet. c. 29 (1844) ; 

The Poaching Prevention Act, 24 & 25 Viet. c. 114 
(1862); and 

The Ground Game Act, 43 & 44 Viet. c. 47 (1880). 

It is proposed to refer to the more important sections 
of these Acts, where a penalty is provided for any 
offence, and to add a few remarks which may be found 
useful, where proceedings before justices are contem- 
plated, with a view to putting a stop to a repetition of 
such offences. 

Considering the interests involved, and the large 
amount annually expended by landed proprietors and 
shooting tenants in the rearing and preservation of 
game, and whose interests are so persistently attacked 
by poachers and others, it is not unnatural that in- 
fluential associations should have been formed in the 
various counties in the United Kingdom, where mem- 
bers may on payment of an annual subscription safe- 
guard their rights, and aid and assist each other in the 



10 A PEACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

protection of their interests and the preservation of 
their game, but more particularly partridges and their 
eggs. 

In a subsequent chapter the necessity for and the 
desirability of these associations will be dealt with. 

Of the iniquity of game preserving a great deal is 
sometimes said, chiefly by the illiterate, but these 
associations contend that game preservation, within 
certain limits, brings money from the towns and from 
over-sea countries into our not too prosperous rural 
districts, and in addition provides for the poorer classes 
an enormous quantity of a wholesome variety of food 
at a less cost than it can be commercially produced or 
imported. 

We have heard it said that to interfere in the Game 
Laws, with a view to an extension or rectification of 
some of the sections in the Acts at present in force, 
might do more harm than good, and be the thin end 
of the wedge towards their repeal. Considering the 
great affection and interest of all classes in sport, we 
can only wonder how such a suggestion could possibly 
arise. Such a thing as attempting to entirely repeal 
the Game Laws seems an absurdity in view of the 
interests involved. Personally, we have always looked 
upon the Game Laws as an absolute necessity in this 
country, as indeed it is in all countries so long as game 
is maintained. If those who will not work, but prefer 
to poach on the preserves of others, would only mend 
their ways, there would be very little to be found fault 
with, but while that happy result cannot be attained, 
owners of land surely are justified in endeavouring to 
protect their own interests; and if there were no re- 
ceivers, unfortunately always willing to assist poachers 
in getting rid of their stolen game, the latter would soon 
find the risk was not worth running. 

We have not, in a small work like the present, 
thought it necessary in any way to deal with the Game 
Laws affecting Scotland and Ireland, but may point 
out that many of the Acts referred to apply equally 



LICENSES TO KILL GAME, ETC 11 

to England, Scotland and Ireland, viz., the Poaching 
Prevention Act ; the Night Poaching Acts; the offences 
of selling and buying game unlawfully by other than 
licensed dealers ; the laying of poison on land to de- 
stroy game ; also the Wild Birds' Protection Act, and 
the Acts regulating the law as to granting of licenses 
to kill game, though in Ireland the section referring 
to rabbits is inapplicable so far as they are concerned. 
The Game Act of 1831 does not appear to apply to 
those countries. 

LICENSES TO KILL GAME, ETC. 

To kill or pursue, or use dog, gun, net or instrument 
for killing or taking game, including hares, pheasants, 
partridges, grouse, heath or moor game, black game, 
bustards or snipe, quail, landrails, conies, or deer. 

s. D. 

From 31st July to 31st July following .300 
From 31st July to 31st October . .200 
From 31st October to 31st July . .200 
For a fortnight to be specified . .100 
Gamekeeper's License . . . .200 
To deal in Game (expiring 1st July) .200 
For Gun License (expiring 31st July) . 10 
Dog License (dog over 6 months old) 

(expiring 31st December) . .076 

The exceptions to taking out a dog license are : For 
a blind man or woman ; young hound under twelve 
months old, not used with pack when master has taken 
out license for all hounds used in pack. 

Under the Dogs Act of 1906, which came into force 
on 1st January, 1907, the police may seize stray 
dogs and give notice to the owner that they will be 
either sold or destroyed if not claimed within seven 
days. 

The occupier of premises where a dog is kept shall 
be presumed to be owner ; and damages to cattle, which 



12 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

term includes " horses, mules, asses, sheep, goats and 
swine," when under 5 may be recovered summarily 
as a civil debt. The Act was no doubt passed mainly 
in the protection of sheep, and as it will no doubt tend 
to the safer keeping of dogs of a mischievous propensity 
within bounds, it will also be of some service in the 
prevention of the illicit destruction of game. 

It is not necessary to prove scienter on claim for 
damages. 

Under rules made by the Lord Chancellor, the con- 
sent of a Court of Summary Jurisdiction to a Dog 
License Exemption Certificate is now required under 
the above Act, no fees being payable. Lists of the 
intended applications for certificates are published, and 
any person may, during the fourteen days preceding 
the hearing of the application, lodge an objection with 
the justices' clerk if it can be shown the dog is not kept 
solely for use in tending cattle or sheep. In the case 
of no objection being raised the court will consent, but 
if in any case it appears doubtful if the applicant has 
the right to exemption, the justices would be acting 
within their powers to require an application in person 
and take evidence on oath. 

Lord Lindley, the chairman of the Swainsthorpe 
Petty Sessions on the 21st June, 1907, dealt very 
exhaustively with this question of exemptions from dog 
licenses, and below we give his views as appeared in 
the Eastern Daily Press on the following day : 

" ' The Dogs Act, 1906, has altered the procedure for 
obtaining exemptions from dog licenses, and has created 
a difficulty which is embarrassing to magistrates. 

11 ' Before the passing of this Act, dog licenses and cer- 
tificates of exemption were obtained from the Excise 
authorities, under the provisions of the Customs and 
Inland Eevenue Act, 1878, sect. 22 ; and justices had 
nothing to do with granting either the licenses or the 
certificates of exemption. Certificates for exemption 
were obtained by filling up and signing and sending to 
the proper officer declarations stating the grounds on 



LICENSES TO KILL GAME, ETC. 13 

which exemption was claimed. Forms of declarations 
for this purpose were issued by the Commissioners of 
Inland Revenue, and the names of the persons to whom 
they had to be delivered were stated in the forms. On 
sending a form properly filled up and signed to the 
person so named, the applicant became entitled to a 
certificate of exemption. 

" ' The Dogs Act, 1906, sect. 5, clause 1, requires the 
consent of a petty sessional court to the grant of a 
certificate of exemption from a dog license, but such 
consent is not to be withheld if the court is of opinion 
that the conditions for exemption mentioned in section 
22 of the Act of 1878 apply in the case of the applicant ; 
and the procedure for obtaining that consent is to be 
regulated by rules made by the Lord Chancellor. 
Clause 2 of the section requires these rules to pro- 
vide for dispensing with the appearance of the appli- 
cant, except where the application is opposed, and the 
court considers the appearance of the applicant to be 
necessary for the proper consideration of the appli- 
cation. 

" ' Rules have been made by the Lord Chancellor under 
the authority thus given, and they provide that an ap- 
plication for the consent of a petty sessional court to 
the grant of a certificate of exemption is to be made by 
sending to the clerk of the court a declaration in the 
form prepared by the Commissioners of Inland Revenue, 
duly filled up and signed by the owner of the dog. Lists 
of these applications are to be made by the clerk, a time 
is to be named in the lists for sending to him notices of 
objection, and he is to send notice of the time and place 
of hearing the objection to the applicant and to the 
person objecting. The applicant is to be informed 
whether his attendance is or is not required, and the 
fifth rule states as required by the statute that his ap- 
pearance shall be dispensed with except when his appli- 
cation is opposed, and the court considers his appearance 
to be necessary for the proper consideration of the ap- 
plication. Evidence given on hearing an objection must 



14 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

be given on oath, and the court has power to summon 
witnesses, as under the Summary Jurisdiction Acts, and 
to order objectors or applicant to pay costs. 

" ' The Act of 1906 does not make it the duty of the 
Excise officers or of the police or of any one to object 
to an application, although it may be known or believed 
that the applicant may not be entitled to exemption ; 
and in practice it seldom happens that any one does 
object. The risk that an objector may have to pay costs 
if his objection proves unfounded naturally deters people 
from objecting. But although no objection may be 
made, justices may be informed, or some of them may 
know, or, at all events, believe, that an applicant is 
claiming exemption to which he is not entitled. This 
state of things is not provided for by the rules ; but the 
Act casts upon the justices the duty of satisfying them- 
selves that the applicant is entitled to what he asks. 
The Act says, and the rules repeat, that the applicant 
is not to be required to appear unless the application is 
opposed ; and when the list comes before the justices for 
their consideration, the time fixed for opposing has ex- 
pired. The justices are thus placed in an awkward 
position, and no one can be surprised that not knowing 
what to do they give credit to the declaration and grant 
their consent without troubling themselves further about 
the matter. I cannot, however, think this is right. 
The Act and rules presuppose the lodging of objections, 
and the rules provide for them. But where no objection 
is lodged the rules appear to me to have no application. 
The duty, however, which is imposed by the Act on the 
justices remains to be performed by them, although no 
directions are given as to the way in which it is to be 
performed. If an applicant's declaration is so filled up 
as to be unsatisfactory, I take it to be clear that the 
justices can properly withhold their consent. But even 
if a declaration is unobjectionable on its face, still if the 
justices are informed that the facts stated are untrue, 
it is difficult to see that they discharge their duty to the 
public by granting their consent without further inquiry. 



LICENSES TO KILL GAME, ETC. 15 

They cannot justly refuse their consent without giving 
the applicant an opportunity of supporting his applica- 
tion by further evidence ; but to grant their consent 
without further inquiry seems wrong in principle. 
Their consent is requisite in every case, and there is 
nothing in the Act which requires them to give their 
consent if they are of opinion that they ought to with- 
hold it. There is nothing which says that in the ab- 
sence of opposition they are not to exercise their 
intelligence and must give their consent, although they 
have reason to believe, or at all events to suspect, that 
they are being imposed upon. In such a case I cannot 
help thinking that their proper course is to order the 
application to stand over, and to give notice to the appli- 
cant that they are not prepared to give their consent 
without further inquiry; that evidence may be given 
which he must be prepared to meet, and he should be 
informed of the matters on which evidence is to be 
expected. 

" ' Notice should also be given to the Excise and police, 
so that when the case comes before the court again it 
may be in a position to decide it upon its merits. The 
court might properly request the police to ascertain the 
facts, and give evidence. When the case comes on, the 
evidence, if any, must be taken on oath. If evidence is 
given, the justices will, of course, be guided by it, and 
give or withhold their consent according to the view 
they take of it. If no evidence is forthcoming they 
should be satisfied with the declaration, unless they 
think a further adjournment necessary, which, although 
possible, is not probable. 

" ' If these precautions are taken effect will be given to 
both clauses of section 5 of the Act of 1906. The 
second clause does not in my opinion relieve justices 
from the duty imposed upon them by the first clause ; 
nor cut it down and reduce it to a nullity in all cases in 
which no one thinks it worth his while to oppose an 
application for the grant of a certificate of exemption. 
The second clause protects applicants from the necessity 



16 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

of appearing to meet frivolous and vexatious objections, 
but is a mere piece of machinery for carrying out the 
first clause, and ought not to be construed so as to make 
justices useless unless there is opposition. 

" ' In the early part of this year a case raising the diffi- 
culty above mentioned came before this bench when I 
was in the chair ; and not having looked carefully into 
the matter, I took the view that there being no opposi- 
tion, the bench could not withhold its consent, and we 
acted on that view. I had great misgivings as to its 
correctness, and I undertook to look into the Dog 
Licensing Acts and Bules, and to advise the bench as 
to the course we ought to pursue in future. I have 
now done so ; and until otherwise decided by higher 
authority my advice to the bench will be in accordance 
with the view here expressed.' 

" His lordship added that they had gone through the 
list of applications that morning. There was nothing 
wrong on the face of them, except in the case of an 
application for an exemption in respect of two dogs. 
With regard to that applicant he had a farm of 250 
acres. He had thirty-six cattle, but no sheep at present. 
He had two dogs, a collie and a Smithfield, but as he 
had no sheep he was not under the circumstances en- 
titled to exemption for two dogs. They would grant 
an exemption for one dog, and if he wanted the other 
he could apply for it." 

If a farmer makes a false declaration when filling up 
the form claiming exemption he would be liable to a 
penalty under the Customs and Inland "Revenue Act, 
1878, as amended by the Act of 1879. 

Proof of age of dog lies on a defendant in case of 
keeping dog without license. 

Of course the old law as to dangerous dogs is still in 
force, and an order may be made on owner to keep same 
under proper control or destroy. Under the orders made 
under Dogs Act of 1906 and other Acts, name and 
address of owner must now be inscribed on collar or on 
a plate or badge attached when dog is on highway, etc. 



LICENSES TO KILL GAME, ETC. 17 

The exceptions from game, etc., licenses are the follow- 
ing: 

1. Taking of woodcock and snipe with nets or 
springs in Great Britain. 

2. Taking or destroying rabbits in Great Britain by 
the proprietor of any warren or enclosed ground or by 
the tenant of lands, either by himself or by his direction 
or permission. 

3. Killing or pursuing hares with greyhounds or 
hunting with beagle or other hounds. 

4. Pursuing and killing deer by hunting with hounds. 

5. Taking and killing deer in enclosed lands, by occu- 
pier or owner of such lands or by his direction. 

Exemptions apply to the following persons : 

1. To any of the Royal Family. 

2. Any person appointed a gamekeeper on behalf of His 
Majesty by the Commissioners of His Majesty's Woods, 
Forests and Land Revenues under authority of any Act 
of Parliament relating to the Crown's land revenue. 

3. Any person aiding or assisting in the taking or kill- 
ing of any game or any woodcock, snipe, quail, landrail, 
or coney or any deer, in the company or presence, and for 
the use of another person who has duly obtained ac- 
cording to the direction of the License Act, 1860, and in 
his own right, a license to kill game, and who shall by 
virtue of such license then and there use his own gun, 
dog, net or other engine for the purpose of taking game, 
and who shall by virtue of such license then and there 
use his own dog, gun, etc., for the taking or killing of such 
game, woodcock, snipe, quail, landrail, coney, or deer, 
and who shall not act therein by virtue of any deputa- 
tion or appointment. 

4. And as regards the killing of hares only, all persons 
who under the provisions of the two Acts 11 & 12 
Viet, chaps. 29 and 30, are authorised to kill hares in 
England without obtaining an annual game certificate. 

5. Under the Ground Game Act, the occupier and 
persons authorised by him to kill such game on the land 
occupied by him. (See Chapter on Ground Game Act.) 

2 



18 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

GAME DEFINED. 

Doubts are often expressed by laymen as to what is 
" game," and what is not. The following is the defini- 
tion under the various statutes : 

Under Game Act, 1831 : " Hares, pheasants, partridges, 
grouse, heath or moor game, black game, and bustards ". 

Poaching Prevention Act: " Hares, pheasants, part- 
ridges, eggs of pheasants and partridges, woodcock, 
snipe, rabbits, grouse, black or moor game and eggs of 
grouse, black or moor game". 

Ground Game Act : " Hares and rabbits ". 

SPOETING EIGHTS. 

It may perhaps not be out of place if a few remarks 
are made with respect to the advantages all classes of 
the community indirectly derive from sporting rights, 
i.e., their assessment to the poor and other rates. 

It does not appear to be generally known, except to 
those who pay them, that these rights contribute very 
largely to the rates, in many cases out of all proportion 
to the advantages derived, and of course the better the 
shootings the higher the assessment. Assessment Com- 
mittees in some unions have been known to double the 
assessment of partridge shootings, i.e., bare land, viz., 
from Is. 3d. to 2s. 6d. per acre, and that on woods from 
3s. 6d. to 7s. per acre, and where the acreage frequently 
runs into thousands of acres the rates amount to con- 
siderable sums paid, although they may be spread over 
more than one parish. Such assessments pay their full 
share of the rates as "Buildings and other heredita- 
ments," and not merely half as "Agricultural land," 
which must appreciably help to reduce the burden of 
the rates on the general ratepayer. 1 

Not only are these rights assessable when actually 

l lt has, however (we are informed), been successfully contended that 
unsevered sporting rights should be entered in the land column of the 
assessment ; though the general practice is to insert all sporting rights 
in the " buildings and other hereditaments " column. 



SPOETING EIGHTS 19 

severed from the land and let to a third party, whom 
we may describe as the " Shooting tenant," but also where 
retained by the landlord, or vested in the tenant. Apart 
from the rates, sporting rights are very often mulcted in 
land tax, as an emolument arising out of land, under 
the Land Tax Acts. Fortunately for the sportsman, 
this is not universal throughout the country, as a different 
practice prevails in some parts of the country, though 
why this should be so it is difficult to understand. Where 
the tax has been assessed and objection made to payment, 
instances have occurred of no further proceedings being 
taken for the recovery of the amount demanded. 

Owners of sporting rights take very different views as 
to the payment of this Land Tax on severed sporting 
rights. One owner held that since it was an Imperial 
tax, it would be disloyal to question either its legality 
or the amount. Another thought it was not worth 
while to trouble in the matter, as the Government 
would have it out of him some way or other. A large 
landowner said his agent was a good one, and it was 
probably all right. Some owners have withheld pay- 
ment, and no further demand has been made. 

The Board of Inland Kevenue, it would appear, does not 
now consider that severed sporting rights are assessable 
to Land Tax, being of opinion that the liability to this 
tax is one of doubt and difficulty, and probably recog- 
nising, that while in the Act of 38 Geo. III. c. 5, sect. 
24, the numerous sources of taxation are specifically 
mentioned (including "the right of fishing"), "sport- 
ing rights " are not so mentioned or included. 

From the reports of the Game Guild it would appear 
that in 1904 their Executive Council advised its 
members to redeem all land tax on their woods and 
on the sporting rights which are invariably attached 
to them, which advice was given on the assumption 
that the valuation of such sporting rights would be 
increased, and which assumption has been already 
verified on appeals against poor rates in respect of such 
rights at petty and quarter sessions. 

2* 



20 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

The Local Government Board have recently pub- 
lished a summary of the law relating to the rating of 
sporting rights (Journal of Agriculture, August, 1905, 
p. 285), of which we reprint the most important clauses, 
and which the reader may consider worth a perusal. 

" Where the right is not severed from the occupa- 
tion of the land (i.&, where the owner retains both the 
land and the right, or lets them both to one tenant) the 
value of the sporting rights are still included in the 
valuation of the land ; but in any other case, the right 
must be dealt with in the manner directed by section 
6 of the Bating Act, 1874. 

"Where any right of sporting is severed from the 
occupation of the land, and is not let, and the owner 
of such right receives rent for the land, the right 
shall not be separately valued or rated, but the gross 
and rateable value of the land shall be estimated as if 
the right were not severed. It would seem, however, 
that the prohibition in the sub-section of a separate 
valuation or rating of the right of sporting is modified 
by section 5 (a) of the Agricultural Bates Act, 1896, 
which requires that in every valuation list the value of 
agricultural land shall be stated separately from that of 
any building or other hereditament. Where, therefore, 
the rateable value of any agricultural land is under the 
Bating Act, 1874, increased by reason of its being esti- 
mated as if the rights of sporting were not severed, the 
amount of such increase should, for the purpose of the 
valuation list, now be included in the rateable value of 
buildings and other hereditaments not being agricultural 
land. 

" The rate payable in respect of any sporting right so 
entered in the valuation list may be deducted by the 
occupier of the land from his rent under section 6 (1) 
of the Act of 1874, unless he has specifically contracted 
to pay such rate in the event of an increase. The 
direction in section 6 (1) is that the value of the land 
shall be estimated as if the right were not severed. It 
would appear, therefore, that in dealing with the right 



SPOKTIXG BIGHTS 31 

as an element of value, it ought not to be estimated 
upon any such consideration as that of the rent which 
a third person might be found to give for it, but ac- 
cording to its worth, if any, to the occupier of the 
land, upon the supposition that the right is no: 
vered: or in other words, that he himself is entitled 
to exercise the right, without the power of m^i-iwg a 
profit by letting it. 

" The effect, therefore, of this provision is to place 
those lands which are let by an owner, with a reserva- 
tion of the right of sporting, on the same footing in 
relation to rateability as the lands which he himself 
occupies, retaining the right to the game upon them. 

" The preceding remarks are mainly directed to those 
cases where the right of sporting is severed from the 
occupation of the land, but is retained by the owner. 
Where, however, the right is let to a person other 
than the occupier of the land, it is rateable as a sepa- 
rate hereditament, and either the owner or the lessee 
of the right may be rated, as the occupier of the 
right of sporting, under section 6 (2) of the Act of 
1874. The ordinary rules of law for determining the 
gross estimated rental and rateable value of other kinds 
of property will apply. 

" Subject to the provisions of section 6 the owner of 
any right of sporting, when severed from the occupa- 
tion of the land, may be rated as the occupier of the 
right under sub-section (3) of the section. But where 
the owner receives rent for the land he could not be 
rated under sub-section (3) as the occupier of the right, 
because this case is dealt with by sub-section (1) of the 
section. For the purposes of the section the owner 
of the right is (1) the person entitled to exercise the 
right, if tie right is not let ; (2) if let, the person who 
is entitled to receive the rent for the same. The Poor 
Bate, General District Bate, Special Sanitary Bate, and 
other local rates are payable in full upon sporting rights 
when severed from the occupation of the land over 
which they are exercised and separately assessed." 



22 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 



GAME PKOTECTION SOCIETIES. 

As mentioned in a previous chapter, the formation of 
these societies throughout the country is of recent date. 
There are very few counties in England unassociated 
with sport, and if each could boast of a " Game Pro- 
tection Society," composed of the leading landowners 
and shooting men in their county, a great advantage 
would accrue, not only to their respective members but 
to others interested in the preservation of game. They 
would provide a greater amount of sport, more protec- 
tion to the game, and the eggs of birds of game, by the 
checking of unprincipled dealers and receivers, greater 
facilities for improving stock by the exchange or pur- 
chase of healthy birds and eggs, with many other ad- 
vantages which need not be here referred to. 

Rules and regulations are of course necessary to ensure 
good management, but these can be readily supplied to 
societies in prospective by the secretaries of existing 
societies, or might be drawn up by any legal draughts- 
man with some knowledge of the Game Laws. 

At the present time there are in England several 
game protection societies, and societies formed for the 
encouragement of sport, amongst which are: (1) The 
Field Sports Protection and Encouragement Society, 
(2) The East Anglian, (3) Essex, (4) Bedford, (5) 
Hampshire, (6) Hunts Game Protection Societies, 
and (7) The Irish Game Protection Association, whose 
respective secretaries are : 

1. Mr. J. Powell, Essex Street, Strand, London. 

2. Mr. Charles Kow, 1 Eedwell Street, Bank Plain, 
Norwich. 

3. Mr. F. H. Bright, Maiden, Essex. 

4. Mr. A. Morrison, Mill Street, Bedford. 

5. Mr. J. Charles Warner, 29A Jewry St., Winchester. 

6. Mr. W. P. Theakston, Estate Office, Huntingdon. 

7. Mr. B. J. Newcombe, 110 Grafton Street, Dublin. 
All these societies, from our personal knowledge, are 



GAME PROTECTION SOCIETIES 23 

doing and have done a great amount of good work in 
the interest of the sportsman, and in checking the illicit 
traffic in game eggs. The rules work admirably, and 
the respective secretaries would be happy to give any 
information or assistance they could in the forma- 
tion of further kindred societies or associations in other 
counties where any assistance may be required. There 
is also another society, which, although not a game 
protection association, materially assists them ; this is 
the Game Guild. 

The guild, though it accepts subscribing members, 
should more properly be described as a committee, 
composed chiefly of large landowners, and having no 
interest whatever in any game-farming or selling, who 
yearly elect and support the legitimate game farmers 
who may desire it, inspecting farms, and eliminating 
names where any charge of unsatisfactory dealing is 
substantiated. 

The committee issue a yearly report to the county asso- 
ciations affiliated to them for the purpose of information. 

The Hon. Secretary is Mr. Nicholas Everitt, Prince 
of Wales Road, Norwich. 

To deal with the various clauses of the rules of any 
of the present societies is scarcely warranted here, such 
societies being of a semi-private nature, and the rules 
the property of the members of those societies, but 
shooting men have everything to gain and nothing to 
lose by the introduction of such societies, and we are at 
a ]oss to understand why they are not more numerous 
than they are. It is high time for owners to com- 
bine for the mutual protection of their interests when 
agents are sent into villages for the collection of 
game eggs (pheasants and partridges) and offering good 
prices for them. The inducement is frequently more 
than an ordinary labourer can resist, knowing, as he 
invariably does, of several nests containing eggs, easy 
of access, which he can possess himself of at a favour- 
able time, and thus put a few shillings in his pocket 
without any one being the wiser. 



24 A PKACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

Occasionally valuable information can be imparted by 
the secretary of a society to its members, in districts 
where an organised raid by poachers is being engineered, 
he having more ways than one of obtaining early informa- 
tion. The information received from the various game 
farms within the area of the society's labours materially 
assists its members in the placing of orders for their 
pheasants' eggs, and what a vast alteration and im- 
provement would be made in the standard of the 
present game farmer throughout the country if societies 
were more general to guard their mutual interests. 
The doubtful game farmers (if any did exist) would 
soon be identified through the members purchasing 
their eggs elsewhere, and weeded out in due course, 
and there would be greater reliance than is sometimes 
the case now, that the eggs ordered were actually pro- 
duced on the farms whence they were purchased, as the 
buyer generally expects they should be. Many game 
farmers we know do not purchase eggs from outside 
their farms, and guarantee all eggs sold by them as 
having been produced on their farms, but others are 
sometimes obliged to buy when their production has 
not been equal to the demand, particularly in the early 
part of the season. A published list embodied in the 
Annual Eeport giving names and addresses of the 
members willing to exchange game eggs, particularly 
partridges', by way of improving the stock, would be 
found very advantageous, and it would be advisable that 
the arrangements should be made direct (rather than 
through a formal process with the secretary), and thus 
expedite matters. 

Now that the importation of Hungarian partridges has 
so much increased, much valuable information might be 
obtained from the reports forwarded by members on 
their purchases, who also on receipt of the consignment 
could forward details to the secretary of society, stating 
number on arrival in good health, loss of birds, name 
of consignee, etc. Occasionally by seasonable advice a 
member may be materially assisted in escaping from a 



GAME PROTECTION SOCIETIES 25 

long and costly suit arising out of a transaction which 
has not been eminently satisfactory. 

A list of foreign exporters of " Hungarians " is 
annually published in the Game Guild Keports? gener- 
ally in order of merit, so far as known, together with 
their acreage of " catching rights," situation of estates, 
and credentials. So far as " Hungarian eggs " are con- 
cerned, a purchase at present is not very desirable, 
considering the prohibition recently placed upon their 
export. In 1904 in Germany the exportation was pro- 
hibited, in the Austria-Hungary Empire the export is 
prohibited from Hungary, Bohemia, etc., but not from 
Austria, and it is believed the eggs are obtained by 
forwarding through that province. The sale of these 
eggs being prohibited, the consequent difficulty in con- 
cealing their transport, and the likelihood that many of 
the eggs may be stolen, are among the vicissitudes of 
the foreign egg, so that it with difficulty arrives in 
England in a fertile state. Some persons even go so 
far as to say that in occasional instances the eggs of 
the previous year are consigned as fertile eggs. 

With regard to the trade in birds in the " catching 
up " area on the Continent the seasons are as follows : 

In Germany " catching up " is allowed to the 31st 
January, but a special permit may be obtained up to 
15th February if the birds are not required for food. 

In Hungary "catching " is allowed to 1st January, 
but permission may be obtained to 1st February, 
though one importer states that the season ceases on 
the 15th January, and that permission may be allowed 
until the 30th January. 

In Bohemia " catching" begins on 15th August, and 
is allowed until 31st January, and no permit is given 
for further catching. 

It would seem that after the above dates all or nearly 
all the birds imported must have been penned for a 
longer or shorter period. 

The great difference of opinion in England as to the 



26 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

success of the system of importing " Hungarians " is 
due to the length of time the birds are penned, and the 
sanitary condition of the foreign pens; in short, all 
birds should be imported before January, and it is 
desirable that foreign eggs, intended for exportation 
to England, should be tested abroad before being 
despatched, and certainly also by the consignee on their 
arrival; and looking at matters in a business light, 
it might be prudent for the purchaser to delay pay- 
ment until he has satisfied himself with the result 
of the test. The same remarks apply to the purchase 
of birds. 

It is recognised that birds despatched immediately 
after being caught are likely to be more healthy and 
fertile than those which have been penned, and rightly 
command higher prices. It is also equally clear that 
birds are more likely to be fresh caught if bought in the 
months of November or December than in January or 
February, and are also cheaper. If foreign exporters 
clearly understood that English buyers would always 
repudiate payment for dead birds, they would be more 
careful in despatching bad ones, and paying carriage for 
them. This would in time induce the local farmers 
and dealers to build larger pens, and keep their birds 
under healthier conditions.. 

We should like, however, to say there must always be 
some doubt whether a purchase of " Hungarians " is 
not a purchase of English birds (though we do not say 
it is so), unless those from whom the purchase is made 
are above suspicion. 

The question of the prevalence of enteric amongst 
pheasants and partridges is of importance to sportsmen, 
so, from information obtained from the members of 
the East Anglian Game Protection Society in 1906, 
who had replied to queries asked them, we have been 
permitted to extract from their Keport the follow- 
ing : 

" Very many of the members believed themselves clear 
of the disease ; on the estates of a very few the disease 



GAME PKOTECTION SOCIETIES 27 

existed last year among pheasants, and on some part- 
ridges were also affected, the loss in instances given 
varying from 10 to 30 per cent." 

One member states : " In my opinion, much of the so- 
called enteric is not enteric at all, but diarrhoea, which 
arises from wrong feeding ; the young birds are too 
forced on with heating foods, and cannot stand sudden 
chills and wet". This is also the opinion of other 
members. 

Another states : " In the spring of 1904 there was a 
bad attack of enteric in the rearing field, a part of the 
park. It had not been used for many years for rearing 
purposes, so could not have been contaminated by pre- 
vious use. The ground, however, is used a good deal 
for sheep grazing, and there are a few rabbit runs and 
holes ; my own theory is that as it was a particularly 
dry season, the pheasant chicks got absolutely no natural 
food in the way of insects, and so ate only artificial 
food, the result being that the intestines became de- 
ranged and irritated, and a ready prey to the enteric 
bacillus. Anyway, directly the rain set in, the chicks 
picked up, the enteric became less violent, and seemed 
to abate entirely." Some of the members complained 
of the increasing number of poultry houses on farm 
lands, and say that these are often filthy, and a source 
of disease ; this may be so, but the homestead poultry 
houses are generally still fouler, and more liable to 
spread enteric, and a landlord might do worse than ask 
his tenant to allow him to whitewash these annually, 
free, of course, from any charge, especially as a white- 
wash sprayer has recently been invented for such 
purposes. 

It is hardly necessary to say that there is no remedy 
for this disease, and one means of prevention, cleanliness 
and sanitation, and that it can be communicated by the 
bought fowls, food, keepers' clothes, cooking utensils ; 
it is also suggested that dipping coops in creosote or 
other disinfectant is preferable to application by hand 
and brush. 



28 A PKACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

It has been suggested that so far as the English 
partridge is concerned, a certain number of cock birds 
might be caught, and kept in pens till the breeding 
season, and then put in charge of young partridges 
hatched under hens. On all estates there are usually a 
number of nests mown over, or made in dangerous 
places, and it is said that an unmated cock bird is a far 
better nurse than a barn-door hen, and that broods so 
tended will not be so likely to " pack " later in the 
season. It is also suggested that " Hungarians " might 
be bought for this system, but the difficulty still re- 
mains, that of catching the cock birds. 

With respect to the English partridge, we should 
like to make a suggestion to Game Associations which 
we think would, if carried out, be of the greatest im- 
portance to preservers of game and sportsmen generally, 
and that is, that each society should obtain from the 
game dealers within their respective areas an assent 
to assist the society by refusing to deal in live English 
partridges or their eggs. If there were no trade in 
the provinces, the eggs would be very difficult to get 
into the London market and thence to the Continent, 
and not much possibility of any of them coming back 
as " Hungarian ". Little difficulty would be found 
in making the above suggested arrangement, as we 
have happily found out by experience in the eastern 
counties 

So far as live partridges are concerned, it may in 
the eyes of some persons be considered unnecessary 
to provide for this, but we would submit that it is 
necessary. 

It would be very unusual for a sporting tenant to 
covenant in his lease to leave so many hundred or 
thousand partridges on the land at the expiration of 
his lease, consequently there would be probably noth- 
ing to prevent him catching up partridges wholesale, 
having made arrangements with licensed game dealers 
for their purchase. We have never heard of this 
practice being resorted to, and hope we never will ; 



GAME PKOTECTION SOCIETIES 29 

but we think the suggestion we have made is a very 
good one, and might be used to the mutual advan- 
tage of all concerned. Game dealers, as a rule, know 
on which side their bread is buttered, and are not bad 
to deal with when treated fairly. 

Too much credit cannot be given to these associations 
for checking the illicit traffic in game out of season, for 
which all good sportsmen should be very grateful. 

The early consignments into the London markets of 
the large quantities of game on the morning of the open- 
ing days of the season has no doubt struck many an 
observer, and as to how such large numbers can pos- 
sibly find their way to market. If we might venture an 
opinion, we should say the birds have either been 
poached by unscrupulous persons having a right on 
the land off which the birds came, who have been 
unlawfully netting, trapping and shooting for a few 
days prior to the game season commencing, or, so 
far as pheasants are concerned, despatched by some 
game farmer who has been killing off a portion of his 
surplus stock after midnight on the morning of the 
opening day (1st October), by way of securing the best 
prices for the birds eligible for market. To this latter 
practice there is, of course, no objection, except possibly 
from the purchaser's point of view. 

The convictions obtained of late at the instance of 
these associations, against those bold enough to run 
the risk, must have gone a long way towards putting a 
stop to such practices. 

Game farmers are quite within their rights in trying 
to get the best prices they can for their surplus stock, 
curious though it may appear to have a large consign- 
ment of pheasants in Leadenhall Market by seven o'clock 
on the 1st October, killed that morning, we assume, by 
being knocked on the head before being despatched by 
the mail. As to partridges, no doubt many of those 
hanging up early on the morning of the 1st September 
have been netted by those who can have no sporting 
rights. An examination of the birds bought would soon 



30 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

disclose the fact whether they had been shot or killed as 
above. 

In the Field of the 22nd September, 1906, is a letter 
from Mr. W. Horton, of Glasgow, bearing on the neces- 
sity for the introduction of Game Protection Societies, 
which we think of sufficient interest to give an extract 
from. He writes : " An interesting poaching case came 
before Sheriff Blair at Dumbarton on the 12th inst., 
when two poachers were convicted of night poaching 
near Glasgow, and sentenced to two months' hard 
labour each. The capture was made by the keepers, and 
besides the usual poaching tackle, a * Poachers' Diary ' 
was found on one of the men, as follows : ' Me and 
my mate killed the following amount of rabbits from 
June 26th. Started June 27th, killed 45 ; June 28th, 
46; June 30th, 25; July 2nd, killed 17; July 3rd, 
41 ; July 4th, 40 ; July 5th, 20 ; July 6th, 1 ; July 7th, 
8; July 8th, 44; July llth, 16; July 13th, 49; July 
14, 4 ; July 16, 28 ; July 18, 60 ; July 19, 32 ; July 20, 
68 ; July 22, 25 ; July 23, 10 ; July 24, 15 ; July 26, 
48; July 28, 40; August 5, 58; Aug. 7, 54; Aug. 8, 
58; Aug. 9, 50; Aug. 10, 44; Aug. 11, 35; Aug. 13, 
28 ; Aug. 14, 41 ; Aug. 15, 66 ; Aug. 16, 59 ; Aug. 19, 
36; Aug. 20, 43; Aug. 21, 22; Aug. 23, 64; Aug. 30, 
57 ; Aug. 31, 34 ; Sept. 1st, killed 83 ; Sep. 2, 72 ; Sep. 
4, 80; Sept. 5th, 30.' 

" The total catch is about 1,660, and probably gave 
each man 30s. a night. This diary is no doubt a 
unique document, and probably the 'first and last of 
its kind. It could not serve a better purpose than to 
form the keynote for a movement amongst the game 
preservers for such an alteration in the law, relating to 
the sale of game, as would make it impossible for a 
poacher to dispose of what he has killed, even though 
he held a game license. 

" Only persons having the right of game on any land 
should have any power to sell game killed on that land, 
and to prevent evasion of the law by unscrupulous 
game dealers there should be suitable enactment. 



THE EXTENSIVE TRAFFIC IN GAME EGGS 31 

"There are many excellent Associations of Game 
Preservers throughout the country, and for this pur- 
pose they might suitably unite. The outlet for poached 
game being removed, the occupation of the poachers 
would be gone." 

We may add The Field Sports Protection and En- 
couragement Association have drafted a Bill for this 
purpose, which they hope in time to pass into law. 

THE EXTENSIVE TKAFFIC IN GAME EGGS. 

Some idea of the magnitude of the extensive traffic in 
game eggs in the eastern counties may be gathered from 
a perusal of a letter written by E. K. Pratt, Esq., of 
Kyston Hall, Norfolk, to the Field in 1900. 

We also print the editor's footnote to the letter and 
the leading article on the subject. 

" SIR, You have so often in your columns con- 
demned the indiscriminate purchase of partridge eggs, 
that I trust you will think well to publish the following 
facts, in the hope that their publication may act as a 
deterrent to this practice. 

" On May 15 a man was found on my land with 
sixty-one partridges' eggs and nine pheasants' eggs. 
I believe he had never stolen before, but his wife was 
ill, and as he was out of work and had no money, I 
refrained from prosecuting him. 

" He stated that he had arranged to sell the eggs to a 
certain dealer, and gave other information. 

" This dealer was prosecuted at a petty sessions on 
the charge of aiding and abetting, but, on technical 
grounds, the case was dismissed. The dealer after- 
wards stated that he intended to give up the trade, 
as it caused 'more unpleasantness than the business 
was worth '. 

"I find that during the first six months of this year 
a dealer made no consignments of any sort by train 
before April 26th, and none after June 5th. Between 
these dates he despatched by train alone : 



32 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

" Six baskets and boxes, weighing 194 lb., to a game- 
keeper to Mr. of H . 

" Four baskets, weighing 80 lb., to a game preserver 
in Norfolk. 

"Eighteen baskets and boxes, weighing 378 lb., to a 
fishmonger. 

"The fishmonger, on his part, during the first six 
months of this year, consigned nothing by train before 
April 22nd, and nothing after May 31st, but between 
these dates he despatched boxes, etc., as follows : 

" Twenty-three boxes, weighing 871 lb., to a pheasant 
and poultry breeder in a home county. 

" Twelve boxes, weighing 377 lb., to a gamekeeper to 
Mr. . 

" Nineteen boxes, weighing 722 lb., to a landowner in 
H . 

" Fifty-nine boxes, weighing 226 lb., to a game farm 
in an eastern county. 

" Fifty-one boxes, weighing 1,946 lb., to a consignee 
' to be called for ' at Liverpool Street Station. 

" Twelve boxes, weighing 446 lb., to a gamekeeper to 
Lord . 

" Thirty-four boxes, weighing 1,310 lb., to a gentleman 
in a home county. 

" Thirteen boxes, weighing 543 lb., to another 
consignee at Liverpool Street Station * to be called 
for'. 

" Seventeen boxes, weighing 701 lb., to a game dealer 
in Norfolk. 

" Ten boxes, weighing 270 lb., to the head keeper to a 
landowner in S W . 

" I forward the names and addresses of all these con- 
signees for your private information. 

" Now, if these baskets contained game eggs, calcu- 
lating the weight of a partridge's egg at i oz., and a 
pheasant's egg at 1 oz., and assuming that they were in 
equal proportions, and allowing for weight of hamper 
and packing, this would mean a despatch by train 
alone of over 6,000 game eggs from the dealer, and 



THE EXTENSIVE TRAFFIC IN GAME EGGS 33 

136,000 from the fishmonger, in which latter total 
probably the former eggs are included. 

" But the chances are that the majority of these eggs 
are those of partridges, because pheasants' eggs are laid 
in confinement, and may be readily bought from game 
farmers, but partridges' eggs cannot, except in rare 
instances, be honestly obtained from fishmongers and 
gamedealers in towns. 

' ' The railway company very properly make a rule not 
to divulge the contents of parcels consigned to them, 
and it may be that these boxes contained flowers or 
vegetables, or some such innocent produce ; if so, and 
if it should appear, from any explanation afforded by the 
consignees referred to or otherwise, that I am mistaken, 
I shall be only too glad to admit my mistake in your 
columns. E. E. PEATT. 

"Ryston Hall, Downham. 

" [In the interest of sport we think it right to publish 
this letter, but, as a matter of courtesy to the con- 
signees, we for the present withhold their names and 
addresses. The evidence produced to us in support of 
the statements above made, in conjunction with other 
information, justifies the conclusion : 

" 1. That there is a large and increasing traffic in 
partridges' eggs throughout the country ; 

"2. That the purchasers do not exercise sufficient 
care to ascertain whether the source from which they 
buy is a legitimate one ; 

"3. That dealers, to enable them to complete their 
orders for eggs, are obliged to buy from one another; 
and 

"4. That in many cases the eggs are stolen before 
they reach the dealers. The evils of such a system have 
been frequently pointed out in these columns, but still 
the practice prevails, and it would seem as if nothing 
short of publication of names and addresses could avail 
to check it. From this course we should not shrink if 
the interests of sport demand it. ED., Field.] " 

3 



34 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

The Field article is as follows: "The modern craze 
for making ' big bags ' is gradually leading to a con- 
dition of things which, if not speedily reformed, must 
soon prove disastrous. No one can blame a genial host 
who is fond of shooting for wishing to provide his 
friends with a good day's sport, but when the head of 

fame killed in one day is to be counted, not by hundreds, 
ut by thousands (as now often happens), it seems to us 
that the limits of moderation are far exceeded. . . . Un- 
fortunately, in many cases our modern game preserver 
is very careless in his purchases. His keeper is told to 
look out for a few eggs, and to get them where he can. 
On the strength, perhaps, of an advertisement by the 
owner of a so-called ' game farm,' which, if inquiry 
were made, might prove to consist of an acre of ground 
with a few yards of wire netting and a dozen coops, 
serving merely as a ' blind,' he straightway orders a 
consignment of eggs that could not possibly be produced 
on so small an area, and must therefore be supplied by 
the dealer from some other source undisclosed. In some 
cases the vendor has not even the acre of ground and 
the coops to show. He shelters himself behind the 
announcement that he is a ' licensed gamedealer '. 
He buys where he can, and is not particular in ascer- 
taining whether the eggs offered to him have been 
honestly obtained or not. The evils of such a system, 
if not patent to his customers, are pretty evident to 
everybody else. The price offered for game eggs by the 
dealer who would not buy if there was not a market 
for them is a direct incentive to poaching, and we are 
in a position to state that it is not merely from labourers 
and higglers who collect from labourers that the supply 
is originally obtained, but in some cases a direct bribe is 
offered to gamekeepers to betray their trust. We have 
in our possession a letter from a dealer to a gamekeeper 
offering to purchase grouse eggs from him at a shilling 
apiece." 

The writer then refers to Mr. Pratt's letter, and con- 
tinues : " It is little wonder that game preservers in 



THE EXTENSIVE TRAFFIC IN GAME EGGS 35 

Norfolk and Suffolk should complain of a dearth of 
partridges in their districts when such wholesale ab- 
straction of eggs is encouraged by those who should 
know better. Nor does the mischief end here. Many 
a poor man is in this way tempted to be dishonest, and, 
by the irony of fate, if caught and convicted, may find 
himself sentenced by a magistrate whose interests he 
has quite unwittingly endeavoured to serve. It is time 
that such an evil should be reformed, and it remains to 
consider the remedy. The Irish magistrates in some 
districts have set a good example by refusing to grant 
licenses to deal in game when the applicants declined to 
disclose their source of supply and to allow their books 
to be inspected. If that example were more generally 
followed it would go far to check the evil complained of, 
especially if the police were empowered to make the 
inspection. There can be no doubt, also, that the forma- 
tion of societies for the prevention of poaching would be 
further aided in this direction, and the efforts already 
made by the Field Sports Protection Association, the 
Irish Game Protection Society, and the Norfolk Poach- 
ing Prevention Society (as described by Mr. Eow, the 
secretary of the last-named guild in our issue of 20th 
May) are worthy of all encouragement. If the com- 
mittees of such societies would prepare county lists of 
gamedealers willing to co-operate in the way suggested, 
and if landowners would abstain from dealing with any 
whose names are not on such lists, a healthier state of 
things would soon prevail." 

In the following year the Norfolk and Suffolk Poaching 
Prevention Society (now East Anglian Game Protec- 
tion Society) published in the Field a list of consign- 
ments by a Norwich game dealer, discovered by their 
agent, giving dates, etc., of which the following is an ex- 
tract, and which undoubtedly showed that a considerable 
trade at that time was being carried on in the city of 
Norwich. This it is considered has, through the energy 
of the above society, to the satisfaction of its members, 

3* 



36 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

undoubtedly been seriously checked, if not altogether 
stopped, so far as any illicit traffic is concerned. 

"In the above case the society was not aware that 
any consignments had been forwarded in that year 
before the 26th April, on which date the consignor 
forwarded 3 boxes to a game farmer, labelled 'China 
and glass with care '. To another game farmer he 
forwarded, on the 27th, 4 boxes ; 28th, 6 boxes ; 30th, 

2 boxes ; 1st May, 3 boxes ; 2nd, 5 boxes ; 4th, 4 boxes ; 
7th, 2 boxes; llth, 6 boxes; 12th, 2 boxes; 16th, 4 
boxes ; 17th, 2 boxes ; 18th, 1 box ; 21st, 2 boxes ; 22nd, 

3 boxes ; 23rd, 6 boxes ; 25th, 1 box ; 30th, 4 boxes to 
another game farmer. To another consignee he for- 
warded on 7th May, 3 boxes ; 8th May, 1 box ; 14th, 2 
boxes; 15th, 2 boxes." 

GAME FAKMS AND GAME FAKMEKS. 

The importance of the game farm industry on a large 
scale can scarcely be imagined without a personal in- 
spection of a farm, but some idea of its extent can be 
gathered from the fact that on some of the larger farms 
there are between 800 and 900 pens, many of them 
about fifty yards square, each containing about seventy- 
five birds, the majority smaller, however, and containing 
fewer birds ; and that a no less number than 200,000 
pheasants' eggs, and between 7,000 and 10,000 poults, 
are annually on offer for sale, independent of the number 
of eggs and birds required by the proprietor for stock 
for the following year. 

Our first visit to a game farm was just prior to a 
nesting season. To see several thousand healthy 
pheasants surrounded by wire-netting ten or twelve 
feet high, supported by poles fastened in the ground, 
struck us as being novel and interesting. It is perhaps 
more interesting still to see the birds a little later on, 
in their long, low, flat pens (some corrugated iron, others 
creosoted timber, but generally the former), small and 
large, the smaller ones containing five hens and a cock 



GAME FARMS AND GAME FARMERS 37 

bird. The whole of the smaller pens are movable, 
and being moved each week or so, a change of grass 
and soil is obtained which prevents any possibility of 
the ground being foul or contaminated, the ground be- 
ing limed every other year. Later still, the hundreds 
of coops, respectively possessed of a healthy-looking 
barn-door hen, in charge of a brood of twelve or four- 
teen young pheasant chicks, are exceedingly interesting. 
At some farms an amusing system is in vogue, the hens 
being taken from the coops to the rear, and there, whilst 
they and their broods are being fed, a change is afforded 
them on the fresher grass, some little distance from the 
coops. The hens are detained by a string affixed to one 
leg, the other end being fastened to a peg in the ground. 
This is at first very much resented by the hens, but they 
soon get accustomed to it and enjoy the change. 

In the winter months, and when thought desirable, 
at some farms warm food is prepared for the pheasants 
in a large boiler on the premises, and at the more im- 
portant farms a specialist is retained for the purpose of 
making periodical unexpected visits, for an inspection 
and examination of the birds and the food given them, 
when a change of diet may be ordered. 

By way of obtaining the best possible results, and an 
encouragement to the attendants, some of the game 
farmers allow the men a percentage on the number of 
chicks successfully brought up to a profitable age, which 
no doubt stimulates the men to look well after their 
charge, and neglect nothing which may add to their 
advancement. 

We should say movable pens for laying pheasants are 
undoubtedly the best for the health of the birds and the 
fertility of the eggs, and if the pens were moved every 
month, or even oftener, it would be advisable, so as to pre- 
vent any fear of contamination. To the purchaser we 
suggest that purchased eggs should be allowed a day 
or so to rest, after being unpacked before being placed 
under hens. If not practicable to then set them, they 
should be turned on their sides daily. In dry weather 



38 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

the nest should be damped, but not the eggs. Sitting 
hens should be taken off the nest daily, and allowed off 
a few minutes each day. During hatching they should 
not be disturbed unless absolutely necessary, and the 
young birds should remain till perfectly dry before their 
removal, so as to prevent any chill being contracted. 
Insect powder may be sprinkled with advantage over 
the sitting hens and their nests. 

The legal position of the game farmer so far as he is 
personally concerned can scarcely be said to be entirely 
satisfactory. Section 4 of the Game Act of 1831 is 
the one which most affects him, and that section is as 
follows : 

" That if any person licensed to deal in game by 
virtue of this Act, as hereinafter mentioned, shall buy 
or sell or knowingly have in his house, shop, stall, pos- 
session or control, any bird of game after the expiration 
of ten days (one inclusive and the other exclusive) from 
the respective days in each year on which it shall be- 
come unlawful to kill or take such birds of game re- 
spectively as aforesaid, or if any person not being licensed 
to deal in game by virtue of this Act as hereinafter 
mentioned shall buy or sell any bird of game after the 
expiration of ten days (one inclusive and the other ex- 
clusive) from the respective days in each year on which it 
shall become unlawful to kill or take such bird of game 
respectively as aforesaid, or shall knowingly have in his 
house, possession or control any bird of game, except 
birds of game kept in a mew or breeding place, after 
the expiration of forty days (one inclusive and the other 
exclusive) from the respective days in each year on 
which it shall become unlawful to kill or take such 
birds of game respectively, as aforesaid, such person 
shall on conviction forfeit not exceeding 1 for every 
head of game so bought, sold, or unlawfully had in 
possession." 

What, then, under the section is the position of a 
game farmer ? If he has a license to deal in game, he 
must conform to the law as above set out, and must 



GAME FARMS AND GAME FARMERS 39 

not be in possession of game after ten days from the 
commencement of the close season. If he is not licensed, 
he must not be in possession of it after forty days (ex- 
cept in a mew or breeding place). Without a license he 
could not well continue his business, as he could only 
breed and rear and not sell. All extensive farmers are no 
doubt licensed to deal in game, as, of course, they must 
have a license to deal in game to enable them to sell 
game ; section 28 applying to live as well as dead game, 
it cannot be bought from a person other than a dealer or 
the holder of a full 3 license to kill game, though, of 
course, no license is required for the sale or purchase of 
game eggs, they not being within the definition of game 
under the section. 

Although game farmers might have some legal diffi- 
culty in justifying their position in keeping pheasants 
for sale all the year round in view of section 4 of the 
Act, we do not think any of them need be at all alarmed 
at the possibility of proceedings being taken against 
them for having birds in their possession as game dealers 
during the close season. We are not sure what the 
general practice throughout the country with game 
farmers is as to selling live pheasants during the close 
season, but it would appear to be within the statute 
to do so and they would thus incur the penalty. The 
law certainly requires modification so as to legally 
protect them under the changed circumstances, so as 
to recognise a legitimate trade. We do not, however, 
think that any one would be officious enough to insti- 
tute proceedings, as a private informer, with a view to 
a penalty being imposed on a game farmer who has 
birds in his possession during the close season. In 
all probability the justices hearing the case would be 
very much guided by the fact that the Inland Eevenue 
authorities themselves have recognised the existing state 
of affairs and taken no action against those apparently 
transgressing the section, under the altered circumstances 
of the times. 

With reference to the question of selling live game by 



40 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

game farmers during the close season the following may 
interest the reader. 

The Game Guild had much correspondence in June, 
1906, with the Field as to the advertisements of their 
Associates, the proprietors being unwilling to insert 
advertisements of pheasant poults for sale during close 
time. It was pointed out to them that the industry 
could not be carried on at a profit if game farmers were 
not allowed to sell " poults,' 1 since in rearing hen birds 
for stock they were inevitably obliged to rear cock 
birds also, which require to be delivered at an early 
date. 

In reply to this suggestion the Field printed in their 
following July issues a very clear survey of the whole 
question of game farms, by J. W. Willis Bund, M.A., 
LL.B., of which the following is an extract : 

" In advertisements of live birds for sale it has been 
usual to insert the proviso that the birds shall not be 
delivered until after the expiration of the close season. 
The question has lately arisen whether such a statement 
in the advertisement is necessary, and it would seem 
that it is not ; for, if the position of the game farmer is 
legal, it is no illegal act on his part to release the game 
during the close season. 

" This brings us to the conclusion that all sale of 
game by any one, whether a licensed dealer or not, 
during close time is illegal, but that a person not a 
licensed dealer may have game in a mew or breeding 
place in his possession and control during close time, 
but may not sell it. Such seems to be the law, and, if 
it is so, it makes the position of the game farmer one of 
great difficulty. As already shown in a previous article, 
he cannot, unless he takes out a license to deal in game, 
legally sell game to the public. If he takes out a license 
to deal in game, then he brings himself within the mis- 
chief of section 4, and it becomes illegal for him to have 
game in his possession during the close time, even in a 
mew or breeding place, since it is in his possession or 
control. It may be admitted at once that a law which 



GAME FARMS AND GAME FARMERS 41 

makes it impossible for a man to carry on his trade is 
one that requires a very strong reason to justify. 

" How, then, can game farming be legally carried on ? 
This is by no means an easy question to answer, and it 
seems only in a roundabout way by two persons, one 
who is licensed to deal in game, and another who is not. 
The one who is not licensed to deal in game will breed 
and rear the game in fact, have the whole management 
of the farm during the close time, but he will have 
nothing to do with the sale of the game. The person 
who will sell the game will be the licensed dealer, who 
will have to buy from the breeder. He will, in order to 
evade the section, have to be very careful not to have 
any of the game in his possession or control during the 
close season, and not to have bought it or sold it during 
that time. As soon as the close season is over he can 
legally buy from the breeder, who can then legally sell to 
him, and the public can legally buy from him, as he is a 
person licensed to deal in game. It is obvious that great 
care will have to be taken by both parties to escape the 
law, but in this way it can be done, and it would seem 
to be the only legal way in which it is possible to do 
it." 

The Field has since undertaken to insert advertise- 
ments omitting all reference to dates of delivery. 

The proprietors of Country Life, having been ap- 
proached with the same object, say: ''They are dis- 
posed to think it rather unjust that the letter of an 
Act seventy years old should fetter a legitimate industry, 
which carrying out the spirit of the same Act contri- 
butes to the amusement and food supply of the country ". 
They will, therefore, be glad to help those legitimate 
game farmers who are recognised as Associates of the 
Guild, and unless prevented by the Government or 
some legal decision, will during the summer advertise 
pheasants and poults in Country Life. 

In April, 1907, a licensed dealer in game was sum- 
moned at the instance of the Field Sports Protection 
and Encouragement Association under the 4th section 



42 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

of the Game Act of 1831 (selling live partridges during 
the close season). 

On the part of the prosecution it was not alleged 
that the birds were English, or that they were not 
Hungarians, but it was contended that the Game Act 
of 1831 applied as much to foreign live game as to 
English. Evidently the case had been brought with 
a view to proving that the traffic in foreign live birds 
during the English close season was illegal. 

It appears the defendant advertised live Hungarian 
partridges for sale probably as agent, we are not 
certain forwarding the orders received to Hungary, 
and sending intending purchasers receipts for cheques 
received on account of the birds. 

For the defence it was alleged that the birds came 
direct from Hungary, and were never in the defendant's 
possession, and that being so, the sale took place abroad. 

The justices pointed out that the sale took place in 
England and during the close season, and convicted the 
defendant. 



INDICTABLE AND SUMMARY 
OFFENCES. 

The following are practically the whole of the indict- 
able and summary offences dealt with under the Game 
Laws. 

INDICTABLE OFFENCES. 

TAKING OK DESTKOYING GAME BY 
NIGHT, ETC. 

Unlawfully taking or destroying any game or rabbits 
by night on any land (open or enclosed), or on any 
public road, highway or path, or the sides thereof, or 
at any openings, outlets or gates from any such land, 
highway or path, or by night unlawfully entering or 
being on any land (open or enclosed) with any gun, 
net, engine or other instrument for the purpose of 
taking or destroying game, after two previous con- 
victions. Night Poaching Act of 1828 (9 Geo. IV. 
c. 69, sect. 1). Misdemeanour. 

USING VIOLENCE. 

Any person found committing above offence, assault- 
ing or offering violence with gun, crossbow, firearm, 
bludgeon, stick, club or other offensive weapon to 
owners or occupiers of land, their gamekeepers, ser- 
vants, or assistants. (Section 2.) Misdemeanour. 

OFFENDEKS ABOVE THKEE TOGETHEE 
AKMED. 

Persons to the number of three or more together 
unlawfully by night entering or being on land (open 

43 



44 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

or enclosed) to take or destroy game, any of such 
persons being armed with gun, crossbow, firearm, 
bludgeon, or any other offensive weapon. (9 Geo. IV. 
c. 69, sect. 9.) Misdemeanour. 

KILLING OE TAKING HAEES OE EABBITS 
IN WAEEENS. 

(Larceny Act, 1861, 24 & 25 Viet. c. 96, sect. 17. 

Misdemeanour.) 

Unlawfully and wilfully between the expiration of 
the first hour after sunset and the beginning of the 
last hour before sunrise, taking or killing any hare or 
rabbit, in any warren or ground lawfully used for the 
breeding or keeping of hares or rabbits, whether the 
same be enclosed or not. 

The first, second and fourth offences are triable at 
quarter sessions, but the third only at assizes. Bail 
is discretionary in the fourth case, but compulsory in 
the three first named. 

A very important point must not, however, be over- 
looked before deciding to proceed by way of Indictment, 
viz., the question of costs. In the great majority of 
indictable cases at sessions and assizes, as is well 
known, the cost of the prosecution is defrayed by the 
county or borough, as the case may be, within which 
the offence is committed. It is not so with Indictable 
cases under the Game Laws, for only in the last of the 
above offences (taking rabbits, etc., in warrens) are the 
costs paid by the county or borough. In the other 
cases, seeing the prosecutor has to defray the ex- 
penses of the prosecution, and as this is sometimes 
a costly matter, including as it does not only the 
costs on the preliminary proceedings when the defen- 
dant is committed for trial, but the preparation of the 
case for trial, brief, counsels' fees, witnesses' and court 
fees, the mode of procedure is a point well worth con- 
sideration, where it is at all practicable to charge the 
defendant summarily before the justices. Where, say, 



KILLING HARES OR RABBITS IN WARRENS 45 

four men together are found by night on land taking 
game, armed with guns, etc. (no violence being used), 
the proper charge undoubtedly would be under the 9th 
section of 9 G-eo. IV. c. 69, that section specially pro- 
viding as it does for such an offence, notwithstanding the 
expense involved by a prosecution, though there could 
be no objection to the laying of an Information charging 
the defendants under section 1 of the Night Poaching 
Act separately, and asking the justices to dispose of 
the cases summarily. This would, of course, be the 
least expensive and most convenient way of dealing 
with the cases, if the proposed arrangement was not 
vetoed by the justices' clerk, provided also the men 
were not old offenders and leniency was to be shown. 
These indictable prosecutions must be instituted within 
twelve months after the commission of the offence. 

Under the 9th section of the Act it is not necessary 
that all the men charged should have entered the land ; 
if they are all there for the common purpose of taking 
game, they are all equally responsible if some of the party 
enter and the others remain sufficiently near to be able 
to assist. If only one of the men is armed, all are to 
be considered as armed. 

The power of arrest under this statute applies to the 
owner of the land and the occupier (not the lessee of 
sporting rights), and their keepers and assistants, but 
this is more fully dealt with in a subsequent chapter. 

In preferring an Indictment for the misdemeanour 
after two previous convictions for night poaching, care 
must be taken that the previous charges are identical 
with the charge contained in the indictment. In Hex 
v. Lines (Court for Crown Cases Keserved, December, 
1901) it was held that where a person had been con- 
victed under section 9 of the Night Poaching Act, 
1828 (three or more together armed), and the two 
previous convictions being under section 1 of the Act 
(ordinary night poaching), the third conviction was 
quashed, not coming within the meaning of the words 
''shall so offend a third time". The four judges con- 



46 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

stituting the court all agreed, though Justice Wright 
said there might be some cases under section 9 which 
might be cases within section 1. 

Judgment was respited at the Bedfordshire Quarter 
Sessions until the opinion of the above court was 
known, but the prisoner was detained in custody as 
he was unable to find bail. The attention of the court 
was drawn to the fact, and on the judgment being given 
the prisoner was ordered to be discharged from custody. 

SUMMARY CASES. 

DAY POACHING OK TEESPASS IN PUKSUIT 
OF GAME, ETC. 

(1 & 2 Wm. IV. c. 32, sect. 30.) 

The above section, after reciting that as game would 
become an article which might be legally bought and 
sold, it was therefore just and reasonable to provide 
some more summary means than then existed for pro- 
tecting the same from trespassers, enacted : 

" That if any person whatsoever shall commit any 
trespass by entering or being in the daytime upon any 
land in search or pursuit of game or woodcocks, snipes, 
quails, landrails, or conies, such person shall on con- 
viction thereof before a Justice of the Peace, forfeit and 
pay such sum of money, not exceeding two pounds, as 
to the Justice shall seem meet, together with the costs 
of the conviction, and that if any persons, to the number 
of five or more together, shall commit any trespass by 
entering or being in the daytime upon any land in 
search or pursuit of game, or woodcocks, snipes, quails, 
landrails, or conies, each of such persons shall on con- 
viction thereof before a Justice of the Peace forfeit and 
pay such sum of money not exceeding five pounds as to 
the said Justice shall seem meet, with costs of the 
conviction. Provided always that any person charged 
with any such trespass shall be at liberty to prove by way 
of defence, any matter which would have been a defence 



TRESPASS IN PUESUIT OF GAME, ETC. 47 

to an action at law for such trespass, save and except 
that the leave and license of the occupier of the land so 
trespassed upon shall not be a sufficient defence in any 
case where the landlord, lessor, or other person, shall 
have the right of killing the game upon such land by 
virtue of any reservation or otherwise as hereinbefore 
mentioned ; but such landlord, lessor or other person 
shall, for the purpose of prosecuting for each of the two 
offences herein last before mentioned, be deemed to be 
the legal occupier of such land, whenever the actual 
occupier thereof shall have given such leave or license ; 
and that the lord or steward of the crown of any manor, 
lordship, or royalty, or reputed manor, lordship, or 
royalty shall be deemed to be the legal occupier of the 
land of the wastes or commons within such manor, 
lordship, or royalty, or reputed manor, lordship, or 
royalty." 

By far the greater number of offences under the 
Game Laws are brought under this section (30), for 
trespassing in pursuit of game or rabbits, if we omit 
the offence of taking game eggs from nests during the 
egging season, and not any afford more scope for legal 
argument. The section of course only applies to the 
daytime, which is defined in the Act to commence at 
the beginning of the last hour before sunrise, and 
conclude at the expiration of the first hour after sunset. 
The prosecution must be commenced within three 
calendar months after the commission of the offence, 
but the proceedings need not be instituted by the owner 
or occupier of the land, in fact any person may now lay 
the information, which need not be on oath. The party 
wishing to avail himself of any consent, authority or 
other matter of defence, or any certificate or license, 
must produce or prove same (sect. 42). 

The words of the section it will be noticed are 
" entering " or " being," by which is meant a personal 
entering on the land as apart from a constructive entry, 
but an offence may nevertheless be committed on the 
highway. The public have a right of user of a public 



48 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

highway for legitimate purposes, but subject to this, 
the land is considered to be in the possession and 
occupation of the adjoining owner and occupier, and if 
a person unlawfully takes game upon the highway, or 
snipe, quail, landrail, or coney, or commits a trespass 
in pursuit of it, he renders himself liable to the 
penalties recoverable, just the same as if he were tres- 
passing in the field on the other side of the hedge. If 
a person shot from off his own land and killed a 
pheasant or partridge on the land of another adjoining, 
which bird was from the first on the adjoining land, 
and goes on to that land to pick up the bird, he com- 
mits a trespass under this section, the killing and the 
picking up being considered as one and the same 
transaction, the offence commencing with the shooting 
and ending with the picking up (Osbond v. Meadows). 
Had the bird risen on his own land and he had shot it 
over his land, and it had fallen on to the adjoining land, 
he would of course have been justified in following and 
picking up the bird, though it would be advisable to 
leave his gun behind. If there are several persons 
trespassing and one stays outside the field to watch, and 
gives the alarm, all are equally liable as principals, or 
those on the land might be charged as principals, and 
the one outside as an aider and abetter (Passey's case). 

A person who urges on a dog from the highway to 
take game or rabbits there, or on land adjoining, and 
game or rabbits be caught and appropriated by such 
person, he would come within the provisions of the 
statute. If the offence of trespass in pursuit is com- 
mitted by five or more defendants together, each on 
conviction is liable to a 5 penalty. It must be always 
borne in mind that the word "game" in the 30th 
section means live game, so that a trespass cannot be 
committed in respect of dead game, and a beater 
accompanying a shooting party appropriating a pheas- 
ant recently killed by one of the guns, would not 
commit an offence under this section, though under 
certain circumstances he might be charged with lar- 



TEESPASS IN PUKSUIT OF GAME, ETC. 49 

ceny of the bird, where it had been reduced into the 
possession of the owner. 

It is always a question for the court to determine 
whether a defendant is in pursuit of game, etc., or not. 

The jurisdiction of the justices is often ousted where 
a question of right is bond fide set up by a defendant, 
and as to this the justices must decide, but it is not 
necessary for the prosecution to establish "mens rea" 
in the defendant (Watkins v. Major), and it is not 
sufficient for the defendant to say that he believed 
himself not to be a trespasser, for he must show 
reasonable grounds for his belief, and it must not be 
such a claim as cannot be recognised in law, but 
reasonable. 

A defendant convicted of a game trespass and in 
possession of a gun or game license, forfeits it, though 
there is nothing to prevent such person from taking 
out a fresh license afterwards. 

Game found upon a person trespassing by day or 
night, which game has been recently killed, ,may be 
demanded and seized by any person having the right to 
the game upon the land, or the occupier or gamekeeper 
or servant of either of them (sect. 36). 

Trespassers not giving their real names and place of 
residence or wilfully continuing or returning upon the 
land, when required to quit and give their names, etc., 
by the person having the right to the game, or by the 
occupier of the land, or any gamekeeper or servant 
of either, or any person duly authorised, may be appre- 
hended by the person requiring, or any person acting 
under his orders, and conveyed before a magistrate 
within twelve hours, or such trespassers may be pro- 
ceeded against by summons. Penalty not exceeding 5 
and costs (sect. 31). 

Where damage is done in coursing or following 
hounds without the consent of the owner or occupier 
of the land trespassed upon, a civil action for tres- 
pass would be the remedy, as section 35 of the Game 
Act specially exempts persons hunting or coursing with 

4 



50 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

hounds when in fresh pursuit of game, etc., started on 
other lands, from the penalty provided for offences 
against section 30. If not a case of fresh pursuit the 
section would of course apply, and the persons coursing 
might be charged under either the 30th section, for 
trespassing in pursuit of game (unless legally authorised 
in writing under the Ground Game Act), or under 
section 23 for "using dogs for the purpose of taking 
game without certificate," if such was the fact. But, 
query, would it be advisable for a landlord or shooting 
tenant to prosecute under such circumstances, in a case 
where the occupier had merely given verbal permission 
to course? It is suggested not. These circumstances 
must often arise through ignorance of the Ground Game 
Act, and most annoying it must be to see the hares, 
which have been carefully preserved, seemingly wan- 
tonly destroyed ; though it must not be forgotten that 
a spiteful occupier might if so determined legally 
authorise in writing several of his friends to course 
hares at any period of the year, which would mean 
a serious disturbance of the winged game and practi- 
cally put a stop to sport. Under the circumstances 
a landlord or shooting tenant would be wise it is 
suggested in not taking proceedings, but in trying 
what diplomacy with such a tenant would do. 

From the above, the reader will have observed that 
to constitute a charge of trespass in pursuit of game or 
conies, etc., tbere must be something more than an 
ordinary trespass on the land complained of, that is, 
some evidence of the intention of the defendant to search 
for or to pursue game, etc. 

We have had a case dismissed where a man was 
found by a keeper on land strictly preserved on which 
he was carrying a gun in a sporting attitude, and walking 
up by the side of a bank in the field where there were 
rabbits, because no game or rabbits were seen by the 
keeper and the defendant in his defence stating "he 
was after a blackbird ". This is not an uncommon de- 
fence, and does not often succeed, but in the case quoted 



TRESPASS IN PURSUIT OF GAME, ETC. 51 

the two justices sitting at the petty sessions when the 
case was heard were rectors of adjoining parishes and 
octogenarians. Needless to say the defendant was 
somewhat elated with his good fortune, and as much 
surprised as the court. If walking about with a gun 
in a sporting attitude on land where it is reason- 
able to expect game, is evidence of using the gun for 
the purpose of taking game, subjecting a defendant 
to a 5 penalty, a fortiori, it should be sufficient to 
satisfy a court where the charge is simply one of tres- 
pass in pursuit of rabbits along a bank where they 
abound. 

An offence may be committed under section 30 if a 
person goes on to his neighbour's land and shoots from 
there at birds which have been put up on his own land, 
for here he is undoubtedly trespassing and in pursuit 
of game (Philpot v. Buglar), though very few people 
with any pretensions to being neighbourly would raise 
any objection to a gentleman stepping off his own land 
on to his neighbour's for the purpose of more easily 
shooting his own pheasants. Where a man fired at and 
wounded a rabbit which ran off his land on to the land 
of a neighbour, where it was seen to go into a hole, and 
was afterwards followed and secured by the man who 
fired at it, this would be a trespass in pursuit of the 
rabbit, the man having no right to follow a wounded 
rabbit on to another person's land. 

In Kenyon v. Hart the defendant was sporting on his 
own estate when a pheasant flew up and was shot after 
it had crossed the boundary fence of another's land, 
where it fell dead and was picked up afterwards by the 
shooter. This was held not to be a trespass in pursuit 
within the section. 

A parole reservation of the game to the landlord when 
he has continually exercised the right, has been held to 
be a valid reservation (Liversidge v. Whiteoak). 

In Burrows v. Gillingham defendant was charged 
with trespass in pursuit of game. A report of a gun was 
heard proceeding from a wood, and defendant was seen 

4* 



52 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

almost immediately to come out of the wood with a gun 
and some dogs and run off. There was no direct evidence 
as to seeing him in the wood in actual pursuit. As the 
justices refused to convict, the case was taken to the 
Queen's Bench Division, where it was held the justices 
were wrong and should have convicted, as there was 
sufficient legal and admissible evidence. Case remitted 
back to justices to convict. 

In Taylor v. Jackson (a case stated from the justices 
in the county of Essex) it was decided that on a charge 
of trespassing in pursuit of game in the daytime, the 
sporting rights over which were claimed by a person 
other than the owner or occupier, where the accused 
failed to prove the leave of the occupier, it was not 
necessary for the shooting tenant to prove his right, by 
the production of the agreement under which he held it. 
In this case the defendant's solicitor contended that 
the sporting rights being an incorporal hereditament, 
could only be vested in a person other than an occupier 
of the land, by an instrument under seal, and urged 
that the production of such a deed or lease was neces- 
sary to the establishment of the case against the de- 
fendants. The justices overruled the point, hence the 
appeal, in which their decision was upheld. 

In Spicer v. Barnard (28 L.J.M.C., 176), where the 
lease reserved the game to the landlord, there appears to 
be some difference shown between license to kill and 
direction to kill, and a bond fide person employed by the 
tenant to kill rabbits could not be convicted of the tres- 
pass in pursuit, the statute not taking away the tenant's 
right to kill the rabbits, and he also being entitled to 
have the necessary assistance, but it appears this de- 
cision was not intended to mean that the tenant could 
give leave to any one to sport and kill rabbits on the 
land. The right therefore to kill the rabbits under 
section 12 of the Game Act by the tenant and those 
duly authorised by him otherwise than in writing, as 
apart from the provisions of the Ground Game Act, 
must not be quite overlooked where the person em- 



TRESPASS IN PURSUIT OF GAME, ETC. 53 

ployed by the tenant is killing not for sport, but in pur- 
suance of a direction to kill from the tenant. 

The 12th section above referred to, prohibiting the 
tenant from killing game on his land, when the sport- 
ing rights are reserved to the landlord or let, it will be 
remembered does not apply to conies. 

Among some of the novel practices of trespassing in 
pursuit of game, by way of supplying a decent dish, at 
someone else's expense, for Sunday's table, may be men- 
tioned the following : 

A labouring man working on land during his dinner 
hour provides himself with a good substantial catapult, 
and having stalked some pheasants who are enjoying 
themselves near the site of a newly thrashed stack of 
corn, is seen by two keepers in the employ of the owner 
of the land, who strictly preserves the game (the neigh- 
bourhood being well wooded), to repeatedly use the 
catapult and hit them broadside very severely. He 
does not secure any of them, though it is proved to 
the bench that the catapult in question, produced to 
the court, is capable of killing. The keepers in the 
case had noticed a very large number of crippled 
pheasants near this particular place, some with broken 
legs and others with broken wings, a difficult matter to 
explain, until they dropped upon the defendant and put 
an end to a practice which undoubtedly accounted for 
the number of cripples, as it was before the 1st October. 
Defendant was convicted of the trespass in pursuit. 

The charge preferred was for trespass in pursuit, as 
ifc could scarcely be proved satisfactorily to the bench 
that the catapult was an "instrument" for taking 
game, at least that was our impression at the time 
the information was laid. 

The defendant had, of course, a perfect right to be 
where he was, but so soon as he commenced his 
endeavour to take game he became a trespasser. 

This reminds us of a question casually asked us the 
other day. A friend of ours was cycling a few miles 
from Norwich, and while riding down a lane in a rather 



54 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

secluded place a rabbit ran across the road, and secreted 
itself in the long grass and bushes on the bank. He 
jumped off his machine with the intention of killing 
it, but on second thoughts desisted, not feeling quite 
sure of his legal position in the matter. A farm 
labourer coming along, and who had seen all that had 
happened, was somewhat wroth at the apparent foolish- 
ness of our friend in not securing the rabbit, telling him 
that " anybody was perfectly at liberty to kill anything 
in the shape of hares or rabbits caught on the road- 
side ". Our friend had a hazy idea that this was not 
exactly so, but determined to set his mind at rest by 
consulting us, and after hearing the law on the subject 
was pleased that he had so desisted. 

Had he been seen by the keeper (and some of them 
are ubiquitous), he might have been summoned for 
trespassing in pursuit of rabbits ; and had a police 
constable just been rounding the corner as he was 
taking up and killing the rabbit, he might have had 
to appear as defendant under " The Poaching Preven- 
tion Act " for coming from land where he had been 
taking game. A pleasant position for an independent 
gentleman ! 

One hears sometimes of a sporting tenant, with not 
too much wood, having his pheasants lured away from 
some belt on the boundary of his shooting by the 
neighbouring farmer, who persists in placing old raisins, 
currants, etc. (for which they have a great weakness), on 
his land adjoining. There does not appear to be much 
amiss here, certainly nothing which the law takes any 
notice of, criminal or otherwise, as the birds being feres 
natures until reduced into possession, the farmer, if he 
can entice the birds and induce them to leave his neigh- 
bour's wood for his own pastures, is entitled to take 
them if he can legally reduce them into his possession, 
but he must of course have a game license to kill or take 
them. 

This is without doubt very annoying to the land- 
owner who has reared and fed the birds, and is looking 



TRESPASS IN PURSUIT OF GAME, ETC. 55 

forward to his reward. Personally, if the 1st October 
had not arrived, we should content ourselves with 
endeavouring to offer the birds greater inducements 
to remain in and about the belt ; but in any event, 
whether we succeeded in this or not, we should lose 
very little time after the 1st in giving that particular 
belt our best attention. 

It is suggested, however, that if a man walking by 
the side of a public road sees a dead rabbit in a snare 
which had been set by the tenant of the field for the 
purpose of taking rabbits, and goes into the field and 
appropriates the rabbit, a larceny would probably be 
committed, the tenant having reduced the rabbit into 
his possession by setting the snare and securing it ; for 
when animals feres natures are killed upon the soil they 
become the absolute property of the owner of the soil, 
and the Ground Game Act having given the tenant the 
right to kill ground game, when it is killed by him or 
through him, the property would no doubt vest in him. 
There would in a case like the above be a separate and 
distinct killing of the rabbit by one person and a separate 
and distinct carrying away by another not authorised. 

It is not necessary in order to support a conviction for 
trespass in pursuit of game to prove that the searching, 
etc., was with the intention to then kill or reduce into 
possession (Stiff v. Billington). 

In this case a gamekeeper was seen to leave his 
master's land with his dog and go on to adjoining land 
over which a neighbour had sporting rights. The land 
in question was sown with mustard by the tenant 
farmer, not the " sporting tenant ". When the keeper 
was detected he stated he had been carrying out his 
master's instructions and did not object to being caught, 
as the mustard had been sown to entice his master's 
pheasants. The justices having convicted the defend- 
ant (finding as a fact there was game on the land in 
question), the court above held the conviction was 
right, Lord Alverstone, L.C.J., in giving judgment, 
stating, " the court had nothing to do with the desire 



56 A PEACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

of the appellant to settle the question whether a man 
had the right to sow mustard in his field in order to 
attract his neighbour's pheasants, and the decision 
arrived at by the justices would not be disturbed. The 
court was asked to say that the words ' search ' and 
' pursuit ' in section 30 of 1 & 2 Wm. IV. c. 32 must 
be limited to ' searching and pursuing game with 
an intention to kill them at the time or reduce them 
into possession '. He thought it would be very dan- 
gerous to lay down any such rule as that with regard 
to the meaning of ' search ' and ' pursue ' ." Justice 
Lawrance agreed, and the appeal was dismissed. 

If there be no evidence of an intention to search or 
pursue after game the section would not apply, and the 
matter would resolve itself into an action for damages 
for trespass. Of course if actual wilful damage is done, 
though even only to the extent of a penny, to the fences 
or hedges, criminal proceedings might be taken for the 
actual damage occasioned, or if the defendant was not a 
man of straw, it might be worth while, if further trouble 
was anticipated, to proceed against him for an Injunction 
to restrain him from further annoyance and trespass. 

Sometimes a serious question arises as to the owner- 
ship of the land on which an offence is alleged to have 
been committed. When committed on a field or on the 
bank of the field no question can very well arise, as the 
ownership of the field is known and would be probably 
admitted, but where committed on a bank or fence with 
a single ditch contiguous to it a question may arise. 

Generally speaking, the ditch is looked upon as the 
property of the owner of the fence, as it is presumed, in 
the absence of evidence to the contrary, that the person 
who originally owned the land upon which the fence 
was erected, cut the ditch at the time the fence was 
planted on the limit of his property to throw up the soil 
to make that side of the hedge, taking care not to trespass 
on his neighbour's soil. On the other hand, rights con- 
sistent with ownership might be set up by the adjoining 
owner, such as felling timber, repairing gates and stiles, 



TKESPASSEKS USING VIOLENCE 57 

mending fences, etc. This might carry a certain amount 
of weight, but might not be considered conclusive evi- 
dence as against the claimant of the hedge and ditch. 
In Lord Craven v. Pridmore and others, which was 
a case coming before Mr. Justice Kidley, he decided 
that while admitting the force of the plaintiff's argu- 
ment, who relied upon the situation of the ditch as the 
extent of his property, that this view might be displaced 
by sufficiently strong evidence of ownership by the other 
side, of his contention of long user of the fence, which 
was apparently consistent with a legal title to the fence, 
and gave judgment for the defendant. 

It was hoped something more would be heard of this 
case in the Court of Appeal, but as his lordship decided 
the case on a question of fact, the higher court would 
scarcely interfere with such a finding if asked to do so. 

An appeal lies from a conviction in all cases under the 
Game Laws excepting the Ground Game Act, but in the 
large majority of cases the fine is not leviable by distress 
in default of payment. 

FIVE OE MOEE TEESPASSEKS USING 
VIOLENCE IN HIS MAJESTY'S PAEKS, ETC. 

(Section 32 of the Game Act of 1831.) 

Where any persons to the number of five or more 
together shall be found on any land or in any of His 
Majesty's forests, parks, chases, or warrens, in the day- 
time, in pursuit of game or woodcock, snipe, quails, 
landrails or conies, any of such persons being armed 
with a gun, and such persons or any of them shall by 
violence, intimidation or menace, prevent or endeavour 
to prevent any person authorised therein mentioned 
from approaching such persons so found, or to tell their 
or his Christian name, surname or place of abode respec- 
tively as therein mentioned, such persons so offending 
by such violence, intimidation or menace as aforesaid, 
and every person then and there aiding or abetting such 



58 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

offender, shall upon being convicted thereof forfeit and 
pay a penalty of not exceeding 5 and costs, in addition 
to and independent of any other penalty to which any 
such person may be liable for any other offence against 
the above Act. 

COMING FKOM LAND WITH GAME NETS, 
ETC., IN POSSESSION. 

(Poaching Prevention Act, 1862.) 

This Act provides " that it shall be lawful for any 
constable or peace officer in any county, borough, or 
place in Great Britain and Ireland, in any highway, 
street, or public place, to search any person whom he 
may have good cause to suspect of coming from any 
land where he shall have been unlawfully in search or 
pursuit of game, or any person aiding or abetting such 
person and having in his possession any game unlaw- 
fully obtained, or any gun, part of a gun, or nets or 
engines used for the killing or taking game ; and also 
to stop and search any cart or other conveyance, in or 
upon which such constable or peace officer shall have 
good cause to suspect that any such game, or any 
such article or thing is being carried by any such per- 
son ; and should there be found any game or any such 
article or thing as aforesaid upon such person, cart or 
other conveyance, to seize and detain such game, article 
or thing ; and such constable or peace officer shall in 
such case apply to some Justice of the Peace for a 
summons citing such person to appear before two Jus- 
tices of the Peace assembled in petty sessions. And if 
such person shall have obtained such game by unlawfully 
going on land in search or pursuit of game, or shall 
have used such article or thing as aforesaid for unlaw- 
fully killing or taking game, or shall have been accessory 
thereto, such person shall, on being convicted thereof, 
forfeit and pay any sum not exceeding 5, and shall 
forfeit such game, guns, part of guns, nets and engines ; 



COMING FROM LAND WITH GAME NETS, ETC. 59 

and the justices shall direct the same to be sold or 
destroyed, and the proceeds of such sale, with the 
amount of the penalty, to be paid to the treasurer of 
the county or borough where the conviction takes place ; 
and no person who, by direction of a justice in writing, 
shall sell any game so seized, shall be liable to any 
penalty for such sale ; and if no conviction takes place, 
the game, or other article or thing, as aforesaid, or the 
value thereof, shall be restored to the person from 
whom it had been seized." 

This section does not repeal any of the provisions of 
the previous statutes relating to offences against the 
Game Laws, but provides an additional remedy against 
poachers, as may be seen from the title. 

Game in this section means " hares, pheasants, part- 
ridges, eggs of the two last-named birds, and wood- 
cock, snipe, rabbits, grouse, black or moor game ". 

"Highway" and "street," as mentioned in the 
section, require no comment, but as to the words "pub- 
lic place," some explanation may be given, as questions 
often arise as to how far they extend. "Public place " 
then is intended to mean a place analagous to " high- 
way " or " street ". The question as to what a " public 
place " is, under the Poaching Prevention Act, does 
not appear to have been decided, though under the 
Vagrant Act, a railway station platform has been held 
to be one. Convictions under the Poaching Prevention 
Act have taken place at county petty sessional courts 
where seizures have been effected on railway platforms, 
but in cases of "fresh pursuit" only. Generally speak- 
ing, the words should be limited to such a place as a 
police constable in the execution of his duty is usually 
in the habit of patrolling. 

The police have no power under the Act to search a 
person who is starting out on a poaching expedition, as 
such person could not be said to be " coming from land," 
but he may search any person "coming from land," if 
he has good cause to suspect him of having been on 
land for the purpose of taking game, and of having 



60 A PKACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

game or instruments used for the taking or killing of 
game upon him, or any person aiding or abetting such 
person. It is not necessary to prove to the justices 
that the person suspected had actually been unlawfully 
on the land pursuing game. The search may be either 
by day or night, and must take place on the " highway," 
"street," or "public place," though in hot pursuit may 
take place in another place, and a conviction has been 
upheld where a defendant, who was in possession of 
rabbits on a highway, on seeing a police constable, 
leaped over a fence, and being pursued threw them 
down in a field some distance from the highway. If 
the game is seen or felt upon the person afterwards 
charged, the question of search would be immaterial. 
If a conviction takes place the justices are to order the 
game, etc., to be sold or destroyed, but if the proceedings 
result in a dismissal, it would, if claimed by the de- 
fendant, be returned to him. Where the defendant 
denied being in possession of the game, the subject of 
the inquiry, and repudiated ownership, the prosecutor 
would probably retain possession, and rightly so, even 
though the case were dismissed, and risk the con- 
sequences, as is generally adopted. 

If the constable has good cause for suspicion in 
making his search he would be justified in so doing, 
though no offence could be proved. There must also 
be a seizure of the game or gun, etc., to secure a con- 
viction, and the constable who seizes must apply for a 
summons, as the proceedings must take that form. A 
warrant under this section cannot be granted. 

The court must, however, be satisfied from the facts 
that the defendant had unlawfully been on land where 
he had obtained the game, or if in the case of possession 
of a gun or net, etc., that such had been used for the 
unlawful taking or killing of game. 

Many curious points often arise under the section 
now being dealt with. Where a man is stopped on the 
highway coming from land where he has undoubtedly 
been in search of game, and is carrying a brace of 



COMING FROM LAND WITH GAME NETS, ETC. 61 

pheasants or rabbits in his pockets, and after being 
searched by a police constable, the game is seized, no 
difficulty would probably arise, particularly if the man 
had a gun or nets for taking game and had no leave or 
license and does not give a satisfactory account as to 
how he came by what is seized. But, say a number of 
rabbits are seized from a cart by a police officer, who 
had reason to suspect the individual in charge, who 
was connected with poachers. Undoubtedly the game 
was poached, but bringing home the case to the de- 
fendant is sometimes a difficult task, especially if he is 
an old hand, declining to account for the possession of 
the rabbits, and telling the officer that he has come by 
them lawfully, and that if they are seized the officer 
must take the consequences. After the seizure the 
question arises, how is the man to be charged under the 
Act, whether as principal (having been on the land him- 
self and obtained the rabbits) or as an aider and abetter, 
accessory to some person who has unlawfully obtained 
the game. If a principal, a doubt might arise in the 
mind of the prosecution as to whether it would be con- 
sidered by the court as even practicable for the defen- 
dant to have actually committed the offence of having 
been on the land and obtained the game whilst having 
charge of a horse and cart, as it might be strongly 
urged as against a conviction that it would naturally 
require two or more persons to manipulate the nets, 
which must have been used in the taking of a number 
of rabbits. 

If as " accessory " what about the " principal," and who 
would the aider and abetter be accessory to, where the 
principal is unknown ; as in the opinion of some magis- 
trates and their clerks the principal offender should be 
disclosed prior to proceedings being commenced against 
an " accessory," under this section, though happily this 
is not always insisted upon. 

This section without doubt, especially in cases like 
the last named, gives the police officers and the clerks 
to justices considerable difficulty when an Information 



62 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

is being prepared, but as the clerks are always particu- 
larly well versed in such matters, the trouble is as a rule 
generally easily surmounted. 

Most ingenious defences are often raised under this 
section on the question of "suspicions of the officer 
seizing," the "search and the seizure," and conflicting 
and unsatisfactory as are the various decisions in the 
High Court on the above points, shortly it may be 
taken for granted that, if the justices satisfy themselves 
that the suspicions of the officer are well founded, the 
search and the seizure in order, and that the game has 
been unlawfully obtained, or that the guns had been 
unlawfully then recently used for the unlawful killing 
or taking of game, there would not be much difficulty 
in arriving at a decision adverse to the person charged. 

We have not thought it necessary to trouble the 
reader with a digest of the various decisions in the 
High Court on the various points raised under this 
section, on account of their conflicting nature. 

SPKING TEAPS AND POISON. 

(Ground Game Act.) 

Section 6 of the above Act enacts that no person 
having the right of killing ground game under this 
Act or otherwise, shall use any firearms for the purpose 
of killing ground game, between the expiration of the 
first hour after sunset and the commencement of the 
last hour before sunrise ; and no such person shall, for 
the purpose of killing ground game, employ spring 
traps, except in rabbit holes, nor employ poison ; and 
any person acting in contravention of this section shall, 
on summary conviction, be liable to a penalty not 
exceeding 2. 

Ground game means hares and rabbits, and the 
words "or otherwise" include tenants with sporting- 
rights at common law T on the land, but exclude land- 
lords in possession (Saunders v. Pitfield). In Smith v. 



SPRING TRAPS AND POISON 63 

Hunt it was held the prohibition in the section as to 
employing spring traps did not apply to an owner 
occupying his own land when the sporting rights were 
not let by him. 

An owner who has leased the land and reserved the 
sporting rights, having thus only a concurrent right to 
the ground game, could not use spring traps in the 
open. 

If an "occupier," over whose lands the sporting 
rights are reserved to the landlord, invited two or more 
persons to kill ground game on the land with firearms, 
he might, it is conceived, be proceeded against for 
aiding and abetting them. 

Many " occupiers " under the Ground Game Act, 
where the game is reserved to the landlord, let for a 
lump sum the rabbits to rabbit catchers and vermin 
killers, but the man employed must be authorised in 
writing, to be legally entitled to kill them, and if he is 
not so authorised he would be a trespasser under the 
30th section. If authorised in writing he must comply 
with the provisions of the Ground Game Act, and set 
his traps accordingly. If he does not, being within the 
provisions of the Act, he might be summoned, as the 
" occupier " himself might, for setting spring traps other- 
wise than in rabbit holes. If, however, the game was 
not reserved to the landlord, but the full right enjoyed by 
the tenant, it would appear the Ground Game Act 
would not apply, and the traps might be set independent 
of that Act. 

An assistant to a vermin killer, accused with his 
principal (which latter is authorised in writing), of 
using spring traps in the open, might be charged with 
aiding and abetting the principal, as such assistant 
could not be a person entitled to kill ground game under 
the Act ; though probably the better way to charge him 
would be under the 30th section of the Game Act 
(trespass in pursuit), as it might be questioned whether 
he could " aid and abet " in an offence he could not be 
charged with as a principal. 



64 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

The onus in each case lies on the defendant to prove 
the trap was set in the hole. 

The period of time prohibited in the section is the 
same as the usual night poaching hours; and with 
respect to the employing of the traps it may be further 
mentioned that these must be set in the bond fide 
scrape of the hole, it having been decided by the 
Scotch Court of Justiciary that where rabbits had 
scraped below a wire fence in their passing from one 
side of the fence to the other, it was not a rabbit hole 
within the meaning of the section. 

There does not appear to be any authority under the 
Ground Game Acts to seize and retain the spring traps 
found set out of rabbit holes. 

The offence of employing poison in the section seems 
to have been necessary, as the 1 & 2 Wm. IV. c. 
32, sect. 3, did not include rabbits, but referred only to 
the destruction of "game," i.e., "putting poison with 
intent to destroy or injure game on any land where 
game usually resort, or on any highway," rendering 
offender liable to a penalty of 10. By 26 & 27 Viet, 
c. 113, sect. 2, it is provided, as to poison, that every 
person who shall offer or expose for sale or sell any 
grain, seed, or meal, which has been steeped or dipped 
in poison, or with which any poison or any ingredient 
or preparation has been so mixed as thereby to render 
the same poisonous and calculated to destroy life, shall 
in either case for every such offence forfeit on conviction 
not exceeding 10. 

By section 3 any person who shall knowingly and 
wilfully sow, cast, set, lay, put, or place, or cause to be 
sown, cast, put, or placed into, or upon any ground or 
other exposed place or situation any such grain, seed, 
or meal so steeped or dipped in poison, or with which 
poison or any ingredient or preparation has been so 
mixed as thereby to render such grain, seed, or meal 
poisonous or calculated to destroy life, shall on con- 
viction forfeit not exceeding 10. 

By section 4 of the Act nothing is to prevent the 



SPORTING AT UNLAWFUL SEASONS 65 

offering for sale or selling of any solution for dressing 
any grain or seed for bond fide use in agriculture only, or 
for the sowing of such grain or seed. 

As it is necessary under the Game Act for the prose- 
cution to prove the intent to kill game (which is gen- 
erally somewhat difficult of proof), and the 26 & 27 
Viet. c. 113 does not require such proof, the latter Act 
would seem to afford the better protection. 

It would be a question for the justices to decide as to 
whether or not the poison was used for the purpose and 
with the intention to destroy game. 

SPOKTING AT UNLAWFUL SEASONS. 

KILLING GAME ON A SUNDAY OR CHRISTMAS DAY. 

(1 & 2 Wm. IV. c. 32, sect. 3.) 

" If any person whatsoever shall kill or take any game, 
or use any dog, gun, net, or other engine or instrument 
for the purpose of killing or taking any game on a Sun- 
day or Christmas Day, such person shall, on conviction 
thereof before two Justices of the Peace, forfeit and 
pay for every such offence such sum of money, not ex- 
ceeding 5, as to the Justices shall seem meet, together 
with the costs of the conviction." 

KILLING GAME IN CLOSE SEASON. 

Section 3, proceeding as follows, further enacts : 
" And if any person whatsoever shall kill or take any 
partridge between the 1st day of February and the 1st 
day of September in any year, or any pheasant between 
the 1st day of February and the 1st day of October in 
any year, or any black game (except in the county of 
Somerset or Devon, or in the New Forest in the county 
of Southampton) between the 10th day of December 
in any year and the 20th day of August in the succeed- 
ing year, or in the County of Somerset or Devon or 
in the New Forest aforesaid between the 10th day of 

5 



66 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

December in any year and the 1st day of September in 
the succeeding year, or any grouse commonly called red 
game between the 10th day of December in any year 
and the 12th day of August in the succeeding year, or 
any bustard between the 1st day of March and the 1st 
day of September in any year, every such person shall, 
on conviction of any such offence before two Justices of 
the Peace, forfeit and pay for every head of game so 
killed or taken such sum of money, not exceeding 1, 
as to the said Justices shall seem meet, together with 
the costs of the conviction." 

" Taking" under this section means "catching," but 
if the game is accidentally caught either in a trap or by 
a dog it might not be an unlawful taking, the gist of 
the case being the part the defendant acted under the 
circumstances. If his action warranted the belief that 
he intended to liberate the game caught, either by trap 
or dog, then no conviction would follow; but if the 
defendant appropriated the game, it would make all the 
difference. The killing and taking are only one offence, 
though of course a person may take without killing. 

The question as to whether a gun was used or not 
is for the justices to decide, as it has been decided, as 
before mentioned, that walking about with a gun in a 
sporting attitude where there was a reasonable possi- 
bility of finding game was evidence of using the gun, 
if there was an intention to kill game (Hebdon v. 
Hentley). A snare has been held to be an "instru- 
ment " for taking game, and is within the section. 

An offence is often committed against this section by 
those who know the law and ought to know better, but 
occasionally matters are brought to light, and adequate 
fines inflicted upon the delinquents. We remember the 
case where the son of a landowner, who farmed his 
estate, was charged with using snares on Sunday, which 
he had apparently set on the previous Saturday, and 
allowed the snares to remain during the Sunday, when 
several partridges were snared in them, the defendant 
calling the following morning and taking the birds out 



SPORTING WITHOUT CERTIFICATE 67 

of the snares. The evidence was ample to sustain a 
conviction, being supported by Allen v. Thompson, which 
case decided that a defendant might be convicted with- 
out any evidence of his having been on the land during 
the Sunday. It is a most unsportsmanlike act to set 
a quantity of snares over a field for the purpose of 
taking game, either pheasants or partridges ; and where 
they can be proved to be allowed to remain on Sunday 
and birds are caught, fines will invariably result if pro- 
ceedings are taken with that view. We have heard of 
many complaints of small tenant farmers who take out 
a game certificate persisting in setting large numbers 
of these snares on their lands and in the hedges, but 
an intimation from their landlord to desist has generally 
had the desired effect. 

SPOKTING WITHOUT CEBTIFICATE. 

(1 & 2 Wm. IV. c. 32, sect. 23.) 

No person shall kill or take any game, or use any dog, 
gun, net, or other engine or instrument for the purpose 
of searching for or killing or taking game without being 
authorised so to do by game certificate. Penalty not 
exceeding 5 (with costs). 

It is necessary to avoid the penalty that a person 
should have obtained the license, and not merely have 
paid the duty, before he begins to sport, or an offence 
will be committed, and a conviction before the justices 
at the instance of the police or a common informer will 
not exempt the defendant from a further penalty at 
the instance of the Commissioners of Inland Kevenue, 
which is a cumulative penalty. The Commissioners 
are, however, somewhat lenient in matters of this kind, 
and invariably give a defendant who has been convicted 
of the offence of trespassing in pursuit of game or 
using a gun, etc., an opportunity of voluntarily paying 
a compromised penalty stated at the time, and if this is 
paid further proceedings are abandoned. 

This is often considered by sportsmen most objection- 

5 



68 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

able. They have to take their licenses out year by year 
before they shoot, and yet poachers and others who go 
sporting about without a license, sometimes with a 10s. 
license to carry a gun, get their sport for nothing, till 
caught trespassing in pursuit, when a small fine is in- 
flicted by the justices, as it is very seldom a second charge 
is preferred at the same time for sporting or killing 
without license. If a second charge were preferred for 
the sporting or killing without certificate and a convic- 
tion followed, the Commissioners would invariably hold 
their hand, not being desirous of proceeding for the 
cumulative penalty, and thus prosecute the defendant 
a second time for practically the same offence. Thus 
it will be seen that the better course to adopt when 
deciding to proceed against a defendant who com- 
mits a trespass in pursuit of game, and uses a gun for 
the purpose of taking game, or actually takes game, 
without having a certificate authorising him to do 
so, is to simply lay an Information for the "game 
trespass," and leave the Commissioners of Inland 
"Revenue to take the necessary proceedings for the 
recovery of their penalty for either the using of the 
gun for taking, etc., or for killing, without certificate. 

Killing hares, under the provisions of the Ground 
Game Act, 1880, does not, of course, necessitate the 
taking out of a license to kill game. A person may be 
convicted under this section (23) of killing or taking game 
without certificate, if he has no certificate, during the 
close season, and he would, of course, be further liable 
under section 3 for killing or taking game during the 
close season. 

Under the 23rd section of the Game Act, 1831, an 
information for " sporting without certificate " may very 
often be preferred against a defendant where it is not 
practicable to lay any information under the Night 
Poaching Acts, for using dogs by night for the pur- 
pose of taking hares (the dog not being an instrument 
for taking game under the last-named Acts), or for a 
trespass in pursuit of game (section 30), such section 



SPORTING WITHOUT CERTIFICATE 69 

not applying to the night-time, assuming, of course, 
that the dogs were coursing hares and unsuccessful 
in their endeavours, and that the men were either 
on the land or inciting the dogs to pursue the game. 
Should the hare be caught and appropriated by the 
owner of the dogs, there would be little difficulty in 
securing a conviction for taking or destroying game 
under the Night Poaching Acts. First portion of 9 
Geo. IV. c. 69, sect. 1. 

The full effect of this 23rd section has very often 
been overlooked in cases where dogs have been used 
at night, especially in those cases where the hare has 
been coursed by the poachers' dogs but not caught. 

A difficulty sometimes arises where several defendants 
are charged with an offence of killing game without 
license, where it cannot be satisfactorily proved who 
actually killed the bird in question. In the case of 
Hunter v. Clarke and others several men were charged 
with killing game without a license, and the informa- 
tion having been dismissed, the Inland Revenue authori- 
ties, who prosecuted, appealed by way of a special case 
for the opinion of a superior court. It appears that all 
the defendants carried guns and were ranging a field in 
which wheat had been cut but some was still standing. 
Four pheasants rose in succession out of the wheat, 
shots were fired at two of them, and all the defendants 
pointed their guns at one of the birds, when three guns 
were discharged. One of the defendants had a license 
to kill game, two had a license to carry a gun and two 
not. 

For the prosecution it was contended that each of 
the defendants was in pursuit of game, and having re- 
gard to the whole of the evidence given, was liable to 
conviction. 

For the defendants it was contended, and believed 
by a majority of the justices, that they were in search 
of rabbits, that in so far as they pointed their guns at 
the pheasants but did not fire them, they acted on the 
impulse of the moment and without any intention of 



70 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

firing, and that the evidence failed to show which of the 
defendants actually fired at the pheasant, or either of 
them. 

The majority of the justices dismissed the informa- 
tion on the following grounds : 

That the particular person who shot the pheasant 
could not be identified, and 

That they believed the defendants went to the field 
for the purpose of shooting rabbits and not to shoot 
game. 

On the appeal, in the King's Bench Division, it was 
urged on behalf of the appellant that the justices were 
wrong. They seemed to have thought that because 
the defendants went primarily with the intention of 
killing rabbits they were not liable, but at the moment 
they fired at the pheasant they were in pursuit of game. 
As to the second point, each defendant who fired at the 
pheasant was liable to a conviction, and the identifi- 
cation of the particular shot which killed the bird was 
not necessary. 

The respondents did not appear. 

Lord Alverstone in giving judgment said : " This 
case must be remitted to the justices to convict the 
three defendants who were proved by the evidence to 
have shot at the pheasant ". 

Justices Darling and Channell concurred. 

HAKES. 

(55 Viet. c. 8, sect. 2.) 

This statute makes it unlawful to sell or expose for 
sale any hare or leveret during the months of March, 
April, May, June or July. Penalty not exceeding 20s. 
The Act does not of course apply to foreign hares im- 
ported and sold here or exposed for sale during the 
above months. 

In England hares and rabbits may be killed all the 
year round, but as stated above, hares and leverets 



SELLING GAME WITHOUT LICENSE 71 

must not be sold or exposed for sale during the above- 
mentioned months. 

So far, however, as moorlands are concerned, the Act 
of 1880, sect. 1, sub-section 3, only authorises the killing 
of hares and rabbits on moorlands and unenclosed lands 
(not being arable) from llth December to 31st March, 
but this does not apply to detached portions of less 
than twenty-five acres adjoining arable lands. 

By the Ground Game Amendment Act of 1906, 
which came into operation on the 1st of April, 1907, 
notwithstanding the above sub-section of the Act of 
1880, the occupier of lands to which that sub-section 
applies, shall without prejudice to his existing rights 
under that Act, be entitled between the 1st September 
and the 10th December, both inclusive, to exercise the 
right of killing and taking ground game, otherwise than 
by the use of firearms. By section 3 of the Act of 1906, 
section 3 of the Act of 1880 shall not prevent the occu- 
pier of moorlands, and the owner of such lands, or the 
person having the right to the game thereon, from 
making and enforcing agreements for the joint exercise, 
or the exercise for their joint benefit, of the right to kill 
and take ground game, between the 1st September and 
the 10th December both inclusive in any year. 

Hares must not be killed on Sunday or Christmas 
Day, and are further dealt with under the heading of 
ground game. 

SELLING GAME WITHOUT LICENSE. 
(1 & 2 Wm. IV. c. 32, sect. 25.) 

Any person not having a license to kill game (except 
he be licensed to deal in game) selling or offering for 
sale any game to any person whatsoever, or any person 
authorised to sell game by virtue of a license to kill 
game, selling or offering for sale any game to any person 
whatsoever, except a licensed dealer (sect. 25). Penalty 
not exceeding 2 for every head of game. 



72 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

Any licensed dealer buying or selling or knowingly 
having in his house, etc., possession or control any bird 
of game after ten (one inclusive and other exclusive) 
days from the time when it shall be unlawful to kill or 
take such game, or any person not being a licensed dealer 
buying or selling any bird of game after ten days from 
the time when it shall be unlawful to kill or take such 
game, or knowingly having in his house, etc., any bird 
of game (except birds kept in a mew or breeding place) 
after forty days from same time. Penalty, 1 for every 
head of game (sect. 4). 

Buying game except from licensed dealers, and 
licensed dealers buying from uncertificated persons, or 
not having license board affixed outside premises, or 
selling game at other than shop, etc., where board 
affixed, renders offender liable to 10 penalty. 

The Local Government Act of 1894 provides that the 
powers, duties and liabilities of justices out of quarter 
sessions shall be transferred to the Rural or Urban 
District Council by whom game certificates are granted, 
and on their production the Excise authorities grant the 
license to deal in game. This license expires on the 1st 
July in each year, and must state on the face of it the 
house, shop or stall where the game is to be sold. An 
exception is of course made in the case of innkeepers 
selling for consumption in their own houses to their 
customers. 

A license to deal in game cannot be granted to a 
licensed victualler, beerseller or the owner, guard, or 
driver of a mail coach or conveyance used to convey 
mails, or to a carrier or higgler or a person employed by 
any of the above, and a licensed victualler or innkeeper 
must of course obtain his game from a person duly 
authorised to sell. A license is not required to sell 
simply woodcock, snipe, quail, landrail, rabbits or deer. 

A dealer in foreign game must now make the neces- 
sary application for a certificate to a District, Urban or 
Town Council, as the case may be since the Customs 
Act of 1893 over-riding the old law as stated in Pudney 



SELLING GAME WITHOUT LICENSE 73 

v. Eccles. A person cannot sell game to a licensed game 
dealer unless he shall have taken out a full 3 license, 
except a gamekeeper acting under his master's express 
written authority on his master's account in respect of 
game killed on his master's land (or over which he has 
the right of sporting). If the game is otherwise killed 
the keeper must have a full 3 license. 

A game dealer purchasing foreign game from a per- 
son not licensed to sell or kill game would incur no 
penalty in so doing. What would be the use of in- 
flicting a penalty on a person buying French partridges 
from a Frenchman, where the Frenchman had no 
license to kill or sell game, when probably a license 
is not required at the place from which the game is 
obtained ? 

A person licensed cannot sell at more than one house, 
shop, stall, etc., without being further licensed to do so, 
and any offence on the part of the game dealer in con- 
travention of the Game Act, renders the license void, 
but there appears to be nothing to prevent a person who 
has been convicted under the Act, from applying for 
another license which would expire on the following 
1st July. Whether it is absolutely necessary for the 
person to apply to the local authority, and obtain a 
fresh certificate to present to the Excise before they 
would grant him a second license for the unexpired 
period of the year, is a question, but from past experience 
we think the Excise would grant the license on pay- 
ment of the 3, their opinion being that their previous 3 
license only was forfeited, and the certificate not affected. 
Licensed dealers commit an offence against section 28 
of the Game Act if they buy live game (which would in- 
clude tame game) from persons not authorised to sell it, 
the onus being on the dealer to ascertain if the seller 
could legally sell. 

Under section 4 of the Game Act persons other 
than, licensed dealers in game may keep birds of 
game in a " mew " or " breeding place " during the 
close season, though dealers are liable to a penalty for 



74 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

being in possession of game at such a time. If dealers 
were allowed to buy tame game from persons who had 
no license to kill or sell game the practice might, and no 
doubt would, encourage the theft of pheasants from 
pheasantries. 

A dealer may purchase from an " occupier " under the 
Ground Game Act hares killed by him, or persons 
authorised by him under that Act, and having no license 
to kill game. 

Game may also of course be purchased by a licensed 
dealer in game from a person authorised to sell game 
under an order of justices made under the provisions of 
the Poaching Prevention Act, where the game has 
been seized under that Act on the " highway," " street," 
or " public place," and the person in possession of it 
has been convicted, and the game ordered by the jus- 
tices to be sold. 

A question has sometimes been raised as to whether a 
woman was entitled to hold a license to deal in game. 
To some this may seem a curious question, but it is 
a much more difficult one to answer than it appears 
to be, inasmuch as in the form of license in the schedule 
to the Act granting the license, reference is made to 
"him" and "his". The schedule being a portion of 
the Act, it might very properly be inferred that the 
grant must necessarily be to a man, notwithstanding 
the "Acts of Parliament abbreviation of 1850," enact- 
ing that words importing masculine gender should be 
deemed to include the feminine, the "singular" the 
"plural" and so forth, and the further Acts bearing on 
the subject. It is a matter not without doubt, though 
it has always, we believe, judging from experience, 
been in favour of a woman holding a license when 
granted by the justices, and since the Local Govern- 
ment Act of 1894, by the local authority there referred 
to, on the production of whose grant the Excise have 
never hesitated to issue their license. 

Surely it was never intended by the legislature to 
prohibit the widow of a deceased game dealer from 



TAKING HAEES OR RABBITS IN WARREN 75 

succeeding her husband in his business, where fully 
competent. 

We are inclined to think that the framer of the Act, 
in drafting the form annexed to it, inserted the words 
"him" and "his" mechanically, and that it passed 
unnoticed and so received the Eoyal Assent. 

At all events we should not hesitate to make the 
necessary application for a female, if instructed, and 
should hope to be successful. 

TAKING HAEES OE EABBITS IN WAEEEN. 

(24 & 25 Viet. c. 96, sect. 17, Larceny Act, 1861. 
Misdemeanour.) 

Unlawfully and wilfully between the expiration of the 
first hour after sunset and the beginning of the last 
hour before sunrise taking or killing any hare or rabbit 
in any warren or ground lawfully used for the breeding 
or keeping of hares or rabbits, whether the same be 
enclosed or not. (This portion of the section has been 
previously referred to amongst the indictable cases.) And 
unlawfully and wilfully between the beginning of the last 
hour before sunrise and the expiration of the first hour 
after sunset taking or killing any hare or rabbit in such 
warren or ground or at any time setting or using therein 
any snare or engine for the taking of hares or rabbits. 
Penalty not exceeding 5. 

Nothing in this section is to affect a person taking 
rabbits in the daytime on any sea bank or river bank 
in the County of Lincoln, so far as the tide shall ex- 
tend, or within one furlong of the bank. This of 
course only exempts persons from the penalty imposed 
by this section and not from section 30 of the Game 
Act (the ordinary section for trespassing in pursuit 
of game or rabbits). The above section 17 of the 
Larceny Act does not repeal or interfere with sec- 
tion 1 of the Night Poaching Act of 1828, which only 
relates to open and unenclosed land, and it is entirely 
for the justices to decide whether the land in question 



76 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

is a warren or not (Bevan v. Hopkinson). If the de- 
fendants are actually found committing either of the 
above offences under section 17 they may be imme- 
diately apprehended without a warrant (section 103). 

TAKING OE DESTEOYING EGGS. 
(1 & 2 Wrn. IV. c. 32, sect. 24.) 

Any person not having the right of killing game upon 
the land, nor having permission from the person having 
such right, wilfully taking out of the nest, or destroy- 
ing in the nest, the eggs of any bird of game or swan, 
wild duck, teal or widgeon, or knowingly having in his 
possession any eggs so taken. 

This is undoubtedly of all offences against the Game 
Laws the most disastrous to the preserver of winged 
game, striking as it does at the root of all sport, and 
judging from the enormous quantities of game eggs 
formerly trafficked in, it naturally behoves those who 
possess sporting rights to guard them jealously. 

The English partridge is a general favourite with 
sportsmen, being essentially the tenant of the cornfields, 
and common to all the corn counties in England, more 
abundant perhaps in those counties where the labours 
of the ploughman are most extensive. The hen bird 
commences to lay her eggs about the middle of April, 
when the weather is favourable, but it is often well into 
May before the egging season becomes general. 

On account of the large number of eggs laid it may 
with safety be said that there is not much fear of the 
bird being exterminated. The egging season of 1906 
was, however, as disastrous as it possibly could be, 
thousands of young birds being drowned by the severe 
storms, and in many instances the parent birds as well. 
Indeed it was reported that in Norfolk 400 young birds 
had been destroyed in one field. Fortunately, however, 
such was not general throughout that county, and it is 
not at all likely that even all the "persecution" the 



TAKING OR DESTROYING EGGS 77 

bird meets with from the sportsman will drive it from 
its haunts, rising as it does when disturbed to settle 
again in the same field. 

If a partridge had but a woodcock's thigh, 
'Twould be the finest bird that ever did fly ; 
If a woodcock had but a partridge breast, 
'Twould be the finest bird that ever was dressed. 

On the edible qualities of the bird it is unnecessary 
to dwell here. 

We have heard of the theory of collecting partridges' 
eggs and substituting artificial ones in the nest and 
allowing the birds to sit on the latter until their own 
eggs (which have been placed under hens) were on the 
point of hatching, and could be restored to the nests. 
It was supposed by these means the partridges' eggs 
were better protected from the attacks of vermin, but 
there is no evidence that this has been successful in 
practice. 

No doubt much has been done in the counties of Nor- 
folk, Suffolk, Essex, Bedford and Cambridge and other 
counties where associations exist for the protection of 
game, to preserve the pheasant and partridge and to 
check the illicit traffic in their eggs, but much still 
remains to be done in other counties which might 
easily be accomplished by the co-operation of persons 
interested. 

In addition to the eggs of birds of game, section 
24 also covers the eggs of swan, wild duck, teal and 
widgeon. 

To secure a conviction the prosecutor must prove 
either a taking out of the nest, a destroying in the nest, 
or the defendant in possession of eggs so taken. 

The word " so " in the section means a great deal, 
and is very often overlooked not only by laymen but 
sometimes by the legal practitioner, and from its in- 
troduction into the section will be seen the important 
bearing it has. To be in possession of game eggs, ap- 



78 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

parently unlawful, is not legally sufficient to bring the 
presumed offender within the section now being dealt 
with, unless coupled with some evidence as to the ab- 
straction from the nests, and this section must not be 
confused with section 2 of the Poaching Prevention 
Act, where a search is made by a police officer on a 
highway, street or public place and a seizure is effected. 
It may also be noted here that a person trespassing in 
search of game eggs commits no offence under section 30 
of the Game Act (game trespass), as he is not in search 
or pursuit of live game, and many preservers of game 
have met with some disappointment on finding such to 
be the law. 

We remember a case where a gamekeeper after watch- 
ing a poacher trespassing in search of game eggs and 
brushing the fences with a stick, accosted him on the 
land, searched him and found nothing, and reporting 
the case to his master was directed to summon 
for the next petty sessions. The keeper accordingly 
attended the magistrates' clerk's office and explained the 
circumstances of his case. He was told that no offence 
was disclosed, which seemed to him incredible, and so 
his master was again interviewed and the keeper was 
directed to obtain independent advice. He laid the 
details before us, and we were bound to endorse what 
the magistrates' clerk had advised. Had the keeper 
been more experienced he would have laid low, watched 
the man a little longer, and then probably have had the 
satisfaction of seeing him take eggs and of getting him 
convicted for so doing. The proper course under such 
circumstances is to wait until an offence has been com- 
mitted and then accost the party trespassing. 

Happily cases of wanton destruction of game eggs are 
undoubtedly on the decline, in fact are of rather rare 
occurrence, and apart from the ordinary idler of the 
village and the confirmed poacher, only occur when 
some ill-feeling exists against the landlord or sporting 
tenant for some real or imaginary grievance. It is any- 
thing but a pleasant sight to see several partridges' nests 



TAKING OR DESTROYING EGGS 79 

containing eggs all smashed, apparently by some evil- 
disposed person's foot having been placed therein, and 
that not accidentally. In justice, however, to the tenant 
let it be said that he was not the person responsible for 
it or even suspected. Although suspicion was very strong 
against one individual, for various reasons no proceed- 
ings were taken and the matter allowed to drop. Fortu- 
nately it is very seldom that any friction exists between 
the landowner or the sporting tenant, and the tenant of 
the land shot over, good feeling being reciprocated, but 
where this is not the case considerable annoyance and 
sometimes damage may be caused during the egging 
season in a variety of ways. 

Of the many devices to avoid detection adopted by 
traffickers in illicitly-obtained game eggs, much might 
be written and said, but perhaps a few only need be 
mentioned here. 

A year or two back the most common method of 
transit from the parish where the eggs were obtained to 
the larger centres in Norfolk (we cannot speak as to 
other counties) was the false bottom in cart. This 
becoming too well known to the energetic police, 
false bottoms to crates and large stone bottles were 
adopted, the bottoms of which would screw off, more 
particularly used when despatched by carrier, but these 
dodges are now getting stale and considered a little too 
hazardous to risk. 

In 1906 a man was strongly suspected of trafficking 
in game eggs purloined from the land in the neighbour- 
hood of the village in which he lived, but though he 
had often been searched by the police on his way to 
Norwich he was never found to have any game eggs 
upon him. The mystery was, however, solved at last, 
the man's wife having brought the eggs into Norwich 
under the seat in her child's perambulator. 

Pedestrian bagmen often run the gauntlet, and have 
been known to admit bringing safe to its destination a 
box of game eggs, charging a small toll for the service 
rendered. 



80 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

Near Holt (which was a hotbed of the poaching fra- 
ternity) a hawker admitted to bringing 140 " shortens," 
as partridges' eggs are there called, collected at Binham, 
to Holt, wrapped up in a box in a roll of cloth, and 
reaching his destination without difficulty. 

It may surprise some of my readers to know that in 
a certain parish in Norfolk a somewhat novel method 
of collecting illicitly-obtained game eggs prevailed for 
several years. A dealer in game food had an agent, 
who, whilst advertising the food in the rural districts, 
at the same time advertised that he was prepared to 
give so much per dozen for pheasants and partridges' 
eggs, his bills being deposited in the village public- 
houses. The practice was a shortlived one, and gave 
colour to the statement freely circulated at the time 
that a large order had been given (10,000 eggs) for 
the stocking of a gentleman's preserves, and the eggs 
had to be obtained. 

Without doubt, this was putting temptation into the 
mind of the countryman working on or near the land, 
and encouraging him to abstract what eggs he could 
from the banks and land on which he was working, as 
well as the man cultivating a few rods of land as a 
garden, upon which a partridge might have nested. 

Not a hundred miles from East Dereham there is 
a public-house which was formerly resorted to by the 
idlers of the village during the egging season, who 
were known to have in their pockets more cash then than 
at any other period of the year. In one of the rooms 
in this house was a recess in which was a locker 
largely used during the season for the depositing of 
game eggs by those in the secret, an understanding 
existing between the landlord and his sly customers. 
Whenever they had any eggs to dispose of, they were 
placed in this locker by the depositor, and on his return 
shortly afterwards he would find the eggs removed and 
their value in cash. It is said thousands of partridge 
and pheasants' eggs passed through that locker every 
season, without any agreement between the landlord 



TAKING OR DESTROYING EGGS 81 

and his friends, but each relying on the other and the 
custom at the house, all interested being perfectly satis- 
fied with the bargains. This is happily a thing of the 
past. 

By way of assisting in the identification of game 
eggs, where they are at all likely to be purloined 
during the egging season, much may be said in 
favour of "marking". 

If nests are easy of access to the poacher, where 
footpaths are at all numerous, the experiment of 
"marking" may be considered advisable. The best 
method to adopt is undoubtedly stamping the initials 
of the proprietor with invisible ink (which on being 
subjected to the proper test reappear), with a pneu- 
matic stamp which readily adapts itself to the shape 
of the egg without injury to it, as might be caused by 
other methods sometimes resorted to. This stamping 
has never been known to be the means of making the 
bird forsake its nest. 

This practice was, without the slightest doubt, the 
means of bringing home to a defendant the charge of 
being in the unlawful possession of over 600 game eggs, 
which but for the initials on several of them, could 
never have been identified. Of course it is not neces- 
sary to stamp each egg, but only two or three of a full 
nest. The stamping instrument can be obtained from 
Spratts Patent, Ltd., 24 and 25 Fenchurch Street, 
London, E.G., for a very trifling sum (5s. complete), 
and the pencil now called " Tecko" may be purchased 
at the same address, price also 5s. complete. 

Against the practice of marking is perhaps the incon- 
venience to the keepers, the possibility of disturbance 
to the laying bird by going too often to the nest, or the 
probability of leaving some footmark on the bank near 
the nest, by which it is betrayed to the idler of the 
village or the poacher from the town, who, if they 
happen to be old hands at the egging business, will 
carefully examine the eggs for marks before appro- 
priating them. 

6 



82 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

Woe to any nest of eggs if a mark is detected upon 
any of them, as the sole of the man's boot would soon 
be in the nest. 

This marking principle has only recently been brought 
to the front, and although those most interested have 
not unanimously approved the principle, it is getting 
more generally known and adopted. 1 

To some it may seem a more natural state of affairs 
to allow the nests to remain undisturbed, and take the 
risk involved, putting on an additional hand to assist 
the watchers and keepers. Of course, if the purloining 
of the eggs continue, and it is decided to find the cul- 
prit if possible, " marking " might materially assist 
where there is a possibility of a seizure being effected, 
but this should be done with invisible ink. 

It is a very common practice for landowners and 
sporting tenants in Norfolk to pay a small sum, 
generally about a shilling, to any person who informs 
the keeper of a nest of game eggs found in an exposed 
situation overlooked by the keepers and likely to come 
to harm either in one way or another. This is no 
doubt a wise and businesslike proceeding, especially 
when the eggs are allowed to remain in the nest and 
the keeper given an opportunity of taking them him- 
self ; but instances often occur of the eggs being taken 
by the finder to the keeper. This raises considerable 
doubt sometimes as to whether the eggs have been 
taken from the place alleged, or from some other nest 
which ought not to have been disturbed, besides putting 
it within the power of the finder, if so disposed, to 
appropriate them, where he does not meet with a keeper 
before he reaches his home. 

Without doubt every year large quantities of part- 
ridges and pheasants' eggs are trafficked in in the 

1 In some counties where a Game Association is in vogue, each 
member is, we understand, given an initial (or two initials), with which 
his keeper marks the eggs. Any eggs being found with the mark 
should be easily traceable. It is believed that the fact of this being 
known to be done is a great deterrent to egg stealing. 



TAKING OR DESTROYING EGGS 83 

counties of Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridge, and prob- 
ably in other counties within the British Isles, which 
have been poached. A large and legitimate trade is 
done in pheasants' eggs, but so far as partridges are 
concerned it can scarcely be so, and it is more particu- 
larly with reference to the latter that the following re- 
marks apply, as pheasants' eggs and the game farmer 
have been dealt with in a previous chapter. 

It may be honestly stated that, generally speaking, 
in the counties named, when partridges' eggs are sold 
they have been in the vast majority of cases illicitly 
obtained, as what landowner or sportsman, or farmer 
having the sporting rights on his land, would think of 
taking partridges' eggs from off his land ? Very few in- 
deed, we should say. We have heard of one landowner 
(and only one) who is said to annually sell some of his 
first laid partridge eggs, but should rather doubt it, and 
we will give him the benefit of the doubt. 

Being more of a wild bird, the partridge often nests on 
the banks by the side of the road and by-paths, and 
early in the egging season before the herbage is much 
grown the nests are discovered without much searching 
for by those intent on finding them. No doubt it is 
some temptation to the unemployed to search the banks, 
and so long as purchasers can be found among un- 
scrupulous game dealers and others for eggs, however 
obtained, so long will the illicit traffic exist. 

The question of checking this traffic has for years 
much concerned good sportsmen, and many suggestions 
have been made in trying to find a remedy, but not 
until the advent of Game Protection Associations in 
counties has anything effective been accomplished. 
Where such Associations exist, and members undertake 
not to purchase partridge eggs (except under certain 
special rules), and combine to endeavour to stop the 
illicit traffic in them, much no doubt can be and is 
accomplished, and the exchanging of eggs by way of 
improving stock must be beneficial, particularly where 
estates are wide apart. 

6* 



84 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

Why these associations should not be formed in more 
game-preserving counties than at present exist, one is 
at a loss to understand, as combination and co-operation 
on the part of an influential society go a long way 
towards attaining the objects in view. 

Much assistance could be given to the preservers of 
game and sportsmen by honest game dealers, to their 
mutual advantage, if the latter would only look at 
matters in a proper light and could be induced to keep 
a register of all game eggs and live birds of game pur- 
chased by them, and allow it to be inspected by 
some recognised official, acceptable to all; but this is 
apparently at present too much to expect. The practice 
of keeping such a register does, we are informed, pre- 
vail in some of our colonies ; and why not here ? So let 
us hope the day is not far distant when such provisions 
will be in force in these islands ; but game preservers 
will have to exert themselves before this can be attained 
though not much can be expected in this direction 
while a Kadical Parliament lasts. 



TENANT KILLING GAME WHEN SAME 
EESEEVED. 

Section 12 of the Game Act, 1831, enacts : 
" That where the right of killing the game upon any 
land is by this Act given to any lessor or landlord, in 
exclusion of the right of the occupier of such land, or 
where such exclusive right hath been or shall be speci- 
ally reserved by or granted to or doth or shall belong to 
the lessor, landlord or any person whatsoever other than 
the occupier of such land, then and in every such case, 
if the occupier of such land shall kill, pursue or take 
any game upon such land, or shall give permission to 
any other person so to do, without the authority of the 
lessor, landlord or other person having the right of kill- 
ing the game upon such land, such occupier shall on 
conviction before two Justices of the Peace forfeit and 



NIGHT POACHING 85 

pay for such pursuit such sum of money not exceeding 
2, and for every head of game so killed or taken such 
sum of money not exceeding 1, as to the convicting 
justices shall seem meet together with the cost of the 
conviction." 

The above section will not prevent the tenant " as 
occupier" from killing the hares under the Ground 
Game Act or the rabbits, even, of course, where the 
game is reserved, but except as provided by the Ground 
Game Act a stranger cannot be authorised by the tenant 
to kill the rabbits either for his own or the stranger's 
use, or the woodcock, snipe, quails or landrails. When 
the right to kill is vested in the landlord or the lessee, 
the license or consent of the tenant is of no avail, sec- 
tion 30 of the Act allowing the party entitled to the 
game to enforce the penalty. 

Consequently as a tenant cannot commit a trespass on 
his own land, if he kills game, where the game is 
reserved by the landlord, the offence would come under 
section 12. If the tenant only kills woodcock, quails, 
landrails or snipe he could not be prosecuted under 
section 12. A tenant can take woodcock and snipe 
with nets or springs. 

Where a person is not authorised by the owner of 
the land or the occupier or the person in possession of 
the sporting rights, such person is liable to the Excise 
penalty for killing rabbits, woodcock, snipe, quails 
and landrails in Great Britain, unless he has a game 
license under the Game License Act, 1860 (23 & 24 
Viet. c. 90, sect. 4). 

NIGHT POACHING. 

(9 Geo. IV. c. 69, sect. 1.) 

If any person be found unlawfully taking or destroy- 
ing game or rabbits by night on any land, open or 
enclosed, or by the sides thereof, or any opening, outlet, 
or gates from such land, highway or path, or by night 



86 A PKACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

unlawfully entering or being on any land, whether open 
or enclosed, with any gun, net, engine or other instru- 
ment for the purpose of taking or destroying game. 
Punishment for the first offence with or without hard 
labour, for not exceeding three calendar months, and at 
the expiration to be bound in a recognisance, himself in 
10, and two sureties in 5 each, or one in 10 to not 
so offend again for the space of one year, and in case of 
not finding sureties, further imprisonment with hard 
labour for six calendar months, unless the sureties be 
sooner found. 

For a second offence to be committed with hard 
labour for not exceeding six calendar months, and at 
the expiration of the imprisonment to find sureties him- 
self in 20, and two sureties in 10 each, or one in 20, 
not to so offend again for two years. 

The Summary Jurisdiction Act provides a penalty in 
all cases, where formerly imprisonment alone could be 
adjudged, but it appears that hard labour cannot be 
given in default of payment of the penalty inflicted. 
The maximum fine under this section would be 25. 

Prosecutions must be commenced within six calendar 
months from the commission of the offence and distress 
is provided in case of non-payment of penalty, and as in 
all other cases under the Game Laws, except those under 
the Ground Game Act, there is a right of appeal. 

Third offence is an indictable misdemeanour, and has 
been dealt with previously amongst the indictable cases. 

Night time is defined as commencing at the expira- 
tion of the first hour after sunset and concluding at the 
beginning of the last hour before sunrise. 

One or two remarks may be made upon the section. 

As the reader will observe the offence extends not 
only to land, open and enclosed, but to any public road, 
highway or path, or the sides thereof, or at the opening 
outlets or gates from such land, etc. This was extended 
by 7 & 8 Viet. c. 29, and was highly necessary. 

It will further be seen from the section that the first 
part of it refers to the unlawful " taking or destroying 



THE GROUND GAME ACT, 1880 87 

of game or rabbits " by night, the latter portion to un- 
lawfully " entering land, open or enclosed, with gun or 
net, engine or other instrument for the purpose of taking 
game" not rabbits. There is no mention of "dog" in 
the section, and it has been decided that a dog is not an 
" instrument " for taking game, but if a dog is used at 
night there would be no difficulty in charging the de- 
fendant with " sporting without certificate," if such was 
the case, under the 23rd section of the Game Act, i.e., 
using dog for the purpose of searching for game, to wit, 
hares. This, as before stated, is a point often over- 
looked in cases where night offences have taken place. 

THE GEOUND GAME ACT, 1880. 
(43 & 44 Viet. c. 47.) 

Under this Act, passed in the interest of good hus- 
bandry, for the better security of capital and labour 
invested in the cultivation of the soil, and to enable occu- 
piers to protect their crops from injury by ground game, 
the " occupier " of land has the right to take ground game, 
which is denned as "hares and rabbits," concurrently 
with the person who may be entitled to the ground 
game on the same land, subject to the following : 

(1) The occupier shall kill and take ground game 
only by himself or by persons duly authorised by him 
in writing. The "occupier" himself and one other 
person authorised in writing by such "occupier " shall 
be the only person entitled under that Act to kill game 
with firearms. No person shall be authorised by the 
"occupier" to kill or take ground game, except mem- 
bers of his household, resident on the land in his occupa- 
tion, persons in his ordinary service on such land, and any 
one other person bond fide employed by him for reward 
in the taking and destruction of ground game. 

Every person so authorised by the occupier shall on 
demand by any person having a concurrent right to kill 
and take ground game on the land, or any person autho- 



88 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

rised by him in writing to make such demand, produce 
to the person so demanding, the document by which 
he is authorised, and in default he shall not be deemed 
to be an authorised person. 

(2) A person shall not be deemed an occupier of land 
for the purpose of the Act by reason of his having a 
right of common over such lands, or by reason of an 
occupation for the purpose of grazing or pasture for not 
more than nine months. 

(3) In the case of moorlands and unenclosed lands 
(not being arable lands) the right is to be exercised only 
from llth December to 30th March, but this is not to 
apply to detached portions less than twenty-five acres 
in extent adjoining arable lands (see Hares for Ground 
Game Amendment Act, 1906). 

Many points naturally arise in connection with the 
true interpretation of the word "occupier" as well as 
of those persons referred to in section 1 of the Act, as 
capable of being authorised by the occupier to kill and 
take ground game, namely : 

" Members of his household resident on the land in 
his occupation " ; 

"Persons in his ordinary service on such land," and 

"Persons bond fide employed by him for reward in 
the taking and destruction of ground game." 

First as to " occupier ". The Act states, as before 
mentioned, who are not " occupiers," and there it stops, 
without defining the word, but, generally speaking, it 
may be taken for granted to mean the person actually 
in possession of the land in question as tenant or sub- 
tenant as the case may be, but not owners of cattle 
agisted on land for which so much per head is paid. 
If the " occupier " was also owner, the Act would not 
apply to him, the objects of the Act being to assist 
"occupiers," and it has been so held. "Members of 
his household." This would be a matter for the court 
to determine according to the circumstances of the case, 
as unfortunately the words are not included in the in- 
terpretation clause in the Act, and the words would no 



THE GKOUND GAME ACT, 1880 89 

doubt seem to apply to those dwelling in the same house 
as the tenant, though it would hardly include a person 
casually staying for the day. There does not seem yet 
to have been any legal decision on the point. 

From the above it will be seen that an occupier under 
the Ground Game Act may authorise one person only 
to kill ground game with firearms, and that person must 
be one of those mentioned in the section, and such person 
must be authorised in writing, and the authority must be 
produced when legally demanded by a person justified 
in demanding it, or the person exercising the right is 
not to be deemed an authorised person, and may be 
proceeded against as a trespasser. If there are more 
occupiers than one, as in the case of executors, it would 
appear to be doubtful if all could exercise the right 
individually. The proper course to adopt would be to 
arrange amongst themselves who should give the 
authority. 

Many farmers appear to be under the mistaken 
impression that they can verbally authorise a servant of 
theirs to shoot ground game, and we well remember an 
instance when staying in the country with a farmer 
friend. We had been walking over the farm, he with 
his gun, when one of his labouring men came and told 
him he was wanted at home, an unexpected visitor 
having arrived. Without further ado my friend handed 
his gun to his man and asked him to go and try and get 
a rabbit or two or a hare if he saw one, and although 
we reminded him that he had not vested his man with 
sufficient legal authority, he could not be reasoned into 
believing that it was necessary the authority given 
should be in writing. 

If the Act is not complied with legal difficulties are 
sure to arise, and sometimes very unpleasant ones, 
particularly when the adjoining properties are strictly 
preserved by the neighbouring squire, or the sporting 
rights on them let, with a keeper in attendance. If the 
provisions of the Act are not adhered to, what is to 
prevent a farmer with several sons on his farm giving 



90 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

illegal permission to kill ground game to each of them, 
one enjoying the benefits one day and another the next, 
and so on, until one of them happens to be seen by the 
sporting tenant adjoining or his keeper (which might 
not occur for months and much damage done in the 
meantime), when a stop is put to the existing state 
of affairs, and one son only legally vested with the 
authority. It is not perhaps so much the wholesale 
destruction of the ground game by the occupier to the 
prejudice of the other person entitled to the concurrent 
right, more particularly the hares, as the damage very 
often done during the breeding and rearing season to 
the young birds, which get separated from the parent 
birds by the constant firing at ground game, and lost. 

The Act does not of course authorise ground game to 
be killed on any days or seasons or by any of the means 
prohibited by any other Act of Parliament, and under 
section 2 the "occupier" cannot divest himself of his 
right to kill the ground game under the Act, and should 
he attempt to do so, any agreement in contravention of 
such right would be bad in law, though the Act does 
not exempt him from taking out a gun license, but it 
does a game license so far as killing ground game is 
concerned. 

A tenant who has the exclusive right to the winged 
game under his lease or agreement is within the Act 
and deemed to be an " occupier " (Sanders v. Pitfield). 
If an "occupier" sublets the land so as to create an 
occupation in the eyes of the law in the person who 
hires it from him, he who lets would naturally during 
the continuance of the tenancy lose his right to the 
ground game, and his rights under the Act, which 
would pass to the sub-tenant. 

If a bailiff is authorised under the Ground Game 
Act in writing by the "occupier" (his employer), and 
he with two other men are found coursing hares, the 
bailiff having given them verbal permission, the case 
not coming within the exception in 35 of the Game 
Act (coursing in fresh pursuit), the two friends would, 



THE GROUND GAME ACT, 1880 91 

it is contended, be committing a trespass under the 
30th section, to say nothing about the bailiff being 
liable for aiding and abetting them. 

It is the practice in many parishes in the county 
of Norfolk and probably throughout the country, for 
farmers, or their men, when cutting corn with ma- 
chinery, to invite friends to assist in the killing of the 
rabbits and hares as they bolt from the remnant of the 
standing corn, invariably several men being in possession 
of firearms. No doubt the farmer is only too pleased 
to be able to reduce the stock of rabbits and hares 
within his grasp, and to provide against the escape 
of many. It is not often that any notice is 
taken of such a proceeding, though in 1906 a case 
was brought before a Norfolk bench of magistrates, 
where a conviction followed under the above circum- 
stances, the tenant having overlooked the fact that his 
authority must be in writing, and that he can only give 
such authority to one person to kill with firearms, and 
who must be one of the persons mentioned in the Act. 
If there were no firearms used, the practice would 
nevertheless be illegal, unless the parties assisting in 
the killing were each authorised in writing ; though 
unless there was a destruction of hares, no notice would 
probably be taken of the matter. 

Very considerable doubts have been expressed as to 
the effect of the meaning of the word " occupier " in 
connection with an owner who occupies his own land, 
and some litigation has been the result. 

In 1885 in Smith v. Hunt it was held that the Act 
did not apply to owners occupying their own land, 
consequently that such an occupier was not bound by 
section 6 as to the illegality of using spring traps above 
ground, using firearms at night or employing poison, 
which a bond fide " occupier " has to comply with. 

In the year 1899 the case of Anderson v. Vicary was 
heard and decided at the Exeter Assizes. In this case 
the owner of the land let the sporting rights to the 
plaintiff and then sold a portion of the land to the 



92 A PKACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

defendant, subject to the plaintiff's sporting rights. Mr. 
Justice Wright decided that the defendant who entered 
into occupation was entitled to trap the rabbits on his 
portion of the estate, and to be treated as any other 
occupier, and further went on to say that although it was 
reported that Smith v. Hunt appeared to hold that no 
part of the Act applied to owners occupying, he thought 
that the judgment in that case was limited to section 
6 of the Act. 

On the case being taken to the Court of Appeal, the 
decision of Mr. Justice Wright was confirmed by a 
majority of the judges, viz., that the occupying owner 
had, as incident to the occupation of his land, the right 
to the ground game, and that a grant of the sporting 
rights over the land did not deprive him of the right. 

In the one case it was decided that the Ground Game 
Act, so far as the penal section is concerned (using 
spring traps, setting poison, and shooting at night), 
did not apply to owners when occupying their own land, 
who might consequently trap, etc., irrespective of the 
Act ; but in the other it was decided that the Act does 
to some extent interfere with the power of the owners, 
when in occupation of their own land, parting with the 
whole of their interest in the sporting rights to another 
person. 

The Ground Game (Amendment) Act, 1906, amend- 
ing the Act of 1880, which came into operation on the 
1st April, 1907, does not affect the position of matters 
very much, as it leaves the expressions " occupiers " and 
"ground game" as before, and does not deal with the 
other expressions in the former Act. 

Section 2 of the new Act extends the right of occu- 
piers of moorlands, etc., referred to in sub-section 3 of 
the 1880 Act, without prejudice to existing rights under 
that Act, to killing and taking ground game between the 
1st September and the 10th December, both inclusive, 
in any and every year, as conferred by the former Act, 
otherwise than by the use of firearms. 

Section 3 relates to agreements between occupiers and 



THE GROUND GAME ACT, 1880 93 

owners of moorlands, and is to the effect that section 3 
of the Act of 1880 shall not apply to prevent the occu- 
pier of lands to which section 1, sub-section 3 of that 
Act applies, and the owner of such lands, or other 
persons having the right to kill and take game thereon, 
from making and enforcing agreements for the joint 
exercise, or the exercise for their joint benefit, of the 
right to kill and take ground game between the 1st 
September and the 10th December, both inclusive, in 
any or every year. 

The Agricultural Holdings Act of 1906 (introduced 
into the House of Commons as the " Land Tenure 
Bill ") received some drastic amendments in the House 
of Lords, and deals with the question of compensation 
to tenants for damages done to their crops by winged 
game and other matters purely agricultural (which 
latter we are not here concerned with), and comes into 
operation on the 1st January, 1909. 

The Act as it now stands is not much like the Bill 
when it left the House of Commons, and sportsmen 
generally may congratulate themselves upon that fact, 
as had the Bill passed the Lords in the condition it left 
the Commons it would have been a most unwelcome 
addition to the laws from a sportsman's point of view. 

Under this Act, if a tenant sustains damage to his 
crops from game, the right to kill which is not vested 
in him or any one claiming under him, other than the 
landlord, he may claim compensation from the landlord 
for such damage, if it exceeds Is. per acre of the area 
over which the damage extends, and any agreement to 
the contrary is void. Notice of the claim must be given 
to the landlord as soon as may be after the damage is 
first observed by the tenant, in order that the landlord 
may have an opportunity to inspect the damage alleged. 
When the alleged damage is done to growing crops 
notice in writing must be given before the crop is 
reaped, raised, or consumed, and where the damage is 
done to crops already reaped or raised, notice must be 



94 A PEACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

given before the removal of the crop. If the right 
to kill and take the game is vested in some person 
other than the landlord, the latter may claim to be in- 
demnified by such person against all claims for damages 
under the Act. 

Game includes deer, pheasant, partridge, grouse and 
black game. 

It may be somewhat difficult for an occupier to satis- 
factorily prove that the alleged damage was wholly 
caused by the depredations of the pheasants, and not 
partly (as will probably be the case in some instances) 
by the ground game and from other causes, but this 
must be a matter for the occupier to decide upon 
before he embarks on legal proceedings against his 
landlord. 

WILD BIEDS' PKOTECTION ACTS, 1880 TO 1904. 

Although the above Acts may perhaps be said to be 
just outside the pale of a small work like the present, 
we have thought it advisable to give a short epitome 
of their provisions and also the Orders made under the 
Acts by the County Councils of Norfolk and Suffolk. 
Whether the efforts of those responsible for the Orders 
have given general satisfaction in the counties named is 
a matter of some doubt. Many curious cases have 
arisen under the Acts throughout the country, and in 
all probability more will follow. 

Considering the pecuniary value of many species of 
wild birds which only occasionally visit this country, we 
would suggest that the penalty imposed by the statute 
is perfectly inadequate to prevent the killing of these 
birds. If additional legislation is ever provided, by all 
means let provision be made for an increase in the 
penalty, and in the case of a second conviction against 
the same individual, say within five years, the penalty 
should be doubled and a forfeiture (and sale) in case 
of conviction, not only of any trap, net, snare or decoy 
bird, but particularly the bird and the eggs, which are 



WILD BIRDS' PROTECTION ACTS, 1880 TO 1904 95 

the subject of the proceedings, together with any boat or 
gun used in the killing or taking. This might deter the 
individuals named from attempting a second time to 
evade the Act, as it is useless to expect a 1 penalty to in- 
fluence those who are ever on the look-out for a specimen 
of a rare wild bird, the possession of which will hand- 
somely compensate them for the fine inflicted. We have 
heard of one of these " sportsmen " (it was before the 
Act of 1902 was passed) who, intent on obtaining a rare 
bird which had been seen on two or three consecutive 
days, decided to have it at any cost and at all hazards, 
and this although a reward of 1 per bird for information 
of unlawfully killing was advertised. He succeeded in 
shooting the bird, with the aid of a boat, and by way of 
recouping himself for the penalty which he knew was in 
store for him, reported the matter to the authorities and, 
it is said, claimed the reward. He was summoned and 
fined the full amount named, and accordingly, it is said, 
received the reward, so that financially he was no worse 
off. What we then objected to was his being entitled 
to retain the bird, which was worth a 10 note, also his 
gun and his boat. The Act of 1902 (2 Edward VII. 
c. 6, sect. 1) now requires the forfeiture, in addition 
to the penalty, of the bird or egg obtained, but we 
think the instruments referred to (trap, net, snare or 
decoy bird) should, at the discretion of the court, in- 
clude boat and gun, or at all events on a second con- 
viction. 

Section 3 of the 43 & 44 Viet. c. 35 enacts that if 
any person who between the 1st March and 1st August 
shall knowingly and wilfully shoot or attempt to shoot 
or shall use any boat for the purpose of shooting or 
cause to be shot any wild bird, or shall use any lime, 
trap, snare, net or other instrument for the purpose of 
taking .any wild bird, or shall expose or offer for sale or 
shall have in his control or possession after 15th March 
any wild bird recently killed or taken, shall on conviction 
be liable to a penalty in the case of any wild bird in- 
cluded in the schedule to forfeit and pay for every such 



96 A PEACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

bird not exceeding 1, and in the case of any other wild 
bird, for a first offence, reprimanded and discharged on 
payment of costs, and for every subsequent offence to 
forfeit and pay for every such wild bird not exceeding 
5s. in addition to the costs. 

To the above there follows an exception to the effect 
that the section is not to apply to the owner or occupier 
of any land, or to any person authorised by the owner 
or occupier killing or taking any wild bird on such land 
not included in the schedule. 

The following year (1881) an amending Act was 
passed to the effect that a person should not be liable 
to a conviction for exposing or offering for sale or 
having the control or possession of any wild bird 
recently killed if he satisfied the court : 

1. That the killing of such wild bird, if in a place to 
which the Act extends, was lawful at the time when 
and by the person by whom it was killed ; 

2. That the wild bird was killed in some place to 
which the Act does not extend, and the fact that the 
wild bird was imported from some place to which the 
Act does not extend shall, until the contrary is proved, 
be evidence that the bird was killed in some place to 
which the Act does not extend (Wild Birds' Protection 
Act, 1881, sect. 1). 

Additional penalties are imposed by the principal Act 
upon persons transgressing who refuse to give their 
real name and place of abode, or give an untrue name 
or place of abode, in addition to that imposed by 
section 3 of the principal Act, not exceeding 10s. 

The Secretary of State may on the application of any 
County or Borough Council vary or extend the time 
during which the killing or taking of wild birds is 
prohibited by the Act of 1880. 

The jurisdiction of the Admiralty is defined, and 
certain modifications are made as to the island of St. 
Kilda, etc. The Secretary of State is empowered on 
application by the local authority to prohibit : 

1. The taking or destroying of wild birds' eggs in any 



WILD BIRDS' PROTECTION ACTS, 1880-1904 97 

year or years in any place or places within a county or 
county borough ; 

2. The taking or destroying of eggs of any specified 
wild birds within a county, etc., as recommended by 
the County Council ; 

3. The application by the County Council is to specify 
the limits of the place, the particular species of wild 
birds to which the order is to apply (section 2 of the 
Act of 1894). 

Section 5 of the last named Act provides as a penalty 
for taking or destroying or for inciting any person to 
take or destroy the eggs of any wild bird named in the 
order, a sum not exceeding 1 for every egg taken or 
destroyed, and by the Wild Birds' Protection Act of 
1902, the eggs and the wild birds taken, etc., may be 
forfeited on conviction, whilst the Act of 1896 orders 
any trap, snare, net, or decoy bird to be forfeited on 
conviction of offence under that or the previous Act. 

By the Wild Birds' Protection Act of 1904 any 
person affixing, placing, setting, or knowingly per- 
mitting or causing to be affixed, placed, or set on any 
pole, tree, cairn of stones or earth, any spring trap, gin, 
or other similar instrument calculated to cause bodily 
injury to any wild bird coming in contact therewith, is 
liable to a penalty of 40s., and for a second or subse- 
quent offence, 5. 

As birds included in the schedule to the principal 
Act of 1880 are very numerous, and as they are not all 
included in the following Order issued by the County 
Council of Norfolk, we give a list of them for refer- 
ence : 

American quail Cornish chough Dunlin 

Auk Coulterneb Eider duck 

Avocet Cuckoo Fern owl 

Bee-eater Curlew Fulmar 

Bittern Diver Gannet 

Boxie Dotterel Goatsucker 

Colin Dunbird Godwit 

7 



98 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 



Goldfinch 


Oyster catcher 


Shoveller 


Grebe 


Pewit 


Skua 


Greenshank 


Petrel 


Smew 


Guillemot 


Phalarope 


Snipe 


Gull (except black- 


Plover 


Solangoose 


backed gull) 
Hoopoe 


Ploverspage 
Pochard 


Spoonbill 
Stint 


Kingfisher 


Puffin 


Stone curlew 


Kittiwake 


Purre 


Stonehatch 


Lapwing 


Razorbill 


Summer snipe 


Loon [lark, 44 & 45 


Redshank 


Tarrock 


Viet. c. 51] 


Reeve or ruff 


Teal 


Mallard 


Roller 


Tern 


Marrot 


Sanderling 


Thickknee 


Merganser 


Sandpiper 


Tystey 


Murre 
Night-hawk 


Scout 
Sealark 


Whaup 
Whimbrel 


Night-jar 


Seamew 


Widgeon 


Nightingale 


Sea parrot 


Wild duck 


Oriole 


Sea swallow 


Willock 


Owl 


Shearwater 


Woodcock 


Ox bird 


Shelldrake 


Woodpecker 



The following is a copy of the Order issued by the 
Norfolk County Council. 



THE WILD BIEDS' PEOTECTION ACTS, 1880 TO 1904. 
ADMINISTRATIVE COUNTY OF NORFOLK- 

Notice is hereby given that under the provisions of the 
Wild Birds' Protection Acts, 1880 to 1904, His Majesty's 
Secretary of State for the Home Department has, upon the 
application of the Norfolk County Council, made the follow- 
ing Order : 

Title. 

I. This Order may be cited as the Wild Birds' Protection 
(County of Norfolk) Order, 1905. 



WILD BIEDS' PROTECTION ACTS, 1880-1904 99 

BlEDS. 

Additions to Schedule of Act of 1880. 

II. The Wild Birds' Protection Act, 1880, shall apply 
within the County of Norfolk to the following species of 
wild birds in the same manner as if those species were 
included in the Schedule to the Act : 

Bearded Titmouse or Reed Pheasant. 

Crossbill. 

Sand-Martin . 

Close Time Extended. 

III. The period during which the killing or taking of wild 
birds is prohibited by the Act of 1880 shall be extended 
throughout the County of Norfolk, so far as regards all birds 
mentioned in the Schedule to that Act, except the snipe, 
teal, and all species of wild duck, so as to be between the 
1st day of March and the 1st day of September in any year. 

The Bittern, Little Bittern, and Great Bustard Protected 
during the whole of the Year. 

IV. During the period between the 31st day of August in 
any year and the 2nd day of March following, the killing 
or taking of the bittern, little bittern, and great bustard, 
is prohibited throughout the Administrative County of Nor- 
folk. (A recent Order includes the kingfisher, goldfinch, 
bearded tit, and all species of owl within this clause.) 

All Birds Protected on Sundays in Certain Areas. 

V. During the period between the 31st day of August in 
any year and the 2nd day of March following, the killing or 
taking of wild birds on Sundays is prohibited within the 
areas described in Article VI., paragraphs (A), (B), (C), (D), 
and (E) of this Order. 

EGGS. 
All Eggs Protected in Certain Areas. 

VI. The taking or destroying of the eggs of any species 
of wild birds is prohibited during the period expiring on 
the last day of February, 1911, within the following areas : 

7* 



100 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

(A) Hickling Broad, Whitesley and Heigham Sounds, 
Blackfleet Broad, Horsey Mere, Martham and Somerton 
Broads, and the rands, skirts and walls thereof, and fens 
and reed grounds appertaining thereto respectively, and 
the islands therein, and the dykes communicating there- 
with, including the Hundred Stream or Thurne River and 
Ancient Bed and the rands and walls thereof from Heigham 
Bridge to the sea at Winterton, and all the marshes and 
low-lying and uncultivated lands, fens, reed grounds, 
warrens, marram or sandhills and sea-shore, to the line of 
high-water mark, in the several parishes of Waxham, Horsey, 
Potter Heigham and Hickling, and such part of the Parish 
of Catfield as lies to the east of the Midland and Great 
Northern Joint Railway. 

(B) The warrens, marram or sand hills, and sea-shore, 
to the line of high-water mark, in the Parish of Winterton. 

(C) Such parts of the Rivers Yare and Wensum as are 
within the Administrative County of Norfolk, and the streams 
communicating therewith ; the River Bure and the streams 
communicating therewith ; and Rockland and Surlingham 
Broads, and the rands, skirts, and walls of each of such 
rivers and broads, fens and reed grounds appertaining 
thereto respectively, and the islands therein, and the dykes 
communicating therewith. 

(D) The series of Broads known as Ormesby, Rollesby, 
Hemsby, Filby, and Burgh Broads, and the rands, skirts, 
and walls thereof, and the dykes communicating therewith ; 
and the fens, reed grounds, and low-lying lands, marshes, 
and pastures adjacent thereto, including Lady Broad or 
Hard Fen Water in the Parish of Filby, Brandyke Broad in 
the Parish of Burgh St. Margaret, and Muckfleet Dyke, and 
the marshes and low-lying lands and pastures near or 
adjacent thereto respectively. 

(E) The whole of the foreshore of the County of Norfolk, 
including the shingle, sand hills, salt marshes, creeks, 
and other unenclosed lands extending from high-water 
mark to the first boundary of enclosed or cultivated land 
separating the foreshore from them. 



WILD BIRDS' PROTECTION ACTS, 1880-1904 101 

Certain Eggs Protected throughout the County. 

VII. The taking or destroying of the eggs of the following 
Species of Wild Birds is prohibited throughout the County 
of Norfolk, viz. : 

1. Bittern and Little Bittern. 

2. Great Bustard. . ,7, ;;,">''', ; 

3. Crossbill. 

4. Great Crested Grebe or Loon. 

5. Kingfisher. 

6. Sand Martin. 

7. Owl (all species). 

8. Norfolk Plover, Stone Curlew or Thick Knee. 

9. Ruff or Reeve. 

10. Ringed Dotterel, Ringed Plover, or Stone Runner. 

11. Oyster Catcher or Sea Pie. 

12. Terns, Sea Swallows, Pearls, or Dip Ears (all 

species) . 

13. Bearded Titmouse or Reed Pheasant. 

14. Wild Duck and Teal (all species). 

Repeal of Former Order. 

VIII. The Order of the 4th April, 1901, is hereby repealed. 

Given under my hand at Whitehall, this 6th day of 
November, 1905. 

A. AKEJRS-DOUGLAS, 
One of His Majesty's Principal Secretaries of State. 

PENALTIES. 

And notice is further given that any person who, during 
the close time between the 1st day of March and the 1st day 
of August in any year, kills or takes any wild bird, or 
who during the close time between the 1st day of March 
and the 1st day of September in any year, kills or takes any 
wild bird in respect of which the close time is extended by 
Article III. of the above Order, and any person who, during 
the period between the 31st day of August in any year and 
the 2nd day of March following, kills or takes the bittern 
and little bittern and great bustard, or who during the 



102 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

same period kills or takes any wild bird on Sundays within 
any of the areas described in Article VI. of the Order, will be 
liable to the penalties prescribed by the above-mentioned Acts. 

Any person who shall take or destroy, or incite any other 
person : tp - take or destroy, the eggs of any wild birds 
within any area specified in Article VI. of the above Order, 
the -eggs; cf any species of wild bird named in Article 
of such Order, will be liable on conviction to pay for 
every egg so taken or destroyed a penalty not exceeding 1. 

Section 4 of the Wild Birds' Protection Act, 1896, provides 
that where any person is convicted of an offence against 
that Act, or the Act of 1880, the court may, in addition to 
any penalty that may be imposed, order any trap, net, snare 
or decoy bird used by such person for taking any wild bird 
to be forfeited. 

The Wild Birds' Protection Act, 1902, provides that where 
any person is convicted of an offence against the Wild Birds' 
Protection Acts, 1880 to 1904, the court may, in addition to 
any penalty that may therein be imposed, order any wild 
bird or wild bird's egg, in respect of which the offence has 
been committed, to be forfeited and disposed of as the court 
shall think fit. 

CHARLES FOSTER, 
Clerk of the Norfolk County Council 

THE SHIBEHOUSE, NORWICH, 6th November, 1905. 

EAST SUFFOLK COUNTY COUNCIL. 
WILD BIRDS. 

Notice is hereby given of the following Order made by the 
Secretary of State : 

Title. 

I. This Order may be cited as The Wild Birds' Pro- 
tection (Administrative County of East Suffolk) Order, 1902. 

BIRDS. 
Additions to the Schedule of the Act of 1880. 

II. The Wild Birds' Protection Act, 1880, shall apply 
within the Administrative County of East Suffolk to the 



WILD BIRDS' PROTECTION ACTS, 1880-1904 103 



following species of wild birds in the same manner as if 
those species were included in the Schedule to the Act : 



Avocet 

Wheatear 

Whinchat 

Great bustard 

Little bustard 

Crossbill 

Pied flycatcher 

Spotted flycatcher 

Marsh harrier 

Hen harrier 

Montagu's harrier 

Common buzzard 

Honey buzzard 

Rough-legged buzzard 

Hobby 

Common martin 

Sand martin 

Swallow 

Swift 

Nuthatch 



Redstart 

Robin 

Turtle dove 

Bearded tit 

Longtailed tit 

Osprey 

Pied wagtail 

Yellow wagtail 

Grey wagtail 

Blackcap 

Garden warbler 

Willow warbler 

Chiffchaff 

Stonechat 

Whitethroat 

Lesser whitethroat 

Golden-crested wren 

Wryneck (cuckoo's mate or 

snake bird) 
Kentish plover 



Close Time Extended. 

III. The time during which the killing or taking of wild 
birds (other than the wild duck) is prohibited within the 
Administrative County of East Suffolk, shall be extended so 
as to be between the last day of February and the 1st day 
of September in each year, the close time for the wild duck 
remaining as fixed by The Wild Birds' Protection Act, 
1880, namely, between the 1st day of March and the 1st 
day of August in every year. 

Certain Birds Protected during the whole of the Year. 

IV. During the period between the 31st day of August in 
any year and the 1st day of March following the killing or 
taking of the following kinds of wild birds is prohibited 
throughout the Administrative County of East Suffolk : 



104 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 



Avocet 

Nightingale 

Goldfinch 

Nightjar 

Green woodpecker 

Great spotted woodpecker 

Lesser spotted woodpecker 

Kingfisher 

Cuckoo 

Barn owl 

Tawny owl 

Long-eared owl 

Short-eared owl 

Buzzard 

Honey buzzard 

Bough-legged buzzard 

Merlin 

Hobby 

Osprey 

Wryneck (cuckoo's mate or 

snake bird) 
Swallow 
Sand martin 
House martin 
Swift 
Bearded tit (reedling or reed 

pheasant) 
Longtailed tit 

Common (or corn) bunting 
Black-headed bunting (reed 

sparrow) 

All Birds Protected on Sundays within a Certain Area. 

V. During the period between the 31st day of August in 
any year and the 1st day of March following, the killing or 
taking of wild birds on Sundays is prohibited in the portion 
of the Administrative County of East Suffolk which is situ- 
ated to the east of the London to Great Yarmouth main line 
of the Great Eastern Railway in the said Administrative 



CM bunting 
Snow bunting 

Yellow bunting (yellow ham- 
mer 
Robin 
Wheatear 
Stonechat 
Whinchat 
Sedge warbler 
Reed warbler 
Blackcap 
Garden warbler 
Willow warbler 
Chiffchaff 
Whitethroat 
Lesser whitethroat 
Bittern 
Redstart 
Pied flycatcher 
Spotted flycatcher 
Nuthatch 
Wren 

Golden-crested wren 
Pied wagtail 
Yellow wagtail 
Grey wagtail 
Spoonbill 
Great bustard 
Little bustard 
Thick-knee 



WILD BIRDS' PROTECTION ACTS, 1880-1904 105 

County, and in the following parishes or such parts thereof 
as are not situated to the east of the said main line in the 
said Administrative County, namely : 

Akenham, Barking-cum-Darmsden and Needham Market, 
Barsham, Baylham, Bealings Magna, Bealings Parva, Bec- 
cles, Belstead, Belton, Benhall, Bentley, Blakenham Great, 
Blakenham Little, Blaxhall, Bradwell, Bramfield, Brainford, 
Brampton, Brantham, Bromeswell, Burgh Castle, Campsey 
Ash, Claydon, Coddenham, Darsham, Eyke, Farnham, Frit- 
ton, Glemham Little, Halesworth, Herringfleet, Holton (near 
Halesworth), Kelsale-cum-Carlton, Martlesham, Melton, 
Middleton, Pettistree, Playford, Redisham, Ringsfield, Rush- 
mere St. Andrew (near Ipswich), Saxmundham, Shadingfield, 
Spexhall, Sproughton, Tattingstone, Tuddenham St. Martin, 
Ufford, Wenhaston-with-Mells Hamlet, Westerfield, West- 
hall, Weston, Wherstead, Whitton, Wickham Market, Wis- 
sett, Woodbridge, Yoxford, also so much of the following 
estuaries and tidal waters as are within the body of the 
County of Suffolk, and lie above or to the landward side of 
the following lines respectively, namely : 

STOUR AND ORWELL. 

A line drawn straight from the Tower, in Walton-on-the- 
Naze, in the county of Essex, to the seaward extremity of 
Landguard Point, in the County of Suffolk. 

Provided that nothing in the said Order shall apply to 
any wild duck decoy, for the time being used as such, or any 
pond used in connection therewith, in the said portion of 
the said Administrative County or in any of the foregoing 
parishes. 

EGGS. 

All Eggs Protected in Certain Areas. 

VI. The taking or destroying of the eggs of any species 
of wild birds is prohibited for a period of five years from the 
date of this Order in the following places within the Ad- 
ministrative County of East Suffolk, namely, the sea coast, 
beach, foreshore, sandhills, saltings, or salt marshes, situate 
between the sea or estuaries and the land side of the sea or 



106 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

esturial wall, embankment, ditch, fence, or other artificial or 
natural boundary separating the same from the cultivated 
land, from the north side of the Eiver Blyth to Landguard 
Point (excluding the estuary of the Aide above the ferry at 
Slaughden Quay, Aldeburgh). 

Repeal of Former Order. 
The Order of the 19th December, 1898, is hereby repealed. 

Given under my hand at Whitehall, this 18th day of 
January, 1902. 

(Signed) CHAS. T. KITCHIE, 
One of His Majesty's Principal Secretaries of State. 

A. TOWNSHEND COBBOLD, 

Clerk of the East Suffolk County Council. 

COUNTY HALL, IPSWICH, 
29M January, 1902. 

WEST SUFFOLK COUNTY COUNCIL. 
WILD BIRDS' PROTECTION ACTS, 1880 TO 1896. 

The County Council of the Administrative County of West 
Suffolk hereby give notice that by an order of the Secretary 
of State, entitled " The Wild Birds' Protection (Administra- 
tive County of West Suffolk) Order, 1900," dated the 18th 
day of December, 1900, it is inter alia ordered : 

Additions to the Schedule of the Act of 1880. 

II. The Wild Birds' Protection Act, 1880, shall apply 
within the Administrative County of West Suffolk, to the 
following species of wild birds in the same manner as if 
those species were included in the schedule to the Act : 

Great bustard Hen harrier 

Reed bunting Montague's harrier 

Gadwell (wild duck) Common buzzard 

Crossbill Kestrel 

Spotted flycatcher Hobby 

Marsh harrier Hawfinch 



WILD BIRDS' PROTECTION ACTS, 1880-1904 107 

Hedge sparrow Longtailed tit 

Heron Marsh tit 

Landrail Coal tit 

Redpoll (linnet) Grey wagtail 

Common martin Pied wagtail 

Sand martin White wagtail 

Swallow Yellow wagtail 

Swift Black cap 

Nuthatch Garden warbler 

Ring ouzel Grasshopper warbler 

Meadow pipit Reed warbler 

Tree pipit Sedge warbler 

Quail Whitethroat 

Redstart Lesser whitethroat 

Robin Water rail 

Redbacked shrike Golden crested wren 

Tree creeper Wryneck (cuckoo's mate or 

Turtle dove snakebird) 

Bearded tit 

Certdin Eggs Protected throughout the Administrative 
County. 

IV. The taking or destroying of the eggs of the follow- 
ing species of wild birds is prohibited throughout the Ad- 
ministrative County of West Suffolk : 

Bittern Tawny owl 

Teal Long-eared owl 

Goldfinch Short-eared owl 

Great crested grebe Stone curlew (thicknee or 

Rednecked grebe Norfolk plover) 

Sclavonian grebe Redshank 

Eared grebe Common snipe 

Little grebe (dabchick) Woodcock 

Kingfisher Green woodpecker 

Nightingale Great spotted woodpecker 

Nightjar (goatsucker, night- Lesser spotted woodpecker 

hawk, fern owl) Great bustard 

Golden oriole Reed bunting 

Barn owl Gadwall 



108 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

Crossbill Kedbacked shrike 

Spotted flycatcher Tree creeper 

Marsh harrier Turtle dove 

Hen harrier Bearded tit 

Montague's harrier Longtailed tit 

Common buzzard Marsh tit 

Kestrel Coal tit 

Hobby Grey wagtail 

Hawfinch Pied wagtail 

Heron White wagtail 

Landrail Yellow wagtail 

Redpoll Black cap 

Common martin Garden warbler 

Sand martin Grasshopper warbler 

Swallow Reed warbler 

Swift Sedge warbler 

Nuthatch Whitethroat 

Ring ouzel Lesser whitethroat 

Meadow pipit Water rail 

Tree pipit Golden crested wren 

Quail Wryneck (cuckoo's mate or 

Redstart snake- bird) 

PENALTIES. 

And notice is hereby given that any person who between 
the 1st day of March and the 1st day of August, in any 
year, shall knowingly and wilfully shoot, or attempt to shoot, 
or shall use any boat for the purpose of shooting, or causing 
to be shot, any wild bird, or shall use any lime, trap, snare, 
net, or other instrument, for the purpose of taking any wild 
bird, or shall expose or offer for sale, or shall have in his 
control or possession, after the 15th day of March, any wild 
bird, recently killed or taken, shall, on conviction, in the case 
of any wild bird which is included in the schedule to the Wild 
Birds' Protection Act, 1880, forfeit and pay for every such bird 
in respect of which an offence has been committed, a sum not 
exceeding 1, and in addition to such penalty shall be liable 
to forfeit any trap, net, snare, or decoy bird used by him for 
taking such wild bird. 



WILD BIRDS' PROTECTION ACTS, 1880-1904 109 

And notice is hereby further given that any person who 
shall take or destroy, or incite any other person to take or 
destroy, the eggs of any species of wild bird named in Article 
IV. of the Order above set forth shall, on conviction, forfeit 
and pay for every egg so taken or destroyed, a sum not 
exceeding 1. 

A. TOWNSHEND COBBOLD, 

Clerk of the County Council. 
SHIRE HALL, BURY ST. EDMUND'S, 
8th February, 1906. 



WEST SUFFOLK. 

GREAT BUSTARDS, OWLS, KINGFISHERS AND 
KESTRELS. 

Extension of Close Time. 

The County Council of the Administrative County of West 
Suffolk hereby give notice that by an Order of the Secretary 
of State, entitled " The Wild Birds' Protection (Administra- 
tive County of West Suffolk) Order, 1900," dated the 18th 
December, 1900, it is inter alia ordered : 

" During the period from the 1st day of August in any 
year to the last day of February following, both days inclu- 
sive, the killing or taking of the following species of wild 
birds is prohibited throughout the Administrative County of 
West Suffolk : 

" Great bustard, owl (all species), kingfisher and kestrel ". 

And notice is hereby further given that the penalties im- 
posed by the Wild Birds' Protection Acts, 1880 to 1896, 
apply to offences committed against the Order above set 
forth. 

A. TOWNSHEND COBBOLD, 

Clerk of the West Suffolk County Council. 

SHIRE HALL, BURY ST. EDMUND'S, 
1st July, 1904. 

N.B. The effect of the Wild Birds' Protection Act, 1880, 
and the above Order is that great bustards, owls, kingfishers 
and kestrels are protected throughout the year. 



110 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

CKUELTY TO ANIMALS, BIKDS, ETC. 
(Destroying Cats and Dogs, etc.) 

The killing of cats and dogs found trespassing on 
enclosed lands by keepers is not an uncommon occur- 
rence, and as some little misunderstanding seems to 
exist on the subject, a word or two by way of advice 
may be found appropriate. 

Nineteen keepers out of every twenty labour under 
the impression, that if a cat or dog is found ranging 
about on preserved ground they are justified in shooting 
it. No one is justified in killing a dog or cat when 
simply trespassing, and not even when trespassing and 
pursuing game, unless the killing is the only means of 
protecting the life of the game, etc., pursued, but even 
in the latter case it is desirable if not absolutely neces- 
sary first to attract the attention of the cat or dog, and 
thus give it a chance to desist and get away before 
shooting it, and judging from certain decisions in the 
county courts of late, we must say that very strong 
evidence must be forthcoming on the question of pro- 
tecting the life of the game, etc., pursued, or the shooter 
must be prepared to find himself mulcted in damages 
for the loss the owner of the dog or cat has sustained. 

There does not appear to be anything in the game 
laws to guide one as to when it is and when it is not 
safe to kill a cat or dog doing damage or suspected of it, 
or when after game. By the Malicious Damage Act, 
1861 (24 & 25 Viet. c. 97, sect. 41), it is enacted that if 
any person maliciously kill, maim or wound any dog, 
bird, beast or other animal, not being cattle but being 
either the subject of larceny at common law, or 
ordinarily kept in a state of confinement, or for a 
domestic purpose, he is liable to a penalty of 20 over 
and above the amount of injury caused, or may be im- 
prisoned for six months without option of fine, but he 
has the option of trial by jury. These criminal proceed- 



CRUELTY TO ANIMALS, BIRDS, ETC. Ill 

ings could not be taken, nor would they apply to a case 
of shooting an animal in defence of a person's property, 
and such a case would resolve itself into a civil action 
for damages. A person might trap a cat or dog tres- 
passing in his orchard without bringing himself within 
the provisions of the above Act, but much would depend 
(if the animal was alive when found) upon the treat- 
ment it subsequently received at the hands of the person 
to be charged, as to whether he were criminally respon- 
sible for wounding, etc. 

The owner of a legal chase or warren might kill any dog 
found hunting on the warren, etc., whether it is doing 
anything hurtful at the time or no (Wright v. Eamscot). 

The Wild Animals in Captivity Act, 1900, provides 
that a person shall be guilty of an offence who, whilst 
an animal is in captivity or close confinement, or 
is maimed, pinioned or subjected to any appliance or 
contrivance for the purpose of hindering or preventing 
its escape from such captivity or confinement, shall by 
wantonly or unreasonably doing or omitting any act, 
cause or permit to be caused any unnecessary suffering 
to such animal, or who shall cruelly abuse, infuriate or 
tease or terrify it, or permit it to be so treated, shall be 
liable to imprisonment for not exceeding three months, 
or to a fine not exceeding 5, but the Act is not to apply 
to any act or omission in the course of preparing animals 
for food, or to the Vivisection Act of 1876, or to cours- 
ing any animal not liberated in injured state in order to 
facilitate its capture or destruction. 

The word " animal " under this Act means any " bird, 
beast, fish or reptile " which is outside the provisions of 
the Cruelty to Animals Acts, i.e., horse, mare, gelding, 
bull, ox, cow, heifer, steer, calf, mule, ass, sheep, lamb, 
hog, pig, sow, dog, cat, or any other domestic animal. 

" Domestic animal" has by the Cruelty to Animals 
Act of 1854 been defined, but it is scarcely necessary to 
further enlarge upon it here. 

Animals not the subject of larceny at common law 
are foxes, bears, monkeys, apes, cats, polecats, ferrets, 



112 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

badgers, etc., and animals fera natura, not serving for the 
food of man, although reclaimed, and under the Larceny 
Act of 1861, when kept in a state of confinement or for 
any domestic purpose it is larceny to steal or kill with 
intent to steal any of them, or a part of them. Penalty, 
not exceeding six months and forfeiture over and above 
value of animal, not exceeding 20 ; second offence, im- 
prisonment for not exceeding twelve months (section 21). 
By section 22 any person knowingly having in his pos- 
session any bird, plumage, skin, etc., is liable to the 
same penalties as for stealing, etc. 

Under " The Wild Animals in Captivity Act, 1900," 
a very important case came before the Holt justices, 
where two warreners were jointly charged with unlaw- 
fully permitting to be caused unnecessary suffering 
to a certain "wild animal" in captivity, to wit, "a 
pheasant ". The Koyal Society for the Prevention of 
Cruelty to Animals prosecuted, being represented by 
counsel, and we defended the men. As this was the 
first case of its nature under the Act where the subject 
of the inquiry was a bird of game, and as we have not 
since heard of a similar case being undertaken, we have 
thought it of sufficient importance to give a somewhat 
full account of the proceedings, and which we venture to 
suggest, under the circumstances, and in view of the 
remarks of the justices who heard the case, are some- 
what exceptional. 

Counsel for the prosecution said the Society attached 
a great amount of importance to this prosecution 
on account of it being practically the first prose- 
cution of any kind under this new Act of Parlia- 
ment. He thought the bench would be of opinion 
that it assumed some importance from the fact 
that he was going to ask them to put an interpre- 
tation upon certain words in the second section of 
the Act. The prosecution had nothing to do with that 
against a man recently heard, he being only an incident 
in the case. The facts were very simple. It appeared 
there saw a prosecution before that bench when that 



CEUELTY TO ANIMALS, BIRDS, ETC. 113 

defendant was summoned for using a trap for the pur- 
pose of taking game. Evidence was given in the case, 
and was supported by the present defendants, who were 
warreners. They watched this trap, in which was a 
pheasant, from 2 o'clock till 9 P.M. on the 27th October, 
and again till 9 o'clock on the 28th. They watched, as 
they stated, and would undoubtedly state that day, for 
the purpose of seeing who was responsible for catching 
the bird. 

Learned counsel was here informed he would find 
that the bird was not alive on the morning of the 28th. 

He said he was instructed the bird was alive. 

Chairman. It was proved it was not alive. 

Counsel was sure the bench would not be influenced 
by anything they had heard before. The prosecution 
was taken under the 63 & 64 Viet. c. 33. In the first 
section it stated thus : Animals meant any "bird, beast, 
fish or reptile which was not included in the Acts of 
1849 and 1854 ". The second section said that any 
person shall be guilty of an offence who, whilst an 
animal is in captivity or close confinement, or is 
maimed, pinioned, or subjected to any appliance or 
contrivance for the purpose of hindering or preventing 
its escape from such captivity or confinement, shall, by 
wantonly or unreasonably doing or omitting any act, 
cause or permit to be caused any unnecessary suffering 
to such animal. These defendants were charged with 
omitting to do a certain act by which substantial suffer- 
ing was caused to the bird. The Act said that any 
person who should cause unnecessary suffering to any 
animal which was subject to any contrivance for the 
purpose of hindering or preventing its escape was guilty 
of an offence. In this case the bird was caught in a 
trap, and his submission was that a trap was a con- 
trivance or appliance which was used for the purpose 
of preventing the bird's escape. That was a matter of 
common sense. Then they came to the words "wan- 
tonly committing a certain act ". It was quite clear 
the defendants had been watching the bird in the trap, 

8 



114 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

and they did so for the purpose of ascertaining who set 
the trap, so that whatever they did or omitted to do 
was done intentionally and therefore wantonly. The 
question was whether this omission of the defendants 
was reasonable. That, of course, raised the question 
as to whether anything could have been done by 
defendants that would have obviated the sufferings of 
the bird. There were two things which he submitted 
could have been done by the defendants to have obviated 
that suffering. They could h ave watched for those whom 
they intended to catch, leaving the trap empty. If that 
was not sufficient, they could have killed the bird and 
left it in the trap, so there were two things they might 
have done which they did not do, and having omitted 
to do these two things which they might have done, his 
submission was there was an unreasonable omission to 
release the bird. 

Chairman. There is another point. If they had 
killed the bird in the trap they might have rendered 
themselves liable to be prosecuted under another Act. 

Counsel said he recognised the weakness of the argu- 
ment about killing the bird, but he did not believe if the 
men were brought before the bench on a charge of killing 
a bird under such circumstances they would be punished. 

The Chairman said he only wished to draw attention 
to it. He did not wish to harass learned counsel at all. 

Counsel said he thought the point would be raised. The 
question was whether they could not have done something 
else. It was not an offence to release a bird from a trap. 

Chairman. With a broken leg ? 

Counsel said he would deal with that point further 
on. They could have released this animal from the 
trap. It would have caused it less suffering to be 
released than to have continued fluttering about in 
the trap ; even if the wing and legs were broken, it 
would have suffered less on the ground than in the 
trap. With regard to the word ''omit," it said in the 
section, any one omitting to do any act under these 
circumstances by which unnecessary suffering was 



CEUELTY TO ANIMALS, BIRDS, ETC. 115 

caused would be committing an offence. The ques- 
tion arose as to whether there was any legal re- 
sponsibility on these men to do anything or not. He 
contended that the defendants were the only persons 
who could have released the bird, and therefore being 
persons in that responsible position they undoubtedly 
were persons who had some legal responsibility thrust 
upon them. Consequently they omitted to do what was 
obviously their duty. Then the question arose as to 
whether by that act of omission any suffering was 
caused at all. The only argument he could apply was 
that it was obvious that if the bird had been removed 
from the trap it would have suffered less. 

An Inspector of the R.S.P.C.A. said he was sent by 
the Society to the district in order to make inquiries 
generally as to the trapping of wild game. He came 
down on the 26th November. 

Chairman. After the conviction. 

Witness. Yes, in consequence. There had been re- 
ports of gamekeepers doing that sort of thing, and he 
was sent down. He said he made some inquiries as 
to the prosecution, and in consequence, on the 28th 
November, saw one of the present defendants. Wit- 
ness told him he was making inquiries about a pheasant 
which was caught in a spring trap on the 27th October 

on land belonging to Mr. C H , and asked him 

if it was a fact that the bird was allowed to stay strug- 
gling in the trap from 2 o'clock on Sunday the 27th 
until the next morning. Defendant replied : "I saw 
a pheasant there in the trap about 2 P.M. and sent for 

T (the other defendant), and together we watched 

the bird from 2 o'clock on the Sunday afternoon till 9 P.M., 
and then we went home, returning at four next morning. 
The pheasant was still alive, but it was what you call 
dead, when it was taken out at nine by the then de- 
fendant." Witness told him it was alleged that the 
bird was badly mutilated, and must have suffered very 
much before it died, and asked him why he did not kill 
it. He replied : " It was nay duty to have done it, as it 

8* 



116 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

was private ground, but I left it as we have a lot of 
poachers on the land ". Later on witness saw the other 
defendant, who said : " About 2 o'clock on Sunday 

The Chairman asked if the witness had any right to 
go and interrogate a person. If a policeman had done 
this, he would have been censured and cautioned. He 
questioned whether the evidence was admissible. 

Counsel said a very important case had been decided 
on that point, the late Lord Chief Justice stating 
that he was of opinion that a caution should not be 
given. 

Witness, continuing, said T told him that they 

had watched the pheasant till 9 P.M. He returned 
again at 4 o'clock in the morning and found the 
pheasant still alive and knocked about, the legs being 
broken and other injuries. Witness asked him if it 
would not have been more humane to have killed the 
pheasant at 2 o'clock, and he replied : " That is nothing 
to do with me. I could not help its sufferings." He 
added that he wanted to catch the man. 

Cross-examined. There was no one present when he 

examined the defendants. He was certain that V 

(one of the defendants) told him the bird was alive at 
4 o'clock in the morning. Defendant did not state that 
the plantation belonged to the brother of his employer. 
He did not know the Society was going to prosecute, as 
he was simply sent down to make inquiries. 

Another witness (the defendant in the previous case 
and also a warrener) stated that on the 28th October he 
found a live pheasant in a trap at a quarter-past nine 
in the morning. Witness took it from the trap, killed 
it, and put it in his bag. He was at once spoken to by 
the two present defendants. One of them said, " Is this 
how you catch them?" Witness replied, "It looks 
like it ". One of the present defendants then said they 
had watched the bird since 2 o'clock the previous day, 
and observed that it was alive at a quarter-past four 
that morning. Both of the legs were broken, and one 
wing smashed all to pieces. 



CRUELTY TO ANIMALS, BIRDS, ETC. 117 

Cross-examined, witness admitted having been prose- 
cuted for using the trap and convicted. 

This was the case for the prosecution. 

For the defence we submitted that the defendants 
did not come within the provisions of the new Act. 
One was a warrener in the employ of a person not 
in possession of the sporting rights, and he went on 
the Sunday in question into a wood which belonged to 
his employer, but over which his employer's brother 
had the shooting rights. He saw a bird in a trap, and 
sent for the other defendant. He knew some one had 
been poaching, and thought it was his duty to watch 
and see who the culprit was. They watched until nine 
that night, and the next morning when they went again 
to the spot they found the bird was dead. Under the 
circumstances they thought they had done everything 
they could legally be expected to do. If they had 
killed the bird, they would have been killing game 
without a license. They did not know for one 
moment if the man who had been convicted of using 
the trap might not have been on the other side of the 
fence. The defendants knew nothing about the pro- 
visions of the new Act, and it was suggested that it 
should have been published the same as the Wild 
Birds' Protection Act had been, and submitted the 
following evidence for the defence. 

Mr. C. H., the owner of the wood, was sworn, and 

stated that V was a mole-catcher in his employ, 

and had not a game license. " Common Hill " (where 
the trap was stated to have been set) was his property, 

but the shooting was let to his brother. V had no 

right to interfere with any game in that wood, or with 
a spring trap set there. If he had let the bird out of 
the trap it would not have been possible to have con- 
victed the man of setting the trap. 

Counsel. Therefore a bird must go on suffering in 
order that a man may be convicted. If it could have 
been proved to the satisfaction of the Society that this 
man set the trap 



118 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

Chairman. He was convicted before us. 

Counsel. If the Society had had evidence that the 
former defendant saw this bird in the trap and allowed 
it to suffer, he would have been prosecuted, but the only 
evidence we have is that he did not know it was there. 

Chairman. That bird could never have got into that 
trap if the former defendant had not set it. 

Counsel. For that he has been convicted. 

The Chairman asked whether it was the duty of any 
one who set traps for rats to watch and see if a rat 
came in, and then kill it. 

Counsel. No, it is not your duty to sit by that trap 
and watch it, but if it could be proved that you omitted 
to do any act by which unnecessary suffering is caused, 
then you are guilty of an offence. 

Cross-examined. Witness said he approved of the 
conduct of his employees. They had no right to kill the 
bird, and if they had let it out of the trap the man who 
set the trap could not have been convicted because no 
one saw him do so. Undoubtedly the bird would not 
have suffered so much out of the trap as in it. 

The Chairman thought it would have suffered a great 
deal more if let out, as it would have fluttered about and 
been starved. It ought to have been killed if anything. 

We were about to call the defendants when counsel 
intervened, and said he opened his case as to the re- 
sponsibility of the defendants, and that they had juris- 
diction over certain land, and that they alone could have 
released the bird from the trap and had omitted to do 
so. If the bench were convinced they had no such 
power and no such responsibility, his case was gone. 
He could not possibly ask the bench after that to con- 
vict the defendants in the way he had asked them to. 

The bench retired to consult in private, and on their 
return into court the Chairman said they had given the 
case great consideration, and they had come to the con- 
clusion that it must be dismissed on the ground that 
the defendants had no jurisdiction over the trap or 
pheasant, and allowed the defendants their costs. 



SEIZURE OF GAME FOUND ON POACHEKS, ETC. 119 



SEIZUEE OF GAME FOUND ON POACHEES, 
TEESPASSEKS, ETC. 

By section 36 of the Game Act any person found 
by day or night upon any land, or in any of His 
Majesty's forests, parks, chases or warrens in search or 
pursuit of game, and who shall then and there have in 
his possession any game which shall appear to have 
been recently killed, it shall be lawful for any person 
having the right of killing the" game upon such land by 
virtue of any reservation or otherwise, or for the occu- 
pier of such land (whether there shall or shall not be 
any such right by reservation or otherwise), or for any 
gamekeeper or servant of either of them, or for any 
officer as aforesaid of such forest, etc., or any person 
acting by the order and in aid of any of the several per- 
sons, to demand from the person so found such game in 
his possession, and in case such person shall not im- 
mediately deliver up such game, to seize and take the 
same from him for the use of the person entitled to the 
game upon such land, forest, etc. 

There is nothing in the section as to a search, and if 
the game cannot be seen by the person demanding it, 
he should not proceed to search the trespasser, although 
he may strongly suspect and his suspicions would prove 
correct. (It is, however, often done.) The demand 
should be made then and there on the land or in fresh 
pursuit. The game seized must be strictly confined to 
the birds and beasts included in the definition of 
"game " in the Act. 

This section includes the sporting tenant, and he and 
his keeper, etc., would be justified in seizing game from 
a trespasser. 

It would be noted before that the seizure under the 
Poaching Prevention Act only applies to police con- 
stables on highways, where suspected persons coming 
from land are searched and game, etc., found upon 



120 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

them, when not only the " game " found upon such 
persons, which includes rabbits, game eggs, etc., but any 
gun, net or engine used for the killing or taking game 
is liable to seizure. There is no power for a gamekeeper 
to seize a gun found upon a trespasser. 

Special powers are, however, given to gamekeepers 
appointed by the lord of a manor, slightly in excess of 
those powers possessed by ordinary gamekeepers, but 
they must be set out in the "deputation" appointing 
the keeper, which is to be stamped and registered with 
the clerk of peace. These refer chiefly to the seizing of 
dogs, nets and other instruments or engines used for 
the taking of game. If warranted by his deputation to 
do so, he could kill any dog used by an unlicensed per- 
son on the manor lands (Koy v. Duke of Beaufort). A 
keeper on a manor could not be authorised to seize 
"guns" by his appointment, as the word is omitted 
from the section under which the " deputation " is 
made. One gamekeeper of a manor could not seize 
and destroy the dog of a gamekeeper on an adjoining 
manor which he found trespassing on the first-named 
manor (Eogers v. Carter). 

AKKEST. 

Questions sometimes arise as to how far a keeper may 
go in the arrest of a poacher found committing offences 
under the game laws. Mistakes are sometimes made, 
keepers having got excited and 'gone a little too far in 
arresting a person found committing an offence on 
the land over which he is in charge, with the result 
that his employer is threatened with an action for 
damages. 

Section 2 of the Night Poaching Act of 1828 pro- 
vides : 

That where any person shall be found upon any land 
committing any such offence as is mentioned in section 
1 (night poaching), it shall be lawful for the owner or 
occupier of such land or for any person having a right 



ARREST 121 

or reputed right of free warren or free chase thereon, 
or for the lord of the manor or reputed manor wherein 
such land may be situate, and also for any gamekeeper 
or servant of any of the persons therein mentioned or any 
person assisting such gamekeeper or servant, to seize and 
apprehend such offender upon such land, or in case of 
pursuit being made in any other case to which he may 
have escaped therefrom, and to deliver him as soon as 
may be into the custody of a police officer in order to his 
being conveyed before two justices of the peace, and in 
case such offender shall assault or offer any violence 
with any gun, crossbow, firearm, bludgeon, stick, club or 
other offensive weapon towards any person so authorised 
to seize and apprehend him, he shall whether first, 
second or other offence be guilty of a misdemeanour, and 
on conviction liable to penal servitude for seven years 
or imprisonment with hard labour for not exceeding 
two years. 

It will be seen from the above that the power to 
arrest given by this Act does not extend to the lessee 
of the sporting rights or his gamekeeper or servant, but 
only to those named. 

The Night Poaching Act of 1844 extends the Act of 
1828 to persons taking or destroying game or rabbits 
by night on public roads, highways or paths, or by the 
sides thereof, or the openings, outlets or gates from 
same, and persons offending under this Act may be 
arrested by the owner or occupier of the lands adjoining 
such road, etc., their gamekeepers and servants and any 
one assisting them. 1 Persons may also be arrested 
when found at night on land open or enclosed with gun, 
net, etc., for the taking of game (but not for the taking 
of rabbits) under the latter part of section 1 of the 
Night Poaching Act, 1828. 

Also under section 9 of the last-named Act, offenders 
may be arrested where three or more together enter 
land opened or enclosed armed by night with gun, etc., 

1 The poachers here must be actually taking game or rabbits. 



122 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

for the purpose of taking or destroying game or rabbits. 
(If one armed, all are armed, and if one only enter and 
the others are outside assisting in any way, all are 
equally liable.) So that a keeper must not arrest a 
poacher on the highway going to or returning from 
where he has been in search or pursuit of game or 
rabbits, nor can he when they are poaching on the 
highway by night arrest poachers there, unless the 
poachers are, as above stated, actually taking game or 
rabbits at the time, but it would be otherwise had the 
keeper pursued them from off his master's land where 
they had been taking game or rabbits. 

If a gamekeeper whilst attempting lawfully to arrest 
a poacher meets with violence, and in self-defence 
strikes the poacher and the poacher kills him it is 
murder (Beg. v. Ball). Eeasonable resistance is justifi- 
able in the case of a sporting tenant or a servant of his 
in arresting a poacher under section 2 of the Night 
Poaching Act (Beg. v. Addis), and where the servant of 
a sportsman discharged his gun whilst struggling to 
arrest a poacher, whereby the poacher was killed, it was 
held to be manslaughter (Beg. v. Wesley). Apart from 
the above, if a felony has been committed an accused 
person may be arrested without warrant. If a misde- 
meanour a warrant should be first obtained. 

Any person may however arrest a poacher when com- 
mitting an indictable offence between 9 A.M. and 6 P.M. 
and hand him over to a police constable (14 & 15 
Viet. c. 19, sect. 11), which has been held to apply to 
poachers under the Night Poaching Act of 1828. 

Any person also may arrest under the Larceny Act 
of 1861, section 103, a person found committing any 
indictable offence without warrant, which will apply 
to the indictable offence of killing or taking hares in 
warrens by night. 

For the offence of trespassing in the daytime persons 
cannot be arrested, but their names and addresses may 
be demanded and they may be requested to leave the 
land and give their correct names and addresses, and if 



ARREST 123 

the offenders refuse or give a false one or refuse to leave 
the land or return to it, they may be arrested and con- 
veyed before a justice, and, on conviction, they are liable 
to a fine of 5. If, however, the offenders cannot be 
conveyed within twelve hours before a justice they must 
be discharged and summoned in the ordinary course. 
The above penalty would be in addition to any penalty 
the offender is liable to for the trespass in pursuit of 
game, etc. 

The person entitled to make the request for the name, 
etc., would be : 

Any person entitled to kill the game ; 

The occupier of the land ; 

Any gamekeeper or servant of either of them or a 
person duly authorised by them. 

It must not of course be assumed from the foregoing 
that every person trespassing on land may on declining to 
give his name and address be taken before a justice and 
there dealt with, but only persons on the land in pursuit 
of game, snipe, woodcock, quails, landrails or conies. 
If a mere ordinary trespass, where no damage accom- 
panies it, the remedy would be by action at common 
law or an injunction to restrain ; but in that case the 
occupier or owner would be justified in using sufficient 
force to expel an intruder, if he declined to leave the 
premises when requested, though no more force than 
was absolutely necessary should be resorted to. 

The Game Act of 1831 does not preclude actions for 
trespass on land in search of game, dead or alive, or for 
other purposes, section 46 providing as follows : " That 
nothing in this Act contained shall prevent any per- 
son from proceeding by way of civil action to recover 
damages in respect of a trespass upon his land, whether 
committed in pursuit of game or otherwise, save and 
except that where any proceedings shall have been insti- 
tuted under the provisions of this Act against any person 
for or in respect of any trespass, no act at law shall be 
maintainable for the same trespass by any person at 
whose instance or with whose concurrence or assent 



124 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

such proceedings shall have been instituted, but that such 
proceedings shall in each case be a bar to any such action, 
and may be given in evidence under the general issue ". 

It does not appear necessary for a defendant to have 
been actually convicted before a bench of justices of a 
trespass in pursuit of game to bar a subsequent action 
for trespass for damages, an order dismissing the case 
would be sufficient where the case had been heard and 
formally adjudicated upon. 

From the above it will be seen that it is optional for 
the person against whom the trespass has been com- 
mitted to take either criminal or civil proceedings against 
the person trespassing. 

An action for trespass could be brought in the High 
Court or in the County Court where the damages claimed 
do not amount to more than 100, but the County Court 
could not try an action where a question of title arises, 
except by consent of the parties interested ; where the 
value of the lands, tenements, or hereditaments in dis- 
pute or the rent payable in respect thereof exceeds the 
sum of 100 by the year. Should the plaintiff bring an 
action in the High Court, which might have been brought 
in the County Court, and does not recover 10 or more, 
he is not entitled to any costs, and if 10 or more and 
less than 20, only the County Court scale costs, unless 
the judge certifies that there was sufficient reason for 
bringing the action in the High Court. 

AIDEKS AND ABETTEES. 

The general law as to aiders and abetters applies 
equally to offences under the game laws, so that every 
person who aids, abets, counsels or procures the com- 
mission of any offence under such laws punishable on 
summary conviction, is liable to be proceeded against 
and convicted for the same, either together with the 
principal offender or before or after his conviction, and 
is liable to the same fine or imprisonment as such prin- 
cipal offender is liable to, and may be proceeded against 
in the county, borough or place where the principal 



JUSTICES' JUSTICE 125 

offender may be convicted or where the offence of aid- 
ing or abetting may have been committed. If the aider 
and abetter is so charged, prior to a conviction having 
been secured against the principal, proof of the principal 
offence having been committed would be required. 

Special provision, it will be remembered, has been 
made in the Poaching Prevention Act as to accessories 
to persons coming from land where they have been in 
pursuit of game and having game nets, etc., in possession. 

Where a person stands on a roadway or bank of a 
field in which another is committing, say, a trespass in 
pursuit of game, and assists or gives an alarm to him in 
the field, the first mentioned might be rightly charged 
with aiding and abetting, or even as a principal, as he 
could be satisfactorily proved to be acting in concert. 
If two men are driving in a cart and the cart is stopped 
and one man shoots and kills game which he secures 
and takes back to him in the cart, who has been 
detaining the horse, holding reins, etc., the last named 
would be aiding and abetting. These are of course 
only simple illustrations of the offence of aiding and 
abetting, the law applying to all offences committed. 

JUSTICES' JUSTICE. 

It is not intended by the above title to infer that 
justice is not impartially dispensed by those holding 
His Majesty's Commission of the Peace in game cases 
coming before them at the various petty sessions. 
Entirely the reverse. 

After many years' experience we can honestly say that 
magistrates, if sportsmen and the owners of their own 
shooting, as a general rule are more inclined to err on 
the side of leniency and to give the defendant the benefit 
of the doubt than those justices who are not so in- 
terested in that particular kind of sport. We have seen 
some rather hard hits at justices in print, as to the 
heavy penalties inflicted upon defendants under the game 
laws, but we cannot endorse them, as our experience 



126 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

has been otherwise ; indeed in some courts it is next to 
impossible to obtain a conviction against a trespasser in 
pursuit, if he appears and strongly protests his inno- 
cence, whether he goes into the box to give evidence or 
not. Egging cases now are happily a thing of the past, 
with the exception of an odd case or two each year, but 
when this was so rife it was very seldom that more 
than a shilling fine per egg was inflicted, although 5s. 
per egg might have been imposed. We have often 
thought if magistrates could see their way to inflict a 
somewhat heavy penalty on a poacher when caught for 
the first time, it might have the effect of effectually 
stopping him from that line of business. To inflict a 
small fine, often paid with contempt, generally results 
in another expedition to spite the prosecutor's servant 
plus an endeavour to recoup the penalty paid. If the 
second venture is successful, in all probability the man 
blossoms into a full-blown poacher before he is much 
older. 

Merciful to a fault very often, particularly towards a 
first offender, the magistrates no doubt do exercise their 
jurisdiction more seasonably in the case of an old 
offender. 

Many interesting cases under the game laws in 
which we have been concerned are well worth repro- 
ducing. Space will not admit of many, but whilst on 
the subject of justices, we should like to refer to an in- 
stance of how game cases are sometimes dealt with in 
the North country. 

A defendant was summoned before a bench of magis- 
trates for a trespass in search of game, to wit, hares. 
It was proved he owned a dog, which was taken out 
with him regularly, and had become a great nuisance to 
the gamekeeper. The dog was seen to be chasing a 
hare in a field adjoining the highway, but the sending 
of it there by the defendant, who remained a passive 
spectator walking along the crown of the road, could 
not be proved, in fact there was no evidence except 
that the dog was in the field coursing the hare. The 



OUSTER OF JURISDICTION OF JUSTICES 127 

justices retired to consider their decision, and, on their 
retaking their seats, the chairman, after enlarging on the 
gravity of the offence, explained to the defendant that it 
had not been satisfactorily proved to the court that he 
had actually trespassed or been seen to incite the dog, 
but there was abundance of evidence to show the dog 
had been trespassing in pursuit, and they had thereupon 
unanimously decided to convict, further- remarking that 
" although they could not fine him, as he deserved, they 
could the dog, and would ". The dog would be fined 10s. 
and costs. 

We are not quite sure whether the conviction was 
appealed against, or whether the owner paid the dog's 
fine. We do not remember the dog going to jail. 

OUSTEE OF THE JUEISDICTION OF THE 
JUSTICES. 

A claim is very often set up by a defendant charged 
with some offence under the game laws (more par- 
ticularly perhaps in a case of trespass in pursuit), that 
he had a right vested in him to do the act complained 
of, and for which he has been summoned. If this 
claim is, in the opinion of the justices hearing the case, 
a bond fide claim of right, their jurisdiction is ousted and 
their hands tied from dealing with the matter before 
them, just as in a case of wilful damage where a right 
is set up. 

It is not, however, sufficient for a defendant to state 
that he claims a right (as that might be done in any 
case), but it must be a reasonable claim and one which 
the law will support him in, not a mere idle, absurd or 
shadowy claim which the law cannot recognise. The 
claim is often set up by a defendant's solicitor, some- 
times with the faintest pretence towards a right, especi- 
ally if he has only a moderate defence on the merits of 
the case, but it is for the justices themselves to decide 
as to the reasonableness or otherwise of the right alleged. 
There is one point that perhaps ought to be here men- 



128 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

tioned, and that is the question of "guilty knowledge ". 
Under almost all other Acts of Parliament there must 
be what is legally termed " rnens rea," that is to say, 
that the defendant at the time he committed the act 
complained of knew he was a wrongdoer, and was com- 
mitting a criminal offence. Under the game laws, 
however, so far as a trespass in pursuit of game or rab- 
bits, etc., is concerned, this is dispensed with, and a 
defendant is presumed to know the law and what his 
own rights are. A number of cases have been decided 
in the High Court on the question of claim of right and 
ouster of jurisdiction which we need not trouble the 
reader with here, but a very important case was decided 
which arose on certain common lands at Holt called 
" The Lowes," in which we were interested, and in 
which all the authorities on the subject were discussed, 
and we have thought worth reproducing. 

The case was heard before the justices sitting at the 
Holt Petty Sessional Court, when a man was charged 
by a keeper with unlawfully committing a trespass in 
pursuit of pheasants on the Holt Lowes. It was ad- 
mitted the defendant was upon " The Lowes," and shot 
a pheasant there ; that the information was laid by a 
person having no interest in the land or in the game 
thereon ; that " The Lowes " had been at one time 
waste or common land, but had been dealt with by 
an Inclosure Award under an Inclosure Act, 47 Geo. 
III., and which award was put in in evidence. 

The defendant claimed that he was entitled under 
the provisions of the award to kill the game on ' ' The 
Lowes," as he was the occupier of an ancient house in 
the parish of Holt of a less rental value than 10 per 
annum. 

The clauses in the award are very long, and we do 
not propose to set them out in detail, but the following 
are portions of clauses which were relied on : 

"And we do hereby assign, set out and allot unto the 
rector, churchwarden and overseers, etc., all that piece 
of land in Holt called 'The Lowes,' about 120 acres. 



OUSTER OF JURISDICTION OF JUSTICES 129 

In trust and to the intent that the same shall and may 
be used by the owners and occupiers of such ancient 
houses within the said parish of Holt as are particu- 
larly specified in the schedule hereunder for the purpose 
of supplying each and every of them with common of 
pasture for one head of neat stock, or for one gelding 
or mare, and that the owners and occupiers of such 
houses shall and may for ever hereafter cut and take 
flags, ling, brakes and furze for firing upon such part 
of the last-mentioned allotment, to be consumed in 
such houses respectively, and not elsewhere, at such 
times in every year in such proportions and in such 
manner and subject to such rules, orders and regula- 
tions as the said rector, etc., for the time being or the 
major part of them shall from time to time direct or 
appoint. 

" And we do hereby order and direct that no cattle 
whatever shall feed or depasture or be turned upon 
the last allotment for the purpose of feeding and de- 
pasturing there, save and except such cattle as shall 
really and bond fide belong to and be the property of 
the several persons who shall answer the description 
aforesaid, and shall for the time being be entitled to 
the benefit of the said last allotment according to the 
true intent and meaning of the said private Act." Then 
follow directions to the trustees for the management, 
the appointment of reeves, the repairing of the fences, 
the impounding of cattle wrongfully turned on the allot- 
ment, etc., etc. 

It was admitted that the house occupied by the 
defendant was one of the houses scheduled in the 
award. 

That he acted in good faith, and stated that the only 
claim he made to the right of shooting was as an occu- 
pier of the house scheduled. 

A witness was called on behalf of the defendant, who 
also owned a scheduled house, who swore he had shot 
on " The Lowes " with different people, and had never 
had his right to do so disputed by anybody. 

9 



130 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

On behalf of the prosecution it was contended that 
under the statute 1 & 2 Wm. IV. c. 32, sect. 30, it was 
immaterial who laid the information ; and even if that 
were not so originally, it is so since the Summary Juris- 
diction Act came into operation. 

That the defendant might be convicted under the 
statute, although there is no evidence of "mens rea". 

That in order to oust the jurisdiction of the justices, 
the bond fide claim of right set up must not be absurd, 
shadowy or impossible in point of law. That the right 
set up by the defendant under the award was wholly 
without foundation in law. That such rights as the 
award gave to the defendant did not and could not 
confer any right to take the game on the land in 
question. 

The justices, however, under the circumstances were 
of opinion that the defendant's claim of right was made 
bond fide, and that their jurisdiction was thereby ousted, 
and declined to adjudicate, but agreed to state a case 
for the opinion of the court above. 

On the case being formally prepared, the points for 
the consideration of the court were : 

1. Was the information rendered invalid by the fact 
that the appellant had no interest in the land in ques- 
tion or in the game thereon ? 

2. Were the justices right in holding that their juris- 
diction was ousted by the claim of the defendant ? 

The matter came on in due course in the King's Bench 
Division of the High Court before J. J. Eidley and 
Bigham, when the first point for the consideration of 
the court was withdrawn by counsel for respondent, 
who admitted that the information was valid, but with 
respect to the second question the court decided that 
the appeal of the appellant must be dismissed, the 
court being of opinion that the claim of the defendant 
was a bond fide one. 

In giving judgment, Justice Kidley said : " The de- 
fendant may well have the right he claims, and I think 
it would be unjust for me to say otherwise. I do not 



OUSTER OF JURISDICTION OF JUSTICES 131 

think this court is the right court to deprive the defen- 
dant of the claim he makes, as I do not think it is a 
claim that cannot be properly set up. The whole ques- 
tion is whether he had a reasonable ground. I do not 
pretend to say it is a case free from difficulties, but I 
think the question is whether or not the magistrates 
were right in considering their jurisdiction was ousted. 

" The case governing this is Watkins v. Major, and 
although that case is distinguishable, the principle laid 
down in that case can be applied here. There it was 
laid down that there must be shown reasonable grounds 
in order to oust the jurisdiction. This applies here, but 
the facts somewhat differ, because in this case there has 
been an enclosure, and the ancient houses cannot be left 
out of our consideration altogether. Further, another 
person who owns another house also claims the right 
which has not been disputed. Can it be said there is 
no possible belief that the defendant had any reasonable 
grounds to believe he had the right ? The difficulty 
arising is, I do not see anything in the award which 
could entitle the defendant to the right of sport. It is 
one of those cases on the border-line, and I have come 
to the conclusion that we should apply the principle 
that the justices had the right to hold their hands, and 
that there was a question of title which ousted their 
jurisdiction. What we say does not decide the rights 
of the respective parties, and we do not say what the 
rights show." 

Justice Bigham, in following, said: "I have had a 
great deal of doubt in the case, and my difficulty arises 
from the fact that I cannot easily describe how the 
respondent's right arises out of the facts stated in the 
special case. I agree with counsel for the appellant 
there should be some colour of title to such a claim as 
set up, but here there is not only a bond fide claim set 
up, but it appears that some other person had enjoyed 
the right undisputed by any one. I cannot say the 
justices were wrong in the course they took. The 
rights of the respondent should be raised in some 

9* 



132 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

other way. I agree with the decision of my brother 
Eidley." 

ANOMALIES IN THE GAME LAWS. 

One often hears it stated when Acts of Parliament 
are being criticised, " that there was never an Act 
yet passed but what a coach and four might be driven 
through it," and so on. This is a somewhat wide ex- 
pression, but no doubt to the lay mind many sugges- 
tions might sometimes be made by way of improving 
the draft of a bill to be presented to Parliament, but it 
is very often forgotten that there are two sides to most 
questions, and although a certain suggested alteration 
might appear very expedient and apparently an advan- 
tage so far as one set of persons interested are con- 
cerned, yet where many people's interests are at stake 
it often needs more than ordinary skill and efforts to 
effect a just change equitable to all. 

No doubt there are a few alterations necessary in the 
game laws, when looked at from a game owner and 
sportsman's point of view, and this is the light in which 
we are looking at them at present (and a great many 
more no doubt in the eyes of the poacher), but it is 
proposed only to deal with a very few which occur in 
practice, and which would be an advantage to the game 
owner and sportsman if remedied, although it must 
not be forgotten that undoubtedly the legislators of the 
past were perfectly cognisant of what they were doing, 
in fact doing what has been done with their eyes open 
and intentionally. 

A reference to the latter part of the Night Poaching 
Act of 1828 will show that to unlawfully enter by night 
any land open or enclosed with a gun, net, engine or 
other instrument for the purpose of taking or destroying 
game, renders the offender liable to a heavy fine. Inas- 
much, however, as the word " dog " is not mentioned 
in the section, and as it has been decided that a dog is 
not an instrument for taking or killing game, a person 



ANOMALIES IN THE GAME LAWS 133 

trespassing at night in pursuit of game commits no 
offence under that Act, as the trespass in pursuit section 
only applies to the daytime. This Night Poaching Act, 
it is suggested, requires amending so as to include 
" dog" as an "instrument," as undoubtedly some dogs, 
particularly lurchers, are often very instrumental in 
taking game, to say nothing about other damages and 
depredations they commit when out at night with their 
owners, particularly during the nesting season, the 
worrying of sheep, etc. It is far from pleasant to con- 
template having men with dogs ranging about on your 
meadows or park by night after game, and because no 
game or rabbits are taken and appropriated no criminal 
proceedings can be taken under the Night Poaching Acts. 

A case in point was brought to our notice some little 
time back where keepers found men trespassing during 
night poaching hours on strictly preserved land, with 
lurcher dogs undoubtedly after hares. Fortunately for 
the men no hares were killed or even seen by the 
keepers, nor had even a rabbit been killed, but the 
matter was reported to their employer by the keepers, 
who received instructions to proceed against the men, 
their names having been taken in the ordinary way. 
Application was in due course made to the magistrate's 
clerk of the division for a summons, but he pointed 
out to them that no offence had been committed. 

The employer was greatly disappointed, and much 
annoyed at such a state of affairs existing, and not 
being satisfied in his own mind, decided upon obtaining 
legal advice, but only to be advised that the magistrate's 
clerk was quite correct in his version of the law. Had 
the dogs been seen to have been urged on, or incited by 
their owners in the searching of game, or had the men 
appropriated a rabbit which the dogs had caught, the 
case would have been much different. 

An alteration might also very properly be made in 
the law so far as larceny of dead game is concerned. 
As the reader will probably know, to constitute larceny 
in dead game the game must have been reduced into 



134 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

the possession of the owner, and the question of identi- 
fication has also to be reckoned with. 

A year or so ago a landowner in Norfolk had upon 
his estate a rabbit warren and employed several war- 
reners, some of whom were suspected of purloining 
rabbits caught by them for sale by their employer. The 
head keeper was instructed to give an eye to and search 
any of the warreners he suspected. He met two war- 
reners one day returning home at the end of the day, 
and he told them he suspected them of stealing rabbits 
and should search them. The men in reply denied they 
had any rabbits in their possession or that they had 
ever stolen any, but on the keeper searching them and 
raising their respective "smocks," upon each man he 
found a brace of freshly killed rabbits tucked up under 
their smocks. The rabbits could not have been ob- 
tained from other than the land on which the men were 
employed, and were warm. The keeper was instructed 
to lay an information for larceny against each for steal- 
ing a brace of rabbits, as the case could not be otherwise 
treated, seeing there could not be a trespass in pursuit 
of rabbits by the men when there, they being lawfully 
there and specially employed to kill rabbits. 

Summonses were issued, but on the case being called 
at the ensuing petty sessions, it was suggested by the 
bench that the information should be withdrawn, and 
this was done, the magistrate's clerk no doubt having 
intimated to them that no conviction could follow, and 
nothing further was done in the matter. 

The rabbits had never been reduced into the posses- 
sion of the owner, and the identification of the rabbits 
would have been difficult to prove, as generally speaking 
rabbits are somewhat awkward animals to swear to, 
unless they have been previously " nicked " or marked 
in some way or other. Nor could the warreners have 
been charged with embezzling the rabbits, as it could 
not have been proved they had been received by the 
men for and on account of their master, etc., as required 
by that statute to support a conviction. 



ANOMALIES IN THE GAME LAWS 135 

If a beater appropriate a shot bird he has picked up 
which has never been received into the possession of 
the sportsman who killed it, or perhaps more likely 
mortally wounded it, it is not larceny at common law. 
Unless the bird could be unmistakably proved to be 
alive when picked up, there could not be a charge of 
trespass in pursuit of game or of taking game without 
certificate, a fortiori, if the bird was actually dead, it 
could not be a trespass, the section only applying to live 
game, and as it had not been reduced into possession it 
could not be larceny. 

A year or so ago a landowner was out shooting with 
a party of friends on his own lands. A pheasant, which 
was either killed or mortally wounded, dropped on the 
bank dividing the field on which the bird was shot and 
the highway, and before it could be found and picked 
up by the snooting party or their attendants, a travel- 
ling hawker who happened to be passing along the 
highway (and who had probably seen all that had trans- 
pired), picked up the bird and declined to give it up 
when asked to, quietly walking off with it, saying he 
claimed it as his property. His name was taken and 
application was made for a summons against him either 
for larceny of the bird or for game trespass in respect of 
it (the prosecutor did not care which), but no process 
was granted, the bird never having been reduced into 
possession, and it not being quite clear or able to be 
sworn to that the bird was alive when appropriated by 
the hawker. 

From the above and innumerable other cases which 
might be mentioned, it naturally follows that some 
effort should be made to get the laws amended making 
provision for the purloining of game, etc., which cannot 
from the circumstances arising be then and there re- 
duced into the possession of the owner. Admitted that 
such birds as pheasants and partridges and indeed other 
birds of game in a natural state are when alive practi- 
cally wild game, and not a personal chattel in which a 
person on whose land they are can have an absolute 



136 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

property, but merely a qualified right under certain 
circumstances to capture and take them, still it is 
exceedingly annoying to find a pheasant that has 
been reared on your property and fed and attended to 
until the law allows it to be killed, when it is shot, 
purloined by the first loafer who happens to pass. An 
action for trover would no doubt lie for the possession 
of the bird so taken away, but who would go to the 
expense of such proceedings in a civil court ? The 
remedy would be worse than the disease. 

There are cases of larceny of dead game by those 
who have not poached and killed the game reported, 
but in Beg. v. Townley, where rabbits had been caught 
by poachers and left in a ditch and afterwards brought 
away by them, the rabbits being ferce natura, it was held 
not to be larceny. Had the rabbits been taken away by 
persons other than those who had caught them, they 
would have been considered as the property of the 
owner of the land on which they were found, and 
larceny could be committed in respect of them, but it 
does not seem to be intended to place poachers in the 
same category as felons. 

It may be taken for granted that the mere killing of 
an animal or bird of game by a person legally authorised 
to kill game is not such a reduction of it into possession 
as would make it his absolute property so as to main- 
tain a charge of larceny against the person who took 
it away with the intention of depriving the owner of 
it (Reg. v. Roe). But animals and birds fera natures 
when reclaimed and confined and practically under the 
care and cognisance of their owner would be the sub- 
ject of larceny at common law, e.g., young pheasants in 
a coop reared by a hen, although they eventually become 
wild birds when turned out ; pigeons when reclaimed 
and swans when marked and at large in public rivers, or 
whether marked or not if in a private river or pond, etc. 

Going back to the question of anomalies in the Acts, 
the first section of the Night Poaching Act of 1828 
dealing with guns, nets, etc., as before stated, not only 



ANOMALIES IN THE GAME LAWS 137 

omits the word "dog," but also the forfeiture clause, 
which at times has been found very important. The 
Poaching Prevention Act provides on conviction as 
before stated for an order by the justices being made 
for the sale or destruction of game nets, guns, etc., 
found by a police constable on a defendant on highway 
where he had been in search of game and was suspected 
of having used them, the proceeds going to swell the 
county exchequer. It is suggested the Night Poaching 
Act should also carry a forfeiture clause in respect of 
the nets, etc., used. 

Surely if poachers are out by night taking game or 
rabbits, with probably several nets 100 yards long each, 
and a lurcher dog driving the rabbits into the nets, on a 
conviction the nets should be forfeited. Poachers, as a 
rule, know the land on which they poach well, one or 
more of the party every foot of it as a rule, and very 
often the habits and arrangements of the keepers in 
charge, and in a few nightly visits with anything like 
ordinary luck, can soon clear a place of the rabbits. 
Sometimes, however, the poachers come off second 
best, and have to leave their nets and tackle behind, 
being only too glad to keep clear of the keepers. 

As a rule, the guns, nets or other instruments are 
generally retained by the prosecution who leave the 
poacher to his remedy (not often availed of), but it 
would be more satisfactory if the detention was done 
under the cover of the law. An action in the county 
court for the recovery of the nets or their value by the 
poacher after his conviction might be successful, but 
would hardly be worth the expense and risk with the 
possibility of the Whitehaven case being repeated and 
an order made for the handing over of the nets, valued 
at Id. in a few years' time. 

Further, there appears only one section in the game 
laws dealing with crime, viz., section 1 of "The Night 
Poaching Act of 1828," which provides for an increased 
penalty being imposed for a second conviction against 
the same offender. 



138 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

Under the licensing laws, and indeed in many 
other statutes, provision is made for this, and a person 
who is even found drunk in a public place is on con- 
viction a second time within twelve months liable to a 
double penalty, and for a third offence within the like 
period to a penalty of 40s. with the costs. Why should 
not the same principle be applicable to offences under 
the game laws ? It would surely act as a deterrent 
if an habitual poacher knew he would be liable to a 
double penalty when caught trespassing in pursuit of 
game a second time, and so on. 

As it is, the penalty for this offence is not a particu- 
larly heavy one ; and seeing that an individual partial to 
this particular class of offence is not caught every time 
he commits it, it is evidently thought well worth while 
running the risk for the sport, plus income, involved. 
Were the penalty liable to be doubled on a subsequent 
conviction within five years, with a corresponding period 
in default of payment, a person's weakness in this di- 
rection might be cured and his poaching proclivities 
effectually nipped in the bud before he blossomed into 
a confirmed poacher and hardened criminal. Prevention 
is better than cure. 

A very large accumulation of long nets, the result of 
sundry confiscations from time to time at a local court, 
were deposited for public sale, in accordance with the 
previous orders of the justices in the various cases in 
which the nets had been conspicuous factors. Having 
had a casual intimation of the proposed sale, and not 
caring to attend personally and bid for the nets (which 
might have meant giving a very long price for each), 
and being particularly anxious the nets should not again 
fall into the hands of the " gentlemen " responsible for 
the accumulation, or their friends, we made an arrange- 
ment with a local furniture broker to buy the whole of 
the lot in for us. 

He attended the sale, as also did about a dozen inter- 
ested poachers, each no doubt having made up his mind 
after inspecting them as to which he intended to secure. 



ANOMALIES IN THE GAME LAWS 139 

The bidding commenced, and the nets being sold in one 
lot as arranged, was secured by our representative, the 
poachers present not caring to bid, being under the im- 
pression they could obtain from the broker what nets 
they felt inclined to buy, with a small addition to the 
purchase price by way of commission to him, and were 
all in good spirits at the position matters were assuming. 
When the nets were knocked down to the broker for a 
very trifling sum the poachers were not long in making 
their choice and in asking : " How much do you want 
for this ? How much for this ? What for this ? " and 
so on. On being told by the broker he could not sell 
any of the nets, that they had been purchased on a 
gentleman's instructions who required them, the con- 
tempt and disgust of the poachers may be imagined. 
They tried hard to effect " a deal " and to buy one 
or two old favourites, but the broker was immovable 
and would not sell one, and at last the poachers, find- 
ing further efforts useless, left the hall making use 
of the sweet modest language ordinarily used by that 
fraternity. 

Of course a poacher cannot expect to come off scot- 
free every time he goes out. It may be he thinks the 
game would not be worth the candle if there was not 
a little more excitement in poaching than the mere 
obtaining and selling the game poached. No doubt 
often a good many jokes are cracked whilst he is making 
his long rabbit nets in the back premises, and a sore 
grievance it must be to him when he has got his nets out 
on two sides of a favourite calling place and is about to 
send his trusty dog into the field to drive the rabbits 
home into the nets when he hears the keepers lumber- 
ing on to him. He has then to decide whether he will 
face the music or take to his heels, and it is generally 
the latter, though no doubt it is like taking his heart's 
blood to leave his nets behind. 



140 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

GUN LICENSES. 

As it is not every one who knows the full legal ex- 
tent of the Gun License Act of 1870 (33 & 34 Viet. c. 57), 
it may not be out of place to give shortly an epitome of 
its provisions here, not so much as affecting sportsmen 
generally, but as showing what the law exacts from 
other persons often met with on the lands with firearms 
in their possession. 

The above Act requires every person who uses or 
carries a gun in the United Kingdom, except in a 
dwelling-house or the curtilage thereof, to take out a 
yearly license, which costs 10s. (unless such person shall 
have in force a game license) under a penalty of 10, 
and by section 2 of the Act " gun " includes a firearm 
of every description, and an air-gun, or any other kind 
of gun from which any shot, bullet or other missile can 
be discharge !. Even a mere pocket toy pistol has been 
held to be a gun (Campbell v. Hadley). 

''Curtilage" means outbuildings, offices, yard, etc., 
adjoining a house, which would pass in a conveyance 
of the house. An orchard en* yard separated from the 
house by an enclosed yard, beyond which was a garden, 
was held not to be within the curtilage of the house 
(Asquith v. Griffin). 

Police constables, as well as the officers of Inland 
Bevenue, have, under section 9 of the Act, power to 
demand production of a license from any person using 
or carrying a gun (unless such person is in the Naval, 
Military or Volunteer Service of His Majesty, or in the 
constabulary and others exempted), and if the person 
upon whom the demand is made does not produce the 
license or a license to kill game and permit the constable 
or Excise officer to read the license, such constable, etc., 
may require the Christian and surname of such person, 
and if he refuses to give same he is liable to a penalty 
of 10, in addition to any other penalty he may have 
subjected himself to under this or any other Act. The 
10 may, however, like all other penalties since the 



GUN LICENSES 141 

passing of the Summary Jurisdiction Act, be reduced 
by the justices hearing the case to any extent, and is 
not as was the law prior to the passing of the last-named 
Act merely reducible to one-fourth. For a second 
offence the penalty can only be reduced to one-fourth 
of the maximum. The constable or officer may enter 
when necessary any land or premises (other than 
dwelling-houses or curtilage) for the purpose of making 
such demand for a license. There are of course numer- 
ous classes of persons who are exempted from the 
provisions of the Act who incur no penalty, viz. : 

1. Any person in the Naval, Military or Volunteer 
Service of His Majesty or constabulary or police force 
using or carrying gun in performance of duty or engaged 
in target practice. 

2. Any person having in force a license or certificate 
to kill game granted by the Excise. 

3. Any person carrying a gun belonging to a person 
having in force a license under the Act by order of such 
licensed person or for the use of such person. 

4. The occupier of lands using or carrying a gun for 
the purpose of "scaring" birds or killing vermin on 
such lands or a person so using or carrying by order of 
the occupier who has himself a license to use a gun or 
to kill game. 

5. Any gunsmith or his servant carrying a gun in the 
ordinary course of his trade or by way of testing it. 

6. Any person carrying a gun in the ordinary way of 
his business as a common carrier. 

By section 8, if a gun is carried in parts by two or 
more persons in company, each and every of such persons 
is deemed to be carrying a gun. But, query, would an 
offence be committed under this section of the Act if 
two or more persons were carrying certain portions of a 
gun amongst them but were not in company. We sug- 
gest not. The words carrying or using require no com- 
ment. " Scaring " birds does not mean kitting birds, 
consequently if a person who has a license to kill game, 
or to carry and use a gun, authorises another to kill 



142 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

birds, the last named must have a license to carry a 
gun. 

The Act does not define what " vermin " means, but 
in a Scotch case (Lord Advocate of Scotland v. Young) 
it was held that rabbits were not vermin, and a license 
should be obtained by any one about to shoot them, 
indeed it would appear from the wording of the Game 
License Act of 1860 (23 Viet. c. 90) that every person 
who shall take, kill or pursue or assist in so doing or use 
any dog, giin, net or other engine for the purpose of 
taking, killing or pursuing game or any woodcock, snipe, 
quail, landrail, coney or deer without a proper license 
(with the exception of taking woodcock or snipe with 
nets or springs and various other exceptions) is liable to 
a penalty of 20. 

The learned editor of Stone's Justice s Manual, thirty- 
eighth edition, in a footnote to the Gun Act, states that 
it is understood that the Board of Inland Eevenue will 
not as a rule take proceedings against any person who 
being duly authorised by the holder of a gun or game 
license may occasionally kill a bird that does not fall 
within the description of game, while engaged in u scar- 
ing " birds for the protection of his crops. 

By section 7 the onus of proof that the person charged 
is not incurring the penalty lies on the defendant. 

Licenses are not transferable, and if a person be 
found carrying or using a gun without a license, the 
fact of his taking out a license later on in the same day 
would not relieve him from the liability to prosecution. 

The license to carry a gun is void if the licensee is 
convicted of trespassing on land in pursuit of game or 
woodcock, snipe, quail, landrail or conies under section 
30 of the Game Act. A game license would be also 
forfeited were the person convicted under the last-named 
section in possession of one, but there is nothing to 
prevent a person so convicted from taking out a fresh 
license for the remainder of the year on paying the 
necessary duty to the Excise. 

An occupier of land would not we think require a 



GAMEKEEPERS AND POACHERS 143 

gun license to shoot a fox on his lands as it would seem 
to come within the definition or rather meaning of the 
word " vermin " in the Act. 

Under the Highway Act of 1835, sect. 72, to fire off 
any gun or pistol within fifty feet of the centre of any 
carriage-way or cart-way incurs a penalty of not ex- 
ceeding 40s. 

GAMEKEEPEKS AND POACHEKS. 

As a rule it will be admitted that gamekeepers are 
about as trusted members of the community, so far as 
their masters are concerned, as most men who have to 
work for their living, very often the most implicit con- 
fidence being reposed in them, and it is not very often 
that we hear of one abusing his trust. Like other 
members of the community, however, there is occasion- 
ally found a black sheep amongst them. 

Having had a very large number of cases under the 
game laws through our hands during past years, where 
the informations have invariably been laid by keepers, 
and having had ample opportunities of judging of their 
probity and merit, in justice to them we feel bound to 
say that so far as one could judge, with one single ex- 
ception, we never doubted the truth of the statements 
made to us, relative to any case they had in hand. With 
the above exception they have proved themselves a 
straightforward class of men. It is not an occupation 
that appeals to many people, and at times the duties 
of their office must even be a little distasteful to them- 
selves, especially when their beat is made the happy 
hunting ground now and again of a gang of notorious 
poachers on their nocturnal visits, or even when one or 
two families of poachers live in the immediate neigh- 
bourhood. 

Patrolling alone, very often under such circumstances, 
the lanes and pathways through the fields, protecting 
the game, must at times be very trying to them, and 
there is perhaps some excuse for a keeper who, after 



144 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

several severe days' shootings, indulges in a little more 
bed than is usually his lot. Apart from his qualifica- 
tions as nominal prosecutor, however, some keepers 
have been known to be a little remiss in their duties to 
their employer when duty called them to protect his 
property, and we have heard some good stories in this 
direction, but one or two will no doubt suffice. 

Not long ago a keeper was called up by two police 
constables to assist them in an endeavour to arrest 
some poachers who had been seen to enter a wood near 
the keeper's house with guns and who were then at 
work amongst the pheasants. The officers did their 
best to waken the keeper by hammering at his front 
door, but this not having the desired effect they com- 
menced throwing stones at his bedroom window. This 
answered the purpose, the keeper putting his head out 
of the window and wanting to know what was the 
matter. He was soon told, and asked if he had not 
heard the guns almost under his window. He said he 
hadn't heard them, but that it was not to be wondered 
at as he had been out all day shooting and had got 
deafened with the continuous reports of the various 
guns, and was awfully tired. Whilst the officers were 
urging him to put on his clothes and accompany them, 
the poachers made off with their booty, and were not 
caught. 

We have known of instances where keepers have 
absolutely refused to dress and leave their bedrooms to 
assist police constables who had gone considerably out 
of their way and off their beat to advise the keepers of 
night-poachers who were making a haul amongst phea- 
sants, and remember the case of a head keeper " feeling 
very much aggrieved at a constable " for knocking him 
up at midnight after a shooting party, positively declin- 
ing to accompany him, and asking the officer to go to 
the under-keeper's house and knock him up, as he himself 
" had had a very rough time of it lately ". 

The police officer patrolling the roads has often an 
opportunitv of watching a night-poacher which a keeper 



GAMEKEEPERS AND POACHERS 145 

has not, as he often meets the poachers on the roads 
going to the rendezvous, and as he is practically power- 
less on the land, assistance is often very naturally sug- 
gested, and expected, from the keepers, and if a rebuff 
instead of assistance is given the policeman, he is not 
likely to take notice of a second poaching expedition 
coming under his observation in that immediate neigh- 
bourhood. 

Where three or more enter by night armed with 
guns, etc., for the purpose of taking game, the legisla- 
ture has wisely, as before mentioned, made the offence 
an indictable one, and properly so, as it is not every 
preserver of game who considers it necessary or desir- 
able to employ more than one keeper, though his shoot- 
ing may be somewhat extensive, but with few coverts ; 
and where poachers have arranged for a night's excur- 
sion on some one's preserves they generally go armed, 
which means rough business, and an intention to have 
a few bags of game at all hazards. The law should 
be, as indeed it is, severe upon poachers who go out 
poaching at night in gangs. There is considerable credit 
due to the keeper who, when alone, is bold enough to 
tackle a band of desperate men who stop at very little 
when they find there is a prospect of their plans being 
frustrated. 

In striking contrast with the few weak-kneed keepers 
we have heard of, there are of course scores of the most 
fearless keepers who are out night after night attending 
strictly to duty, but we do not propose to deal with 
them here. 

Of the poacher we may say he is a wily customer at 
his best, and is generally well known, more particu- 
larly to the police. Of course there are poachers and 
poachers, the one a professional and confirmed poacher 
making his living by it (when not in jail), and the other 
satisfying himself with a turn now and again ; some who 
will own up honourably when caught red-handed, others 
who do not hesitate at throwing a brick at a keeper's or 
constable's head to facilitate escape. As the old ones 

10 



146 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

die off, as age and infirmity creep on, there are generally 
others to take their places, and if a poacher has a son 
it is next to certain he follows in the footsteps of his 
father ; so that there is not much likelihood of their ex- 
tinction. We have heard of some rather daring esca- 
pades in which poachers have been engaged illustrative 
of the length they will sometimes go and the risks run, 
sometimes the result of a bet. 

Last season a poacher made a bet of 2s. 6d. with a 
man about the same calibre as himself, that he would 
go to a certain wood and shoot half a dozen pheasants 
which he would bring home, and whilst at the wood 
would unchain the keeper's watchdog. This is not 
many miles outside the city of Norwich, and the truth 
of it is vouched for by our informant, who stated the 
pheasants were brought into the city and the bet paid. 
Our " hero " selected his night and took a friend with 
him, a more notorious poacher than himself. The pair 
went close up to the keeper's cottage in the wood, and 
commenced shooting the birds. The second shot roused 
up the keeper, who came outside the back-door and 
shouted, "Who's there?" On being told not to make 
a noise, but go inside, as he might get shot, he did so, 
and was not seen any more that night. The remain- 
ing pheasants required were soon bagged, and the dog 
(which, it should be stated, was known to the poacher) 
liberated from its chain. 

In a certain small town in Norfolk the police occasion- 
ally had to take in hand a poacher who invariably had the 
happy knack of throwing himself into a fit at a moment's 
notice when arrested. A young officer once arrested 
him, and getting nervous at the police station at the 
condition of his prisoner, deemed it prudent to call in 
the services of a medical man. On the doctor arriving 
and examining his " patient," he soon found the man 
was malingering, and requested the officer to fetch a 
hand basin while he got his lance out, intimating that 
it was necessary to bleed the patient. The " invalid " 
heard it, and unable to stand it any longer jumped up 



GAMEKEEPERS AND POACHERS 147 

and commenced a violent attack on the doctor, with 
a view to making good his escape; but after sundry 
blows from the doctor in self-defence with a new um- 
brella (which unfortunately came to grief in the en- 
counter), the man was secured and safely lodged in the 
cell. It is not on record whether the doctor's fee and 
the damage to the umbrella were paid for by the county, 
but the result was evidently somewhat different to what 
the poacher had expected. 

Early one morning two poachers, father and son, had 
for them a very fortunate experience. They had been 
out on their bikes about six miles from home, and as 
they were returning with the game strapped on their 
machines one gave way, and had to be repaired. 
Whilst this was being done in a suitable place by the 
side of the road, the squire's carriage drove past, the 
squire having just been driven to the station, and the 
coachman returning to the Hall noticed what the men 
were doing and the game beside them. Had the squire 
been in the carriage matters might have turned out 
differently. Fortunately for the poachers the coachman 
did not take the trouble when he got to the Hall to send 
word to the police constable resident in the village until 
an hour or two had elapsed, or the pair would soon 
have been overtaken and, under the Poaching Preven- 
tion Act, searched and the game seized. As it hap- 
pened the men were able to mend their bicycle, load and 
ride off, leisurely reaching home without mishap. The 
only person they met was the keeper on a neighbouring 
estate, who of course had no power to interfere, and to 
whom they jocularly remarked, as they pointed to their 
newly-acquired game, " This is what we have to do for 
a living now ". 

A subsequent examination near where the men were 
seen first, disclosed unmistakable evidence where the 
stakes and nets had been used, but of course there was 
no evidence to connect the two men with them, as they 
had not been seen on the land, and no offence could be 
proved against them. 

10* 



148 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

An old poacher whom we knew very well, old Bob N., 
and who never, it was said, went out during the daytime, 
always at night, and then alone, used to say he didn't care 
a rap if he was only " catched " fair, but when the keepers 
met him on the highway with his gun and game at night, 
overpowered him and took from him what he had got, 
and then swore he was found poaching on the land, it 
was a bit above a joke. He was nearly always in jail, 
as getting into years he couldn't get away when it was 
necessary quite so quickly as he would have liked. He 
was quite a torment to the magistrate's clerk, as when 
out of prison he generally found time to call upon Mr. 
T. for the purpose of begging a shilling or two when 
"hard up," and which he seemed to think he was fairly 
entitled to, seeing he was Mr. T.'s best client, and he 
was not often disappointed. He had a great respect for 
Mr. T., and often was heard to say, " Mr. T. is a nice 
man, but d n them costs ". This old poacher died in 
jail. 

An amusing instance of the audacity of poachers 
happened near Norwich last season. 

Several of them had been out one night netting 
rabbits, and had caught about thirty couples ; but as 
it was not practicable for them to get the rabbits into 
the city before daylight, their cart having failed them, 
they decided to hide the rabbits and the nets altogether 
in a partially used straw stack on the field. Not con- 
sidering it prudent to go themselves later on in the 
morning for the rabbits and nets, they sent the wife of 
one of them to see if all was right at the stack. Some 
labouring men having been working in the same field 
in the meantime accidentally came across the rabbits 
and the nets, and, having apportioned the rabbits 
amongst themselves, very foolishly placed the whole 
together again (with the exception of one man's share, 
which he wisely preferred to have in his own posses- 
sion) under the hedge in the field. Upon the wife 
returning and informing the poachers that all the 
rabbits and nets were missing, the men were in a 



GAMEKEEPEKS AND POACHEKS 149 

great state of excitement, as it meant considerable 
expense and labour if the nets were not recovered. A 
consultation was held as to what should be done, and 
eventually it was decided that they should all go and 
make inquiries from the labourers, and that if they 
could only get back the nets by fair or foul means, 
they would be satisfied, and would not trouble about 
the rabbits. On getting to the field they did their best 
to make friends with the labourers, regaling each with 
a good drink of " something short, out of a long bottle," 
and told them of their loss, that they did not care so 
much about the rabbits, as they could soon get some 
more, but they wanted badly to get the nets back, and 
perhaps the labourers could tell them something that 
might assist them. They soon got on the soft side of 
the labourers, who, delighted with their lucky find, very 
soon proudly admitted that they had found the rabbits in 
the stack with the nets, and as they did not want any- 
thing with the nets, which were of no use to them, they 
(the poachers) could have them back again, provided 
they themselves retained the rabbits, which was of 
course agreed to. All went to where the rabbits and 
the nets were, when the poachers coolly commenced to 
pick up and walk off with the lot, nets and rabbits, 
telling the labourers to stand back ; they were theirs, 
and they were going to have them as they had caught 
them, and much to the discomfiture of the labourers 
walked off with both rabbits and nets. 

Last season three notorious poachers were busily 
engaged in a wood strictly preserved in which were 
a large number of pheasants. It was the time of the 
year when hen pheasants were in demand, and the men 
were adopting the usual tactics resorted to by poachers 
in this part of the country when live hen birds are most 
valuable, viz., gently suspending a large number of 
small nets from the bushes on each side the pheasants' 
runs and slowly driving the birds into the nets, in which 
they become entangled. They had secured a goodly 
number of birds when more than an equal number of 



150 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

keepers appeared on the scene and secured poachers, 
nets and pheasants. A cart was speedily requisitioned, 
and the delinquents placed therein with their game and 
nets, a sufficient posse of keepers accompanying them 
to prevent any attempt at escape. Whilst being driven 
to Norwich one of the poachers made bold to offer a 
suggestion to the keeper in charge, viz., that instead of 
being ignominiously taken to the city they should all 
give their proper names and addresses, and that they 
should be summoned instead of being " carted" about. 
None of the poachers appear to have been known to 
the keepers, but after a little hesitation the keepers 
were prevailed upon to act upon the suggestion, and 
the names and addresses of the poachers were care- 
fully taken, and the men liberated with a view to 
being summoned. The head keeper afterwards makes 
his way into the city to lay the information, and on his 
way communicates with the police, who, on scrutinising 
the names and addresses, were strongly of opinion all 
were fictitious ones, as indeed they turned out to be. 
Although several visits were made to the city by the 
keepers with a view of meeting and identifying one or 
more of the men wanted, no success was met with and 
nothing further transpired. Moral One in the hand 
is worth two in the bush. 

Those who abet the poacher are without doubt more 
to blame than the poacher himself. 

We know an apparently respectable man, living on 
his own estate of something like 100 acres, surrounded 
by large landed proprietors who strictly preserve. His 
place is not easily watched, as there is practically but 
one entrance to it by road, and that approach is well 
lined with barbed wire netting on each side of the road- 
way, at the end of which, before a visitor can reach the 
front or back doors, there is a ferocious dog, on a long 
chain, to pass, and none but those authorised by his 
master must venture near. Nor does he forget to bark 
when any strangers are about. No game is reared on 
this particular estate, the proprietor satisfying himself 



GAMEKEEPEKS AND POACHERS 151 

with the game reared by his neighbours around, which 
he ingeniously entices. He has a game license, and is 
said to thoroughly enjoy himself, being a good shot. 
But what we cannot appreciate in him is his open 
encouragement to and harbouring of the most notorious 
of poachers, as many as half a dozen at a time having 
been hospitably entertained by him on his premises, 
specially catered for in one of his barns, where he finds 
sleeping accommodation for his guests on the hay-mow. 
Of course the game found on his lands is soon secured, 
and nightly excursions made on the preserves surround- 
ing him. On the approach of danger from the keepers 
in the vicinity (ever on the look-out for the marauders), 
a hasty retreat is made back to their haven of safety. 
The proprietor, of course, takes the game purloined, 
which is despatched to the London markets, and who 
gets the lion's share of the ultimate proceeds of the 
plunder can be easily imagined. To do him credit, 
however, we must admit there is still truth in the old 
saying, " Honour among thieves," for he is not slow at 
paying the fines of his friends when occasion arises, for 
the smaller offences they are caught at when napping, 
nor does he mind becoming surety for them when that 
even is necessary, and no one else is forthcoming to 
take the responsibility. 

Another gentleman we know well, materially assists 
poachers to his and their mutual pecuniary advantage. 
He has very extensive shooting rights over scattered 
lands in several parishes in a game district, but we are 
not sure whether he rears any pheasants. What we 
refer to is his giving leave to the various poachers in 
the vicinity to trap and snare the ground game ad lib., 
with the result that when these poachers are accosted 
by any of the police in the district with a sack of 
rabbits on their back, and searched under the Poach- 
ing Prevention Act, they always happen "to be coming 
from the gentleman's land in question, where they have 
honestly got their game". In the face of these state- 
ments, when the land alluded to is practically within 



152 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

the range of possibility of access, nothing further can 
be done, and the game, undoubtedly poached off other 
lands, must be allowed to pass, much to the officer's 
chagrin. 

Whilst on the subject of smuggling home game un- 
lawfully obtained may be mentioned a novel way we 
have recently had brought to our notice. 

In a parish not many miles from the city of Norwich, 
is a mansion in an extensive park, where the game is 
very strictly preserved. 

Unfortunately for the sportsman the parish is infested 
with poachers, who practically live out of the proceeds 
of the sport they are fortunate enough to enjoy, and 
apparently seem to have learned by experience how to 
poach and evade the vigilance of the police and the 
gamekeepers. We have not, of course, made it our 
business to follow them in their enjoyment, only dealing 
here with the proceeds of their excursions, easily ar- 
ranged and secured in a very simple manner. 

The proprietor at the Hall is kind-hearted, and good 
enough to give to several of the old women in the parish 
the privilege of going into the park and gathering sticks 
and firewood, blown off the trees around and adjoining 
their cottages. The poachers, well knowing this ar- 
rangement, always plant their sack of pheasants, hares 
or partridges at a convenient place in the wood for 
being brought home, and arrange with their female 
relatives to do the needful, either on their barrows or 
perambulators, well covered up with sticks, at a con- 
venient time next morning when the police constable 
has either just come off duty, or just gone on, and is 
nicely out of harm's way. 

This has been in vogue for some years without the 
slightest suspicion being attached to any one, and must 
have been the means of saving many a poacher from 
running directly into the arms of a police constable who 
would have been only too glad to have met him coming 
home with his poached game. 

The most audacious and barefaced robberies in con- 



GAMEKEEPERS AND POACHERS 153 

nection with game and game eggs we have heard of 
were the following. 

In a large portable fowl's house in a field (placed some 
100 yards from the gate leading into the highway), 
specially fitted up for the purpose, were a large number 
of pheasants' eggs, about 1,000, under farmyard hens, 
and expected to hatch off in about a week's time. To 
the dismay of the keeper, one morning, on going to 
feed the hens, he found the staple through which the 
lock was attached, drawn, to admit of entrance to the 
house, and every egg from under the hens taken. The 
only other intimation of anything unusual having hap- 
pened outside the fowl-house were the marks of cart 
wheels on the grass close by. 

Every endeavour to discover the miscreants (for there 
must have been more than one person engaged), was 
made, but the matter remained a mystery. A notorious 
poacher got credit for the theft, though the residents 
of the parish looked nearer home for enlightenment, but 
the keeper was not suspected, and rightly so. Whoever 
the perpetrators were they must have known something 
of the keeper's arrangements and that he was not likely 
to disturb them for twenty minutes or so. As the 
eggs must have been known to have been in an advanced 
state, special arrangements must have been made by 
the thieves with the intended buyer for the resetting 
on delivery, as who would have bought under such 
circumstances ? 

The other case alluded to was where a game owner 
had the misfortune to lose at one fell swoop the whole 
of his stock of young pheasants, several hundreds about 
half grown, from the coops while with their foster- 
mothers. In this case not a vestige of a sign by way 
of a clue was left behind by the thieves. No arrest was 
ever made. A poacher was suspected of knowing some- 
thing about the birds, and some time afterwards, on 
getting a substantial sentence for night-poaching in the 
neighbourhood, is said to have admitted the theft and 
to whom he disposed of the birds, sold to one of his 



154 A PEACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

accomplices in a much better position than himself, 
who, he alleged, had turned the birds down amongst 
his own. 

Probably the admission was correct, but the poachers 
bare statement would have been useless without some 
substantial evidence corroborating him, had proceedings 
been attempted. Assuming he adhered for a while to 
his statement, in all probability he would shortly after- 
wards have repudiated it and sided with his friend, and 
sworn his previous statement had been a hoax. 

One of the methods adopted by poachers for the 
netting of partridges, and without doubt the most dis- 
astrous to the sportsman, is as follows : 

Three men leave by night for their rendezvous by 
different routes till they get out of the city (anywhere 
up to seven or eight miles is good enough for them), in 
possession of a long net up to 100 yards long by four 
or six wide, with two poles which will take to pieces, 
on the fishing-rod principle. On arriving at their desti- 
nation the poles are put together and affixed to each are 
the ends of the nets. A man then takes possession of 
each pole, the net is stretched out, and with the net 
extended the two men walk down the field, the third 
man keeping a short distance behind the net. As soon 
as a covey of partridges is touched up they fly, and 
down goes the net on them. All may not be caught, 
but the major part of them generally are ; besides the 
net is often placed over the top of a covey before a 
single bird has taken flight, and No. 3 behind despatches 
the birds against the sole of his boot and bags them. 
This operation is repeated till the bag has enough in, 
and a return is made home. When will the sportsman 
learn to protect his game by bushing. Even a few 
slender branches of dead hawthorns stuck up in the 
ground considerably retard the progress of the poachers, 
as they are awkward things to get out of a net in the 
dark, and it is an easy and cheap remedy which few 
farmers object to. 

We have known of instances of large coveys of part- 



GAMEKEEPERS AND POACHERS 155 

ridges being taken wholesale, and when a shooting party 
has afterwards arrived with every expectation of making 
splendid bags, there was scarcely a partridge to be found, 
and this even in a gentleman's park. 

Poachers invariably secure sporting rights where they 
can. 

We know a notorious poacher, who, we are informed, 
actually has vested in him the sporting rights over con- 
siderably more than 1,000 acres of land in the parish in 
which he resides and adjoining parishes, some of the 
land running close up to plantations most strictly pre- 
served by the landowner whose keepers have to in- 
cessantly watch the nests on the border until the eggs 
are hatched off. He, the poacher, takes out an annual 
certificate and consequently is able to legally sell his 
game without any difficulty to persons licensed to deal 
in game. Of course he does not go to the expense of 
rearing any birds, but no doubt takes care to secure all 
the eggs he can off the lands he has any right on, and 
in the shooting season bags all game he can kill. 

What arrangements he makes with the various tenants 
of the properties by way of rent we do not know, nor 
whether he is assessed on the sporting rights to the 
rates, but we are surprised at the neighbouring owners 
allowing such a state of affairs to exist, instead of pay- 
ing a trifle for the sporting rights, and squeezing out 
their undesirable neighbour. 

The constables in and about the parishes are power- 
less, and have only a poor time of it, as there is nothing 
for them to do but to look on when the game and eggs 
come home. Under the circumstances there is not the 
slightest use in making investigations. 

Whilst speaking of poachers something may be said 
of the four-legged poacher. We are reminded of the 
damages a fox occasioned one night to a game farmer's 
stock of pheasants in Norfolk. Having gone to make 
an inspection of the farm, whilst looking round the 
buildings we were surprised to see a quantity of hen 
pheasants hanging up. It was the close season and 



156 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

we were informed by the proprietor that a fox was 
responsible for his loss. It appears that amongst his 
stock of pheasants on the farm were about 3,000 hen 
birds in an enclosure which was surrounded with wire 
netting about 12 or 14 feet high, supported by and fixed 
to poles placed in the ground at intervals of so many 
yards. This enclosure was erected on a meadow and 
horses were grazing outside the enclosure. During the 
night the animals had evidently been rubbing their 
hind quarters against the poles, and in walking away 
had lifted up the bottom of the netting sufficiently 
high to admit of a fox creeping underneath and 
killing between fifteen to twenty brace of pheasants. 
Long hairs from a horse's tail were found attached to 
the netting and pole, which thoroughly explained the 
cause of the mishap and consequent slaughter. Some 
of the birds had evidently only had a nip on the head 
while others were more disfigured. How the cunning 
rascal had been able to find his way out of the enclosure 
again was a mystery, as the netting had not, if we 
remember rightly, been much lifted up from the ground 
and the enclosure was a very large one. No doubt the 
birds having one wing strapped were considerably handi- 
capped and would fall easy victims. 

A keeper has no right to take a ferret from a poacher 
found trespassing, and the latter would be justified in 
retaking same, but using no more force than necessary 
and actually required for the purpose. 

To kill game a gamekeeper must be in possession 
of a license taken out either by him or his master 
under section 7 of the Game License Act of 1860. He 
can, however, shoot hares under the Hares Act of 1848, 
without license, if duly appointed and authorised by his 
employer. Authority must be registered with the clerk 
to the justices of the division, which is held good till 
the 1st February unless revoked. 



COMMON LANDS WARRENS 157 

COMMON LANDS WAKEENS. 

Over the waste lands of a manor the lord of the manor 
has by right of his ownership of the soil the right to the 
game thereon, and the persons having rights of common 
of pasture on the wastes simply have a right to eat the 
herbage by their cattle, sheep, etc. (Cooper v. Marshall). 
They (the common right holders) have no right to the 
game on the common, and the lord could maintain an 
action of trespass against them for so doing (Lonsdale v. 
Bigg). Neither are they considered " occupiers " under 
the Ground Game Act of 1880. If, however, the com- 
mons have been enclosed under some Enclosure Act 
and portions thereof allotted to persons as freeholds, 
the right to the same would no doubt belong to the 
allottees, but in this case a question affecting the rights 
of individuals interested in the property and the game 
there, is not very likely to arise. 

Several attempts have of late been made in Norfolk 
by the inhabitants of villages in parishes to claim the 
right to the rabbits on the common or waste lands as 
against the lord of the manor and those claiming under 
him, but they have been uniformly unsuccessful in their 
attempts, and section 10 of the Act of 1831, which pro- 
tects the lord's rights to the game, seems now to be 
getting more generally admitted and recognised. 

Where the Enclosure Award for the parish absolutely 
vested the rabbits and the right to hunt and take them 
on the Common in the parishioners, and the right has 
never been assigned, it would still exist, but this is not 
general, and we only remember of one instance where 
this is so, and this only extending to householders under 
a certain rental. 

Warrens generally speaking are nothing more than 
enclosed lands (or they might be unenclosed), used for 
the breeding of rabbits or hares. Any person may have 
a warren on the land he hires or owns. On poor land 
this is often resorted to, and the income derived there- 
from when attended with ordinary care and attention is 



158 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

very often considerable. Of course if the animals, either 
rabbits or hares, escape, being f&ra natures, on to an ad- 
joining owner or occupier's land, they may be there shot 
and appropriated by him, so that it is highly desirable 
to effectually enclose. 

" Free warren " is a special right derived by grant 
from the Crown, and possesses rights and liberties 
thereunder. 

As will be seen in other portions of this work the 
killing or taking of hares or rabbits in warrens is a 
much more serious offence than killing or taking them 
elsewhere. If the offence be committed at night-time 
(during night-poaching hours) it is a misdemeanour, if 
in the day-time the offender is liable to a 5 penalty. 

DAMAGES FOE OVEKSTOCKING. 

Under the Ground Game Act of 1880 a tenant 
has the remedy in his own hands, so far as any damage 
which hares or rabbits may do, but a landlord who re- 
serves the sporting rights on letting to a tenant a farm, 
is not entitled to bring on to the land without the ten- 
ant's leave more game than can be reasonably and fairly 
kept thereon, nor allow the game to unnecessarily in- 
crease, so as to do damage to the crops. We are dealing 
with the present position of matters irrespective, of 
course, of the position after 1st January, 1909. 

In the case of Farrer v. Nelson, plaintiff was tenant 
of a farm (exclusive of coppices), and the shooting 
rights, which were reserved to the landlord, were let by 
him over the whole estate to the defendants, who had 
bred a large quantity of pheasants (1,500) and had 
brought 450 into a wood adjoining plaintiff's field, 
where the birds damaged his crops. 

The decision of the court was in favour of the plain- 
tiff, who had compensation awarded him. Baron Pollock 
(Justice Day concurring) in his judgment said : " A 
person was entitled to bring on his land any quantity 
of game which can be reasonably and properly kept 



PIGEONS 159 

there, so that nothing unnatural is done, and so long 
as the lessee of the shooting rights was exercising the 
ordinary rights which the landlord, who had reserved 
the rights, might have exercised, he was acting within 
his rights, but the moment he brings on game to an 
unreasonable extent or causes it to increase to an un- 
reasonable extent, he is doing that which is unlawful, 
and an action may be maintained by his neighbour for 
the damage which he has sustained ". 

There does not, however, appear to be any case heard 
and decided in the High Court on the question of com- 
pensation where a person who has bred game on his 
own lands, and such game escapes and damages another 
person's crops near him. 

It is conceived no action would lie against a landlord 
for game breeding or rabbits in the ordinary course of 
nature upon his lands, which might damage his tenants' 
crops, and it is of course quite legitimate to use the land 
a person may own as a rabbit warren. If rabbits are 
turned down and they and their young injure the 
tenants' crops, an action would lie. Further, a person 
would be within his rights to shift or remove game 
naturally bred upon the land of a tenant to another 
portion of his land (Birkbeck v. Paget). 

Generally speaking the sporting tenant is in the same 
position as the landlord, so far as damages for over- 
stocking go. 

PIGEONS. 

Pigeons and house-doves when reduced into posses- 
sion, as in a dovecot, or shut up at night in boxes, are 
the subject of larceny at common law, and a person 
convicted of stealing them is liable to the same penal- 
ties as for simple larceny, whether child, young person 
or adult. 

It is also a criminal offence to kill, wound or take 
any house-dove or pigeon under such circumstances as 
shall not amount to larceny at common law, offender 



160 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

being liable to a penalty of 2 (24 & 25 Viet. c. 96, 
sect. 23). 

If, however, a pigeon was doing damage to growing 
crops on another man's land, and is shot under a claim 
of right, the above section would not apply, especially 
where notice given to the owner of intention to kill 
(Taylor v. Newman). 

If a man trespass after wild pigeons, and them only, 
the owner or occupier's remedy would be by an action 
for trespass. 

THE GEEAT BUSTAED. 

This splendid bird, once regularly found both in Eng- 
land and Scotland, but more particularly perhaps in the 
counties of Norfolk and Suffolk, although occasionally 
found upon some of the moors of Berwickshire, the 
wastes of Lincolnshire and Yorkshire, and the Downs 
of Dorset, Southampton, Wiltshire and Sussex, but 
which had unfortunately become extinct, has through 
the instrumentality and energy of Lord Walsingham 
been reintroduced into the eastern counties, and con- 
sidering the interest and importance attaching to the 
bird we specially refer to it. 

As is probably well known, the bustard is peculiar to 
the Eastern hemisphere and Australia, but it is still 
fortunately found in many places on the Continent, not- 
ably Spain and Portugal, France, Germany, and prob- 
ably other places, including Tartary, where in winter 
season numbers of them are, it is said, found together, 
one of them, it is further stated, being generally placed 
out as a sentinel by way of giving notice of the approach 
of danger. 

Its body is very substantial and its limbs strong, with 
long legs and neck, small feet and short beak, somewhat 
of the ostrich type but with longer wings. A frequenter 
of the extensive plains, when not on the wing they 
run with great speed. When compelled by necessity to 
fly, their flight is swift. They are said to be poly- 



THE GREAT BUSTARD 161 

gamous, one male accompanying many females, the 
female bird being very much smaller than the male, in 
fact only about one-third the size. Their clutch of eggs, 
generally two or three, are deposited on the ground, 
often without any pretence towards a nest, on loose 
straw or the like material, usually amongst the rye or 
spring corn. When in the height of their plumage the 
male is of a much brighter and gayer colour. 

It may be claimed of the bustard to be the largest of 
the native birds in Europe, the male being 4 feet in 
length and 9 feet in expanse of wings weight from 
30 to 40 Ib. ; and undoubtedly its size had a great deal 
to do with the bird becoming extinct, as it was not at 
all likely that so large a bird could escape being observed 
and fall a victim. The value of the eggs too would 
undoubtedly be considerable in the eyes of collectors. 

The male bird on arriving at maturity is said to 
possess a pouch on the forepart of the neck under the 
skin, the entrance to which is beneath the tongue, 
which pouch is said to be capable of holding a large 
quantity of water. Its use does not appear to be abso- 
lutely clear, though it is surmised by some to be carried 
about for the use of the brood, but this is questioned 
by others, seeing it is admitted the male bird is seldom 
noticed with the female after incubation. Some have 
supposed this small " reservoir," as it has been termed, 
is used to supply the bird's thirst whilst on the dreary 
plains on which it resorts, and that further use is made 
of the water by squirting it out as a means of defence 
against an enemy pursuing it. Why the male bird 
should be specially endowed and not the female is a 
little difficult to comprehend, but probably, being so 
much heavier a bird, he is somewhat handicapped in 
flight. Some people have supposed the bird to be able 
to live without drinking, and it is alleged that a captive 
bird kept in a show proved this. 

The female bird is said by those very much interested 
in these birds to be a very close sitter, which would 
seem rather remarkable considering the nature of the 

11 



162 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

bird, for it is also said that if her eggs are in the least 
handled the bird will effectually leave her nest. 

From what we can gather it is said the last few 
bustards seen alive in Norfolk were all females, one 
being killed in 1879 at Lexham. On Massingham 
Heath a year or two previously seven female birds were 
observed. 

In the Norfolk Chronicle of August, 1900, an announce- 
ment was made by Lord Walsingham with respect to 
an experiment about to be made for the reintroduction 
of the bird into Norfolk and Suffolk, which we repro- 
duce here. 

"An attempt is being made to reintroduce the great 
bustard in what was formerly one of the favourite 
haunts of this fine bird, on the borders of the Norfolk 
Fens. 

" This effort is due to the public spirit of an English 
gentleman, resident abroad, whose love of natural his- 
tory has induced him to incur considerable expense and 
trouble in the matter. 

"It is hoped that residents in Norfolk and Suffolk 
will agree to respect the birds, which will probably be 
at large before this letter appears, and by preventing 
their destruction will secure the success of an experi- 
ment to which the reintroduction of the capercailzie in 
Scotland affords a parallel instance and an encouraging 
precedent. 

" (Signed) WALSINGHAM." 

A number of the birds having been imported from 
the Continent, in referring to the arrival of the birds in 
the Eastern Counties Magazine and Suffolk Notebook for 
the month of November following, his lordship wrote 
as follows : 

" Sixteen birds have been imported and have been 
accorded full measure of care and hospitality on a large 
estate on the borders of Suffolk, where they will receive 
ample protection within the limits of an area of some 
50,000 acres, owned by good sportsmen with a friendly 



THE GREAT BUSTARD 163 

interest in natural history. When these birds arrived, 
I clearly explained in a short letter to the newspapers 
that this importation was due to the public-spirited 
enterprise of an English gentleman resident abroad, 
and I must entirely disclaim any personal credit for 
what has been done. Contrary to the inference drawn 
or implied by the writers of several newspaper articles 
which have lately appeared, I had nothing whatever to 
do with the matter, until my advice was asked in what 
particular locality the best chance of success could be 
secured, when I made certain suggestions, which have 
since been followed. 

" The first shipment of sixteen birds arrived safely, 
and up to the time of writing only one of their number 
has died through an unavoidable accident. The wing 
feathers were cut to ensure safety of transport, and the 
time has therefore not yet arrived when they will be 
completely at liberty to fly when and where they please. 
In the meanwhile they have become very tame, but 
before they reacquire the power of flight they will 
enjoy a run of some 800 acres of open land within 
the precincts of low wire netting. 

"It is a curious coincidence that in selecting a place 
where the surrounding conditions would be favourable 
to their liberty, I quite accidentally hit upon the very 
land on which the last breeding colony of great bustards 
is known to have existed in England. I am creditably 
informed that some of the old residents in the district 
remember a flock of about forty, and can still tell of the 
manner in which they were approached and killed by 
men engaged in agricultural work carrying a gun behind 
their horses." 

In speaking of the law on the subject, he adds : 

"It is much to be hoped that the County Councils 
of Norfolk and Suffolk may be induced, with the con- 
sent of the Home Secretary, to give to the great 
bustard the protection of a close time extending 
throughout the whole year, in which case those who 
are interested in establishing a self-sustaining colony 

11* 



164 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

will be encouraged to undertake fresh importations 
with a view to avoid the danger of inbreeding, which 
is an almost certain source of failure in any such 
experiments. 

"Although the great bustard is perhaps equally 
partial to open heaths and large tracks of cultivated 
land, it is almost exclusively a feeder on green food. 
So far as my experience goes, farmers need not antici- 
pate any damage to their crops, at the most perhaps 
the ordinary grass diet may be varied by some picking 
at turnip-tops ; but for many years to come no con- 
siderable increase in numbers can be anticipated, and 
the killing of a few more wood pigeons would probably 
more than compensate any loss that could possibly be 
sustained through extending friendly hospitality to the 
pioneers of our returning pilgrims." 

After this able and kind appeal by his lordship on 
behalf of the imported bustard, and notwithstanding 
the publicity given to the subject throughout Norfolk 
and Suffolk in the press, it appears that two of these 
birds were actually shot on the 20th June following at 
Finningham, on land in the occupation of Mr. Edwards 
there, and on the 8th July at Hartismere Petty Sessions 
at Eye, Suffolk, the person who shot them was sum- 
moned under the 3rd section of the Game Act of 1831 
for killing game during the close season. Below we 
give a report of the case from the Eastern Daily Press 
of the 9th July, 1901. 

The defendant was present, and pleaded " Guilty " to 
the offence. The birds, which had been stuffed by Mr. 
Hudson of Ipswich, were placed on the table during 
the hearing of the case. 

Mr. Lucas T. Cobbold, who prosecuted on behalf of 
the Norfolk and Suffolk Poaching Prevention Society, 
said he did not know whether the bench would like him 
to tell them a few of the facts of the case. The land 
on which the birds were shot was in the occupation of 
Mr. Edwards. These birds were included under the 
Game Act of 1831, and were protected during the 



THE GREAT BUSTARD 165 

breeding season from 1st March to 1st September. 
Round this neighbourhood at the present moment, as 
was very well known, efforts were being made to bring 
these bustards back into this country. The defendant 
was a gamekeeper, and he (Mr. Cobbold) must ask them 
in considering the case to remember that he, of all per- 
sons, would probably be aware what these birds were, 
and that they were included in the schedule, especially 
as they had been seen in the neighbourhood before, and 
the presence of large birds such as these must cause 
inquiry. The defendant must have known that these 
were the bustards about which there had been so much 
talk. After he shot the birds the defendant carried one 
of them about quite openly, and admitted having shot 
it. The larger bird was found in a pea field adjoining 
Mr. Edwards' land, and defendant shot it as it stood in 
the peas. He carried the birds to the station, and after- 
wards to the bird-stuffers, and he had admitted that the 
birds were shot. It was not improbable that the de- 
fendant would state that he did not know what the 
birds were. That was a plea that every defendant 
could set up, and he asked the bench to consider that 
it would answer any man's purpose to shoot such birds 
and have them stuffed, and then ask to be treated as a 
first offender. His society were not at all vindictive, 
but it was a case which he asked them to treat seriously. 
They were not birds which did injury, but they fed on 
slugs, toads and frogs, and those things, and did no 
damage to corn. 

Defendant in reply to the Bench stated he saw these 
birds, and they were quite strange birds to him, and he 
thought possibly they might be destructive, though he 
did not know what they were. He had never heard 
anything about them, and had never seen anything like 
them. He had no idea at all that he was breaking the 
law. He thought it was a foreign bird come over here, 
a destructive bird, and he did not know that there was 
anything wrong in shooting it. He did not do it to get 
any gain by it, and he did not try to sell it. He did 



166 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

not suppose any one else in the neighbourhood knew it 
was a bustard. 

The Chairman said it was the tendency of every one 
to shoot birds like these and take them to the bird- 
stuffers. He understood that was what the defendant 
did, although he said he did not expect to get anything 
out of it. 

Defendant said he thought it was a pity to "hull" 
them away. 

William Hill, head gamekeeper to Lord Iveagh, said 
the birds were brought over at considerable cost. They 
took very long flights, over Suffolk, Norfolk and Cam- 
bridge. Every two or three days they would fly away, 
and then they would return again. 

The Chairman. Have you lost many ? 

Witness. We have lost them all but about seven out 
of the seventeen. 

The Chairman. Shot in this way ? 

Witness. I don't know. It is a great pity. They 
are very interesting birds, and they do no one any 
harm. They eat no corn whatever. 

The Chairman. Would it not have been wiser to 
have pinioned them? 

Witness said the idea was to get them naturalised to 
the place. Their wings were cut, and they had only 
been able to fly for two or three months. Lord Wal- 
singham wanted them to be established all over the 
country. They were valuable from a taxidermist's 
point of view. The last one he saw sold fetched 
17 10s. } so they were worth shooting. He did not 
think the birds produced would have bred this year. 
Lord Walsingham sent them to Lord Iveagh, because 
it was on Lord Iveagh's ground on which they were 
last known to exist. 

Mr. Cobbold said that although they were not actually 
scheduled they were wild birds. 

The Chairman said the defendant would be fined 
the full penalty of 1 for each bird, and the costs 
2 15s. 10d., in default one month's hard labour. The 



THE GREAT BUSTARD 167 

defendant had been guilty of a very serious offence. If 
he had not been a gamekeeper he might have had some 
more excuse, but he had pleaded guilty to killing game 
out of season. The court had decided that for the 
present the birds should be kept in the custody of the 
court. 

Considerable regret was expressed and no small 
amount of indignation felt by all shades of society 
throughout Norfolk and Suffolk at the shooting of 
two of these beautiful birds, whose number was now 
reduced from seventeen to seven, and Mr. Hill addressed 
the following letter to the Eastern Daily Press : 

" I venture to ask you to allow me a little space in 
your valuable paper to appeal to your numerous readers 
to protect the great bustard, now flying about over a 
considerable part of this county and Norfolk. 

" These beautiful birds, once the frequenters of our 
Norfolk and Suffolk heaths, were, in the latter part of 
the eighteenth century and commencement of the last, 
most ruthlessly destroyed. But last season, through 
the instrumentality of Lord Walsingham and others, 
they were reintroduced, at very considerable expense 
and trouble, from Spain, where they were caught when 
quite young. 

" Since then they have been fed by hand on this 
estate, and often return to their feeding-place, taking 
the food out of their attendant's hand. At other times 
they stray to great distances. 

" They are very interesting to those who have had an 
opportunity of studying their manners, and, I may say, 
are quite harmless to the crops, their chief food being 
frogs, field mice, beetles, slugs, etc. ; they will not eat 
any sort of corn whatever. These facts alone should 
recommend them to the protection of our farming 
friends. 

"As few people have ever seen a bustard, I may say 
it is a very large bird, and when flying looks like a large 
heron, but with more pointed wings, and when standing 
on the ground the cock birds are nearly a yard high, on 



168 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

long legs. The back is of a bright brown colour, with 
black pencillings, belly white, a long neck of light slatey 
blue colour, with whiskers or moustachios about five 
inches long. 

" The wings show a white bar some two or three 
inches wide when standing, but when flying show a 
great deal of white in fact, looks almost white. The 
hen birds are much smaller, but of the same colour. 

" I had fondly hoped to hear of some broods of young 
ones being seen, but none such have been notified at 
present." 

So far as the close season for bustards is concerned, 
the Game Act provides a penalty of 1 per head for 
killing or taking them between the 1st March and the 
1st September following, and the 24th section provides 
a penalty of not exceeding 5s. for wilfully taking out of 
nest, destroying in nest, or being in possession of eggs 
so taken unfortunately quite inadequate. 

Under the Orders of the County Councils of Norfolk 
and Suffolk, copies of which will be found in another 
part of this book, both birds and their eggs are further 
protected. 

DEEE. 

Although deer do not come within the meaning of 
" game " in any of the Acts relating to game, and thus 
are unprotected by those laws, special legislation has been 
considered necessary for the protection of deer, and it is 
necessary also to have a license to kill them, the Game 
License Act of 1860 requiring this, though there is an 
exception applying to deer when pursued with hounds, 
or persons pursuing and killing in enclosed grounds 
by owner or occupier thereof, or by their direction or 
permission. 

Deer in Ireland appear to be included in the defini- 
tion of "game" and a close season is consequently 
provided. 



DEER 169 

In England a reservation of "game" would not in- 
clude " deer," but a reservation of " sporting rights " 
would (Spicer v. Barnard). 

When wild on enclosed land, if no grant or any re- 
servation of the sporting rights has been made, a tenant 
might kill deer under the same conditions as he could 
kill other game if he abided by the law as to killing deer 
in the forest or enclosure, etc., in which they are kept. 

If, however, the deer are kept in enclosed ground, 
park, etc., where they are tended to and fed they come 
within the same category as cattle, and to steal them 
would be felony. 

The following Acts are still in force as to deer : 

By 24 & 25 Viet. c. 96, sect. 12, whosoever shall un- 
lawfully and wilfully course, hunt, snare, carry away, 
or kill or wound or attempt to kill or wound any deer 
kept or being in the unenclosed part of any forest, chase 
or purlieu, shall for any such offence on conviction for- 
feit not exceeding 50. A subsequent offence is felony 
and the offender is liable to imprisonment for two years, 
and, if a male under sixteen, with or without whipping. 

Section 13 of the Act is practically the same offence, 
but in the enclosed portion of the forest, etc., or in any 
enclosed land where deer are usually kept, and is felony, 
with same punishment as in preceding section. 

Section 14 deals with the unlawful possession of any 
portion of a deer or any snare or engine on the person 
or premises of the offender who cannot satisfy the 
justice before whom he is brought that he came by 
same honestly or had lawful occasion for the possession 
of the snare, engine, etc. Fine not exceeding 20. 
Where a conviction cannot be obtained against a per- 
son charged under the above the justice may summon 
before him all persons through whose hands the deer 
has passed, and if the person first receiving the deer 
shall not satisfy justice that he came lawfully by same 
he shall be liable to forfeit and pay not exceeding 20. 

Section 15 deals with the setting and using of snares 
and engines for the killing and taking of deer in any 



170 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

forest, chase or purlieu, whether enclosed or not, or in 
any bank or fence dividing same from any land adjoining, 
or in any unenclosed land where deer are usually kept. 
Penalty 20. 

Section 16 authorises any person entrusted with the 
care of deer and his assistants to demand from every 
person entering forest, etc., with intent to hunt and kill 
deer any gun, firearm, snare or engine in his possession, 
and any dog brought there, and if same not immediately 
given up when requested they may be seized on such 
place or in fresh pursuit for the use of the owner of the 
deer. Should any of the offending party unlawfully 
beat or wound any of the persons referred to or assist- 
ing, such offenders shall be guilty of felony and liable 
to imprisonment for not exceeding two years, and, if 
under sixteen, with or without whipping. The beat- 
ing or wounding must be committed on the keepers 
at the time they are attempting to seize the guns, 
etc., under the section or in attempting to arrest the 
defendants. 

Provision is made under section 103 for the arrest of 
any person found committing any offence of either an 
indictable or summary nature and taking such offenders 
before a justice. Search warrants may also be granted 
under the section for the recovery of property stolen, as 
in the case of larceny of other property. 

It would be a question of fact for the jury to be satis- 
fied upon, as to whether the offender was really wilfully 
and unlawfully coursing and hunting, etc., deer on the 
land. 

In Scotland it would appear the 2 & 3 Wm. IV. c. 
68 affects persons committing a trespass after deer. 

In the indictable offences bail is discretionary and the 
costs of the prosecution are allowed by the county, 
the cases being triable at quarter sessions or, of course, 
assizes. 



SWANS 171 

SWANS. 

Swans are not included in the term " game " in any 
of the Acts, but when stolen are the subject of larceny 
at common law, where lawfully marked, though at large 
in a public river, or even unmarked when taken from 
a private river, moat or pond where they are kept, 
but otherwise it would be a trespass in respect of 
them. 

Larceny cannot, however, be committed of swans' 
eggs, the legislature having included them in section 24 
of the Game Act of 1831 and imposed a penalty of not 
exceeding 5s. per egg upon those found wilfully taking 
them out of the nest, destroying in the nest, or knowingly 
having in their possession eggs so taken. 

Swans are the exception to the general rule as to 
" estrays " applicable to animals feres natures, and if a 
person takes an estray he must, so long as he retains it, 
give it the necessary food for its support. If a swan 
regains its liberty and is caught at sea or in a navigable 
river it would prima facie belong to the Crown as a royal 
bird, and the king has thus a right to seize wild and 
unmarked swans as his prerogative, and may grant such 
right to another person within a certain area, but this 
would hardly exclude a subject's right to kill a swan 
found on his own land which was practically feres natures. 

It requires a grant from the king or prescription for 
a subject to have a swan mark. 

It may here be remarked with respect to cygnets that 
an exception is made in the law as to their ownership. 
Unlike the broods of other tame and domestic animals, 
which belong to the owner of the dam or mother, 
cygnets belong equally to the respective owners of the 
cock and hen bird, the reason apparently being that 
the owner of the one bird does not suffer more than 
the owner of the other during the breeding season, the 
male bird being recognised for his constant association 
with the female during the time of incubation of the 
eggs and nurture of the young birds. 



172 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

A FEW INTEKESTING CASES. 

WOUNDING KEEPER. 
(Three or more armed with offensive weapons on land by night.) 

This was a case in which a keeper was wounded one 
night, which resulted in four men being charged with 
entering land together for the purpose of taking game, 
armed with certain offensive weapons, to wit, stones; 
also with feloniously wounding with intent. 

On the original hearing before the magistrates only 
three of the men (viz.. A, C and D) were before the 
court, the fourth (B) not having sufficiently recovered 
from injuries he had received, to be able to appear, and 
of the three, one (C) was discharged, the justices not 
considering a prima facie case had been made out against 
him, the other two (A and D) being committed for trial. 
Subsequently the injured man B, was, on his recovery, 
charged with the above offences and also committed 
for trial, and the three, A, D and B, took their trial at 
the forthcoming Norfolk assizes. 

It appears that, according to the evidence of E, he on 
the night of the 8th August, or morning of the 9th 
(Coronation Day), was out attending to his duties on 
land strictly preserved, where he reared his master's 
pheasants and wild duck, and from where he had a 
month or two previously had some forty-six young 
ducks stolen. He had a double-barrelled gun with him 
at the time, and his son was in the hut close by. He 
was resting on a coop, and towards 1 A.M. he appears to 
have gone to sleep. He was awakened by something he 
heard, and on looking round saw four men in front of 
him looking over wire-netting about ten or fifteen yards 
from him. 

It was a starlight night but no moon, and he could 
not tell who the men were. He got up and turned 
round and went towards the men, and asked them 
what they wanted, and had scarcely got the words out 
of his mouth, he said, when something struck him on 



A FEW INTERESTING CASES 173 

the eye and nose, and without pointing his gun at any 
one it went off, both barrels. Some one called out : 
" You've done it now. You've shot me both barrels ". 
He went to where the man was and asked him his 
name, and he said : " I may as well tell you who I am, 
I am A of H ". E then woke up his son, who was still in 
the hut, and sent him for a horse and cart, and A, after 
it was alleged admitting he had no business to be there, 
and that he had been persuaded to come, was despatched 
to the doctor's, and thence to the workhouse, where he 
remained for several weeks under the doctor's care, 
suffering from the effects of the shot wounds. E was 
taken home and put to bed and attended by a doctor, 
where he remained a week. In consequence of informa- 
tion received by the police an inspection was made, and 
near the coop referred to, several large stones were 
found, one near the coop with blood upon it. A ploughed 
field adjoining was also examined, and the footprints of 
four men going towards the coop, and of three going 
back again, the three agreeing with the three of the 
four going towards the coop. There was no footpath. 
B (the man last committed) was seen by the police the 
day of the alleged offence at his home, and in reply to 
a question put to him, as to what was the matter with 
him, said : " I was going out with A and got shot, and 
how I got home I don't know ". Casts were afterwards 
taken of the footprints on the ploughed field, and sticks 
picked up about the spot, and it was proved that the 
ground was grassy, and that there were no stones 
similar to the ones produced (the ones picked up) and 
that such stones must have been brought by the men, 
though this was disputed by the defence. Whilst A and 
B were in the workhouse, unable to appear before the 
court in consequence of their injuries, they were seen by 
the police and asked if they wished to make any state- 
ment, in case their injuries should prove fatal, and A de- 
clined to do so. B made a statement (which was marked 
as an exhibit in the evidence of the superintendent on 
B's committal for trial) to the following effect: "I left 



174 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

home between 10.30 and 11 in company with A to 
go to S. When me and A were walking the field to- 
gether after some rabbits, just as we got to a place 
where there are some hurdles, there was a man shouted 
out. I think he said, ' What are you after ? ' We both 
stopped dead. Next thing I heard was the report of a 
gun, and I felt a stinging sensation all round my leg. 
I felt half dazed. After I heard the second shot I heard 
A shout out, ' I'm shot '. I heard a man call out, ' I will 
kill both of you '. I was some few yards from A and 
saw him fall. I left him laying there and ran away as 
fast as I could home, but was hours in getting there." 

A, who was left on the ground, was, of course, the 
only one that was identified, but the theory of the pro- 
secution was, that had the other men been arrested, 
nets, etc., would have been found in their possession. 
The above facts, with other miscellaneous details, were 
proved at the assizes, when the three defendants A, B, 
and D were ably defended, and after the prosecution 
had been closed, during the hearing of which Justice 
Grantham, after examining the casts of the feet marks 
with the boots, said he did not think it was sufficient 
identification as they had been made with soft materials, 
and the marks of identification might be removed. 
The prisoner D was shortly afterwards discharged, at 
the request of his counsel. A doctor proved attending 
on B who had from 150 to 200 shot wounds on his legs, 
and whose temperature had been up to 103 at one time 
during his visits. He had also attended A, as well as 
B, and did not consider the latter was in a condition to 
make a statement to the police as stated. B's condition 
was the worst, and that then, at the assizes, he was 
"loaded up with shot". That both men must have 
been near when shot. A went into the box and gave 
evidence on his own behalf to the effect that on the 
night in question he and B went to get some mushrooms 
on the marsh, and clams. When they got near the 
stile, " crack-crack " went a gun and he was hit on the 
left side and knocked down. He shouted and yelled, 



A FEW INTEKESTING CASES 175 

and hopped off towards the stile. He heard the click of 
a gun again and shouted out, " For God's sake don't 
shoot again," and that E said, "I will kill the pair of 
you," and putting the gun to his shoulder fired again at 
him, and knocked him off his feet. E then ran off and 
came again with his son. E said, "I did not mean to 
serve you so bad as that, I only meant to give you a 
' stinging'." 

In cross-examination, when asked more about the mush- 
rooms, he replied : " Well, you don't want a man to 
incriminate himself, do you?" but persisted that E put 
the gun to his shoulder and fired at him. He had only 
been out of prison a week when this happened. That 
was for poaching. The March before he got four 
months for night-poaching and a month for assault, 
but he was on the road at the time and he didn't call 
that " night-poaching ". He was then questioned on a 
long list of previous convictions. 

B was called to corroborate A, and swore there were 
only two of them there, A and himself, and that 
they threw no stones, and took none with them. There 
were plenty of stones at the place where they were hurt. 
He had known A several months, but had not been out 
with him before. Could not say how the keeper got 
hurt. The solicitor for the defence also proved having 
been on the place in question in October, and there 
were any number of stones lying about. 

Counsel for the defence, in addressing the jury on 
behalf of the prisoners, in a long and powerful speech, 
said that if either of the prisoners died E might find 
himself in a very serious position. It was an insult 
to ask the jury to believe his story. Undoubtedly he 
meant to "pepper" any one who came near his phea- 
sants, and was much alarmed when he found what he 
had actually done. 

The judge in summing up to the jury justified their 
action earlier on in the day, when they intimated as he 
assumed they were satisfied with the evidence for the 
prosecution, subject to any defence there might be, and 



176 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

said he wished juries would more frequently give such 
intimations as much time might thereby be saved. The 
two men, he said, had sworn there were only two men 
present at the time of the alleged assault on E (they 
themselves), and that they did not throw the stones, 
and as there had no doubt been a stone thrown, there 
must have been another present who threw the stone, 
which brought the case within the statute. The jury 
found both "Guilty," but recommended B to the cle- 
mency of the court. Counsel for the defence hoped in 
giving sentence the judge would remember the injuries 
both men had received. 

The judge said he quite endorsed the sentiment of 
the jury, but the charge A had made against E almost 
deprived him of the power of giving it effect, because 
it was a cruel charge made at the last moment. Had 
A not been seriously injured, he would have sent him 
to penal servitude for a considerable time. He would 
be imprisoned for six months and B would be sentenced 
to two days' imprisonment, which meant his discharge. 

This case at the time caused considerable interest, 
not only in N. and the locality where it occurred, but 
elsewhere within the county, and numerous letters ap- 
peared in the press, with regard to the merits of the 
case, and the summing up by the judge to the jury, 
but as we are not able to give the summing up in detail, 
we refrain from commenting, allowing our readers to 
put their own construction upon the matter. 

ANOTHEK NIGHT-POACHING CASE. 

(Three or more together entering armed, and with wounding.) 

About three o'clock one morning two keepers and a 
watcher were out attending to their master's interests, 
when they heard the report of a gun which proceeded 
from a wood close by of about sixty acres, and in which 
were a quantity of pheasants. The keepers, desirous 
of ascertaining who was responsible for the firing, went 
round to get into the wood, and in going heard another 



A FEW INTEKESTING CASES 177 

shot in the wood. On entering the wood by one of the 
gates they saw the fire " fly " from a gun, and per- 
ceived some men advancing towards them. The keepers 
secreted themselves in the ditch by the drive in the 
wood, and found the party advancing towards them to 
consist of five men with two guns. As soon as the 
poachers got opposite where the keepers were, the latter 
came out of the ditch and asked the poachers what they 
were doing there, and one of the latter raising his gun 
over his head by the barrel with both hands, struck at 
the head of the keeper who had addressed them. The 
keeper partially warded off the blow with his stick, but 
the stock of the gun hit him over the head, and the gun 
snapped in two, the stock being severed from the barrel, 
and the barrel retained by the poacher. The keeper, 
being a strong stalwart fellow, was, however, still able 
to defend himself, and struck out at the poachers. A 
second keeper seized the poacher who had used the gun 
round both arms from behind, the poacher retaliating 
by thrusting the muzzle of the barrel of the gun several 
times into the keeper's face and eyes and very much 
injuring them. There was a general m$Ue when another 
of the poachers advanced to the keepers with a gun, and 
pointing it at the first-mentioned keeper, said : " Stand 

back, you b , or I'll blow your b guts out," being 

only a yard or two from him at the time. This 
poacher was well known to the keepers, and after his 
name had been called out, was told not to run away. 
Eventually, after some pheasants, quite warm (which 
had been shot), were secured from one of the poachers 
the keepers had got the better of, the poachers retired, 
pelting the keepers with large stones which they were 
alleged to have brought with them in their pockets, as 
there were no stones in the wood. After threatening to 
shoot the keepers, the poachers made good their escape, 
but not before they had injured two of the keepers with 
the stones. * 

The firing in the wood having been heard by a con- 
stable patrolling the roads in the vicinity with his bike, 

12 



178 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

he rode for assistance, and, returning, the poachers were 
followed but not overtaken, and this was hardly to be 
expected, seeing the men happened to return home by 
the fields, a not unusual practice with poachers during 
midnight hours. Warrants were issued for several of 
the men who were known, but only executed as against 
one, who gave himself up some little time afterwards, 
alleging he was not one of the parties wanted. He was, 
however, in due course duly committed for trial, when 
an alibi was set up, and the jury disagreeing the accused 
was bound over to take his trial again at the next 
assizes. The defence was again an alibi, and although 
the judge on this second hearing summed up in the 
prisoner's favour, the jury returned a verdict of " guilty," 
and he was sentenced to twelve months' imprisonment. 
One little matter which probably influenced the jury 
on the second trial was an attempt made by the accused 
to prove that a dog described by the witnesses for the 
prosecution as being with the poachers in the wood on 
the night in question could not have been the accused's 
dog. A dog was brought into court, but unfortunately 
for the accused it was sworn to by witnesses for the 
prosecution as not being the dog seen by them at the 
house of the accused a day or two before the trial, 
which they knew to be the prisoner's and which, it was 
alleged, resembled the dog seen in the wood, though 
they would not positively swear it was the dog. 

It was somewhat singular that the dog was not men- 
tioned in the evidence of the keepers on the committal 
for trial of the accused, and it was not until a day or 
two before the assizes on the second trial that it 
was brought to our notice, when we at once took the 
necessary steps for the animal to be identified, and 
although we got some rather hard hits from counsel 
for the defence for keeping back this additional evidence, 
we were really not to blame, as the dog was only seen 
and identified at the house on the Sunday before the 
trial on the Monday. 

An attempt was subsequently made to obtain the 



A FEW INTERESTING CASES 179 

prisoner's release from jail on the ground that the 
evidence of identification was insufficient, but we under- 
stand that the Home Secretary declined to interfere. 

CASE OF TAKING GAME WITHOUT LICENSE. 

About half-past ten one night in the month of 
January two keepers were out watching, and, whilst 
passing along the highway on their beat, heard some- 
thing fluttering on the other side of the fence, where 
there was a kitchen garden, the occupier of which lived 
near. The keepers knowing their employer had the 
right of sporting over the land in question, got over the 
hedge, and an examination of the place disclosed the 
fact that a hen pheasant had been caught in a trap, 
consisting of a balance-board placed over a hole in the 
ground two or three feet deep, the board being worked 
and kept in position by a piece of elastic. The trap was 
made very near the bottom of the bank separating the 
highway from the garden, and from the wire netting 
on the top of the bank (fixed to keep the ground game 
out of the garden) were two rows of sticks fixed in the 
ground upright, running on each side of a pheasants' 
run, to the trap board. The netting was in this 
particular place raised, no doubt intentionally to admit 
of game, either winged or otherwise, getting under it 
and running down the run on to the trap-board. On a 
further examination of the garden the keepers found 
another trap very similarly constructed, with this ex- 
ception, that instead of a hole dug in the ground a 
barrel was inserted. They decided to watch the traps, 
and did so from the other side of the road under cover 
of the brushwood till early next morning, when the head 
keeper was obliged to leave, leaving the other keeper to 
watch alone. About eight o'clock defendant is seen to 
come from his house close by and go to the trap which 
contained the pheasant, kneel down on the ground and 
look in the trap, and, getting hold of the pheasant, 
was alleged to have killed it by doubling it up with his 

12* 



180 A PKACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

hand. As he was going away with the bird in his 
hand, the keeper spoke to him, when it seems there was 
an attempt to throw the bird away, which the keeper 
went over the hedge for and secured, the defendant 
remarking the trap had only been set the day before, 
but not for pheasants, and (according to the evidence of 
the keeper) admitting that he had killed the pheasant. 

The head keeper corroborated the under keeper as to 
the finding of the bird in the trap as described. 

The defendant, electing to be sworn, stated that the 
bird was dead when he went to the trap, and that it 
was his intention to take the bird to the sporting tenant, 
denying he told the under keeper he had killed the bird. 
After the defendant had called a witness to speak to 
his character, the bench retired, and on their return 
into court dismissed the case, remarking there was a 
doubt in their mind as to whether the under keeper 
from where he was could see the bird killed from the 
position of the trap. 

TAKING PARTRIDGES' EGGS FROM NEST. 

A young farmer, being suspicious of a certain indi- 
vidual, decided one Sunday morning during the egging 
season to watch a partridge's nest with two eggs in, 
which was on the bank of a field. He was watching on 
the bank of a field an occupation lane running bet ween 
where he was and this bank on which was the nest. 
He knew the defendant's movements, and seems to 
have expected him. Having satisfied himself of the 
safety of the nest, he placed himself so as to keep the 
site of the nest in view. The defendant came down the 
lane with his two little boys about five minutes after 
the eggs had been seen safe. He is seen to "brush " 
the fence with his stick and stop opposite the nest, go 
to the nest and put his hand in it and take something 
out of it, which he put in his pocket and walked on. 
Witness did not immediately come through the fence 
and accuse the defendant of taking the eggs, because 



A FEW INTERESTING CASES 181 

there was a second nest farther down the lane which 
he wanted to see if the defendant would take. De- 
fendant continued to " brush " the fence, but did not 
find nest number two, and, as soon as he had passed 
it, witness came out from where he was watching and 
walked across to the partridge's nest and found the 
nest empty. He at once followed after the defendant, 
who, when he saw witness coming, left the hedge side 
and walked in the centre of the lane. He was over- 
taken by the witness just as he had rounded a bend of 
the lane, and challenged with taking the two partridges' 
eggs. Defendant denied the taking, and asked that he 
and his boys should be searched. Witness did not do 
this, but took the defendant back to where the nest 
number one was, which defendant had been seen to go 
to, and pointed it out to him, but still he denied taking 
the eggs. There was ample time for defendant to have 
thrown the eggs away on rounding the corner unseen. 

The defendant, in his statement to the court, denied 
taking the eggs, and stated there were plenty of eggs 
he could have taken had he wished. The justices re- 
tired, and on their return into court said there was not 
sufficient evidence to convict, and the case would be 
dismissed. 

If ever a prosecuting solicitor had reason to feel dis- 
appointed with the result of the justices' decision, this, 
we thought, was the case. 

We were particularly sorry for the young farmer, 
who seemed to think the court had not believed his 
testimony, and were inclined to think he had committed 
perjury, but we were shortly to be enlightened. Before 
leaving the court we were informed by the justices' 
clerk that the case was not free from doubt, that 
had it been a case of murder the prisoner would un- 
doubtedly have had the benefit of the doubt. Shortly 
afterwards we had the pleasure of speaking to one of 
the justices who had sat on the case, and were asked if 
we had any experience of the habits of stoats, which, he 
stated, had been known to have mysteriously carried off 



182 A PKAGTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

nests of eggs in an incredibly short space of time. We 
replied in the negative, which at that time was the case. 

Very shortly after this decision, particulars of a case 
in point came under our notice, for which we were very 
thankful, as it removed entirely the impression still 
existing in our mind that the decision of the justices in 
the last case was hardly satisfactory to the prosecution. 

Whilst walking from the railway station to the court- 
house with a gamekeeper (still in the egging season, 
so the reader may imagine what our conversation was 
about), we casually mentioned the above case. " Ah," 
he said, " them stoats be funny things. Let me tell 
you of a case that came under my own particular 
knowledge." He then went on to explain that he 
knew of a nest of nine pheasants' eggs on the bank 
of a field. Near this bank a labouring man was 
working in the field, and the keeper being somewhat 
suspicious of the man, kept a sharp look-out. He was 
not watching the labourer incessantly, but an hour 
after seeing the eggs safe he went to examine the nest 
to see if they were still safe, and to his surprise found 
the nest empty. He went at once to the labouring 
man, as there had been no one else about who could 
have taken the eggs, and told him he suspected him 
of having taken the eggs, and that he would be charged 
with taking them. The man was horrified, strenuously 
denying having even seen the eggs, much less touched 
them, and was willing to be searched. The keeper took 
the labourer to show him the empty nest, but a few 
paces from the nest one of them saw a pheasant's egg 
protruding from a small hole on the bank, and on a 
further examination of the hole the remaining eight 
pheasants' eggs were found. It was a stoat's nest, the 
eggs having been carried there by the occupants, who 
had not had quite time to safely deposit the whole of 
the eggs in the interior of the bank and out of sight. 

This explanation was quite sufficient for us to feel 
more satisfied with the decision of the justices in the 
case of unlawful taking of the two partridges' eggs. 



A FEW INTEKESTING CASES 183 

ALLEGED AIDING AND ABETTING IN UNLAWFUL POS- 
SESSION OF GAME EGGS. 

A man was charged with the above offence, and 
in order that our readers may the better follow the 
case we give a copy of the charge contained in the 
information. 

" For that A B (principal) on the day of at 

unlawfully and knowingly did have in his 
possession sixty-one eggs of a certain bird of game, to 
wit, a partridge, and nine eggs of a certain bird of game, 
to wit, a pheasant, which had been theretofore by him, 
the said A B, unlawfully and wilfully taken out of 
certain nests upon certain land there situate, he, the 
said A B, not then having the right of killing the game 
upon such lands and not having permission to take the 
eggs as aforesaid from the person having such right, 
contrary, etc. And that C D (the aider and abetter) 
unlawfully was then and there present unlawfully 
aiding and abetting, counselling and procuring the 
said A B to do and commit the said offence." 

The defendant was represented by his solicitor. 

In opening the case for the prosecution, the following 
facts were referred to : A B was a poor agricultural 
labourer out of work, and, having a sick wife de- 
pendent upon him, determined to supplement his 
shattered finances by doing a little poaching. He 
goes out on to certain lands very strictly preserved 
in the neighbourhood of his home, and there takes 
the eggs mentioned, which he placed in a red and 
white pocket-handkerchief, and then hid them up in 
a hedge, intending, after having made arrangements 
for their sale, to return and retake possession of the 
eggs and hand them over to his proposed purchaser. 
With this view, he goes to an adjoining parish, and 
having met C D, told him of the eggs and where they 
were. C D, as would be proved, said to him, " You go 
on first, and I will come on afterwards and drive on 
and pick you up," and this was agreed upon. Before 



184 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

A B gets to the place arranged between them (which is 
a gate on the highway leading down to where the eggs 
are secreted), C D overtook him, and, as arranged, A B 
asks C D for a lift. When they get to the gate, A B 
gets out of the trap, and goes over the gate and up to 
where he has hidden the eggs in the fence. As he puts 
his hand on the parcel of eggs in the handkerchief, two 
keepers in the employ of the owner of the land in ques- 
tion on which the eggs had been taken, who were 
watching the parcel (having missed the eggs and traced 
the feet-marks of the culprit in the grass), sprang out 
from their hiding-place and took possession of the eggs 
from A B. A conversation follows, and C D, who up 
to this time is waiting on the road- way for the return 
of A B with the eggs, but sufficiently near to hear what 
has transpired, is heard to drive off, no doubt having 
heard the conversation. A B, being caught red-handed, 
then made a clean breast of it, and stated where he had 
got the eggs, and the arrangements he had afterwards 
made for disposing of them to the defendant C D. 

The owner of the land and prosecutor did not wish 
to prosecute A B after the open statement he had made. 

It was contended that as the defendant C D was 
charged with aiding and abetting A B in the unlawful 
possession of the eggs at the time they were taken from 
him by the keepers, and not in the unlawfully taking 
them out of the nests (he, A B, being still in the un- 
lawful possession of them), the information as against 
C D for so aiding and abetting in such unlawful posses- 
sion would apply. 

On A B being sworn and detailing a portion of the 
above facts, an objection was raised by the defendant's 
solicitor to the information, which, he submitted, charged 
his client with being an accessory before the fact, as it 
appeared the offence was committed at 3 P.M., and it 
was not until 8.30 that A B saw C D. In reply to this, 
we endeavoured to point out that the information charged 
the defendant with aiding and abetting, not in the taking 
of the eggs, but with the unlawful possession of them at 



A FEW INTERESTING CASES 185 

the time the keepers came upon him with the parcel of 
eggs in his possession, but the information was dismissed. 

POACHING PREVENTION ACT. UNLAWFUL POSSESSION 
OF GAME EGGS. 

The defendant in this case was charged under the 
Poaching Prevention Act with being in the unlawful 
possession of a quantity of pheasants' eggs on the high- 
way, when searched by a police officer who suspected 
him of having been on land, etc. 

The defence was that the eggs were duck eggs. 

The constable proved calling on the defendant to 
stop on the road whilst driving a horse and cart, as 
his suspicions were aroused in consequence of what 
had previously transpired. Instead of stopping, the 
defendant whipped up his horse and endeavoured to 
get past the officer, who seized the reins, and with 
considerable difficulty stopped the horse. He then told 
the defendant that he suspected him of coming from 
land where he had been unlawfully in search of game 
and of having game in his possession, and that under 
the Poaching Prevention Act he should search him. 
All the defendant said was " Oh," and immediately 
removing the lid of a large hamper underneath the 
seat of the cart, containing a large quantity of game 
eggs, at once commenced jamming his boot on the eggs 
in the hamper. The officer let go the horse's head with 
a view to seizing the hamper, when the defendant urged 
on the horse. The officer had to again seize the horse 
by the head, the defendant trying his level best to 
obliterate any signs of eggs by stamping his boot again 
and again amongst the broken eggs in the hamper, 
turning them over with his hand and again stamping 
them down amongst the straw and litter. After several 
abortive attempts on the part of the officer to take 
possession of the hamper (the animal being a spirited 
one), he was obliged to hold the horse's head until he was 
reinforced by another constable, who then took the head. 



186 A PKACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

The officer first mentioned then took possession of the 
hamper, partially full of broken pheasants' eggs and 
straw, and told defendant he should seize what re- 
mained and report the case, the defendant replying, 
" They are only duck eggs ". The broken eggs were 
very shortly afterwards examined by an expert game- 
keeper, who swore they were all pheasants' eggs. 

The defendant appeared on the case being called, and 
pleaded "Not guilty," alleging, as before stated, that 
the eggs were duck eggs. 2 fine, and costs 14s. 

UNLAWFUL POSSESSION OF GAME DURING THE CLOSE 

SEASON. 

The defendant in this case was charged with being 
in the unlawful possession of twelve live partridges on 
the 23rd August. 

The defendant was a labourer, and on the date named 
came on to the railway station platform at W. and 
through the door into the waiting-room and booking- 
office. Just about this time two men drove up to the 
waiting-room by the opposite door, and one of them 
brought into the waiting-room, where the defendant then 
was, a hamper. Defendant said : " Book that to A of 
H.," giving name and address. This was to one of the 
porters, the defendant being looked upon as the con- 
signor, telling the porter they were pigeons for a pigeon- 
shooting match at H. The hamper was weighed in the 
ordinary course and its weight was 24 Ib. At the time 
the hamper was brought into the waiting-room it had 
no label on it, but one was obtained from the cart and 
addressed to the person before alluded to. It appears 
the two men in charge of the hamper had been asked 
by the defendant whom they overtook on the road to 
give him a lift with the hamper, and as they were going 
past the station they agreed. 

The hamper was duly placed in the van and on the 
way to H. the guard in charge, not being quite satisfied 
with the form of the " way bill," which described the 



A FEW INTERESTING CASES 187 

hamper as containing "pigeons," and becoming sus- 
picious at not hearing the usual " cooing " noise made 
by pigeons, examined the hamper, and finding the birds 
to be live partridges instead of pigeons as described, 
altered the way bill to " live partridges ". He was not 
able to exactly swear to the number, and although from 
the weight of the hamper it must necessarily have con- 
tained twenty (as the empty hamper only weighed 7 lb., 
which would leave 17 lb. for the birds), he would not 
positively swear to more than twelve birds being in the 
hamper. As the birds would probably be young birds 
they would not weigh more than f lb. each. At that 
computation twenty-two birds would weigh 16J lb., 
which would leave \ lb. to spare. 

Defendant took a single ticket to H., and travelled 
by the same train as the hamper, which was removed 
from the train there, the defendant getting out there 
also. The hamper was duly delivered at the address at 
H., and the hamper and the defendant returned from 
H. by the same train later on to Norwich. As the train 
returned through W. station the same hamper was 
thrown out of one of the carriage windows by a pas- 
senger whose face was not seen. On its examination a 
quantity of partridges' feathers were taken from it, but 
there were no pigeons' feathers in it. A week after de- 
fendant called at the station for his hamper which was 
handed him and a receipt taken. 

The defendant was very ably defended, but in the end 
he was fined 12 and 2 Is. costs. 

Subsequently the consignee above referred to was 
charged on several informations with being in the un- 
lawful possession of partridges during the close season. 
Only two cases were, however, proceeded with, in one of 
which the defendant was fined 10 8s. and 3 18s. 6d. costs. 

USING GUN FOR TAKING GAME AND WOUNDING 
VALUABLE DOG WORTH 50. 

This was an interesting case. 

On the morning in question two gamekeepers were 



188 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

watching in a wood at E. when they heard the report 
of a gun which proceeded from another wood near in 
another parish. As they were going there several more 
shots were fired getting nearer. The keepers having 
got to the wood in question they secreted themselves 
by the side of the drive, when they saw the defendant 
coming along towards them. They had with them a 
very valuable watch dog (bull and mastiff), trained to 
prevent poachers from getting away by running round 
them, which was muzzled. Defendant had got his 
pockets well filled and was carrying a gun in a sporting 
attitude quite prepared for another shot if at all prac- 
ticable, and looking up the trees for the pheasants. As 
soon as he caught sight of the keepers he was off like a 
roe, and being noted for his powers as a pedestrian he 
soon left the keepers, following in hot pursuit, behind. 
As he was gaining on the keepers they liberated the 
dog, still muzzled, and as soon as the dog got up to the 
defendant he deliberately put the barrel of his gun (an 
old muzzle loader) to the side of the dog and fired. The 
animal reeled and fell, and as the defendant made good 
his escape he threw away one after another several 
pheasants and lost his hat. He got away, but was well 
known to the keepers, who on returning picked up the 
pheasants thrown away by the defendant, which were 
quite warm and had been shot, and afterwards his cap, 
coat and gun were picked up. A search was then made 
for the dog, which they found covered with blood, shot 
right through the shoulder, which shattered the blade, 
200 yards away from where he had been shot. A door 
was taken off its hinges and the dog was put on it and 
taken home. He was attended to by a Norwich veter- 
inary surgeon, who, after taking a quantity of paper 
and several pieces of bone out of the wound and 
dressing it, was very hopeful of his patient recovering. 
The defendant was ably defended, his defence being an 
alibi, but that he (or whoever it might be) would have been 
justified under the circumstances in their own defence 
in doing what was done. The justices decided to con- 



A FEW INTERESTING CASES 189 

vict and fined the defendant 3 and costs, 2 Is. 6d., 
or one month for the poaching, and ordered him to pay 
20 towards the injury to the dog, and 12s. 6d. costs, in 
default two months, which was paid. 

We are glad to say the dog eventually recovered, and 
goes about again much as usual, though not as he was. 
The veterinary got exceedingly attached to his patient, 
and feelingly told us that when he had been dressing 
the wound, and using his knife to get away the bad flesh, 
not a whimper ever came from the dog, which only looked 
up pleadingly to him, as much as to say : "Be as mer- 
ciful as you can, governor, with that knife ". 

ALLEGED UNLAWFUL POSSESSION OF GAME EGGS. 

An interesting case was heard in which a man was 
summoned for having in his possession 250 partridges' 
eggs which had been unlawfully taken from land on the 
15th May. He was further summoned for a similar 
offence respecting 220 eggs on 22nd May and 125 eggs 
on 24th May. A second defendant was summoned for 
aiding and abetting in all the three cases. 

The case of 15th May was heard first. Both de- 
fendants pleaded not guilty, and were ably defended. 

The prosecuting solicitor in his opening said : In this 
case they had to deal with a matter which had given a 
vast amount of trouble in the neighbourhood for months 
past, and in consequence great expense had been in- 
curred. 

On 15th May last a box of eggs was -left at B. station 
and was consigned to A B of C. That box was followed 
and subsequently opened by a detective and was found 
to contain 250 partridges' eggs packed in three layers in 
a most careful manner. The evidence that he had to 
bring before them would be entirely of a circumstantial 
nature, because it was impossible to prove absolutely 
directly the land from which the eggs were stolen. In 
this case the eggs were consigned to Mr. A B, who was 
head gamekeeper on a large estate, and when the agent 



190 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

was communicated with and found out what was hap- 
pening he immediately informed his employer that it 
was alleged he was receiving eggs from illicit sources. 
The employer immediately placed the matter in the 
hands of his solicitors, who made every inquiry con- 
cerning the delivery of the eggs and the source from 
whence they came. No doubt his friend would plead 
on behalf of the defendants that they were agents of 
another firm of gamedealers. It was necessary for 
himself to prove where the eggs came from. On the 
13th June the solicitors referred to wrote 

Solicitor for defence. That is not evidence ; you 
have no right to introduce correspondence from a third 
party. 

Solicitor for prosecution. The eggs were ordered by 
the landowner referred to from the gamedealers re- 
ferred to, who supplied a part, and the other part was 
supplied by the defendants. It is my duty to prove 
the eggs came from him to the consignee in the first 
instance. 

Solicitor for defence. I object, and I wish to take the 
magistrates' ruling on this point. It is unfair for such 
a thing to be mentioned, unless it can be supported by 
evidence. What transpired with the gamedealers is not 
evidence. 

After consultation the chairman said they would rule 
that the correspondence could not be produced. 

Solicitor for the prosecution. Very well. 

The following letter was sent to the defendant by the 
landowner's solicitors : 

" On the 7th June the E. A. G. P. Society wrote to - 
[the landowner] with reference to the partridges' eggs 

ordered by him from [the gamedealers], who now 

inform him that they obtained the same or the greater 
portion of them from you. The society by this com- 
munication evidently seek to make out that the eggs 
have been improperly obtained by you. Under these 
circumstances it is the duty of [the landowner], to- 
wards the society and himself, to make the fullest inquiry 



A FEW INTERESTING CASES 191 

into the matter, and we have to ask you to inform us by 
return of post where you obtained the eggs, and give us 
any further information you can." 

In reply to this defendant wrote stating that the 
eggs came from his own place. The landowner showed 
through his solicitors, that on his part he had no wish 
to receive goods of which there was a doubtful history. 
He might add that the landowner, through his solicitor, 
had rendered the society every assistance in his power 
under the circumstances. 

From the 8th May last to the 24th no fewer than 
4,000 eggs were sent away from C. station by the de- 
fendants. 

Solicitor for defence. What has that to do with the 
case ? I am not answering 4,000 eggs. I am answering 
250. 

Solicitor for prosecution, continuing, said he would 
prove that at the present time the defendant's total 
holding was seventeen acres, and, furthermore, he had 
no license to deal in game. Another witness would be 
called to say that having watched the land in the de- 
fendant's possession all the summer he practically found 
no partridges there at all. Also as a matter of com- 
parison he would prove that one partridge egg per acre 
was a very good average, whilst two eggs per acre was 
a very big average, so it would appear that it was im- 
possible for the defendant to take 100 much more so 
250 eggs from his land. Furthermore, he would prove 
that eggs had been missing from the land in the im- 
mediate neighbourhood of defendant's occupation. He 
further submitted that as the defendant had elected to 
plead that the eggs came from his own land, or land 
whereon he had the sporting rights as proved by letter 
in his own handwriting, the onus of proof rested upon 
him to prove that fact, and that the eggs were taken 
from his lands. He quoted section 42 of the Game Act 
in support thereof. 

A rate collector produced the valuation list which 
showed that the defendant was rated for seventeen 



192 A PEACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

acres of agricultural land. He was not rated in respect 
of sporting rights. 

Cross-examined. There were several acres of land 
wired in for the rearing of game, and also in addition 
to that space there were other woodlands in defendant's 
possession. 

The stationmaster at C produced the " way bills " 

for May. He produced one for 15th May, a box of eggs 
for A B. 

Chairman. How do you know they were eggs ? 

Solicitor for prosecution. I am going to prove that. 

A railway clerk at C Station said he knew de- 
fendants, and on the 15th May one of the defendants 
brought a box to the station. He produced defendant's 
signature. 

Cross-examined. There were two clerks in the office. 
He could not say he was in the office when the signature 
was signed. 

Another booking-clerk said he knew the defendant 
and had seen him write. The letter produced was, he 
thought, in defendant's handwriting. 

The Clerk. Can you swear positively ? No, but to 
the best of my knowledge and belief it is. 

A gamekeeper said the land he looked after ran up 
to within 400 and 500 yards of defendant's. The border 
had been shot very hard, but in spite of that a consider- 
able number of partridges nested there. Early in May 
or late in April, they missed a nest or two from the 
border. 

One egg per acre on the average of forty would 
be a good average of eggs to pick up. It would be 
a heavy lot to pick up two. To talk of six or seven 
eggs per acre would be an impossibility. He knew 
the land occupied by the defendant. It would be im- 
possible to pick up 150 eggs on such a small hold- 
ing. He had not known partridges to lay successfully 
in confinement. During an experience of thirty years 
he had not known a partridge to make a nest in confine- 
ment. By confinement he meant a pen of five or six 



A FEW INTERESTING CASES 193 

acres. Partridges confined to that would lay some eggs ; 
an occasional one might be found, but no nest would be 
made. 

Cross-examined. There have not been any prosecu- 
tions at B this season. 

An estate agent proved his employer's estate almost 

touched B . He could not say he had missed any 

eggs from the B borders. He had taken an oc- 
casional stroll near the defendant's occupation, and had 
never seen any partridges. He had been there for the 
express purpose of seeing if there were any. 

It would indeed be a good place where one could pick 
up two eggs per acre. 

Cross-examined. He had never gone into calculation. 
He was speaking generally. It was recognised that one 
egg per acre was good. He had walked round the de- 
fendant's place several times. Did not touch the land. 
Could tell if necessary how every field is cultivated. 

A clerk to landowner's solicitors said that on the 13th 
June the firm wrote to the defendant as before men- 
tioned. A reply was received. Witness was handing 
it in, when this was objected to as no actual proof of 
the handwriting had been given. 

An argument followed on this point and the bench 
allowed the letter to be read. It stated: "In reply to 

yours re partridges' eggs supplied to [the game 

dealers], I beg to say they came off my own place". 
This completed the case for the prosecution. 

Solicitor for defence submitted that there was no case 
to answer. There was no evidence that either of the 
defendants was seen in charge of that box, or that the 
box contained eggs. There was no evidence from any 
person that the box was ever opened, and therefore 
they must not assume that it contained eggs. The 
evidence was of a most flimsy character. The main 
feature was that on the 15th May there was no proof 
that either of the defendants had possession of the eggs, 
and he would ask the bench to say that there was no 
case for him to answer. The magistrates consulted in 

13 



194 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

private, and upon their returning to court the chairman 
said the bench had decided to dismiss the case. 

UNLAWFUL POSSESSION OF GAME EGGS. 

At A a dealer appeared in answer to a summons 

for having in his possession 617 eggs of game, to wit, 
157 pheasants' eggs and 460 partridges' eggs, on the 
May. 

Counsel for prosecution said the charge was for being 
in unlawful possession of a large number of eggs of 
game, and was brought under section 24 of the Game 
Act, which he read. The present case was one of con- 
siderable importance, because there was no doubt that 
illicit dealing in game eggs went on to a large extent in 
Suffolk and Norfolk, and it was difficult to detect, as 
eggs could not be easily identified, and could be readily 
taken from one place to another. A high price was 
obtained for them, and if people bought them without 
making proper inquiries, the offence merited a heavy 
penalty. The facts in this case were very clear and 
simple. The defendant was a licensed dealer in game. 
Under his license he was entitled to buy eggs from 
persons who obtained them lawfully and cared to sell 

them. On the May, about 2.30 P.M., certain police 

officers were on duty in L , when defendant came 

along driving a horse and cart. The superintendent 
told one of the constables to stop the cart, which he 
did. The constable asked defendant if he had got any 
eggs, and defendant admitted he had. Defendant pro- 
duced a large hamper, which was opened by the side of 
the road. This contained 117 pheasants' eggs and 309 
partridges' eggs 426 in all. Defendant, on being asked 
to account for them, said he got them off his land at 

L , over which he had the right of shooting. The 

superintendent immediately proceeded to test some of 
the eggs, and found one marked with the letters "D.M.S." 
He asked defendant how he accounted for that, and de- 
fendant said it must have been put there by some one to 



A FEW INTERESTING CASES 195 

get him into trouble. Defendant also had a smaller 
hamper, containing forty pheasants' eggs and 151 part- 
ridges' eggs, which he said came from B at F . 

The eggs were taken to the police station at L , 

where the other pheasants' eggs were tested, and five 
more found to be marked "D.M.S." No eggs in the 
small hamper were found to be marked. A strong 
point for the prosecution was that defendant said all 
the eggs in the large hamper came off his own land, so 
there was no question about purchasing them. The 

land in defendant's occupation at L was all fen 

land, and the colour of eggs on that land would differ 
from eggs found on high land, and he would call game- 
keepers to prove that nine out of ten of the partridges' 
eggs found in the large hamper came off high land. 
His second point was that the number of eggs found in 
the large hamper could not have come off defendant's 
land, as at that time of year there would not be any- 
thing like the quantity on his land, which he would also 
call witnesses to prove. The third point was the label 

found in the hamper, which had the address of J. K 

Brewery, L , upon it. The case went further, 

as six of the pheasants' eggs were found marked with 
the letters " D.M.S.," which were the initials of a certain 
keeper on the F - Estate, who would tell them that 
he marked one egg in each nest he came across. He 
marked them with a kind of invisible pencil, so that 
any one looking at the egg would not notice it, but 
when washed with a certain preparation the letters 
would show plainly. One of the six marked eggs had, 

in addition to the initials, two crosses, and S , the 

keeper, would state that he marked this particular egg 

on Sunday, the 14th May, on the farm at L ; and 

also that between the llth and 15th of May he lost 
seven partridges' and five pheasants' nests. The ex- 
planation given by defendant as to the marked egg was 
that someone must have put it amongst his out of 
spite, but as no one knew of the eggs being marked 

except S , it followed that unless he did so no one 

13* 



196 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

else could. S had no reason to do so ; indeed his 

land was a great distance from that over which de- 
fendant had the right of shooting. S - only marked 
one egg in each nest, and each marked egg represented 
a whole nest, containing on an average from ten to 
twelve eggs. If the magistrates came to the conclusion 

that the marked eggs belonged to L - I , they 

would doubtless come to the same conclusion with 
regard to the others. The penalty was a large one, and 
if they considered the facts proved, he submitted that 
a heavy penalty should be inflicted. 

The following evidence was then taken : 
Superintendent H - said : On the 15th May I 

was with police constables P - and B on the 

U Road in the direction of L , when I saw 

defendant driving towards us. I instructed P - to 

stop the cart. P asked defendant if he had got 

some eggs. Defendant said, " Yes, and plenty more 

at home ". P took the hamper from the cart, 

and it was opened in my presence. It contained 117 
pheasants' eggs and 309 partridges' eggs. I took out 
three or four pheasants' eggs and tried them with the 
bottle of solution I had in my pocket. One of them 
was marked with the initials " D.M.S.," and I called 
defendant's attention to it. He said : " They all came 
off my land. If one of them is marked, some one must 
have put it there out of spite. I cannot stop now, and 
will leave them with you." That was after the second 
hamper had been taken from the cart, and defendant 
then drove off. Before I put the solution on the eggs, 
I could not see the mark. I took all the eggs to the 

L Police Station. When we got there I tested 

all the pheasants' eggs, and found six of them marked 
"D.M.S." These were all taken from the large ham- 
per. (The eggs from both the hampers were pro- 
duced in court and examined by magistrates and 
counsel.) Cross - examined. Defendant is a game- 
dealer, and holds a license. I know defendant occu- 
pies a quantity of land at L . There is a lot 



A FEW INTERESTING CASES 197 

of game about there. I do not know where the 
defendant's land is. It was about half a mile from 
L - where we stopped the defendant. Defendant 
could see us on the road. He stopped at once. There 
was no concealment on defendant's part of the ham- 
pers, which were at the bottom of the cart. One 
hamper (large) had 426 eggs, and the other (small) 
had 191 eggs. I found no marked eggs in the small 
one. The large hamper contained both pheasants' and 
partridges' eggs. I found none of the latter marked. 
There were 117 pheasants' eggs in the large hamper, 
and it was only amongst them that I found any marked. 
S - told me that he marked the eggs. I only found 
one marked egg when defendant was there. When 
we found the other marked eggs there were only 
two constables with me. I got the solution from my 
chief-constable. The solution does not spoil the eggs 
for hatching. On the 18th May I received a letter 
from defendant's solicitors asking for immediate return 
of the eggs. Defendant told me he got the eggs in the 

small hamper from Mr. B , who occupies land at 

F . I have found that such statement is true. 

The label (produced) was at the top of the hamper. 
Ke-examined. Defendant told me that the small 

hamper came from F . He has not got a farm 

at L , but only hires shooting. 

Police constable P gave corroborative evidence. 

Daniel M - S , a gamekeeper, said : I am 

keeper in charge of a portion of L I 's es- 
tate. In consequence of eggs being stolen, I marked 
some eggs one in each nest both pheasants and 
partridges. I put my initials " D. M. S." on the eggs 
with a pencil. (At this stage witness marked an 
egg with the specially prepared pencil, his initials, 
" D. M. S.," being practically invisible until the solu- 
tion was put on, when the writing could be plainly 
seen.) Continuing, witness said : I marked one egg 

in each nest I came across on the C Farm, L -, 

and E Farm, E . I marked one egg particu- 



198 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

larly with my initials and two crosses on Sunday, the 
14th May, and put it in a new-made nest on C 
Farm. I looked into that nest on Monday, the 15th 
May, and the egg so marked was gone. There would 
be from ten to fifteen eggs in each nest about that time 
of year. I lost five pheasants' nests and seven part- 
ridges' nests between the llth and 15th of May nests 
that I knew of. I never told any one that I marked 
the eggs, not even the keepers on the beat. Partridges' 
eggs differ in colour when laid on high land and fen 
land. Witness was asked to select eggs showing this 
difference, and did so. Cross-examined. The stain of 
the fen land alters the colour of the eggs. The bird 
finds a dry place for the nest, but it tramples on the 
eggs. I marked one egg in each of a number of nests 

on the E and C Farms. I can only tell for 

certain when I marked the egg which has the initials 
and two crosses. That was on the 14th May. I can 
swear I marked the other five eggs. The egg with the 
crosses must have got from the nest to the defendant's 

cart within twenty-four hours. L I 's C 

Farm is in L . I always keep on my own land, 

and never trespass on other people's. I am not the 
only keeper who uses the particular pencil for marking 
eggs. I have lost a number of eggs. Ke-examined. 
I made a complaint of the loss of eggs to the head 
keeper. I did not know defendant. The initials on 
the eggs found marked are in my writing. 

F. K , head keeper, said : I know the shooting 

hired by defendant, which is in J 's Fen. There 

are about 700 acres, but there are no woods near it. 
My employer has some fen land which adjoins defen- 
dants, and is of the same character. I look after the 
game there, and I know the amount of game found on 
such land. I should only expect to find five or six 
pheasants laying on the quantity of land defendant 
hires, with an average of ten or twelve eggs in each 
nest. I should not expect to find more than twelve 
or fifteen brace of partridges on defendant's land, with 



A FEW INTERESTING CASES 199 

an average of twelve to fourteen eggs. I know the 

E - estate and C Farm. Neither of these adjoin 

the defendant's land, but are some miles off. I am 
used to partridges' eggs, and can tell the difference be- 
tween eggs laid on high land and on fen land. The fen 
eggs would be darker and stained by the fen soil. More 
than half the eggs produced are high land eggs. I pro- 
duce some eggs picked up on high land and fen land. 
Cross-examined. The eggs brought by me are speci- 
mens. Our land goes right up to defendant's. It is 
best to let pheasants lay their full number of eggs be- 
fore taking any. Ee-examined. Defendant has no high 
land in L - so far as I know. In a wet season the 
fen eggs would get more stained, but there would be a 
difference in the colour even in a dry season. 

F - H , under keeper, to S - W , like- 
wise gave evidence, and E B , head keeper to 

another landowner, was also called to prove the differ- 
ence in the colour of eggs on high land and fen or marsh 
land. 

C - said he was the inventor of the pencil 

with which the eggs were marked. The mark could not 
be brought out without the solution. In cross-examina- 
tion, when the witness was asked as to the composition 
of the solution, he objected to give information on the 
point. Counsel submitted that he was entitled ta have 
his question answered, but after some discussion the 
magistrates ruled that it was not necessary for the 
purpose of the present case. 

On resuming after lunch, counsel asked permission to 
call his witnesses before addressing the bench, and this 

was agreed to. The defendant said : I live at M , 

and am a game-dealer. I have a license, and have 

had one for twelve years. I occupy shooting at L , 

about 700 acres. It is fen land, but there is a bank 
round it, and the main line of the G.E.E. runs through 

it. I have about 100 acres of land at M , 300 acres 

at C , and some at B E . On Monday, the 

15th May, I had been to F . I went there for some 



200 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

eggs, and got some from Mr. B , about 200. These 

were the eggs I had in my cart in one of the hampers. 

I went from F to L , about six miles. I called 

at a public-house there, which is kept by J. K . I 

had a glass of beer and met my man C there. He 

brought me some eggs, between 400 and 500. I could 
not say the number exactly. They were in a flat. My 
man brought three lots of eggs collected on Friday, 
Saturday and Monday. I put some feathers, papers, 
etc., with the eggs. I put the flat into my cart and 
started. I had two hampers and some chickens. One 
hamper contained the eggs I picked up at the public- 
house, and the other eggs I had from F . Except the 

eggs I bought from Mr. B , I had no eggs which I 

bought from any one else. Some of the eggs I had in 
the large hamper were marked. I did not know that I 
had any eggs unlawfully taken from anywhere. I was 
stopped by Supt. H - and two police constables. 

P said : " I suspect you of having game eggs in 

your possession ". I said : " I always have some eggs 

at this time of the year ". P said he wanted them, 

and I handed the hampers to him. I did not tell the 
policeman I had plenty of eggs at home. Cross-exam- 
ined. I do not take eggs from the public-house very 
often. I had had one little lot from there before. I shoot 
on my land. I do not know how many birds nest on 
my land. I expected to find as many eggs as I had on 
my land. I had had some off my land once before, but 
I could not say how many. It is all fen land except 
the bank. I do not believe any man can tell between 
an egg on the fen land and others. I do not suggest 
that these eggs came from any of my other land. I 

called at the public-house on Monday. Mr. A is the 

manager, and he has been in trouble once or twice in 

game matters. I gave my man C orders to collect 

the eggs off my land, and I went over there to fetch them. 
I saw my man C- - at the public-house, but I did 

not ask him where he got the eggs. I leave it to C , 

and tell him to get all he can, and do not ask him any 



A FEW INTERESTING CASES 201 

further questions. The eggs were backed up at the 
top, and that is how the label got there. I never saw 
the mark on the egg, and was not asked to explain 
anything about it. I said : " If there is a mark upon 
it, it was put there by some one else ". As soon as 
P- - saw the mark he said, " This is one of them," 
and took the hampers. I said : " If there are any 
marked eggs there they were put upon my land by some 

evil-disposed person ". I know the gamekeeper S , 

and I know C Farm, which is about three miles 

from my land. I gave B 4^d. each for the eggs I 

bought at F . Very early in the season they make 

more money. In the middle of May I was getting 
about 6d. each for partridges' eggs and 9d. each for 
pheasants' eggs. By the Bench. I pay 11 10s. for the 

shooting on the 700 acres of land at L . C is 

not paid wages. He is paid according to the number 
of eggs. 

C- - C , of L , stated that defendant had 

about 650 acres of land there. During the egging 
season he collected the eggs for defendant. L 
was a good country for game and eggs. Witness 
collected the eggs before the 15th May, on the 
Thursday, Friday and Saturday. He collected 420 and 
took them to the public-house, where he put them in 
a hamper. Witness kept the eggs at his house until 
he took them to the public-house. Defendant had 
not come before the 15th May to take any eggs from 
witness, who said he was paid 80s. at the end of the 
season for collecting eggs. Cross-examined. These are 
the first eggs I have collected for defendant this year. 
There are two other men who live on the land, and it 
is their duty to show me the nests. If any one had 
taken 100 or 200 eggs off defendant's land I should 
have known it. Defendant told me to collect the eggs 
on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, and get them ready 
for Monday. I collected 420 odd eggs. I am not aware 
that any of the eggs were marked. All the eggs I 
picked up came from defendant's land. I cannot ac- 



202 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

count in any way for the eggs marked by the keeper 
being amongst them. 

By the Bench. I do not keep count of the number 
of nests. 

A poultry-dealer said he and Mr. B - hired shooting 
over 800 acres of land. On the 15th May defendant 
went over and met him at Mr. B 's house. Wit- 
ness sold him some pheasants and partridges' eggs 
about 200. He gave witness 4Jd. each for them. All 
those eggs came irom the land which witness and Mr. 

B had the right of shooting over. Cross-examined. 

We pay several different people for the shooting. 
B - hires the shooting, and I go in with him. De- 
fendant paid me for the eggs. I could not say how 
much he paid me. He paid me in gold. I spoke to 

Mr. B about it. I shared the money with him, 

but I cannot say how much I gave him. I counted the 
eggs before I sold them. There were about 200. I 
have sold some to defendant before this season. 

By the Bench. Do you mean to say you do not 
know how much was paid you for the eggs? 

Witness gave an evasive answer, and was told by the 
chairman that the magistrates did not believe him. 

Re-examined. We got 3d. each for partridges' eggs 
and 4Jd. for pheasants' eggs. 

A B , of F , also gave evidence as to 

hiring shooting in conjunction with the last witness, 

and A , who was with defendant in the cart when 

stopped by the police, said defendant told him to hand 
out the hampers containing the eggs, and that the 

hampers came from F and L . He saw the 

police smear some stuff on some of the eggs, and heard 
them say there was a mark on one of them, bat he did 
not see it. 

Counsel for defendant, addressing the magistrates, said 
the case was an exceedingly important matter for the 
defendant, who had been a game-dealer for some ten or 
twelve years, and a man could not carry on that trade 
without a good character. The defendant had hitherto 



A FEW INTEKESTING CASES 203 

carried on his business without suspicion. Defendant 
was summoned under section 24 of the Game Act of 1831, 
which he again read. It would be for the bench to say 
whether the prosecution had proved that defendant had 
in his possession eggs wrongfully obtained, and that he 
had those eggs knowing them to have been improperly 
obtained. The question was Had the prosecution 
shown that defendant had a guilty knowledge ? If 
any one had stolen goods or goods unlawfully obtained, 
they took precautions to convey them secretly, but de- 
fendant went in broad daylight to places where he was 
known, and when stopped by the police he made no 
secret about the eggs. He (counsel) submitted that the 
whole of defendant's proceedings showed that he was 
an innocent man. Referring to the marked eggs, he said 
they all knew many eggs were stolen and handed about, 
and it might be that whilst the eggs were at the public- 
house some one put the marked eggs amongst those 
belonging to defendant. The label showed nothing, as 
it was merely taken up with the paper and other things 
to cover the eggs and prevent their being broken. De- 
fendant gave his evidence in a fair way. They knew he 

got the eggs at F , as stated, and there were no 

marked ones amongst them, so they had only the other 

hamper to deal with. Even if there were in the L 

hamper eggs improperly obtained, it must be shown that 
defendant knowingly had such eggs. He submitted that 
the prosecution had not shown that defendant knew he 
had eggs unlawfully obtained, and that he had further 
proved that defendant was innocent. 

After retiring to consider the matter, the chairman 
said the magistrates had gone carefully into the case, 
and were unanimous that the charge was made out so 

far as the 426 eggs in the L hamper were concerned. 

The bench were of opinion that the 191 eggs in the other 
hamper were obtained legally. They had decided to con- 
vict as to the 426 eggs, and imposed a fine of 2s. per egg 
42 12s., with ordinary costs, or one month. 

It transpired that there were fourteen convictions 



204 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

recorded against defendant, eleven of which were for 
offences under the game laws. 

Formal notice of appeal was given on behalf of the 
defendant, but the penalty and costs were afterwards 
paid and the appeal abandoned. 

THE LEASING, ETC., OF SPOETING EIGHTS. 

These interests with the accompanying right to take 
away the game acquired, coming as they do within the 
Statutes of Frauds, being an interest arising out of land, 
and a profit a prendre, must be in writing and signed, 
and whether the document purporting to pass the 
interest be an agreement or a lease it must be under 
seal, i.e., by deed. 

It must not of course be understood that all agree- 
ments for the hiring of sporting rights not under seal 
are necessarily void, as against all parties interested 
under the document, as sometimes acts done or com- 
mitted by a person against whom it is proposed to bring 
an action, would probably bring such person within the 
provisions of the agreement. 

Below will be found a short form of lease of sport- 
ing rights which may be useful to sportsmen generally 
about to hire or let a comparatively small shooting. In 
large shootings many other matters would necessarily 
have to be dealt with and a plan of fields, etc., annexed 
to the lease, but the following will probably be found 
sufficient for most of an ordinary nature. Of course it 
is presumed that a person about to hire such rights 
from the owner of the land, with a tenant in occupa- 
tion, would naturally satisfy himself that the person 
purporting to let has the right vested in him, likewise, 
when thinking of hiring from a tenant, that such tenant 
has the right to the game as well as to the ground game, 
and that the game is not reserved to the landlord. 

This indenture made the day of , 19 , between 
A B, of (address and occupation), hereinafter called the 



THE LEASING, ETC., OF SPORTING RIGHTS 205 

lessor of the one part, and C D, of (address and occu- 
pation), hereinafter called the lessee of the other part, 
witnesseth as follows : 

The lessor doth by these presents grant and demise 
unto the said lessee the full and exclusive right (subject 
only to the concurrent right of occupiers under the 
Ground Game Act of 1880) for the said lessee, his 
friends, gamekeepers, and all other persons having 
his permission to hunt, course, shoot, fish and sport 
over and upon the lands and grounds specified in the 
schedule hereto in the parishes of in the county 

of and to kill, take and dispose of and of turn- 

ing down and preserving all game, woodcocks, snipe, 
quails, landrails and conies, wild fowl and other wild 
animals and wild birds and fish upon the said premises, 
and for the purpose aforesaid, to enter thereon, to hold 
the said rights and liberties hereby granted, subject as 
hereinafter provided unto the lessee from the day of 
unto the day of ,19 , paying unto the said 
lessor the rent or sum of by equal half-yearly pay- 
ments on the day of and the day of in each 
year, without deduction, the first payment to be made 
on the day of next. 

The lessee covenants with the lessor to pay the said 
rent of at the time and in manner aforesaid and to 
pay all rents and taxes levied upon the right of sporting 
hereby granted. 

And also that he will exercise the said right of sport- 
ing in a proper and sportsmanlike manner, and will dur- 
ing the said term keep gamekeepers and assistants and 
will use his best endeavours to preserve a proper and 
efficient head of game. 

And also that he will during the said term pay all 
reasonable claims to the tenants or occupiers of the 
said lands for damage done in the exercise of the said 
sporting rights or by game on the said lands and 
will keep the said lessor indemnified from any such 
claims. 

And also that he will keep down the number of hares 



206 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

and rabbits on the said lands so as to prevent injury 
by them to the crops and to the woods on the said 
lands. 

And also will not at any time during the said term 
assign or underlet the said sporting rights without the 
previous consent in writing of the said lessor first had 
and obtained. 

And will at the end or sooner determination of the 
said term leave upon the said lands at least head of 
cock pheasants and of hen pheasants. 

And the said lessor hereby covenants with the said 
lessee that the lessee paying the said rent hereby re- 
served and observing and performing the covenants on 
his part hereinbefore contained shall quietly enjoy the 
several rights and liberties hereby granted without any 
interruption by the said lessee or any persons claiming 
under or in trust for him. 

And it is hereby mutually agreed and declared that if 
the said rent or any part thereof shall be in arrear for 
twenty-one days, whether the same shall have been 
legally demanded or not, or if the lessee shall commit 
any breach of the covenants hereinbefore contained, the 
lessor may by notice in writing forthwith determine the 
lease hereby created without prejudice to his right of 
action for such breach. 

And it is hereby further agreed that any dispute or 
question which may arise under these presents shall be 
referred to an arbitrator, or in the case of the parties 
hereto being unable to agree then to two arbitrators, 
one to be appointed by either party, and their umpire, 
whose decision shall be final. 

In witness whereof the said parties to these presents 
have hereunto set their hands and seals the day and 
year first within written. 

The Schedule above referred to. 

(Here will follow a description of the lands over which 
the sporting rights are to be granted.) 



THE GAME ACT, 1831 207 

A B (L. S.) 

C D (L. S.) 

Signed, sealed and delivered 
by the within-named A B, in 
the presence of 
Witness' name. 
Address. 
Occupation. 

Signed, sealed and delivered 
by the within-named C D, in 
the presence of 
Witness' name. 
Address. 

Occupation. 

The lease must be properly stamped within one month 
of its execution and date (if not previously stamped), and 
must bear the stamp required according to the value of 
the rent. 

THE GAME ACT, 1831. 
(1 & 2 Wm. IV. c. 32.) 

An Act to amend the laws in England relative to 
Game. (5th October, 1831.) 

Whereas it is expedient to repeal the following statutes 
in that part of the United Kingdom called England, re- 
lative to game, and to substitute other provisions in 
lieu thereof ; be it therefore enacted by the King's most 
excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent 
of the Lords spiritual and temporal, and Commons, in 
this present parliament assembled, and by the authority 
of the same, that so much of a Statute made in the thir- 
teenth year of the reign of King Richard the Second as 
relates to such persons as shall not have or keep any 
greyhound, hound, or other dog to hunt, and shall not 
use fyrets, heys, nets, harepipes, cords or other engines 
to take or destroy hares, conies, or other gentlemen's 
game ; and so much of a Statute made in the twenty- 



208 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

second year of the reign of King Edward the Fourth as 
relates to the having any mark or game of swans ; and 
an Act passed in the eleventh year of the reign of King 
Henry the Seventh, intituled An Act against taking of 
Feasaunts and Partridges ; and an Act passed in the 
nineteenth year of the same reign, intituled De Laqueis 
et Retibus Venantium\ and an Act passed in the four- 
teenth and fifteenth years of the reign of King Henry 
the Eighth, intituled An Act against tracing of Hares ; 
and an Act passed in the twenty-fifth year of the same 
reign, intituled An Act against Destruction of Wild 
Fowl ; and an Act passed in the thirty-third year of the 
same reign, intituled An Act concerning Cross Bows 
and Hand Guns ; and an Act passed in the twenty- 
third year of the reign of Queen Elizabeth, intituled An 
Act for the Preservation of Pheasants and Partridges ; 
and an Act passed in the second year of the reign of 
King James the First, intituled An Act for the better 
Execution of the Intent and Meaning of former Statutes 
made against shooting in Guns, and for the Preservation 
of the Game of Pheasants and Partridges, and against 
the destroying of Hares with Hare Pipes, and tracing 
Hares in the Snow ; and an Act passed in the seventh 
year of the same reign, intituled An Act to prevent the 
Spoil of Corn and Grain by untimely hawking, and for 
the better Preservation of Pheasants and Partridges ; 
and an Act passed in the twenty-second and twenty- 
third years of the reign of King Charles the Second, 
intituled An Act for the better Preservation of the 
Game, and for securing Warrens not inclosed, and the 
several Fishings of this Eealm ; and an Act passed in 
the fourth year of the reign of King William and Queen 
Mary, intituled An Act for the more easy Discovery 
and Conviction of such as shall destroy the Game of 
this Kingdom ; and an Act passed in the fifth year of 
the reign of Queen Anne, intituled An Act for the 
better Preservation of the Game ; and an Act passed in 
the ninth year of the same reign, intituled An Act for 
making the Act of the Fifth Year of Her Majesty's 



THE GAME ACT, 1831 209 

Reign, for the better Preservation of the Game, per- 
petual, and for making the same more effectual; and 
an Act passed in the eighth year of the reign of King 
George the First, intituled An Act for the better Re- 
covery of the Penalties inflicted upon Persons who 
destroy the Game ; and an Act passed in the tenth 
year of the reign of King George the Second, intituled 
An Act for continuing an Act for the more effectual 
punishing wicked and evil-disposed Persons going armed 
in Disguise, and doing Injuries and Violences to the 
Persons and Properties of His Majesty's Subjects, and 
for the more speedy bringing the Offenders to Justice ; 
and for continuing Two Clauses, to prevent the cutting 
or breaking down the Bank of any River or Sea Bank, 
and to prevent the malicious cutting of Hopbinds, con- 
tained in an Act passed in the Sixth Year of His present 
Majesty's Reign; and for the more effectual Punish- 
ment of Persons removing any Materials used for se- 
curing Marsh or Sea Walls or Banks, and of Persons 
maliciously setting on Fire any Mine, Pit, or Delph of 
Coal or Cannel Coal, and of Persons unlawfully hunting 
or taking any Red or Fallow Deer in Forests or Chases, or 
beating or wounding Keepers or other Officers in Forests, 
Chases, or Parks ; and for more effectually securing the 
Breed of Wild Fowl ; and an Act passed in the twenty- 
sixth year of the same reign, intituled An Act to amend 
an Act made in the Eighth Year of the Reign of His 
late Majesty King George the First, intituled "An Act 
for the better Recovery of the Penalties inflicted upon 
Persons who destroy the Game," by enlarging the Time 
within which Suits and Actions are to be brought by 
force of the said Act ; and an Act passed in the twenty- 
eighth year of the reign of King George the Second, 
intituled An Act to explain and amend a Clause in an 
Act made in the Fifth Year of the Reign of Queen 
Anne, intituled "An Act for the better Preservation of 
the Game," in relation to the selling or offering to sale 
any Game ; and an Act passed in the second year of 
the reign of King George the Third, intituled An Act 

14 



210 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

for the better Preservation of the Game in that Part of 
Great Britain called England; and an Act passed in 
the thirteenth year of the same reign, intituled An Act 
to explain and amend the several Laws now in being, 
so far as the same relate to the Preservation of the 
Moor or Hill Game ; and an Act passed in the same 
year of the same reign, intituled An Act to repeal an 
Act made in the Tenth Year of the Keign of His present 
Majesty, intituled "An Act for the better Preservation 
of the Game within that Part of Great Britain called 
England," and for making other Provisions in lieu 
thereof ; and an Act passed in the thirty-ninth year of 
the same reign, intituled An Act for repealing Two 
Acts passed in the Thirty-sixth Year of the Keign of 
His present Majesty, which limit the Time for killing 
Partridges in England and Scotland, and for amending 
so much of an Act passed in the Second Year of the 
Reign of His present Majesty as relates to such Limita- 
tion within that Part of Great Britain called England, 
by making other Provisions for that Purpose ; and an 
Act passed in the forty-third year of the same reign, 
intituled An Act for the better Preservation of Heath 
Fowl, commonly called Black Game, in the New Forest, 
in the County of Southampton ; and an Act passed in 
the forty-eighth year of the same reign, intituled An 
Act to repeal so much of an Act of the First Year of 
King James the First as relates to the Penalties on 
shooting at Hares; and also to repeal an Act of the 
Third Year of King George the First, relating to Game- 
keepers ; and an Act passed in the fiftieth year of the 
reign of King George the Third, intituled An Act for 
the better Preservation of Heath Fowl, commonly called 
Black Game, in the Counties of Somerset and Devon ; 
and an Act passed in the fifty-eighth year of the same 
reign, intituled An Act for the more effectual Prevention 
of Offences connected with the unlawful Destruction and 
Sale of Game ; and an Act passed in the fifty-ninth 
year of the same reign, intituled An Act for the further 
regulating the Appointment of Gamekeepers in Wales ; 



THE GAME ACT, 1831 211 

and all Acts continuing or perpetuating any of the Acts 
or parts of Acts hereinbefore referred to, so far only as 
relates to the continuing or perpetuating the same re- 
spectively ; shall be and continue in force until and 
throughout the thirty-first day of October in the pre- 
sent year ; and shall from and after that Day, as to that 
part of the United Kingdom called England, be repealed, 
(except so far as any of the said Acts may repeal the 
whole or any part of any other Acts, and except as to 
any offences which may have been committed against 
any of the said Acts before or upon the said thirty-first 
day, and as to any penalties which may have been in- 
curred thereunder before or upon the said thirty-first 
day, which offences shall be dealt with and punished, 
and the penalties recovered, as if this Act had not been 
made, and except as to any matters done by any persons 
under the authority of any of the said Acts before or 
upon the said thirty-first day, with respect to whom 
every privilege and protection given by any of the said 
Acts shall continue in force as if this Act had not been 
made) ; and this Act shall commence and take effect 
(except as is hereinafter excepted) on the first day of 
November in the present year. 

II. And be it enacted, That the word " Game " shall 
for all the purposes of this Act be deemed to include 
hares, pheasants, partridges, grouse, heath or moor 
game, black game and bustards ; and that the words 
" lord of a manor, lordship or royalty, or reputed 
manor, lordship or royalty," shall throughout this 
Act be deemed to include a lady of the same re- 
spectively. 

III. And be it enacted, That if any person what- 
soever shall kill or take any game, or use any dog, 
gun, net or other engine or instrument for the purpose 
of killing or taking any game, on a Sunday or Christ- 
mas Day, such person shall, on conviction thereof 
before two Justices of the Peace, forfeit and pay for 
every such offence such sum of money, not exceeding 
five pounds, as to the said Justices shall seem meet, 



212 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

together with the costs of the conviction ; and if any 
person whatsoever shall kill or take any partridge 
between the first day of February and the first day 
of September in any year, or any pheasant between 
the first day of February and the first day of October 
in any year, or any black game (except in the county 
of Somerset or Devon, or in the New Forest in the 
County of Southampton) between the tenth day of 
December in any year and the twentieth day of August 
in the succeeding year, or in the County of Somerset 
or Devon, or in the New Forest aforesaid, between the 
tenth day of December in any year and the first day 
of September in the succeeding year, or any grouse 
commonly called red game between the tenth day of 
December in any year and the twelfth day of August 
in the succeeding year, or any bustard between the 
first day of March and the first day of September in 
any year, every such person shall, on conviction of any 
such offence before two Justices of the Peace, forfeit 
and pay for every head of game so killed or taken 
such sum of money, not exceeding one pound, as to 
the said Justices shall seem meet, together with the 
costs of the conviction ; and if any person, with intent 
to destroy or injure any game, shall at any time put or 
cause to be put any poison or poisonous ingredient on 
any ground, whether open or inclosed, where game 
usually resort, or in any highway, every such person 
shall, on conviction thereof before two Justices of the 
Peace, forfeit and pay such sum of money, not ex- 
ceeding ten pounds, as to the said Justices shall seem 
meet, together with the costs of the conviction. 

IV. And be it enacted, That if any person licensed 
to deal in game by virtue of this Act as hereinafter 
mentioned shall buy or sell, or knowingly have in his 
house, shop, stall, possession, or control, any bird of 
game after the expiration of ten days (one inclusive 
and the other exclusive) from the respective days in 
each year on which it shall become unlawful to kill 
or take such birds of game respectively as aforesaid ; 



THE GAME ACT, 1831 213 

or if any person, not being licensed to deal in game by 
virtue of this Act as hereinafter mentioned, shall buy 
or sell any bird of game after the expiration of ten 
days (one inclusive and the other exclusive) from the 
respective days in each year on which it shall become 
unlawful to kill or take such birds of game respectively 
as aforesaid, or shall knowingly have in his house, 
possession or control any bird of game (except birds 
of game kept in a mew or breeding-place) after the 
expiration of forty days (one inclusive and the other 
exclusive) from the respective days in each year on 
which it shall become unlawful to kill or take such 
birds of game respectively as aforesaid ; every such 
person shall, on conviction of any such offence before 
two Justices of the Peace, forfeit and pay for every 
head of game so bought or sold, or found in his house, 
shop, possession or control, such sum of money, not 
exceeding one pound, as to the convicting Justices shall 
seem meet, together with the costs of the conviction. 

V. And be it enacted, That nothing in this Act 
contained shall in anywise affect or alter (except as 
hereinafter mentioned) any Act or Acts now in force 
by which any persons using any dog, gun, net or 
other engine for the purpose of taking or killing any 
game whatever, or any woodcock, snipe, quail, or 
landrail, or any conies, are required to obtain and 
have annual game certificates ; but that all persons 
who before the commencement of this Act were re- 
quired to obtain and have such certificates shall after 
the commencement of this Act be required from time 
to time to obtain and have the like certificates ; and all 
the powers, provisions and penalties contained in such 
Act or Acts shall continue in as full force and effect as 
if this Act had not been made ; and that all regulations 
and provisions contained in any Act or Acts relative to 
game certificates, so far as they relate to gamekeepers 
of manors, and to the amount of duty for game certifi- 
cates to be charged upon or in respect of gamekeepers 
of manors in the cases specified in such Act or Acts, 



214 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

shall extend and apply to all gamekeepers of lands 
appointed under this Act as fully and effectually as if 
they were gamekeepers of manors, and were expressly 
mentioned in and charged by such Act or Acts. 

VI. And be it declared and enacted, That every 
person who shall have obtained an annual game 
certificate shall be authorised to kill and take game, 
subject always to an action, or to such other pro- 
ceedings as are hereinafter mentioned, for any tres- 
pass by him committed in search or pursuit of game : 
Provided always that no game certificate on which a 
less duty than three pounds thirteen shillings and 
sixpence is chargeable under the Acts relating to 
game certificates shall authorise any gamekeeper to 
kill or take any game, or to use any dog, gun, net 
or other engine or instrument for the purpose of kill- 
ing or taking game, except within the limits included 
in his appointment as gamekeeper ; but that in any 
case where such gamekeeper shall kill or take any 
game, or use any dog, gun, net or other engine or 
instrument for the purpose of killing or taking game, 
beyond such limits as aforesaid, he may be proceeded 
against under this Act, or otherwise, in the same 
manner to all intents and purposes as if he had no 
game certificate whatsoever. 

VII. And be it enacted, That in all cases where any 
person shall occupy any land under any lease or agree- 
ment made previously to the passing of this Act, except 
in the cases hereinafter next excepted, the lessor or 
landlord shall have the right of entering upon such 
land, or of authorising any other person or persons 
who shall have obtained an annual game certificate to 
enter upon such land for the purpose of killing or taking 
the game thereon ; and no person occupying any land 
under any lease or agreement, either for life or for 
years, made previously to the passing of this Act, shall 
have the right to kill or take the game on such land, 
except where the right of killing the game upon such 
land has been expressly granted or allowed to such 



THE GAME ACT, 1831 215 

person by such lease or agreement, or except where 
upon the original granting or renewal of such lease 
or agreement a fine or fines shall have been taken, 
or except where in the case of a term for years such 
lease or agreement shall have been made for a term 
exceeding twenty-one years. 

VIII. Provided always, and be it enacted, that 
nothing in this Act contained shall authorise any 
person seised or possessed of or holding any land to 
kill or take the game, or to permit any other person 
to kill or take the game upon such land, in any case 
where, by any deed, grant, lease, or any written or 
parole demise or contract, a right of entry upon such 
land for the purpose of killing or taking the game hath 
been or hereafter shall be reserved or retained by or 
given or allowed to any grantor, lessor, landlord or 
other person whatsoever; nor shall anything in this 
Act contained defeat or diminish any reservation, ex- 
ception, covenant or agreement already contained in 
any private Act of Parliament, deed or other writing 
relating to the game upon any land, nor in any manner 
prejudice the rights of any lord or owner of any forest, 
chase or warren, or of any lord of any manor, lordship, 
or royalty, or reputed manor, lordship or royalty, or of 
any steward of the Crown of any manor, lordship, or 
royalty appertaining to His Majesty. 

IX. Provided also, and be it enacted, That nothing in 
this Act contained shall in any way alter or affect the 
prerogative, rights, or privileges of His Majesty, his heirs 
or successors, nor the powers or authorities now vested 
in the Commissioners of His Majesty's Woods, Forests 
and Land Revenues, in or relating to any of His 
Majesty's forests or the boundaries thereof, nor in or 
relating to the appointment of any stewards, game- 
keepers, or other officers of any of His Majesty's 
forests, parks or chases, or of any hundred, honor, 
manor, or lordship, being part of the possessions and 
land revenues of the Crown, nor the rights, privileges, 
or immunities of any chief-justice in Eyre, or any 



216 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

warden, deputy warden, or lieutenant of any of His 
Majesty's forests, or any rangers, verderers, foresters, 
master-keepers, under-keepers, or other officers of or 
in any such forests, parks or chases, or of any person 
entitled to any right or privilege under them or any of 
them, nor the rights or privileges of any persons hold- 
ing under any grants or purchases from the Crown, nor 
give to any lord of any manor or manors within any 
forest or the boundaries thereof, nor to any other person 
whatsoever, any privileges, rights or powers within any 
such forest, park or chase, or the boundaries thereof, 
which he did not possess or to which he was not 
entitled before the passing of this Act, but that all 
the aforesaid prerogatives, immunities, privileges, rights 
and powers shall remain as if this Act had not been 
made. 

X. Provided also, and be it enacted, That nothing 
herein contained shall be deemed to give to any owner 
of cattlegates or rights of common upon or over any 
wastes or commons any interest or privilege which such 
owner was not possessed of before the passing of this 
Act, nor to authorise such owner of cattlegates or rights 
of common to pursue or kill the game found on such 
wastes or commons ; and that nothing herein contained 
shall defeat or diminish the rights or privileges which 
any lord of any manor, lordship or royalty, or reputed 
manor, lordship, or royalty, or any steward of the Crown 
of any manor, lordship, or royalty appertaining to His 
Majesty, may, before the passing of this Act, have exer- 
cised in or over such wastes or commons ; and that the 
lord or steward of the Crown of every manor, lordship, 
or royalty, or reputed manor, lordship, or royalty, shall 
have the right to pursue and kill the game upon the 
wastes or commons within such manor, lordship, or 
royalty, or reputed manor, lordship, or royalty, and to 
authorise any other person or persons who shall have 
obtained an annual game certificate to enter upon such 
wastes or commons for the purpose of pursuing and 
killing the game thereon. 



THE GAME ACT, 1831 217 

XI. And be it enacted, That where the lessor or land- 
lord shall have reserved to himself the right of killing 
the game upon any land it shall be lawful for him to 
authorise any other person or persons who shall have 
obtained an annual game certificate to enter upon 
such land for the purpose of pursuing and killing game 
thereon. 

XII. And be it enacted, That where the right of kill- 
ing the game upon any land is by this Act given to any 
lessor or landlord, in exclusion of the right of the occu- 
pier of such land, or where such exclusive right hath 
been or shall be specially reserved by or granted to, or 
doth or shall belong to, the lessor, landlord or any person 
whatsoever other than the occupier of such land, then 
and in every such case, if the occupier of such land shall 
pursue, kill, or take any game upon such land, or shall 
give permission to any other person so to do, without 
the authority of the lessor, landlord, or other person 
having the right of killing the game upon such land, 
such occupier shall, on conviction thereof before two 
Justices of the Peace, forfeit and pay for such pursuit 
such sum of money not exceeding 2, and for every 
head of game so killed or taken such sum of money not 
exceeding 1, as to the convicting Justices shall seem 
meet, together with the costs of the conviction. 

XIII. And be it enacted, That it shall be lawful for 
any lord of a manor, lordship, or royalty, or reputed 
manor, lordship, or royalty, or any steward of the Crown 
of any manor, lordship, or royalty appertaining to His 
Majesty, by writing under hand and seal, or in case of 
a body corporate, then under the seal of such body cor- 
porate, to appoint one or more person or persons as a 
gamekeeper or gamekeepers to preserve or kill the game 
within the limits of such manor, lordship, or royalty, or 
reputed manor, lordship, or royalty, for the use of such 
lord or steward thereof, and to authorise such game- 
keeper or gamekeepers within the said limits to seize 
and take for the use of such lord or steward all such 
dogs, nets, and other engines and instruments for the 



218 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

killing or taking of game as shall be used within the 
said limits by any person not authorised to kill game for 
want of a game certificate. 

XIV. And be it enacted, That it shall be lawful for 
any lord of a manor, lordship, or royalty, or reputed 
manor, lordship, or royalty, or any steward of the Crown 
of any manor, lordship, or royalty appertaining to His 
Majesty, to appoint and depute any person whatever, 
whether acting as a gamekeeper to any other person or 
not, or whether retained and paid for as the male ser- 
vant of any other person or not, to be a gamekeeper for 
any such manor, lordship, or royalty, or reputed manor, 
lordship, or royalty, or for such division or district of 
such manor, lordship, or royalty, as such lord or steward 
of the Crown shall think fit, and to authorise such per- 
son, as gamekeeper, to kill game within the same for 
his own use or for the use of any other person or persons 
who may be specified in such appointment or deputa- 
tion, and also to give to such person all such powers and 
authorities as may by virtue of this Act be given to any 
gamekeeper of a manor; and no person so appointed 
gamekeeper and empowered to kill game for his own 
use or for the use of any other person so specified as 
aforesaid, and not killing any game for the use of the 
lord or steward of the Crown of the manor, lordship, or 
royalty, or reputed manor, lordship, or royalty, for which 
such deputation or appointment shall be given, shall 
be deemed to be or shall be entered or paid for as the 
gamekeeper or male servant of the lord or steward 
making such appointment or deputation, anything in 
any Act or Acts contained to the contrary notwith- 
standing. 

XV. And be it enacted, That it shall be lawful for every 
person who shall be entitled to kill the game upon any 
lands in Wales of the clear annual value of five hundred 
pounds, whereof he shall be seised in fee or as of free- 
hold, or to which he shall otherwise be beneficially 
entitled in his own right, if such lands shall not be 
within the bounds of any manor, lordship, or royalty, 



THE GAME ACT, 1831 219 

or if, being within the same, they shall have been en- 
franchised or alienated therefrom, to appoint, by writing 
under his hand and seal, a gamekeeper or gamekeepers 
to preserve or kill the game over and upon such his 
lands, and also over and upon the lands in Wales of any 
other person, who, being entitled to kill the game upon 
such last-mentioned lands, shall by license in writing 
authorise him to appoint a gamekeeper or gamekeepers 
to preserve or kill the game thereupon, such last-men- 
tioned lands not being within the bounds of any manor, 
lordship, or royalty, or having been enfranchised or ali- 
enated therefrom ; and it shall be lawful for the person 
so appointing a gamekeeper or gamekeepers to authorise 
him or them to seize and take, for the use of the person 
so appointing, upon the lands of which he or they shall 
be appointed gamekeeper or gamekeepers, all such dogs, 
nets, and other engines and instruments for the killing 
or taking of game as shall be used upon the said lands 
by any person not authorised to kill game for want of a 
game certificate. 

XVI. Provided always, and be it enacted, That no 
appointment or deputation of any person as a game- 
keeper by virtue of this Act shall be valid unless and 
until it shall be registered with the clerk of the peace 
for the county, riding, division, liberty, franchise, city, 
or town wherein the manor, lordship, or royalty, or re- 
puted manor, lordship, or royalty, or the lands, shall be 
situate, for or in respect of which such person shall have 
been appointed gamekeeper ; and in case the appoint- 
ment of any person as gamekeeper shall expire or be 
revoked, by dismissal or otherwise, all powers and 
authorities given to him by virtue of this Act shall 
immediately cease and determine. 

XVII. And be it enacted, That every person who 
shall have obtained an annual game certificate shall 
have power to sell game to any person licensed to deal 
in game, according to the provisions hereinafter men- 
tioned : Provided always, that no game certificate on 
which a less duty than three pounds thirteen shillings 



220 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

and sixpence is chargeable under the Acts relating to 
game certificates shall authorise any gamekeeper to sell 
any game, except on the account and with the written 
authority of the master whose gamekeeper he is ; but 
that any such gamekeeper selling any game not on the 
account and with the written authority of such master 
may be proceeded against under this Act in the same 
manner, to all intents and purposes, as if he had no 
game certificate whatsoever. 

XVIII. And be it enacted, That the Justices of the 
Peace of every county, riding, division, liberty, franchise, 
city, or town shall hold a special session in the division 
or district for which they usually act, in the present year, 
between the fifteenth and the thirtieth days of October, 
and in every succeeding year in the month of July, for 
the purpose of granting licenses to deal in game, of the 
holding of which session seven days' notice shall be 
given to each of the Justices acting for such division or 
district ; and the majority of the Justices assembled at 
such session, or at some adjournment thereof, not being 
less than two, are hereby authorised (if they shall think 
fit) to grant, under their hands, to any person being a 
householder or keeper of a shop or stall within such 
division or district, and not being an innkeeper or victu- 
aller, or licensed to sell beer by retail, nor being the 
owner, guard, or driver of any mail coach, or other 
vehicle employed in the conveyance of the mails of 
letters, or of any stage coach, stage waggon, van, or 
other public conveyance, nor being a carrier or higgler, 
nor being in the employment of any of the above-men- 
tioned persons, a license according to the form in the 
schedule (A) annexed to this Act, empowering the per- 
son to whom such license shall be so granted to buy 
game at any place from any person who may lawfully 
sell game by virtue of this Act, and also to sell the same 
at one house, shop, or stall only, kept by him ; provided 
that every person, while so licensed to deal in game as 
aforesaid, shall affix to some part of the outside of the 
front of his house, shop, or stall, and shall there keep, a 



THE GAME ACT, 1831 221 

board having thereon in clear and legible characters his 
Christian name and surname, together with the follow- 
ing words (that is to say), " licensed to deal in game" ; 
and every such license granted in the present year shall 
begin to be in force on the first day of November in the 
present year, and shall continue in force until the fif- 
teenth day of July, one thousand eight hundred and 
thirty-two, and every such license granted in any suc- 
ceeding year shall continue in force for the period of 
one year next after the granting thereof. 

XIX. And be it enacted, That every person who shall 
have obtained any license to deal in game under the 
provisions of this Act shall annually and during the 
continuance of his license, and before he shall be em- 
powered to deal in game under such license, obtain a 
certificate according to the form in the schedule (B) 
annexed to this Act, on payment of the duty of two 
pounds, which is hereby granted and made payable to 
His Majesty for every such certificate, which certificate 
shall be in force for the same period as such license ; 
and the said duty shall be paid to the collector or col- 
lectors of the assessed taxes for the parish, township, or 
place in which the person so licensed shall reside, in 
like manner as the duties on game certificates are by law 
payable ; and every receipt to be given by any collector 
receiving such duty shall be free of stamp duty, and 
shall be delivered to the person requiring the same on 
payment to the collector of one shilling, and no more, 
over and above the said duty for the certificate ; and 
such receipt shall be exchanged for a certificate under 
this Act, in like manner as receipts for the duty in re- 
spect of killing game are by law required to be exchanged 
for game certificates ; and if any person obtaining a 
license under this Act shall purchase or sell or other- 
wise deal in game, as a licensed dealer under this Act, 
before he shall obtain a certificate in exchange for a 
receipt as herein directed, such person shall for every 
such offence forfeit and pay the penalty of twenty 
pounds. 



222 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

XX. And be it enacted, That the collector or collec- 
tors of the assessed taxes in every parish, township, or 
place wherein any person shall reside who shall have 
obtained such annual license and certificate, shall in 
each year make out a list, to be kept in his or their pos- 
session, containing the name and place of abode of every 
such person, and shall at all seasonable hours produce 
such list to any person making verbal application to in- 
spect the same, and shall be entitled to demand and 
receive for such inspection the sum of one shilling ; and 
the duties hereby granted as aforesaid in respect of cer- 
tificates to be obtained by persons licensed to deal in 
game shall be assessed, charged, raised, levied, and col- 
lected by the respective Commissioners and Justices of 
the Peace, and the several other officers acting in the 
execution of the several Acts relating to the assessed 
taxes, in the same manner, and under the same rules, 
regulations, and provisions (except as herein varied), as 
the duties on game certificates are by the said Acts 
directed to be assessed, charged, raised, levied, and col- 
lected ; and that the penalty of twenty pounds hereby 
imposed shall be sued for, recovered and levied, either 
in the district in which the offence shall be committed, 
or in the district in which the offender shall reside, and 
be applied, in the same manner, and under the same 
rules, regulations, and provisions, as penalties on persons 
doing acts without payment of the game duty, or neg- 
lecting to obtain game certificates, are by the said Acts 
directed to be sued for, recovered, levied, and applied, to 
all intents and purposes whatsoever as if such rules, 
regulations, and provisions were specially repeated and 
re-enacted in this Act. 

XXI. Provided always, and be it enacted, That per- 
sons being in partnership, and carrying on their business 
at one house, shop, or stall only, shall not be obliged by 
virtue of this Act to take out more than one license in 
any one year to authorise them to deal in game at such 
house, shop, or stall. 

XXII. And be it enacted, That if any person licensed 



THE GAME ACT, 1831 223 

by virtue of this Act to deal in game shall during 
the period of such license be convicted of any offence 
whatever against this Act, such license shall thereupon 
become null and void. 

XXIII. And be it enacted, That if any person shall 
kill or take any game, or use any dog, gun, net, or other 
engine or instrument for the purpose of searching for or 
killing or taking game, such person not being authorised 
so to do for want of a game certificate, he shall, on con- 
viction thereof before two Justices of the Peace, forfeit 
and pay for every such offence such sum of money, not 
exceeding five pounds, as to the said Justices shall seem 
meet, together with the costs of the conviction : Provided 
always, that no person so convicted shall by reason 
thereof be exempted from any penalty or liability under 
any statute or statutes relating to game certificates, but 
that the penalty imposed by this Act shall be deemed to 
be a cumulative penalty. 

XXIV. And be it enacted, That if any person not 
having the right of killing the game upon any land, nor 
having permission from the person having such right, 
shall wilfully take out of the nest or destroy in the nest 
upon such land the eggs of any bird of game, or of any 
swan, wild duck, teal or widgeon, or shall knowingly 
have in his house, shop, possession, or control any such 
eggs so taken, every such person shall, on conviction 
thereof before two Justices of the Peace, forfeit and pay 
for every egg so taken or destroyed, or so found in his 
house, shop, possession, or control, such sum of money, 
not exceeding five shillings, as to the said Justices shall 
seem meet, together with the costs of the conviction. 

XXV. AM be it enacted, That if any person not hav- 
ing obtained a game certificate (except such person be 
licensed to deal in game according to this Act) shall sell 
or offer for sale any game to any person whatsoever ; 
or if any person authorised to sell game under this Act 
by virtue of a game certificate shall sell or offer for sale 
any game to any person whatsoever, except a person 
licensed to deal in game according to this Act ; every 



224 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

such offender shall, on conviction of any such offence 
before two Justices of the Peace, forfeit and pay for every 
head of game so sold or offered for sale such sum of 
money, not exceeding two pounds, as to the said Justices 
shall seem meet, together with the costs of the convic- 
tion. 

XXVI. Provided always, and be it further enacted, 
That it shall be lawful for any innkeeper or tavern- 
keeper, without any such license for dealing in game as 
aforesaid, to sell game for consumption in his own house, 
such game having been procured from some person 
licensed to deal in game by virtue of this Act, and not 
otherwise. 

XXVII. And be it enacted, That if any person, not 
being licensed to deal in game according to this Act, 
shall buy any game from any person whatsoever, except 
from a person licensed to deal in game according to this 
Act, or bond fide from a person affixing to the outside of 
the front of his house, shop, or stall, a board purporting 
to be the board of a person licensed to deal in game, 
every such offender shall, on conviction thereof before 
two Justices of the Peace, forfeit and pay for every head 
of game so bought such sum of money, not exceeding 
five pounds, as to the said Justices shall seem meet, 
together with the costs of the conviction. 

XXVIII. And be it enacted, That if any person being 
licensed to deal in game according to this Act shall buy 
or obtain any game from any person not authorised to 
sell game for want of a game certificate, or for want of 
a license to deal in game ; or if any person, being licensed 
to deal in game according to this Act, shall sell or offer 
for sale any game at his house, shop or stall, without 
such board as aforesaid being affixed to some part of the 
outside of the front of such house, shop, or stall, at the 
time of such selling or offering for sale, or shall affix or 
cause to be affixed such board to more than one house, 
shop, or stall, or shall sell any game, at any place other 
than his house, shop, or stall where such board shall 
have been affixed ; or if any person not being licensed 



THE GAME ACT, 1831 225 

to deal in game according to this Act shall assume or 
pretend, by affixing such board as aforesaid, or by ex- 
hibiting any certificate, or by any other device or pre- 
tence, to be a person licensed to deal in game ; every 
such offender, being convicted thereof before two Justices 
of the Peace, shall forfeit and pay such sum of money, 
not exceeding ten pounds, as to the said Justices shall 
seem meet, together with the costs of the conviction. 

XXIX. Provided always, and be it enacted, That the 
buying and selling of game by any person or persons 
employed on the behalf of any licensed dealer in game, 
and acting in the usual course of his employment, and 
upon the premises where such dealing is carried on, 
shall be deemed to be a lawful buying and selling in 
every case where the same would have been lawful if 
transacted by such licensed dealer himself : Provided 
also, that nothing herein contained shall prevent any 
licensed dealer in game from selling any game which 
shall have been sent to him to be sold on account of 
any other licensed dealer in game. 

XXX. And whereas, after the commencement of this 
Act, game will become an article which may be legally 
bought and sold, and it is therefore just and reasonable 
to provide some more summary means than now by law 
exist for protecting the same from trespassers ; be it 
therefore enacted, That if any person whatsoever shall 
commit any trespass by entering or being, in the daytime, 
upon any land in search or pursuit of game, or wood- 
cocks, snipes, quails, landrails, or conies, such person 
shall, on conviction thereof before a Justice of the Peace, 
forfeit and pay such sum of money, not exceeding two 
pounds, as to the Justice shall seem meet, together with 
the costs of the conviction ; and that if any persons to 
the number of five or more together shall commit any 
trespass, by entering or being, in the daytime, upon 
any land in search or pursuit of game, or woodcocks, 
snipes, quails, landrails or conies, each of such persons 
shall, on conviction thereof before a Justice of the Peace, 
forfeit and pay such sum of money, not exceeding five 

15 



226 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

pounds, as to the said Justice shall seem meet, together 
with the costs of the conviction : Provided always, that 
any person charged with any such trespass shall be at 
liberty to prove, by way of defence, any matter which 
would have been a defence to an action at law for such 
trespass ; save and except that the leave and license of 
the occupier of the land so trespassed upon shall not be 
a sufficient defence in any case where the landlord, 
lessor or other person shall have the right of killing the 
game upon such land by virtue of any reservation or 
otherwise, or herein-before mentioned ; but such land- 
lord, lessor or other person shall, for the purpose of pro- 
secuting for each of the two offences herein last before 
mentioned, be deemed to be the legal occupier of such 
land, whenever the actual occupier thereof shall have 
given such leave or license ; and that the lord or steward 
of the Crown of any manor, lordship or royalty, or re- 
puted manor, lordship or royalty, shall be deemed to be 
the legal occupier of the land of the wastes or com- 
mons within such manor, lordship, or royalty, or reputed 
manor, lordship, or royalty. 

XXXI. And be it enacted, That where any person 
shall be found on any land, or upon any of His Majesty's 
forests, parks, chases or warrens, in the daytime, in 
search or pursuit of game, or woodcocks, snipes, quails, 
landrails, or conies, it shall be lawful for any person 
having the right of killing the game upon such land, by 
virtue of any reservation or otherwise as herein-before 
mentioned, or for the occupier of the land (whether 
there shall or shall not be any such right by reservation 
or otherwise), or for any gamekeeper or servant of either 
of them, or for any person authorised by either of them, 
or for the warden, ranger, verderer, forester, master, 
keeper, under-keeper, or other officer of such forest, 
park, chase, or warren, to require the person so found 
forthwith to quit the land whereon he shall be so found, 
and also to tell his Christian name, surname, and place 
of abode ; and in case such person shall, after being so 
required, offend by refusing to tell his real name or 



THE GAME ACT, 1831 227 

place of abode, or by giving such a general description 
of his place 'of abode as shall be illusory for the pur- 
pose of discovery, or by wilfully continuing or returning 
upon the land, it shall be lawful for the party so requir- 
ing as aforesaid, and also for any person acting by his 
order and in his aid, to apprehend such offender, and to 
convey him or cause him to be conveyed as soon as con- 
veniently may be before a Justice of the Peace ; and 
such offender (whether so apprehended or not), upon 
being convicted of any such offence before a Justice of 
the Peace, shall forfeit and pay such sum of money, not 
exceeding five pounds, as to the convicting Justice shall 
seem meet, together with the costs of the conviction : 
Provided always, that no person so apprehended shall, 
on any pretence whatsoever, be detained for a longer 
period than twelve hours from the time of his appre- 
hension until he shall be brought before some Justice of 
the Peace ; and that if he cannot, on account of the 
absence or distance of the residence of any such Justice 
of the Peace, or owing to any other reasonable cause, 
be brought before a Justice of the Peace within such 
twelve hours as aforesaid, then the person so appre- 
hended shall be discharged, but may nevertheless be 
proceeded against for his offence by summons or war- 
rant, according to the provisions hereinafter mentioned, 
as if no such apprehension had taken place. 

XXXII. And be it enacted, That where any persons, 
to the number of five or more together, shall be found 
on any land, or in any of His Majesty's forests, parks, 
chases or warrens, in the daytime, in search or pursuit 
of game, or woodcocks, snipes, quails, landrails, or conies, 
any of such persons being then and there armed with a 
gun, and such persons or any of them shall then and 
there, by violence, intimidation, or menace, prevent or 
endeavour to prevent any person authorised as herein- 
before mentioned from approaching such persons so 
found, or any of them, for the purpose of requiring 
them or any of them to quit the land whereon they 
shall be so found, or to tell their or his Christian name, 



228 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

surname, or place of abode respectively, as hereinbefore 
mentioned, every person so offending by such violence, 
intimidation or menace as aforesaid, and every person 
then and there aiding or abetting such offender, shall, 
upon being convicted thereof before two Justices of the 
Peace, forfeit and pay for every such offence such 
penalty, not exceeding five pounds, as to the convicting 
Justices shall seem meet, together with the costs of the 
conviction ; which said penalty shall be in addition to 
and independent of any other penalty to which any 
such person may be liable for any other offence against 
this Act. 

XXXIII. And be it enacted, That if any person 
whatsoever shall commit any trespass, by entering or 
being, in the daytime, upon any of His Majesty's 
forests, parks, chases, or warrens, in search or pursuit 
of game, without being first duly authorised so to do, 
such person shall, on conviction thereof before a Justice 
of the Peace, forfeit and pay such sum of money, not 
exceeding two pounds, as to the Justice shall seem meet, 
together with the costs of the conviction. 

XXXIV. And be it enacted, That for the purposes 
of this Act the daytime shall be deemed to commence 
at the beginning of the last hour before sunrise, and 
to conclude at the expiration of the first hour after 
sunset. 

XXXV. Provided always and be it enacted, That 
the aforesaid provisions against trespassers and persons 
found on any land shall not extend to any person hunt- 
ing or coursing upon any lands with hounds or grey- 
hounds, and being in fresh pursuit of any deer, hare, or 
fox already started upon any other land, nor to any 
person bond fide claiming and exercising any right or 
reputed right of free wan-en or free chase, nor to any 
gamekeeper lawfully appointed within the limits of any 
free warren or free chase, nor to any lord or any steward 
of the Crown of any manor, lordship or royalty, or re- 
puted manor, lordship or royalty, nor to any gamekeeper 
lawfully appointed by such lord or steward within the 



THE GAME ACT, 1831 229 

limits of such manor, lordship, or royalty, or reputed 
manor, lordship, or royalty. 

XXXVI. And be it enacted, That when any person 
shall be found by day or by night upon any land, or in 
any of His Majesty's forests, parks, chases, or warrens, 
in search or pursuit of game, and shall then and there 
have in his possession any game which shall appear to 
have been recently killed, it shall be lawful for any per- 
son having the right of killing the game upon such land, 
by virtue of any reservation or otherwise, as herein- 
before mentioned, or for the occupier of such land 
(whether there shall or shall not be any such right 
by reservation or otherwise), or for any gamekeeper or 
servant of either of them, or for any officer as aforesaid 
of such forest, park, chase, or warren, or for any person 
acting by the order and in aid of any of the said several 
persons, to demand from the person so found such game 
in his possession, and in case such person shall not im- 
mediately deliver up such game, to seize and take the 
same from him, for the use of the person entitled to the 
game upon such land, forest, park, chase or warren. 

XXXVII. And be it enacted, That every penalty and 
forfeiture for any offence against this Act (the applica- 
tion of which has not been already provided for) shall be 
paid to some one of the overseers of the poor, or to some 
other officer (as the convicting Justice or Justices may 
direct) of the parish, township or place in which the 
offence shall have been committed, to be by such over- 
seer or officer paid over to the use of the general rate 
of the county, riding, or division in which such parish, 
township, or place shall be situate, whether the same 
shall or shall not contribute to such general rate ; and 
no inhabitant of such county, riding, or division shall be 
deemed an incompetent witness in any proceeding under 
this Act by reason of the application of such penalty or 
forfeiture to the use of the said general rate as aforesaid. 

XXXVIII. And be it enacted, That the Justice or 
Justices of the Peace by whom any person shall be sum- 
marily convicted and adjudged to pay any sum of money 



230 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

for any offence against this Act, together with costs, 
may adjudge that such person shall pay the same either 
immediately or within such period as the said Justice or 
Justices shall think fit, and that in default of payment at 
the time appointed such person shall be imprisoned in 
the common jail or house of correction (with or with- 
out hard labour), as to the Justice or Justices shall seem 
meet, for any term not exceeding two calendar months, 
where the amount to be paid, exclusive of costs, shall 
not amount to five pounds, and for any term not exceed- 
ing three calendar months in any other case, the im- 
prisonment to cease in each of the cases aforesaid upon 
payment of the amount and costs. 

XXXIX. And be it enacted, That the Justice or Justices 
of the Peace (as the case may require) before whom any 
person shall be summarily convicted of any offence 
against this Act may cause the conviction to be drawn 
up according to the following form of words, or in any 
other form of words to the same or the like effect (that 
is to say) : 
" To wit 1 ~^ e ^ remembered, That on the day 

f of in the year of our Lord 

at in the county of [or riding, division, 

franchise, liberty, city, etc., as the case may be], A. 0. 
is convicted before me, J. P., one [or us, J. P. and 
J. J. P., two, as the case may require] of His Majesty's 
Justices of the Peace for the said county [or riding, etc.], 
for that he the said A. 0. did, on at 

kill [or take] game [or did use a dog, etc., for the 
purpose of killing game], he the said A. 0. not being 
authorised so to do for want of a game certificate, con- 
trary to the statute in such case made and provided [or 
did, here specify any other offence, and the time and 
place when and where the same was committed, as the 
case may be] ; and I [or we] do adjudge that the said 
A. 0. shall for the said offence forfeit the sum of 

[or we do adjudge that the said A. 0. shall for the 
said offence forfeit the sum of being after the 

rate of for every head of game so, etc., or for 



THE GAME ACT, 1831 231 

every egg so, etc.], and shall forthwith pay the said sum, 
together with the sum of for costs ; and that 

in default of immediate payment of the said sums, he 
the said A. 0. shall be imprisoned [or imprisoned and 
kept to hard labour] in the of for the 

space of [unless the said sums shall be sooner 

paid] ; and I [or we] order that the said sums shall be 
paid by the said A. 0. on or before the day of 

and in default of payment on or before that 
day I [or we] adjudge the said A. 0. to be imprisoned [or 
imprisoned and kept to hard labour] in the of 

for the space of [unless the said sums 

shall be sooner paid] ; and I [or we] direct that the said 
sum of (i.e., the penalty) shall be paid to 

being one of the overseers of the poor of, 
etc., to be by him applied according to the directions 
of the statute in such case made and provided ; and I 
[or we] order that the said sum of for costs 

shall be paid to (the complainant). Given 

under my hand [or our hands] the day and year first 
above mentioned. 

" J. P. 
" [or J. P. and J. J. P.] " 

XL. And be it enacted, That it shall be lawful for 
any Justice of the Peace to issue his summons requiring 
any person to appear before himself, or any one or two 
Justices of the Peace, as the case may require, for the 
purpose of giving evidence touching any offence against 
this Act : and if any person so summoned shall neglect 
or refuse to appear at the time and place appointed by 
such summons, and no reasonable excuse for his absence 
shall be proved before the Justice or Justices then and 
there present, or if any person appearing in obedience 
to such summons shall refuse to be examined on oath 
touching any such offence by the Justice or Justices then 
and there present, every person so offending shall, on 
conviction thereof before the said Justice or Justices, or 
any other Justice or Justices of the Peace, forfeit and pay 



232 A PKACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

such sum of money, not exceeding five pounds, as to the 
convicting Justice or Justices shall seem meet. 

XLI. And be it enacted, That the prosecution for 
every offence punishable upon summary conviction by 
virtue of this Act shall be commenced within three 
calendar months after the commission of the offence ; 
and that where any person shall be charged on the oath 
of a credible witness with any such offence before a 
Justice of the Peace, the Justice may summon the party 
charged to appear before himself, or any one or two 
Justices of the Peace, as the case may require, at a 
time and place to be named in such summons ; and if 
such party shall not appear accordingly, then (upon 
proof of the due service of the summons by delivering a 
copy thereof to the party, or by delivering such copy at 
the party's usual place of abode to some inmate thereat, 
and explaining the purport thereof to such inmate) the 
Justice or Justices may either proceed to hear and deter- 
mine the case in the absence of the party, or may issue 
his or their warrant for apprehending and bringing such 
party before him or them, as the case may be ; or the 
Justice before whom the charge shall be made may, if 
he shall have reason to suspect from information upon 
oath that the party is likely to abscond, issue such 
warrant in the first instance, without any previous 
summons. 

XLII. And be it declared and enacted, That it shall 
not be necessary, in any proceeding against any person 
under this Act, to negative by evidence any certificate, 
license, consent, authority, or other matter of exception 
or defence ; but that the party seeking to avail himself 
of any such certificate, license, consent, authority, or 
other matter of exception or defence, shall be bound to 
prove the same. 

XLIII. And be it enacted, That the Justice or Justices 
of the Peace before whom any person shall be convicted 
of any offence punishable upon summary conviction 
under this Act shall transmit every such conviction to 
the next court of general or quarter sessions of the Peace 



THE GAME ACT, 1831 233 

for the county, riding, division, liberty, franchise, city, 
or town wherein the offence shall have been committed, 
there to be kept by the^ proper officer among the records 
of the court. 

XLIV. And be it enacted, That any person who shall 
think himself aggrieved by any summary conviction in 
pursuance of this Act may appeal to the Justices at the 
next general or quarter sessions of the Peace to be 
holden, not less than twelve days after such conviction, 
for the county, riding, division, liberty, franchise, city, 
or town wherein the cause of complaint shall have 
arisen, provided that such person shall give to the com- 
plainant a notice in writing of such appeal, and of the 
cause and matter thereof, within three days after such 
conviction, and seven clear days at the least before such 
sessions, and shall also either remain in custody until 
the sessions, or within such three days enter into a 
recognisance, with a sufficient surety, before a Justice of 
the Peace, conditioned personally to appear at the said 
sessions, and to try such appeal, and to abide the judg- 
ment of the court thereupon, and to pay such costs as 
shall be by the court awarded ; and upon such notice 
being given, and such recognisance being entered into, 
the Justice before whom the same shall be entered into 
shall liberate such person, if in custody ; and the court 
at such sessions shall hear and determine the matter of 
the appeal, and shall make such order therein, with or 
without costs to either party, as to the court shall seem 
meet, and in case of the dismissal of the appeal, or the 
affirmance of the conviction, shall order and adjudge 
the offender to be dealt with and punished according to 
the conviction, and to pay such costs as shall be awarded, 
and shall, if necessary, issue process for enforcing such 
judgment. 

XLV. And be it enacted, That no summary convic- 
tion in pursuance of this Act, or adjudication made on 
appeal therefrom, shall be quashed for want of form, or 
be removed by certiorari or otherwise into any of His 
Majesty's superior courts of record ; and that no war- 



234 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

rant of commitment shall be held void by reason of any 
defect therein, provided it be therein alleged that it is 
founded on a conviction, and there be a good and valid 
conviction to sustain the same. 

XL VI Provided always, and be it enacted, That 
nothing in this Act contained shall prevent any person 
from proceeding by way of civil action to recover 
damages in respect of any trespass upon his land, 
whether committed in pursuit of game or otherwise, 
save and except that where any proceedings shall have 
been instituted under the provisions of this Act against 
any person for or in respect of any trespass, no action 
at law shall be maintainable for the same trespass by 
any person at whose instance or with whose concurrence 
or assent such proceedings shall have been instituted, 
but that such proceedings shall in such case be a bar to 
any such action, and may be given in evidence under 
the general issue. 

XL VII. And for the protection of persons acting in 
the execution of this Act, be it enacted, That all actions 
and prosecutions to be commenced against any person 
for anything done in pursuance of this Act shall be laid 
and tried in the county where the fact was committed, 
and shall be commenced within six calendar months 
after the fact committed, and not otherwise ; and 
notice in writing of such action, and of the cause 
thereof, shall be given to the defendant one calen- 
dar month at least before the commencement of the 
action ; and in any such action the defendant may plead 
the general issue, and give this Act and the special 
matter in evidence at any trial to be had thereupon ; 
and no plaintiff shall recover in any such action if tender 
of sufficient amends shall have been made before such 
action brought, or if a sufficient sum of money shall 
have been paid into court after such action brought, by 
or on behalf of the defendant. 

XL VIII. And be it enacted, That nothing in this 
Act contained shall extend to Scotland or Ireland. 



GROUND GAME ACT, 1880 235 

GBOUND GAME ACT, 1880. 
(43 & 44 Viet. c. 47.) 

An Act for the better protection of Occupiers of Land 
against injury to their Crops from Ground Game. (7th 
September, 1880.) 

Whereas it is expedient in the interest of good hus- 
bandry, and for the better security for the capital and 
labour invested by the occupiers of land in the cultiva- 
tion of the soil, that further provision should be made 
to enable such occupiers to protect their crops from 
injury and loss by ground game. 

Be it enacted by the Queen's most Excellent Majesty, 
by and with the advice and consent of the Lords spiritual 
and temporal, and Commons, in this present Parlia- 
ment assembled, and by the authority of the same, as 
follows : 

1. Every occupier of land shall have, as incident to 
and inseparable from his occupation of the land, the 
right to kill and take ground game thereon, concurrently 
with any other person who may be entitled to kill and 
take ground game on the same land : Provided that the 
right conferred on the occupier by this section shall be 
subject to the following limitations : 

(1) The occupier shall kill and take ground game only 
by himself or by persons duly authorised by him in 
writing : 

(a) The occupier himself and one other person 

authorised in writing by such occupier shall be 
the only persons entitled under this Act to kill 
ground game with firearms ; 

(b) No person shall be authorised by the occupier 

to kill or take ground game, except members 
of his household resident on the land in his 
occupation, persons in his ordinary service on 
such land, and any one other person bond fide 
employed by him for reward in the taking and 
destruction of ground game ; 

(c) Every person so authorised by the occupier, on 



236 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

demand by any person having a concurrent 
right to take and kill the ground game on the 
land or any person authorised b.y him in 
writing to make such demand, shall produce 
to the person so demanding the document by 
which he is authorised, and in default he shall 
not be deemed to be an authorised person. 

(2) A person shall not be deemed to be an occupier of 
land for the purposes of this Act by reason of his 
having a right of common over such lands ; or by 
reason of an occupation for the purpose of grazing 
or pasturage of sheep, cattle, or horses for not 
more than nine months. 

(3) In the case of moorlands, and unenclosed lands 
(not being arable lands), the occupier and the per- 
sons authorised by him shall exercise the rights con- 
ferred by this section only from the eleventh day of 
December in one year until the thirty-first day of 
March in the next year, both inclusive ; but this pro- 
vision shall not apply to detached portions of moor- 
lands or unenclosed lands adjoining arable lands, 
where such detached portions of moorlands or unen- 
closed lands are less than twenty-five acres in extent. 

2. Where the occupier of land is entitled otherwise 
than in pursuance of this Act to kill and take ground 
game thereon, if he shall give to any other person a 
title to kill and take such ground game, he shall never- 
theless retain and have, as incident to and inseparable 
from such occupation, the same right to kill and take 
ground game as is declared by section one of this Act. 
Save as aforesaid, but subject as in section six hereafter 
mentioned, the occupier may exercise any other or more 
extensive right which he may possess in respect of 
ground game or other game, in the same manner and 
to the same extent as if this Act had not passed. 

3. Every agreement, condition, or arrangement which 
purports to divest or alienate the right of the occupier 
as declared, given, and reserved to him by this Act, or 
which gives to such occupier any advantage in con- 



GROUND GAME ACT, 1880 237 

sideration of his forbearing to exercise such right, or 
imposes upon him any disadvantage in consequence of 
his exercising such right, shall be void. 

4. The occupier and the persons duly authorised by 
him as aforesaid shall not be required to obtain a license 
to kill game for the purpose of killing and taking ground 
game on land in the occupation of such occupier, and 
the occupier shall have the same power of selling any 
ground game so killed by him, or the persons authorised 
by him, as if he had a license to kill game : Provided 
that nothing in this Act contained shall exempt any 
person from the provisions of the Gun License Act, 1870. 

5. Where at the date of the passing of this Act the 
right to kill and take ground game on any land is vested 
by lease, contract of tenancy or other contract bond fide 
made for valuable consideration in some person other 
than the occupier, the occupier shall not be entitled 
under this Act, until the determination of that contract, 
to kill and take ground game on such land. And in 
Scotland when the right to kill and take ground game is 
vested by operation of law or otherwise in some person 
other than the occupier, the occupier shall not be en- 
titled by virtue of this Act to kill or take ground game 
during the currency of any lease or contract of tenancy 
under which he holds at the passing of this Act, or 
during the currency of any contract made bond fide for 
valuable consideration before the passing of this Act 
whereby any other person is entitled to take and kill 
ground game on the land. 

For the purposes of this Act, a tenancy from year 
to year, or a tenancy at will, shall be deemed to de- 
termine at the time when such tenancy would by law 
become determinable if notice or warning to determine 
the same were given at the date of the passing of this Act. 

Nothing in this Act shall affect any special right of 
killing or taking ground game to which any person 
other than the landlord, lessor, or occupier may have 
become entitled before the passing of this Act by virtue 
of any franchise, charter or Act of Parliament. 



238 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

6. No person having a right of killing ground game 
under this Act or otherwise shall use any firearms for 
the purpose of killing ground game between the expira- 
tion of the first hour after sunset and the commence- 
ment of the last hour before sunrise ; and no such person 
shall, for the purpose of killing ground game, employ 
spring traps except in rabbit holes, nor employ poison ; 
and any person acting in contravention of this section 
shall, on summary conviction, be liable to a penalty not 
exceeding 2. 

7. Where a person who is not in occupation of land 
has the sole right of killing game thereon (with the ex- 
ception of such right of killing and taking ground game 
as is by this Act conferred on the occupier as incident to 
and inseparable from his occupation), such person shall, 
for the purpose of any Act authorising the institution of 
legal proceedings by the owner of an exclusive right to 
game, have the same authority to institute such pro- 
ceedings as if he were such exclusiye owner, without 
prejudice nevertheless to the right of the occupier con- 
ferred by this Act. 

8. For the purposes of this Act : 

The words " ground game " mean hares and rabbits. 

9. A person acting in accordance with this Act shall 
not thereby be subject to any proceedings or penalties in 
pursuance of any law or statute. 

10. Nothing in this Act shall authorise the killing or 
taking of ground game on any days or seasons, or by 
any methods, prohibited by any Act of Parliament in 
force at the time of the passing of this Act. 

11. This Act may be cited for all purposes as the 
Ground Game Act, 1880. 



GEOUND GAME (AMENDMENT) ACT, 1906. 
(6 Edw. VII. c. 21.) 

An Acfc to amend the Ground Game Act, 1880. (4th 
August, 1906.) 



AGRICULTURAL HOLDINGS ACT, 1906 239 

Be it enacted by the King's most excellent Majesty, 
by and with the advice and consent of the Lords 
spiritual and temporal, and Commons, in this present 
Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the 
same, as follows : 

1. This Act may be cited as the Ground Game 
(Amendment) Act, 1906 ; and the expressions " occu- 
pier " and "ground game" as used in this Act shall 
have the same meaning as they have in the Ground 
Game Act, 1880. 

2. Notwithstanding anything in section 1, subsection 
(3), of the Ground Game Act, 1880, contained, the occu- 
pier of lands to which that subsection applies shall, 
without prejudice to his existing rights under that Act, 
be entitled, between the 1st day of September and the 
10th day of December, both inclusive, in any and every 
year, to exercise the right of killing and taking ground 
game by the said Act conferred otherwise than by the 
use of firearms. 

3. Section 3 of the Ground Game Act, 1880, shall not 
apply to prevent the occupier of lands to which section 
1, subsection (3), of that Act applies, and the owner of 
such lands or other persons having a right to take and 
kill game thereon from making and enforcing agree- 
ments for the joint exercise, or the exercise for their 
joint benefit, of the right to kill and take ground game 
between the 1st day of September and the 10th day of 
December, both inclusive, in any or every year. 

4. This Act shall come into operation on the 1st day 
of April, 1907. 

AGEICULTUEAL HOLDINGS ACT, 1906. 
(6 Edw. VII. c. 56.) 

An Act to amend the law relating to agricultural 
holdings. (21st December, 1906.) 

Be it enacted by the King's most excellent Majesty, 
by and with the advice and consent of the Lords 
spiritual and temporal, and Commons, in this present 



240 A PKACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the 
same, as follows : 

1. (1) Subsection (1) of section 1 of the Agricul- 
tural Holdings Act, 1900, shall be repealed, and for it 
substituted : 

Where a tenant has made on his holding any im- 
provement comprised in the First Schedule to 
this Act, he shall, subject as in the Agricultural 
Holdings (England) Act, 1883 (in this Act re- 
ferred to as "the principal Act"), and in this 
Act mentioned, be entitled at the determination 
of a tenancy on quitting his holding to obtain 
from the landlord, as compensation under the 
said Acts for the improvement, such sum as 
fairly represents the value of the improvement 
to an incoming tenant. 

(2) All questions which, under the Agricultural Hold- 
ings (England) Acts, 1883 to 1900, or the Agricultural 
Holdings (Scotland) Acts, 1883 to 1900, or this Act, or 
under the contract of tenancy, are referred to arbitra- 
tion, shall, whether the matter to which the arbitration 
relates arose before or after the passing of this Act, be 
determined, notwithstanding any agreement to the con- 
trary, by a single arbitrator, in accordance with the pro- 
visions set out in part i. of the second schedule to the 
Agricultural Holdings Act, 1900, and any sum awarded 
by such arbitrator to be paid shall be recoverable in 
manner provided by the Agricultural Holdings (Eng- 
land) Acts, 1883 to 1900, or the Agricultural Holdings 
(Scotland) Acts, 1883 to 1900, for the recovery of com- 
pensation. 

(3) The following rule shall be substituted for rule 
(10) in part i. of the second schedule to the Agricul- 
tural Holdings Act, 1900 : 

The arbitrator shall, on the application of either 
party, specify the amount awarded in respect of 
any particular improvement or any particular 
matter the subject of the award, and the award 
shall fix a day not sooner than one month or 



AGRICULTUEAL HOLDINGS ACT, 190G 241 

later than two months after the delivery of the 
award for the payment of the money awarded as 
compensation, costs, or otherwise, and shall be 
in such form as may be prescribed by the Board 
of Agriculture and Fisheries. 

2. (1) Where the tenant has sustained damage to 
his crops from game, the right to kill and take which 
is vested neither in him nor in any one claiming under 
him other than the landlord, and which the tenant has 
not permission in writing to kill, he shall be entitled to 
compensation from his landlord for such damage if it 
exceeds in amount the sum of one shilling per acre of 
the area over which the damage extends, and any 
agreement to the contrary, or in limitation of such 
compensation, shall be void. 

(2) The amount of compensation payable under this 
section shall, in default of agreement made after the 
damage has been suffered, be determined by arbitra- 
tion, but no compensation shall be recoverable under 
this section unless notice in writing is given to the 
landlord as soon as may be after the damage was first 
observed by the tenant and a reasonable opportunity is 
given to the landlord to inspect the damage 

(a) in the case of damage to a growing crop, before 

the crop is begun to be reaped, raised, or con- 
sumed ; and 

(b) in the case of damage to a crop reaped or 

raised before it is begun to be removed from 

the land 

and unless notice in writing of the claim, together with 
the particulars thereof, is given to the landlord within 
one month after the expiration of the calendar year, or 
such other period of twelve months as by agreement 
between the landlord and tenant may be substituted 
therefor, in respect of which the claim is made. 

(3) Where the landlord proves that, under a contract 
of tenancy made before the commencement of this Act, 
any compensation for damage by game is payable by 
him, or that in fixing the rent to be paid under such 

16 



242 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

contract allowance in respect of such damage to an 
agreed amount was expressly made, the arbitrator shall 
make such deduction from the compensation which 
would otherwise be payable under this section as may 
appear just. 

(4) Where the right to kill and take the game is 
vested in some person other than the landlord, the 
landlord shall be entitled to be indemnified by such 
other person against all claims for compensation under 
this section. 

For the purposes of this section the expression 
" game " means deer, pheasants, partridges, grouse, 
and black game. 

3. (1) Notwithstanding any custom of the country 
or the provisions of any contract of tenancy or agree- 
ment respecting the method of cropping of arable lands, 
or the disposal of crops, a tenant shall have full right to 
practise any system of cropping of the arable land on 
his holding and to dispose of the produce of his holding 
without incurring any penalty, forfeiture, or liability : 
Provided that he shall previously have made, or, as soon 
as may be, shall make, suitable and adequate provision 
to protect the holding from injury or deterioration, 
which provision shall in the case of disposal of the pro- 
duce of the holding consist in the return to the holding 
of the full equivalent rnanurial value to the holding of 
all crops sold off or removed from the holding in contra- 
vention of the custom, contract, or agreement : 

Provided that this subsection shall not apply 

(a) in the case of a tenancy from year to year, as 

respects the year before the tenant quits the 
holding or any period after he has given or re- 
ceived notice to quit which results in his quit- 
ting the holding ; or 

(b) in any other case, as respects the year before 

the expiration of the contract of tenancy. 
(2) If the tenant exercises his rights under this section 
in such a manner as to injure or deteriorate the holding, 
or to be likely to injure or deteriorate the holding, the 



AGRICULTURAL HOLDINGS ACT, 1906 243 

landlord shall without prejudice to any other remedy 
which may be open to him be entitled to recover 
damages in respect of such injury or deterioration at any 
time, and, should the case so require, to obtain an in- 
junction, or in Scotland an interdict, restraining the 
exercise of the rights under this section in that manner, 
and the amount of such damages may, in default of 
agreement, be determined by arbitration. 

(3) A tenant shall not be entitled to any compensa- 
tion in respect of improvements comprised in part iii. 
of the first schedule to the Agricultural Holdings Act, 
1900, which have been made for the purpose of making 
such provision to protect the holding from injury or de- 
terioration as is required by this section. 

(4) In this section the expression " arable land " shall 
not include land in grass, which by the terms of any 
contract of tenancy is to be retained in the same con- 
dition throughout the tenancy. 

4. Where the landlord, without good and sufficient 
cause, and for reasons inconsistent with good estate 
management, terminates a tenancy by notice to quit, or, 
after having been requested in writing, at least one year 
before the expiration of a tenancy, to grant a renewal 
thereof, refuses to do so, or where it has been proved 
that an increase of rent is demanded from the tenant, 
and that such increase was demanded by reason of an 
increase in the value of the holding due to improve- 
ments which have been executed by or at the cost of the 
tenant, and for which he has not, either directly or in- 
directly, received an equivalent from the landlord, and 
such demand results in the tenant quitting the holding, 
the tenant upon quitting the holding shall, in addition 
to the compensation (if any) to which he may be en- 
titled in respect of improvements, and notwithstanding 
any agreement to the contrary, be entitled to compensa- 
tion for the loss or expense directly attributable to his 
quitting the holding which the tenant may unavoidably 
incur upon or in connection with the sale or removal of 
his household goods, or his implements of husbandry, 

16* 



244 A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 

produce, or farm stock, on or used in connection with the 
holding. 

Provided that no compensation under this section 
shall be payable 

(a) unless the tenant has given to the landlord a 

reasonable opportunity of making a valuation 
of such goods, implements, produce, and stock 
as aforesaid ; or 

(b) unless the tenant has within two months after 

he has received notice to quit or a refusal to 
grant a renewal of the tenancy, as the case 
may be, given to the landlord notice in writing 
of his intention to claim compensation under 
this section ; or 

(c) where the tenant with whom a contract of 

tenancy was made has died within three 
months before the date of the notice to quit, 
or in the case of a lease for years before the 
refusal to grant a renewal ; or 

(d) if the claim for compensation is not made 

within three months after the time at which 

the tenant quits the holding. 

In the event of any difference arising as to any 
matter under this section the difference shall, in default 
of agreement, be settled by arbitration. 

5. Section 4 of the Market Gardeners' Compensa- 
tion Act, 1895, and section 4 of the Market Gar- 
deners' Compensation (Scotland) Act, 1897, shall apply 
to improvements executed before the dates of the com- 
mencement of those Acts respectively in like manner as 
the sections apply to improvements executed after those 
dates. 

6. The following improvements shall be included in 
part iii. of the first schedule to the Agricultural 
Holdings Act, 1900 : Eepairs to buildings, being build- 
ings necessary for the proper cultivation or working of 
the holding, other than repairs which the tenant is him- 
self under an obligation to execute : 

Provided that the tenant, before beginning to execute 



AGRICULTUKAL HOLDINGS ACT, 1906 245 

any such repairs, shall give to the landlord notice in 
writing of his intention, together with particulars of 
such repairs, and shall not execute the repairs unless 
the landlord fails to execute them within a reasonable 
time after receiving such notice. 

7. If at the commencement of any tenancy entered 
into after the commencement of this Act either party 
so requires, a record of the condition of the buildings, 
fences, gates, roads, drains, ditches, and cultivation of 
the holding shall be made within three months after the 
commencement of the tenancy by a person to be ap- 
pointed in default of agreement by the Board of Agri- 
culture and Fisheries, and in default of agreement the 
cost of making such record shall be borne by the land- 
lord and tenant in equal proportions. 

8. The enactments mentioned in the schedule to this 
Act are hereby repealed to the extent specified in the 
third column of that schedule. 

9. This Act shall come into operation on the 1st 
day of January, 1909. 

10. This Act may be cited as the Agricultural Hold- 
ings Act, 1906, and shall be read and construed and may 
be cited with the Agricultural Holdings (England) Acts, 
1883 to 1900, and the Agricultural Holdings (Scotland) 
Acts, 1883 to 1900. 



246 A PKACTICAL GUIDE TO THE GAME LAWS 



SCHEDULE. 



ENACTMENTS REPEALED. 



Session and 
Chapter. 



Short Title. 



Extent of Repeal. 



40 & 41 Viet, 
c. 28. 



63 & 64 Viet. 
c. 50. 



The Game Laws Amend- 
ment (Scotland) Act, 
1877. 

The Agricultural Hold- 
ings Act, 1900. 



The whole Act, except sections 
1, 10, and 11, and the defini- 
tion of sheriff in section 3. 

Subsection (1) of section 1. 

In section 2, the words " by 
arbitration in accordance with 
the provisions (if any) in that 
behalf in any agreement be- 
tween landlord and tenant, and 
in default of and subject to 
any such provisions"; the 
words " or arbitrators " ; the 
words " An arbitration shall, 
unless the parties otherwise 
agree, be before a single arbi- 
trator " ; the words " or um- 
pire " ; and the words " subject 
to any provision contained in 
any agreement between land- 
lord and tenant ". 

Second schedule, part ii. 



TABLE OF INDICTABLE OFFENCES 



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TABLE OF SUMMARY OFFENCES 



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INDEX. 



ACCESSORY under Poaching Preven- 
tion Act, 61. 

Actions for trespass in pursuit, 123. 

Agricultural Holdings Act, 1906, 93, 
239. 

Aiders and abetters, 124. 

Alleged aiding and abetting case,183. 
. unlawful possession of game, 
186. 

of eggs case, 189, 
194. 

Allen v. Thompson, 67. 

American quail, 97. 

Anderson v. Vicary, 91. 

" Animal," meaning of, in Wild 

Animals in Captivity Act, 111. 
Anomalies of the game laws, 132. 
Areas, Norfolk, 97. 
Arrest, 120. 
Auk, 97. 
Avocet, 97. 

BEARDED titmouse or reed pheasant, 

99. 

Bee-eater, 97. 
Bevan v. Hopkinson, 76. 
Birkbeck v. Paget, 159. 
Bittern, 97. 

little, and 'great bustard, 99. 
Boxie, 97. 

Burrows v. Gillingham, 51. 
Bustard, 99, 160. 

" CATCHING UP" times, 25. 
Chase, 3. 
Colin, 97. 

Coming from land (Poaching Pre- 
vention Act), 58. 
Committee, House of Lords, 5. 



Common lands, game on, 157. 
Consignments of game to market, 

29. 

Cooper v. Marshall, 157. 
Cornish chough, 97. 
Coulterneb, 97. 
Coursing with hounds, 49, 50. 
Craven v. Pridmore, 57. 
Crossbill, 99. 

Cruelty to animals, birds, etc., 110. 
Cuckoo, 97. 
Curlew, 97. 
Curtilage, 140. 

DAMAGE for overstocking, 158. 
Day poaching, 46. 
Dead game, 48. 
Deer, 169. 

Diary, Col. Peter Hawker, 7. 
Ditch, 56. 
Diver, 97. 

Dog, not instrument for taking game, 
132. 

using for taking game, 67. 
Dogs Act, 1906, 11. 
Dotterel, 97. 

Dunbird, 97. 
Dunlin, 97. 

EGGS, marking, 81. 

taking or destroying, etc., 76. 

unlawful possession of, case, 

183. 

Eider duck, 97. 
Estrays, 171. 
Exceptions from game, etc., licenses, 

17. 

to dog licenses, 11. 
Exemptions from gun licenses, 141. 



253 



254 



INDEX 



Exemption from licenses, 17. 
Extensive traffic in game eggs, 31. 

FAKBEB v. Nelson, 158. 

Fern owl, 97. 

Ferrets, right to seize, 156. 

Field on the extensive traffic in 

game eggs, 35. 
Firing gun on highway, 143. 
Forest, 3. 
Forfeiture of licenses on conviction, 

49. 

Fox, vermin, 143. 
Free warren, 3, 158. 
Fulmar, 97. 

GAME Act, 1831, 207. 

dealers' licenses, 72. 

denned, 18. 

farms and game farmers, 37. 

Guild, 23. 

laws, anomalies of, 132. 

protection societies, 22. 

reduction into possession, 135. 

selling without license, 70. 

tenant killing when game re- 

served, 84. 

unlawful possession of, case, 

186. 

when license required to kill 

rabbits, etc., 85. 
Gamekeepers and poachers, 143. 

license to kill game, 156. 
Gannet, 97. 

Goatsucker, 97. 

Godwit, 97. 

Goldfinch, 98. 

Great bustard, 99, 160. 

Grebe, 98. 

Greenshank, 98. 

Ground Game Act, 87, 235. 

Amendment Act, 1906, 238. 

Guillemot, 98. 

Gull, 98. 

Gun, firing on highway, 143. 

- licenses, exemptions, etc., 140. 

HARES, 50, 70. 

etc., in warren, taking by night, 

44. 

etc., in warren, taking by day- 

time, 75. 



Hebdon v. Hentley, 66. 
Highway, 59. 

firing gun on, 143. 
Holt Lowes case, 128. 
Hoopoe, 98. 

Hungarian partridges, 25. 
Hunter u. Clarke, 69. 

INDICTABLE offences, 43. 

JUSTICES' jurisdiction, ouster of, 127. 

justice, 125. 

KENYON v. Hart, 51. 

Killing game in close season, 65. 

game on Sunday or Christmas 

Day, 65. 
Kingfisher, 98. 
Kittiwake, 98. 

LANDRAIL, when license required to 

kill, 85. 
Land tax, 19. 
Lapwing, 98. 

Lease of sporting rights, 204. 
Licenses for guns, 140. 

to kill game, etc., 11. 
Live game, 48. 
Liversidge v. Whiteoak, 51. 
Lonsdale v. Rigg, 157. 
Loon (lark), 98. 

Lord Lindley on Dogs Act of 1906, 12. 

MALLARD, 98. 
Marking eggs, 81. 
Marrot, 98. 
Mens rea, 49. 
Merganser, 98. 
Murre, 98. 

NAME, giving false name, 49. 

who may request from tres- 
passer, 123. 

Night-hawk, 98. 

Night-jar, 98. 

Night poaching case, 176. 

indictable after two (previ- 
ous convictions), 43. 

summary, 85. 

three or more armed, 43. 

using violence, 43. 



INDEX 



255 



Nightingale, 98. 

Norfolk County, copy of Order under 

Wild Birds' Protection Act, 98. 
North country case, 126. 

OCCUPIERS under Ground Game Act, 

63, 88. 

Onus of proof, 64. 
Oriole, 98. 

Osbond v. Meadows, 48. 
Ouster of jurisdiction, 127. 
Overstocking, damages for, 158. 
Owl, 98. 
Ox bird, 98. 
Oyster catcher, 98. 

PARSON BOND, 9. 
Passey's case, 48. 

Penalties under Wild Birds' Protec- 
tion Act, 101. 
Petrel, 98. 
Pewit, 98. 
Phalarope, 98. 
Philpot v. Buglar, 51. 
Pigeons, 159. 
Plover, 98. 
Ploverspage, 98. 
Poachers and gamekeepers, 143. 

game found on, may be seized, 

119. 
Poaching Prevention Act (coming 

from land), 58. 
Pochard, 98. 

Pratt, E. B., letter from, 31. 
Public place, 59. 
Pudney v. Eccles, 73. 
Puffin, 98. 
Purre, 98. 

QUAILS, when game license required 
for, 85. 

BABBITS, property in dead, 134. 

taking in warren by night, 44. 
- when must have game license 

to kill, 85. 
Bazorbill, 98. 
Bedshank, 98. 
Beduction of game into possession, 

49, 134. 

Beeve or ruff, 98. 
Beg. v. Addis, 122. 



Beg. v. Ball, 122. 

v. Boe, 136. 

v. Townley, 136. 

v. Wesley, 122. 

Beports from members of game 
society, 26. 

Bequest for name of party trespass- 
ing, 123. 

Bex v. Lines, 45. 

Bogers v. Carter, 120. 

Boiler, 98. 

Boy v. Duke of Beaufort, 120. 

SANDERLING, 98. 

Sand-martin, 99. 

Sandpiper, 98. 

Saunders v. Pitfield, 62, 90. 

Scaring birds, 141. 

Schedule of indictable offences, 247. 

of summary offences, 248, 251. 

of wild birds (Acts and Orders), 
97-109. 

Scout, 98. 
Sealark, 98. 
Seamew, 98. 
Sea parrot, 98. 

swallow, 98. 
Secretary of Game Guild, 23. 
Secretaries of game societies, 22. 
Seizure of game, 49, 119. 
Selling game without license, 71. 
Shearwater, 98. 

Shelldrake, 98. 

Shoveller, 98. 

Skua, 98. 

Smew, 98. 

Smith v. Hunt, 63, 91. 

Snare, 66. 

Snipe, 98. 

when game license required 

for, 85. 

Solangoose, 98. 

Special case Holt Lowes, 128. 
Spicer v. Barnard, 52, 169. 
Spoonbill, 98. 
Sporting at unlawful seasons, 65. 

rights, assessment of, 18. 
lease of, 204. 

without certificate, 67. 
Spring traps and poison (Ground 

Game Act), 62. 



250 



INDEX 



Stamping instrument, 81. 

Stiff v. Billington, 55. 

Stint, 98. 

Stoats, 182. 

Stone curlew, 98. 

Stonehatch, 98. 

Street, 59. 

Suffolk, administrative county, Wild 

Birds' Order, 101. 
Summary offences, 46. 
Summer snipe, 98. 
Sunday, etc., taking game on, 66. 
Swans, 171. 

eggs, 77. 

" TAKING," meaning of, 66. 
Taking game with license, case as 
to, 179. 

partridges' eggs, case of, 180. 
Tarrock, 98. 

Taylor v. Jackson, 52. 

v. Newman, 160. 
Teal, 98. 

eggs of, 77. 

Tenant killing game when same re- 
served, 85. 

Tern, 98. 

Thickknee, 98. 

Traffic in game eggs, 31. 

Trespass in pursuit of game, etc., 46. 

Trespassers (five or more together) 
using violence in H.M. parks, 
57. 



Trespassers giving false names, etc., 

49. 
Tystey, 98. 

UNLAWFUL possession of eggs, 76. 

case, 183. 

game case, 186. 

Using dog, etc., for taking game, 67. 

VERMIN, fox, 143. 

WATKINS v. Major, 49. 
Warrens, 157. 
Whaup, 98. 
Whimbrel, 98. 
Widgeon, 98. 

eggs of, 77. 

Wild Animals in Captivity Act, 1900, 
112. 

birds' eggs, 96-97, 101. 
Protection Acts and Orders, 

94, 98-109. 

duck, 98. 

(close time extended), Suf- 
folk, 103. 

eggs, 77. 

Willock, 98. 
Woodcock, 98. 

when game license required to 
kill, 85. 

Woodpecker, 98. 
Wounding keeper, 172, 176. 
Wright v. Bamscot, 111. 



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