Devon Portrait - Will Pratt, Under Keeper
PUBLISHED: 09:14 09 December 2011 | UPDATED: 20:25 20 February 2013
Meet Will Pratt, Under Keeper at Powderham estate and proud winner of the South West Grey Partridge Trophy.
Six years ago, Will Pratt single-handedly started a reintroduction programme of the English Partridge on the Powderham estate and his efforts have recently been rewarded with the South West Grey Partridge Trophy. The decline in game shooting after the World Wars and the industrialisation of farming has seen numbers decrease since 1913. Thanks to Will, Powderham estate now boasts its first wild brood for 20 years.
Will started by rearing 30 chicks under broody hens, allowing them to pair and breed in captivity during the following summer before being released as a tagged family covey, which now numbers 44. Luckily for the partridges, their numbers are still too low to be used for sport, so they will see through the shooting season quite happily. A true country man, Will has not let his project make him grow sentimental. Im still a keen game shooter, nothings ever going to change that!
Photograph by Mike Alsford, www.alsfordpictures.com