Tuesday, 16 November 2010

Game Holes

I've always been intrigued by the little game holes in Cotswold stone walls.  There are many in the stone walls around the village and their primary purpose was to allow grey partridge to travel from field to field.  Being a ground bird the partridge tend to walk in flocks, or coveys, as they feed and are well camouflaged in the grass, stubble or crop.  If they were forced to jump over the walls they would become easy prey.  The hole in the wall therefore allowed them safe passage from field to field. 

The grey partridge was once very abundant, but numbers declined to critical levels post WWII due to the use of pesticides, herbicides and the removal of hedgerows.  However, they are making a small comeback and some farmers are now encouraging them to thrive once more.


  1. nothing like seeing partridge out on the road, their little red feet bibbling along! beautiful and comical at the same time

  2. Yes, their lovely little birds! The ones with red legs are French partridge.

  3. I have known my husband to stop the car to shoo a game bird, frog, or even a rabbit, out of the road.

    I never knew what those little holes in dry stone walling were for, so now I know.

    Dry stone walling itself, is a source of great fascination to us. Such a skilled piece of engineering, that seems to last forever, if done well


  4. Yes, Yvonne, the work that went [and still goes] into dry stone walling is remarkable and it is amazing how long they last.

  5. I've never seen a partridge out on the road - (hmm, time to start making New Year's resolutions already?) - but adolescent pheasants frankly look more like dinosaurs than some of us might like.