What is shotgun shooting?

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Clay pigeon shooting is the art of shooting at special flying targets, known as clay pigeons or clay targets, with a shotgun.

The terminology commonly used by clay shooters often relates to times past, when live pigeon competitions were held. Although such competitions were made illegal in 1921, a target is still called a ‘target’, a hit is referred to as a ‘hit’ and the machine which projects the targets is known as a ‘trap’.

Clay pigeon shooting is currently enjoyed by 9 to 90 year olds of either sex. It is a hobby that can provide great personal fulfilment, and may be enjoyed with just a few friends on a very informal basis, in a more organised fashion at a local gun club or shooting school, or at competition level from registered CPSA events to County, Regional, National and International competitions including the Commonwealth and Olympic Games.

Please click on the links below for further information about the equipment used:


These are purpose made, spring loaded, flywheel or rotational devices especially designed to launch the different types of targets in singles or pairs at distances of up to 100 metres. These …


Although virtually any type of gun up to 12 gauge is capable of being used to shoot clay pigeons, the wide variety of types and models on the market can be bewildering to the newcomer to the sport. …


Shotgun cartridges are readily available in gun shops and at shooting grounds, and within limitations as to the shot size and the weight of the shot load are suitable for clayshooting at CPSA …

the clay pigeon

The targets used for the sport are usually in the shape of an inverted saucer, made from a mixture of pitch and chalk designed to withstand being thrown from traps at very high speeds, but at the …