D0968: Unknown Yorkshire Wood Pigeon, Circa Late 1800s

Very nice wood pigeon decoy made by an unknown carver from England's Yorkshire area, circa late 1800s. It shares many characteristics with the carvings of Yorkshire's Robert Lange from the same time period, including white glass taxidermy eyes, applied raised wings and a similarly shaped body. More uniquely, the head is narrower than most and the tail flips up slightly at its tip. The original paint is nicely patinated and slightly muted in tone, showing moderate wear. In the field, it did forget to duck once with shot scars on the right wing and breast adding to its allure. The decoy retains its original bill. Stand included.

Price: $1075.00

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D0966: Early English Wood Pigeon Decoy, Circa 1900

Early English wood pigeon decoy by an unknown maker, circa late 1800s to early 1900s. A large decoy with only minor wear, measuring 15.5 inches from tip of tail to tip of bill, this glass-eyed carving retains its original bill and is in original paint with a deep brick-red breast and typical white neck patches and wing markings. It has deeply carved wing and shoulder outlines and raised wingtips. This is the first decoy I have seen by this maker although it was most likely produced for the turn of the century retail trade of gunsmiths and sporting goods stores, probably in the London market.

Price: $995.00

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D0962: Robert Lange Wood Pigeon Decoy, Circa 1890s

Very nice wood pigeon decoy by Robert Lange, Yorkshire, UK, circa 1890s. Lange's decoys were limited in production and are some of the finest early decoys the UK has to offer. This example is his slick-sided model with no wing or shoulder carving. Exhibiting an excellent patina, it is in strong original paint showing only minor wear with mottled breast, neatly scalloped neck patches and fluid but precisely applied wing markings. A solid-bodied decoy with high quality glass eyes, it measures 12" in length and is roughly 3" thick. There is a chip missing on the tail, and the bill is a professional replacement. Stand included.

Price: $895.00

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D0960: Exceptional Robert Lange English Wood Pigeon Decoy, Circa 1900

Exceptional English wood pigeon decoy by Robert Lange, Yorkshire, UK, circa late 1800s to early 1900s. These decoys were limited in production and are some of the finest early decoys the UK has to offer. This decoy is carved in Lange's finest style with extended split wing tips, deeply carved wings and shoulders and a full breast. Exhibiting an excellent patina, it is in excellent original paint showing only minor wear with mottled breast, neatly scalloped neck patches and fluid but precisely applied wing markings.. A solid-bodied decoy with high quality glass eyes, it measures 13" in length and is roughly 3.5" thick. Retaining its original bill, it has been lightly hit by shot and has a tight crack it its tail. One would be hard pressed to find a finer example by this important maker. Stand included.

Price: $1495.00

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D0946: Trulock & Harriss Wood Pigeon Decoy, Circa 1880s

Unusually clean example of a classic wood pigeon decoy from the famous gunsmith firm of Trulock & Harriss, Suffolk, England, circa 1880s. Their decoys are considered to be the premier examples of English wood pigeons known. This example is finely crafted with overall feather carving, checkered breast and throat feathers, deeply carved edging on the wing coverts, carved and raised primaries, a fluted tail, glass eyes and a carved cere at the base of the wooden bill. The softly-blended paint with an excellent patina is strong and original other than some touch up paint on the bill which is also original but has been broken off at the face and skillfully reattached. This is the first and only T&H pigeon I've seen with either a carved cere or wooden bill. The decoy is also somewhat shorter and more slender than their more common examples, measuring 13 1/2" from tip of tail to tip of bill. Nonetheless, it is by the same carver as the majority of the T&H decoys. It is my assumption that it is a very early model whose wooden bill turned out to be too fragile, resulting in the use of the poured lead bills seen in their subsequent decoys. In general, it is more refined in form than most od their pigeons. Perhaps the term, "svelte", is most appropriate. Although who carved these decoys for Trulock and Harriss is not known, a strong argument can be made that the birds were made by the same craftsmen tasked with making the gunstocks for the gunsmith's primary product, perhaps on a seasonal basis or as a filler during slack periods.

Price: $2195.00

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D0935: Early Feeding Irish Wood Pigeon Decoy, Circa 1890s

Early and folky feeding wood pigeon decoy by an unknown carver, found in and and possibly from the Belfast area of Northern Ireland, circa 1890s. As often seen in early wood pigeon decoys, the decoy is laminated with attached wings and a 1" thick addition to the belly of the bird. Except for touchup to the face and bill which may be an excellent professional replacement, it is in original paint showing an aged patina with white feathering along the edges of the wings, a white collar at the neck and a white ring at the base of the bill. Measuring 14" in length, it has tack eyes and an attached iron swivel stand. A line attached to the small staple set under the bill was used to give a bobbing or feeding motion to the tail-heavy decoy. This decoy is a rigmate to D0935, listed separately. The two (rigmate not included) can be seen together in the last photo.

Price: $850.00

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D0931: Early George G. Bussey Co. Wood Pigeon Decoy By Mr. Z

Very fine solid-bodied English wood pigeon decoy with yellow glass eyes and its original inset metal bill. Circa late 1st quarter of the 20th century, it is a very early example from the Geo. G. Bussey Co., one of London’s premier sporting goods dealers, The company was founded by George Gibson Bussey (1829-1889) around 1860 and remained in business in London's Peckham district until the late 1940s. Recent research (see "What's In A Name", Hunting & Fishing Collectibles Magazine, Nov-Dec 2019, Pgs 40-46) indicates that these decoys were made for Bussey by an unknown Yorkshire carver I've dubbed "Mr. Z". This decoy has deeply carved shoulders and wing outlines with a carved and fluted tail. Measuring 15" in length and 4 1/2" across the shoulders, it is in excellent original paint, done in he species' breeding plumage. As was the case with many early pigeon decoys, the body was made of multiple pieces. In this case, the bottom of the breast is a 1" thick lamination. Stand included.

Price: $995.00

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Wood Pigeon Decoy Article: English Wood Pigeon Decoys 101, A Primer

Viewable here at no charge. An introductory article I have written on English wood pigeon decoys, published in the March-April 2015 issue of Hunting and Fishing Collectibles Magazine. If you would like to subscribe to or purchase a copy of the magazine itself, please contact Stan Van Etten, Publisher, at HFCollectibles.com. The article is posted as written; however further research has resulted in some changes in the identification of several carvers. Two later articles on wood pigeon decoys are also posted on my (this) website, each containing current identifications and information.

Price: $0.01

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