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ADB
July 15, 2009, 05:35 PM
I've been using my 12 gauge loaded with #2 steel shot to remove any woodchucks that have ventured too close to the house this year. They've been undermining the garage, and I do NOT want to be dealing with house damage because the marmots are breeding out of control. I was wondering though, what do people consider to be an appropriate round for dealing with a woodchuck, and what would be overkill? My local gun shop owner made reference to using my .308 for woodchucks, which struck me as kind of like bear hunting with an Abrams tank cannon: ridiculously overpowered for the job. My 12 gauge seems to be doing a good job taking them out, one shot, without doing excessive amounts of damage. (No bits left on the lawn, for instance.) But I was wondering, what would more experienced varminters usually recommend?

beezaur
July 15, 2009, 06:11 PM
Well, if you're not going to eat it or save the pelt, I think "overkill" is defined by things like ricochet and spraying the side of your house with . . . parts.

Better than a slow death.

Scott

Brian Pfleuger
July 15, 2009, 06:18 PM
I would say that a single projectile larger than, roughly, a 243 is pretty excessive.

A 12ga with some form of birdshot may not be "overkill" but I'd personally use a 22 or something, unless I had a good reason not to.

I hunt them in rural areas all the time using a 204 ruger. I love the sight of pink mist in my crosshairs in the morning.:D

.284
July 15, 2009, 06:35 PM
Ditto Beezaur. If you are taking 400 yd shots in the middle of some field, than by all means let's debate caliber, loads, spotting scopes, and such. I think the fact that you are in close proximity to your house would have me leaning towards safety. I recommend that you stay with your 12 guage and keep in mind what's around your target. You don't want shot bouncing back at you. Also, lead shot will do just fine and is a lot cheaper than steel.

knight0334
July 15, 2009, 06:52 PM
Some say that my using a 45-120 stoked to pushing 250-325gr slugs to 2700-3000fps a bit of overkill. lol

Daryl
July 15, 2009, 07:00 PM
Anything bigger than a .22 LR is probably "overkill" at close range.

But, overkill is effective, too. Mostly you want to consider the environment around your house. If you have close neighbors, then you'll need to consider that.

;)

Daryl

cornbush
July 15, 2009, 07:23 PM
Sounds like your doing pretty good already. That said, I don't think you can have too much gun on varmints you're not saving the pelt from. It helps them decompose faster if they get broken into smaller peices.:D:eek:

SwampYankee
July 15, 2009, 07:47 PM
Hollowpoint 22LR should do the trick at under 50 yards. Although, some of those chucks can be as big as a dog. A .223 might be more appropriate in that case.

Brian Pfleuger
July 15, 2009, 08:15 PM
Hollowpoint 22LR should do the trick at under 50 yards.

Not to be nit-picky, but I hunted woodchucks with nothing BUT a 22 for better than 20 years, the venerable 22 is good to 90+, if you do your part.

Buzzcook
July 15, 2009, 09:04 PM
A .308 loaded with light bullets are used for varmints all the time. iirc there is a very light sabot.

Doodlebugger45
July 15, 2009, 09:58 PM
LOL :D

No such thing as overkill on chucks. Not likely you're gonna eat them. The 12 gauge sounds right for your situation. I see them quite a bit bouncing through the mountains. For me, it's whatever gun happens to be sitting on the seat at the time. My 22 lr pistol does wonders on them out to 70 yards or so, then bullet drop makes it kind of hard to guess the hold. But my 480 Ruger gets it done too. If my .243 happens to be sitting on the seat, then it's a dead chuck out to 350 yards most every time. But if I happen to have my 45-70 laying there, then I won't pass up a shot either at whatever distance I can see.

hogdogs
July 15, 2009, 10:01 PM
Double naught spies use double naught buck if over penetration is an issue... Otherwise the .30-06 or similar would likely do okay...:D:eek:
Brent

ADB
July 15, 2009, 10:12 PM
The main reason I've been using the 12 gauge is twofold: ricochets, as mentioned (since these are REALLY close to my house) and I wanted to insure a clean, fast kill. I could use the .22, but given the size (these are big freakin' woodchucks) I didn't want to risk a wounded animal getting away from me down the nearby hole.

My .308 is right out ever since I've seen one of it's bullets smash through three inches of concrete without slowing down. No way I'm firing that thing at any target within 100 feet of my house. :D

I exclusively use steel shot these days for environmental reasons--don't want to be pumping lead into my lawn. And even if I didn't care, I take these things out and dump them where the coyotes and foxes will eat them. (Seems to keep them away from the chickens.)

Yellowfin
July 15, 2009, 10:59 PM
.223 or 5.45x39, really good if you can put a can on it as to not disturb the neighbors.

tmd11111
July 15, 2009, 11:19 PM
Wait a minute. You think a .308 is over kill but a 12 gage with #2 steel shot isn't. Man you must have some BIG woodchucks.
:rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes:


If their that close to the house and your worried about ricochets then I would consider .22 shorts or better yet an air rifle.

freakshow10mm
July 15, 2009, 11:43 PM
Overkill is when you miss high and hit the woodchuck standing on his shoulders.:D

Daryl
July 16, 2009, 08:32 AM
My .308 is right out ever since I've seen one of it's bullets smash through three inches of concrete without slowing down.

It slowed down. You can trust me on that.

:D

Daryl

flyguyskt
July 16, 2009, 09:58 AM
a 410 with 6 shot would be just right and pretty safe. or buy a good pellet gun!

cheff
July 16, 2009, 10:07 AM
I love the sight of pink mist in my crosshairs in the morning.


:D

Now that brought a smile to my face. It is one of my favorite sights :eek:

pilothunter
July 16, 2009, 10:34 AM
Use your .308 with these:

http://www.wisconsincartridge.com/productcart/pc/viewPrd.asp?idcategory=44&idproduct=92

Turns it into a .22-.250 :D

Rampant_Colt
July 16, 2009, 10:50 AM
Agreed, no such thing as overkill on 'chucks!

We've hunted the destructive little critters with everything ranging from .22, .380 ACP, AK, AR, SKS, 10 gauge, .340 Weatherby Mag [LoL], 12 gauge loaded with slugs, 000, 00, #4 buckshot, etc..

Anytime we enter the property, we stealthfully approach the end of the creek where their 'roost' is, and hunt 'em out.

My AK stoked with thirty 124gr JHP Wolf Military Classic make a real mess out 'em! :cool:

Never nailed one with the .340...LoL

wyobohunter
July 16, 2009, 11:05 AM
Go find the woodchuck home base and turn the war around. If they're migrating in from some large field then the real fun begins. No such thing as overkill if you aren't going to use the critter for food or hide. I'd use my .338 RUM:eek: just for kicks. Hell, I shoot paper with it so why not make it more interesting. In other words, after safety concerns are dealt with of course, the only thing that makes it overkill is the limits of your wallet.

ADB
July 16, 2009, 07:55 PM
Wait a minute. You think a .308 is over kill but a 12 gage with #2 steel shot isn't. Man you must have some BIG woodchucks.

20 pounders. I've owned smaller dogs.

The 308 is mostly overkill as far as penetration--total energy works, but I like it spread around a little more. I'd use the .308 if I had to kill a woodchuck at, say, 800 meters or so. :p It pays not to underestimate that gun.

Go find the woodchuck home base and turn the war around. If they're migrating in from some large field then the real fun begins. No such thing as overkill if you aren't going to use the critter for food or hide. I'd use my .338 RUM just for kicks. Hell, I shoot paper with it so why not make it more interesting. In other words, after safety concerns are dealt with of course, the only thing that makes it overkill is the limits of your wallet.

Heh. The little rodents are endemic around here: they've got me surrounded. I don't mind when they live off in the brush and so forth--they're actually kind of cute munching around at the edges of the lawn. Getting up close to the house, though, is a WHOLE different story. I've been thinking about taking out some smoke bombs (leftover fireworks from a couple Independence Days ago) and trying to reduce the population a bit faster than waiting for them to present themselves, but I haven't found the time yet.

I had a reminder today why I've been using the 12 ga. Yesterday I had another woodchuck move into the hole near the house. Since somebody was napping on the other side of the house, I grabbed the .22 to shoot it.

Unfortunately, the round wasn't powerful enough--I didn't even think I'd hit it--and the critter got back down the hole. I found it today lying just outside it, dead. With the 12ga it was always instantaneous, one shot. I don't know how long this one took to die, but I definitely don't feel good about this shoot compared to the previous ones.

impalacustom
July 17, 2009, 03:12 AM
A 17 Remington with a 20gr Vmax won't exit that groundhog and it will kill them from 0-300yds no problems. Personally to me anything more than a 20 caliber is overkill for groundhogs, prarie dogs, coyotes, fox and a few other small things.

publius
July 17, 2009, 08:55 AM
17HMR or 22mag would be perfect. Try some velocitors in your .22.

johnwilliamson062
July 17, 2009, 09:36 AM
Overkill=collateral damage.
No collateral damage no overkill

Rampant_Colt
July 17, 2009, 09:40 AM
A full-choked 12ga stoked with #5 birdshot and larger is optimum for the OP's needs.
Those tiny pellets won't create a lot of collateral damage in the event of a missed shot. Try for a headshot

Number 4 buckshot is what i prefer to use in the shotgun, 'cause only one pellet may hit the critter, yet still be lethal.

wyobohunter
July 17, 2009, 10:39 AM
Maybe some sort of a miniature Hogdogs dog could be a big help, you might even call it a groundhogsdog... Just sayin'. Of course, this dog would have to be allowed to "re-bite" :D
If I lived close I'd bring over my little Rottwieler-lab mix. She's a sweethart to people but is hell on little varmint critters if allowed to be. Last year she ran down a Mink and shook it in half, two days later she beat up a Yote and took his Moose bone away. Now that we live in town she's learning manners, but man she'd tear into some chucks.

arizona hunter
July 17, 2009, 11:58 AM
Use what you have. If you don't save the pelts, then dead is dead.

HAMMER1DOWN
July 17, 2009, 12:11 PM
Use a Ka-Bar fighting knife, i did look at the reults....
49690
Or you can use a good ole AR-15 like me and my buddy...
49688
P.S. if you want to hear the story on how i knifed a rockchuck, JUST ASK!!!
That day me and my buddy shot 15 total plus 1 that i stabbed and also got us some gophers.

The bullets i used were 55gr. Nosler ballistic tip varmints bullet they did one helluva job on them rockchucks as you can see by the picture.

Zilmo
July 17, 2009, 02:06 PM
Anything bigger than a slingshot is overkill.

T. O'Heir
July 18, 2009, 01:45 AM
ADB, ground hog hunting with your deer load is fabulous practice for deer season, as long as using the calibre is legal where you are. There's no such thing as 'overkill'. Head or solid body shots with a .22 LR HP will do though.
Not so much for winter coyote/fox hunting. Commercial(not the same thing as a milsurp ball bullet), .22 or 6mm FMJ's for winter coyote/fox hide hunting. Hide hunting is what commercial FMJ's are for.
Ground hog hides aren't worth saving. Very thin fur/hair and thin skin.
"...20 pounders..." No such thing as a 20 lb ground hog. They don't get that big, even in the most lush, city, clover field.

impalacustom
July 18, 2009, 03:53 AM
Here is a 28 pound Pennsylvania pig taken with a 17 Hornet and the others were taken with a 17FB, the far left one is 32 pounds and from Montana. These are some people I know who hunt them and they all were using the 20gr Vmax.
Rockchucks, whistlepig, groundhog, marmot, they are all the same and do get big sometimes.

NickySantoro
July 18, 2009, 06:47 AM
I have the same problem with chucks and porcupines at the cabin. 12 gauge with lead #2 works fine.

schutzen
July 18, 2009, 07:53 AM
Overkill is not the question you need to be asking. What is the environment you are shooting in? Rural with no houses for several miles, rural with houses with in a mile, suburban with houses 2-300 feet apart or urban with houses less than 100 feet part? Choose your firearm to suit your environment and then get enough power for a clean kill. Squirrels are destructive rodent here. I kill them around my buildings with a .22LR, but my city dwelling brother uses a pellet rifle to kill then around his garage. Both are effective and both are safe in their environment. If other houses are close, a 12 ga is great. If other houses are not close, a light caliber rifle will extend your range. I use a .223 on groung hogs.

Dragon55
July 18, 2009, 07:54 AM
(from Wiki)
The groundhog is the largest sciurid in its geographical range, typically measuring 40 to 65 cm (17 to 26 in) long (including a 15 cm tail) and weighing 2 to 4 kg (4.5 to 9 pounds).

In areas with fewer natural predators and large quantities of alfalfa, groundhogs can grow to 80 cm (32 in) and 14 kg (30 lb).

Especially that sow that has a den under a huge rock under a big oak 15 yards from my dern garden!!!! Arrrggghh!!!

I sit with my scoped .22 but she won't show :mad::mad::mad:

She also has a path worn under the fence going to my neighbors to steal goat chow.

shurshot
July 18, 2009, 08:02 AM
I have shot WC's at 150 yards w/my scoped .270, at 40 yards w/shotguns, 20 yards w/a recurve bow and at 25 yards w/my Sheridan .20 pump up airgun and .22 pistols. Within range, as long as a vital spot is hit, almost anything will work.

To hell with the gun dealer; use what YOU are comfortable with.
I have found most (but not all), gun dealers (in Maine) to be BS artists out to make as much $$$ as possible, and they don't hesitate to lie like a pirate. Most don't get outside much, they just try to lie to impress new shooters and to make themselves feel like a bigshot.

Once in a while you run accross a decent person who is honest and expects to make a fair profit, but not often. I have to drive north of Augusta to find anyone (I'm talking small gun shops), worth doing trading with.

wild willy
July 20, 2009, 06:50 PM
I've been hunting groundhogs for over forty years getting between 30 and 100 per year Ive weighed some of the largest and the biggest where around 15 or 16 lbs not saying in other areas they don't get bigger. But that hog in the first picture don't weight 28 lbs anybody who has killed very many can tell that. I don't know if you got your pictures mixed up or got bad scales

RDNCKINIT
July 21, 2009, 07:39 PM
the 17HMR is a perfect round for this situation, its got the long distance and plenty enough power for any varmint . i use the same caliber to hunt bobcat and coons. a nice varmint scope,24 power magnifacation makes it even sweeter:)

LanceOregon
July 28, 2009, 10:16 PM
At close range a 17 HMR could handle this, as long as bullet placement was good.

Here is a chuck that I hit at a range of just over 60 yards, with my 17 HMR. I hit him square in his chest as he was standing up just outside the entrance to his den. He dropped where I hit him, and then slid down a little.

To be honest, I was worried when I took the shot that the 17MHR would not drop him, and he would make it back down his hole. I would not use the 17 HMR on chucks at long ranges, though.

http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s272/lanceJOregon/hunting/Chuck17hmr2b.jpg


The 17 Remington Fireball would be a better all around round for chucks. However, it is sort of overkill for hunting squirrels. Here is an example of what it will do to a large squirrel:

http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s272/lanceJOregon/hunting/machIV_online.jpg


You could use it for squirrels, but I would recommend handloading it to much lower velocities.


The .223 Remington is real popular for Chuck hunting. However, a hot load with Hornady VMAX bullets can end up being overkill at shorter ranges. I shot this one at just over 100 yards with a .223 loaded with the 50 gr Hornady VMAX:

http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s272/lanceJOregon/hunting/splat1close.jpg


The Chuck was almost cut in two, and was completely ripped open.

So there certainly is no need at all to consider rounds like the .270 Winchester or .308 Winchester. I can only imagine how a chuck would look like after being hit by one of them. I suppose one could use them to practice your shooting during varmint hunting to prepare yourself for deer season. But there certainly is no need at all to go that big in caliber.


.

LanceOregon
July 28, 2009, 10:20 PM
Overkill=collateral damage.

No collateral damage no overkill

So you are OK with blood and guts being sprayed into the air??

It is quite a sight to see in your scope. However, the heavier recoiling calibers tend to make that impossible to do.

-

Brian Pfleuger
July 28, 2009, 10:31 PM
I would not use the 17 HMR on chucks at long ranges, though.

I have used the 17HMR on woodchucks up to just over 200 yards. To be sure, it's not a "shoot whatever part you see" gun but it's entirely capable of quick, easy, clean kills out to 200, farther without wind. The HMR is badly effected by wind at long ranges.

hogdogs
July 28, 2009, 10:36 PM
So you are OK with blood and guts being sprayed into the air??
As long as it is bullet meets varmint not deer meets grill and bumper induced.:eek:
Brent

Skan21
July 28, 2009, 10:37 PM
My uncle has a lot of land, so he used to use his .444 marlin. There wasn't really much left afterward though......

wyobohunter
July 29, 2009, 03:43 AM
So you are OK with blood and guts being sprayed into the air??


I'm more than o.k. with it, I love it! We aren't talking about food critters here. I'll shoot a varmint like this with any gun I own because it's better than shooting at paper.

As an earlier poster said, collateral damage = overkill.

Old Grump
July 29, 2009, 10:29 AM
Neighbor boy uses 22 rifle or 243 depending on what he wants to shoot that day, I use a 22 pistol or a 20 gauge with #6 shot. Dead is dead as long as you aren't endangering livestock or property, shoot what you are comfortable with. 416 Rigby should be quite a show, no clean up afterwards, just a pink mist slowly dissipating in the breeze. :D

sc928porsche
August 8, 2009, 11:59 PM
I have becoming quite fond of my 135gr matchkings over 74gr of IMR4350 in my 300wm. Guess you would definately rate it overkill, but it works so well.

ken22250
August 9, 2009, 07:50 PM
i have killed them with a .340 wby mag, thats overkill, its very funny, but its also very expensive overkill.
ken

Sensai
August 12, 2009, 11:28 AM
I've shot them with 22LR, 22WMR, 204,243 270 and 30-06 but my favorite is the 17HMR. With the varmint bullets it's enough for clean kills as far out as I can consistently hit. I don't normally shoot at any living creature any further out than I can routinely group my shots within an inch and a half. I have to agree, though, that if the 12 guage is doing the job for you there's no real need to change. My 2 cents worth, Gary

Magi
August 12, 2009, 12:38 PM
This might be considered "overkill" in certain company...

http://www.defensetech.org/images/B61-11.jpg

B61-11

SAIGAFISH
August 12, 2009, 12:50 PM
45/70 would probly overkill.

gsmith3195
August 12, 2009, 01:29 PM
The main reason I've been using the 12 gauge is twofold: ricochets, as mentioned (since these are REALLY close to my house)

if its the richochets your worried about, a plastic tip .17HMR is perfect due to

it dissintegrating on impact, nothing to bounce back.:D

Doodlebugger45
August 12, 2009, 04:32 PM
For the last 2-3 weeks I've been doing my rock chuck shooting a little bit different than I used to. It used to be that I would shoot at them with a .243. But that got fairly predictable. They aren't as hard to hit as a prairie dog, because they are bigger. And they are easier to hit than a coyote because the coyotes are usually trotting along at a decent gait. And besides, I don't hate rock chucks like I do prairie dogs and coyotes, in fact I think the little buggers are kind of entertaining.

So, lately, when I'm driving around this one spot where I know I will see some rock chucks, instead of pulling out the .243, I've been pulling out my .45 Colt. I can usually get to about 100 yards without spooking them. The first shot is typically 2-3' off, but typically the chuck will stand still for the first shot. He's probably laughing at me. Generally the 2nd shot is a whole lot closer and the chuck dives for cover if I don't hit it. So far I've only hit one of them, but it makes it a lot more fun. Just to think about using a .45 Colt as a long range varmint gun seems so preposterous that it's funny. It sure gives the chucks a better chance than the .243 does, so it prolongs my fun shooting.

woodchuckassassin
July 12, 2010, 05:49 PM
overkillhing lol no such thing as long as your being smart about your shots using your head and knowing whats beyond the chuck. I was using my savage 300 rem short action ultra mag for the longest time with 110 gr. HPBT. extremely effective and the red mist is amazing. I shoot a lot of chucks seeing how all my family and friends are dairy farmers. I often have ppl calling me telling asking me to take care of the furry lil creatures that are ruining their fields and equipment. I guess you could truely say I'm addicted to the sport of chuck hunting. I have set a personal goal of 200 for this season and i'm set up right now to surpass that. I'm at 120 right now and I harvested 178 last year. I have now put the 300 in the gun safe and am using a H&R ultra varment rifle chambered in .204 ruger with the skeletized stock and a barska 6-24x60 scope. The gun is amazing the range is incredible and the lack of recoil allows you to stay on target you you can see the carnage left behind from the 32 gr. v-max bullet and the 28.6 gr. of accurate 2520 powder. if anyones looking for the ultimate varment rifle i would highly suggest a 204 ruger.

briandg
July 12, 2010, 11:41 PM
There is no such thing as overkill. it is either dead, or not dead. If you think you may be using an overly efficient weapon, maybe you are, but that's a matter of wasting energy doing something that could be done with less expense and recoil maybe.

I once actually read an article about african hunting, and the guy who wrote it referred to the .460 remington as being too powerful, and used the term "overkill" referring to rhino and buffalo.

OMG. I could feel my iq slipping away. by the time I threw the magazine out, I had lost all capacity to read and speak.

DanThaMan1776
July 13, 2010, 12:06 PM
^^ Agreed. I just picked up a 22 Mag for pests. The balance and weight of a levergun make it nice to carry around, and I don't feel undergunned with the 22 mag.

Brian Pfleuger
July 13, 2010, 12:14 PM
Nothing is overkill except that which is not safe.

I like "explosive" bullets and low recoil.... 204Ruger, 22-250... that sort of thing.

That said, if I could shoot one with a 50BMG round that was frangible so I didn't have to worry about killing someone 2 counties over with the ricochet, I would.

Edward429451
July 13, 2010, 12:22 PM
45/70 wouldn't be overkill on a woodchuck. I'm diein to shoot me a rabbit or something with my Guide Gun. I got a Mule Deer with it but that's not what I mean.

I have that 155 gr collarbutton mould for my 45/70 and I havent killed anything with it yet. They shoot great at smallgame distance. This is a woodchuck gun I tell ya'!

James R. Burke
July 13, 2010, 04:04 PM
I like the 06 with a Hornady 110-V Max at 3712 f.p.s. Takes them out real good.

EMN89
July 13, 2010, 05:29 PM
I have killed groundhogs with .17 hmr, .22 short, .22 Lr, .22 hornet, .243 win, and .270 wsm. The groundhog I killed with the .22 short was hit right behind the shoulder at 35 yards and was DRT, you do not need a powerful cartridge to kill groundhogs. As with any type of hunting shot placement is key. I have shot four groundhogs with my .270 wsm (130 grain federal power shok @3250 fps):eek: and it will quite litterally blow them to bits which i would consider extreme overkill but it is always quite entertaining.

Brian Pfleuger
July 13, 2010, 05:52 PM
As with any type of hunting shot placement is key. I have shot four groundhogs with my .270 wsm (130 grain federal power shok @3250 fps) and it will quite litterally blow them to bits which i would consider extreme overkill but it is always quite entertaining.


Shot placement is only key on a woodchuck when you shoot them in the butt with a 17HMR.;) (He's my cousin, I can pick on him if I want!)


204 on up, shot placement means somewhere between the tail and nose.:D

EMN89
July 13, 2010, 06:11 PM
That was 6 years ago and it was a horrible shot and i was very inexperienced although you do validate my argument, that groundhog got away;)

Brian Pfleuger
July 13, 2010, 06:27 PM
That was 6 years ago and it was a horrible shot and i was very inexperienced although you do validate my argument, that groundhog got away

Don't matter, I'll still be bringing it up in 60 years! That's what family does! Never let you live down the embarrassing moments!

Besides, if that had been a 204, or your 270, shot placement wouldn't have mattered.:D

EMN89
July 13, 2010, 06:50 PM
Unfortunately i didnt have my .270 at the time and you were not there to let me use the .204:p

crowbeaner
August 14, 2010, 07:42 PM
Years ago I owned a model 700 stainless rifle in 300 WinMag. A friend pleaded with me to bring it out and shoot some chucks for S&G. I finally relented and did so. The load was a 130 Speer HP over 74.0 of IMR 4350.
After glassing a newly cut alfalfa field, we spotted an errant whistle pig digging a new hole. The 12th commandment is "thou shalt not dig in thine owners new seeded". We laid down prone and I rested the rifle on my long sleeved shirt( I have to avoid over exposure to UV rays). He watched through the binos as I squeezed one off. The pink mist in the air says it all. I swear the orange tongue of flame stretched almost the 140 yards to the chuck. Upon inspecting the remains of said dearly departed manly marmot, he proclaimed that I was indeed a sick SOB. I politely reminded him that the whole outing was HIS idea!

rickyjames
August 14, 2010, 08:08 PM
i think any of the rimfires 17 or 22's would not only be the most sporting but also the most fun. if you're looking for a little more distance something in the 17 remington to the 243 range would be fun, also more expensive. anything over a 243 would be overkill as a dedicated varmint gun but anything goes with targets of oppertunity, even a 50 bmg.

highvel
August 14, 2010, 08:25 PM
The most fun I've had with ground hogs has been with my scoped T/C .35 Rem "Super 14", second would be my .44 Mag "Super 14"!!!
I believe in sport, and shooting them with a handgun is a lot of sport!

robhof
August 14, 2010, 08:50 PM
Crowbeaner, I had a similiar experience prairie dog hunting in South Dakota, only with a TC 14" barrel and 3030. We were coming back from an unsuccessful deer hunt and came by a dogtown and the landowner said shoot some of them. I had 170gr jsp's and the 1st shot was a little low, struck the mound in front and blew the top half out of the hole. Landowned stated that he wanted them dead, not blown up. The 3030 with the 110gr V-Max, in a TC work great on groundhogs and prairie dogs.

22-rimfire
August 14, 2010, 09:15 PM
Overkill point is about 243 or larger. Yes, a 12 ga shortgun with #2 pellets is overkill. Since you are not doing this for sport, I would consider a 22 WMR just about right for shots around your house.

Old Grump
August 15, 2010, 01:31 PM
This might be considered "overkill" in certain company...

http://www.defensetech.org/images/B61-11.jpg

B61-11

Depends on how mad you are at the prairie dog and how sensitive your neighbors are.

:D

DiscoRacing
August 15, 2010, 01:32 PM
anything over .22-250

sc928porsche
August 17, 2010, 11:12 PM
Since you are hunting them close to your residence, The shotgun is the best pick. If it were far away from the house and other houses, then something in centerfire up to .25 cal should be fine.

You did mention Marmots, so a .22lr will work, but something with a little more power would be advantageous. Marmots are essentially a woodchuck on steroids. I hunted them in the Sierras for many years at ski resorts during the summer because the did so much damage to the lift buildings. The 22lr even with hollow points just wounded them unless it was a head shot. My cure for them became a 22-250.

camper4lyfe
August 19, 2010, 07:44 AM
I love my .22-250 for chucks.

My bro-in-law shot one at roughly 20yds with a 17HMR, and there was no sign of an entry or exit wound. If I had hit it with mine, it would have likely been ripped in half.

kd7sgm
August 22, 2010, 10:31 AM
We call em Rock Chucks here in Idaho. I use a .17HMR and .223 and both will dispatch them efficiently.

Crankylove
August 22, 2010, 11:45 AM
We call em Rock Chucks here in Idaho

Had an invasion of them for a couple years at my Grandpa's place in south-east Idaho. .22's worked............but not nearly as well as the 9mm, .357 Mag, .270 Win, .30-06, .300 Win Mag, 12 Ga, and some 16 Ga. thrown in for good measure.

There is no such thing as overkill.........there is only dead, and better dead.

hooligan1
August 22, 2010, 12:55 PM
.500 S&W, what the heck, that furry lil body absorbing all that energy, wow!:eek:

Creade
September 1, 2010, 02:36 PM
I'm currently building an AR in Beowulf. Believe you me, its going to get some woodchucks.

I've killed them with everything from a shovel to a 30-06.

The 30-06 makes an interesting art project out of them.

sc928porsche
September 14, 2010, 06:41 AM
There is dead, better dead, and really really really dead. Its your choice. :D