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tahoe2
January 28, 2012, 07:11 PM
I'm sure this has been said before, but so sick and tired of people trying to kill large animals with minimal cartridges.(can I shoot an Elk with a .243? or a Grizzly with a 30-30? ). C'mon people!, Aren't we as hunters obligated to dispatch animals as effectively as possible ??
Sorry; just venting against those with egos bigger than their rifle or pistol craft. Too many animals run off to die or don't die, only to suffer for the rest of their lives. ( I am not an animal rights guy ). Just heard a story about the one that got away, because some tool who is a "great shot" took a pop at an elk @ 500 yards away and hit him but didn't recover his animal.

Bigfatts
January 28, 2012, 07:35 PM
I agree, no reason to use a minimum. There are too many people that say they are confident they could use an inappropriate caliber, but only responsibly when given the perfect shot within their own limitations. Well, it's irresponsible to use that caliber in the first place! It doesn't matter if it's a game animal or a pest or nuisance animal. Taking the chance of wounding something and leaving it to die a slow painful death either from the shot or starving because it's crippled is simply inhumane. I am no activist by any means but animals are very important to me both as a sportsman and personally. Many people will say they are confident with their rifle and so it's ok. Me, I'm confident with my rifle AND my caliber.

Of course, I also think that if you can't get reasonably close to your animal you're not a hunter, you're a shooter.

rickyrick
January 28, 2012, 07:41 PM
It's more about the person doing the hunt than the rifle or cartridge choice.

If the bring enough gun theory was true, then there would be no bow, muzzle loader, or shotgun seasons or hunts.

Above all, discipline is required to make the best shot with the chosen weapon.

If said person makes the decision to take a marginal shot with a .243 then they will do the same with any caliber, and most likely make more poor judgements compensating for the larger margin of error the more powerful weapon affords.

tahoe2
January 28, 2012, 07:46 PM
True. No laws against stupidity!

Bigfatts
January 28, 2012, 07:50 PM
If the bring enough gun theory was true, then there would be no bow, muzzle loader, or shotgun seasons or hunts.

Not really true about the muzzle loaders or shotguns. They can both be devestating in their respective ranges. That's more of a big heavy slow bullet vs. small light and fast bullet argument. Broadheads also create a massive wound channel that kills quickly when hit in the vitals. I'm talking more about using something that is marginal for big game being used to take Elk or Moose or Bear. .243 may be ok for Deer, but there are better things that are more suited to hunting something bigger. I've heard some really dumb things in these forums: "Oh, I'd use my .30-06 on Cape Buffalo." That's more the type of thing I'm talking about.

And people that count on the caliber to do the job their shot placement can't should go to the range more. If you can't kill the animal cleanly, don't shoot it.

nate45
January 28, 2012, 07:56 PM
Someone who uses a smaller caliber, doesn't bother me as much as someone who can't shoot, no matter what they use.

I've seen and heard of more than one nimrod that got a deer rifle bore sighted at a gun store and then went straight out hunting with it. :rolleyes:

I remember one guest coming to our lease and saying he was a great shot and how awesome his .300 Winchester Magnum was. We told him everyone had to check their rifles at the 100 yard range before getting in a blind. He couldn't even get on the paper. He had to get help sighting in his rifle and then only managed about a 4" 100 yard group. The guy that brought him said it was good enough. Then the guy shot a deer in the lower hind leg from about 60 yards away. That was his first and only invite.

Plus what about archery? Every year more bow hunters lose and wound animals than hi-power rifle shooters do. I've lost a few myself with a bow. Got them all right through the lungs, but i couldn't find them and I'm a good tracker.

rickyrick
January 28, 2012, 07:57 PM
True enough,

I used those as examples of weapons that have certain limitations.

aaalaska
January 28, 2012, 07:57 PM
OK you have a valid point. But how many wounded critters walk away because ,someone with the bigger is better mind set took the shot with a gun they were scared to death of ,and pulled the shot. Here in Alaska I would take a guerr the number is at least equal to those wounded by light calibers.
The choice of weapons should be one of common sense, but as the saying goes,[You can't fix stupid].

Mike1234
January 28, 2012, 07:59 PM
I'm far from an expert because I don't hunt. However, if I had to hunt to survive then I'll keep the .22LR for rabbits... .223 Rem for coyotes... .243/308 for whitetails... etc. I'd want to ensure the bullet does its job.

aaalaska... this thread has to do with caliber, not skill or aiming. That's a related but separate issue.:)

jmr40
January 28, 2012, 08:00 PM
Nothing wrong with using a smaller weapon as long as the person using it understands it's limitations and hunts accordingly.

rickyrick
January 28, 2012, 08:03 PM
Jmr40,

You said what I was trying to say, just better

tahunua001
January 28, 2012, 08:07 PM
ok lets take this a different direction. for years alligator hunters in the bayou have used 22lr to hunt(in some cases without even sights). if you would have asked me a year ago what the smallest round capable of taking an aligator I would have said 30-06 until I watched the show "swamp people" on the history channel, these people not only hunt gators with 22s but they do it with HUGE success. my family successfully hunted mule deer with 22LRs for years. I dont feel comfortable with that round so I go a couple notches up the ladder to .223 and still have people tell me that I am "obligated to use a larger round" and that I am an unethical hunter. a the fact is that a 223 can kill a deer and a polar bear,a 30-30 can kill a black bear, a 243 can kill an elk, a 270 can kill a grizzly, moose, and bison.

whether a hunter has the skills to use these rounds effectively is where the water gets murky and everyone gets divided into caliber wars. I bought a 300 weatherby mag because I didn't feel comfortable hunting elk and black bear with a 243, that decision had nothing to do with the round but rather with my own confidence with my abilities with that round. not everyone has the money to go out and get that heavier rifle with ultra expensive ammo and for the guys that say to "start reloading" not everyone has the money to go buy a reloading bench and all the manuals to go with it. if you are poor and need cheap meat and a surefire place of getting an elk but all you have is a .257, I would heavily recommend that you get the heaviest bullet for that gun and be picky about what shots you take but to say that someone is obligated to use a heavier round is just like saying I'm obligated to buy a ford 150 if I want to do some landscaping work because my dodge dakota is a marginal vehicle for the job.

tahunua001
January 28, 2012, 08:18 PM
I'm far from an expert because I don't hunt. However, if I had to hunt to survive then I'll keep the .22LR for rabbits... .223 Rem for coyotes... .243/308 for whitetails... etc. It's cruel, selfish, arrogant and ignorant to "underkill".

you would eat a coyote? man you are my new hero :eek:

aaalaska... this thread has to do with caliber, not skill or aiming. That's a related but separate issue.

actually it is quite central to the discussion. for the better part of a century the go to round for deer hunting in this country was the 30-30, only recently have I heard people say it's marginal for the task and that it's a bad idea to use unless you absolutely have to. what changed? the deer didn't get bigger. they didn't learn to make and wear flak jackets. the only thing that has changed is it's no longer a matter of life and death if we miss that shot. if you dont bring an elk home and put it on the kitchen table you can always go to the super market and get a pound of hamburger. we have longer work weeks, shorter hunting seasons and fewer family vacations out in the woods so people are loosing a lot of the mentality behind hunting, they are more willing to take that iffy shot because it's not a huge deal if the game gets away. 30-30 is more capable of taking big game than ever with better factory loads and home loads and yet fewer and fewer people trust it to do the job it was intended for in the 19th century, it's a state of mind argument, pure and simple.

Mike1234
January 28, 2012, 08:30 PM
^^^ I never said that .30-30 is marginal for white-tail deer. It's about equal to .308 Win which I sited as just right for that animal.:) It is NOT the "correct" round for taking down "big" game. Yes, it can. But it isn't morally right.

Let's say that someone shoots ME and I'll have no way to defend myself nor have any hope of surviving in the end. I'd want that person to use a 12ga to my head... not a .22LR to my gut.

I'm just sayin'...

ETA: Before anyone argues about "shot placement" (gut vs. head)... yeah, with no hope of surviving I'd FAR rather have a 12ga shot to the gut than a .22LR shot to the gut... or a 12ga shot to the head than a .22LR shot to the head.

rickyrick
January 28, 2012, 08:38 PM
What its gonna boil down to is this;

It's already been alluded too...

Finding the game....its easier to blow a big bleeding hole in the side of the animal and tracking it than placing a skilled shot to the spine or brain and getting close enough to do so. Because bragging about the animal at the water cooler is really the most important part... not humanely killing the animal....not putting meat on the table.

jmr40
January 28, 2012, 08:50 PM
Killin stuff ain't hard. Poke a hole in the lungs and they die within a couple minutes. How you do that is up to you. If you are skilled enough and brave enough it has been done for 10,000 years with spears.

Getting close enough to put a 223 round into a moose lung ain't unethical. Shooting a moose in the butt with a 375 magnum is.

tahunua001
January 28, 2012, 09:10 PM
Getting close enough to put a 223 round into a moose lung ain't unethical. Shooting a moose in the butt with a 375 magnum is.

my sentiment exactly

Mike1234
January 28, 2012, 09:12 PM
Bring enough gun as the OP wisely suggests. Yes, shot placement is paramount. But so is enough damaging power. Are you going to kill an elephant with a .22LR? Maybe. Should you try? NO!!

ETA: Toned down my post a bit. I guess I'm pretty passionate about quick/humane kills.

rickyrick
January 28, 2012, 09:23 PM
I think the argument is about using a rifle that's on the low end of acceptable choices for a particular animal.....not about using a .22 on an elephant.

Mike1234
January 28, 2012, 09:26 PM
... why choose those alternatives?

ETA: Toned down my words.

tahunua001
January 28, 2012, 09:26 PM
^^^ I find it ironic that most people that say someone is hardheaded and argumentative is also being hardheaded and argumentative. caliber wars are waged in a ocean of gray and both sides are arguing black and white.

when a person is asking "is my caliber able to kill ****?" is asking because he/she really does not know. an elk is bigger than a grizzly bear and yet it's easier to kill so some people really don't know better. that does not necessarily mean that they are unskilled. I had almost no handgun experience before shooting my M9 quals and I scored expert first time up so some people are just naturally good or someone may have been shooting for years and is just now considering hunting for the first time.

you cant say it cant be done if it can and you never know what is a good or bad idea based on the fat that you dont know where a posters skill level lies.

EDIT: so far just about everything on this thread has been the argument of marginal versus overkill and you are arguing, quite literally, the absolute opposite ends of the spectrum.

Mike1234
January 28, 2012, 09:28 PM
*deleted*

rickyrick
January 28, 2012, 09:33 PM
Maybe a guy buys a rifle for a particular activity....scrapes and saves for months, now this rifle cans also be acceptable for a different animal, suddenly he has no right to hunt that animal because it doesn't fit some richer guys skill set.....even though the shooter and the rifle are capable.

Mike1234
January 28, 2012, 09:41 PM
^^^ I'm far from wealthy. I will say that, if it comes to survival of self and family then yes, I do understand hunting with less than adequate calibers had I no other. But... this is not the premise of the OP.;)

ETA: Toned down my wording.

nate45
January 28, 2012, 10:45 PM
If one checks the Colorado Big Game Laws (http://wildlife.state.co.us/SiteCollectionDocuments/DOW/RulesRegs/Brochure/BigGame/biggame.pdf), they will find that a .24 caliber rifle using a minimum of an 85 grain bullet and developing a minimum of 1000 foot pounds at 100 yards is legal for elk.

Colorado has an excellent game department and they based their minimum on what they knew for certain, was plenty of power to kill an elk.

Common sense says you don't take 500 yard shots at elk with a .243, but people do it anyway. Common sense also says one should practice and be proficient with their hunting weapon. Although, as I noted in my first post, not everyone does.

Blaming rifle cartridges that are known to be effective, instead of blaming poor marksmanship and poor decision making is the wrong way of looking at it. Larger calibers than the legal minimum, don't make up for poor marksmanship.

tahoe2
January 29, 2012, 12:56 AM
the OP was by me . I will try to clarify a little. I do not know the hunter in question, I was having a conversation with someone who did, and we both were
disturbed about this. The fellow was shooting a 25-06 and practiced at known ranges of 100, 200, & 300 yards and was confident in his shooting ability, having
killed several deer( Blacktail, Whitetail, & Muley). He did however misjudge the distance ( elk are big animals). Shooting from a bench and sandbags (rifle rest)
at known distances is not shooting in the field ( uphill, downhill, wind etc...).
I took two Pronghorn Antelope in Wyoming last fall and all my shots were moved by wind 5" to 8". My buck was approximately 160-170 yards slightly downhill broadside(10-20mph winds). I fired, under his belly (miss), fired again (miss, over his back, overcompensated) fired again, drilled him 8" behind the shoulder (aiming at the shoulder). He died after running 30 yards. I was shooting a .280 Rem with 130 grn handloads @ 2850 fps. My point is hunting (shooting) in the field is different. Just Sayin !

Discern
January 29, 2012, 01:10 AM
There are multiple factors in a quick kill with a firearm - shot placement, shot angle(s), knowing your skill limitations and staying within those limitations. bullet type, bullet weight, and cartridge. I believe a majority of lost animals are more due to poor shot placement, poor shot angles and improper bullet design or weight for the game being hunted than the cartridge chosen. Ballistics and bullet performance really is a science. IMO, I would not use a 150 gr or 165 gr deer hunting bullet for a 30-06 and go hunting for a grizzly; but I would not use 200 gr or 220 gr hunting bullet in a 30-06 for hunting deer or antelope either.

BIG P
January 29, 2012, 01:31 AM
IMO there is way more wounded animals due to hunter fault than cailber fault.Seen a father & son last weekend hog hunting dad with his 30-06 gut shot and lost his hog untill today,the boy shot his with a 223 in the neck & it went to good use stocking the freezer.So all in all I dont buy into the BIG GUN way of thinking.Most average folks can shoot a small bore much better than a big mag.But thats just Me

Discern
January 29, 2012, 01:47 AM
Last year, American Rifleman had a write up on the Savage .250; and the article mentioned how this cartridge is the choice of many Eskimos for dealing with a polar bear. Any animal smaller, they usually use a .223.

This hunter has people helping to give her advice. It is not a real calm day as you can hear the wind and also see the breath vapors from the elk are blowing to the left. Looks like a quick kill to me. The shot placement is good, and the bullet is also a good match for what is being ask of the cartridge.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hY0w1c-gf18

Buzzcook
January 29, 2012, 02:46 AM
I've shot two elk with a .30-06. once with a 150gr Hornady SP and the other with a 180gr Corlokt.
Imho any bullet that traveled the same path through the animals as those two bullets did, would have killed them just as dead.

In other words a .243 or a .25-06 would have done just as well.

Bigfatts
January 29, 2012, 03:10 AM
I don't necessarily think bigger is better. If it's too big for you to shoot well, you're just as unethical as someone taking potshots at a deer with a .22. Can you kill a deer with a .22? Absolutely, poachers love them around here. But you can also maim a deer much easier with a .22 than, say, a .243. My thought it that if my .375 Win will kill a deer or hog immediately, why would I use a .22 Hornet? I could kill a deer with a .22 Hornet surely, but I'd rather have a round with that extra ass. For me it isn't capability, it's about respecting the animal enough to kill it as quickly and painlessly as I can.

Daryl
January 29, 2012, 08:45 AM
I'm sure this has been said before, but so sick and tired of people trying to kill large animals with minimal cartridges.(can I shoot an Elk with a .243? or a Grizzly with a 30-30? ). C'mon people!, Aren't we as hunters obligated to dispatch animals as effectively as possible ??
Sorry; just venting against those with egos bigger than their rifle or pistol craft. Too many animals run off to die or don't die, only to suffer for the rest of their lives. ( I am not an animal rights guy ). Just heard a story about the one that got away, because some tool who is a "great shot" took a pop at an elk @ 500 yards away and hit him but didn't recover his animal.

So, because someone shot at an elk at 500 yards, didn't hit it right, and lost it, you start a thread against minimum cartridges for game?

You didn't even list the cartridge used, and with good reason. That's not the problem. The problem is someone shooting beyond their capabilities, and a bigger cartridge won't make them a better shot. More likely, it'll make them a worse shot, and even less able to make that 500 yard attempt.

I'd much rather see someone using a .243 for elk, and limiting their shots to 150 yards or so than someone using a 30/378 Wby and shooting at 500 yards.

I've make the occasional long shot, but I've also spent my life hunting open country where I get a lot of practice doing it. Even with that, I won't take the shot unless conditions are nearly perfect.

So while I agree with you (use enough gun), I'd stress even more to know how to use it at the range you're going to shoot at. The includes the limitations of the cartridge and firearm, as well as the shooter's.

Daryl

Brian Pfleuger
January 29, 2012, 09:09 AM
The opposite problem is far more prevalent in todays world. People who don't know any better see threads like this and think, "See!? I DO need a 300WinMag to hunt 120 pound whitetail deer!"

Then they go out and buy a 300Mag and go to the range all excited about their new gun. Next memory they have is having their shoulder put back in it's socket in the ER because, obviously, they don't know how to shoot a big rifle like that or they'd already know they didn't need that big rifle....

So, they never practice cuz that thing HURTS! They might have eventually put 8 or 10 rounds through it, flinching like mad, to get it "sighted in" for their hunt. Now they're out in the woods and Mr Bambi steps out at the usual 45 yards or less at which that most kills take place.... you know, 223 range, on a soft-skinned, light-boned, small animal....

They do what they've learned to do with this gun, which is aim very, very carefully... and then SLAP that trigger and JUMP like they've been struck by lightning!

Yeah, even at 40 yards they've managed to shoot Bambi in the wrong end. Now, Mr Bambi has a big hole in his butt, that WILL eventually kill him... in a couple days maybe...

but the shooter is left wondering, cuz he has no idea he shot this thing in the butt.... his eyes were closed and he looked like he just got hit by Mike Tyson, he didn't see the impact.... "My Lord" he thinks "I DO need more gun for these critters! Even a 300WinMag ain't enough gun!"

And the cycle continues... next thread he sees like this he posts his experience, you know, "sterilized" to avoid any implication that it might have been his ineptness with the rifle that caused the problem... and his story convinces some other poor sucker that if that guy couldn't get a deer with a 300WinMag, by God, I better get a 338WinMag for my elk hunt this fall!



So, no, I'm sorry. I buy the "use enough gun" mantra only in the most basic, common sense way. Ability and shot placement are far, far more important than power. I'd much sooner have my 5-2, 120lb wife hunting deer with a 223 or properly loaded 22-250 than my 270WSM. I'd much rather she hunted elk with a 243 and we hunted up close to the animal than have her try to take a shot with a 300WinMag at 300 yards.

thallub
January 29, 2012, 09:22 AM
It's 90 percent shot placement and 10 percent bullet. Very few bullets will turn a gut shot into a bang flop.

arch308
January 29, 2012, 09:55 AM
A wise man knows his limitations. I like to use enough gun, period. At the bench I'm a pretty fair shot (allthough my rifles will generally outshoot me). But when the adrenelin starts flowing I get pretty shaky, no neck shots for this boy. I love hunting and do my utmost to take game humanely. That is why I like enough gun and take the most reliable shot, right behind the shoulder @ center mass. This leaves me a little room for error.
I know guys that use .223 for deer and always go for neck shots. They feel it kills them quicker and is therefore more humane. If you can do that consistently, great. I don't feel that confident in the heat of the moment.
I can't control others, I can only do what I feel is right for me.

Art Eatman
January 29, 2012, 11:30 AM
Yeah, arch, I know what you mean. Heck, I've had a couple of clean misses from having "buck fever". :D Only a couple, though, thank the Lord...

We've had a fair number of threads here on this subject. That's had me thinking back to my own active hunting days. I've mostly alternated between a .243 and an '06. A couple of dozen deer with each. I'd guess that maybe 2/3 of the kills were neck shots. Almost all of the .243 kills were. (Shrug.)

But I started running the brush and hunting when I was a little-bitty, long before I got into centerfire and reloading and all that stuff. I just figure that I'm generally supposed to be able to control adrenalin and hit targets in the field and all that. I guess call it a lucky lifestyle, although I did work at it a lot and it's not all luck. :)

tahoe2
January 29, 2012, 12:55 PM
Daryl as I posted in #26 the caliber was 25-06 and you don't need a "Magnum" to have "enough gun" ! I use a .280 Rem for deer & antelope and an 8mm Mauser for elk & black bear. Recoil is definitely manageable for the average shooter, IMO. I do reload for my firearms so I am constantly seeking the most accurate combination, and practicing my skill, so that I can make a clean kill. Hunting to me, means shooting all year long, (not 2 weeks before the season begins & put it away for 11 months after), getting within range to make that high percentage shot (body, behind shoulder for me). Not lobbing lead across a canyon & hoping, I'll get a quick kill. Too much distance to really know what's going on, (wind wise) over there. I know all the "long range" shooters are callin me a dipstick right now, but I know my ability(or lack thereof) requires me to get closer. All of my guns are capable, it's a matter of being responsible to yourself, to the animal you pursue, and your fellow hunters.

Guess I should have said "bring enough gun and PRACTICE"

mapsjanhere
January 29, 2012, 01:11 PM
I'm still looking for the perfect elk round myself. I have a safe full of magnums that I know I'm going to worry about the kick on a hunt. So for my last 2 elks I used a 7x65R and a 308W respectively. Both well over 2000 ft-lb, and nevertheless both animals had no exit wound. The 7x65R shot was at 220 yards, the 308 lengthwise from a full frontal shot. One recovered after 300 yards, one dead on the spot, so both fulfilled their purpose. But I still have that nagging feeling that maybe a little bit more gun would have been appropriate to leave a trail if I'd needed one. Luckily my wife has declared a moratorium on elk hunting until the freezer is empty, so I have some more time to ponder.

Brian Pfleuger
January 29, 2012, 01:46 PM
Could just be bullet selection too.

Although I wouldn't expect any bullet to exit in a frontal shot.

You might try Barnes TTSX. They penetrate like crazy and do NOT come apart.

Daryl
January 29, 2012, 01:58 PM
Daryl as I posted in #26 the caliber was 25-06 and you don't need a "Magnum" to have "enough gun" ! I use a .280 Rem for deer & antelope and an 8mm Mauser for elk & black bear. Recoil is definitely manageable for the average shooter, IMO. I do reload for my firearms so I am constantly seeking the most accurate combination, and practicing my skill, so that I can make a clean kill. Hunting to me, means shooting all year long, (not 2 weeks before the season begins & put it away for 11 months after), getting within range to make that high percentage shot (body, behind shoulder for me). Not lobbing lead across a canyon & hoping, I'll get a quick kill. Too much distance to really know what's going on, (wind wise) over there. I know all the "long range" shooters are callin me a dipstick right now, but I know my ability(or lack thereof) requires me to get closer. All of my guns are capable, it's a matter of being responsible to yourself, to the animal you pursue, and your fellow hunters.

Guess I should have said "bring enough gun and PRACTICE"

Can't really argue with your choices; they're solid, proven performers.

Personally, I'll choose either a .243 or 7mm mag for deer. Mostly depends on my mood, and where I'm hunting. I've shot critters from coyotes to elk and bison with the 7mm mag, and have yet to have anything take more than a few steps after being hit with it.

All that said, someone here once asked what the minimum was that I'd use for elk. My reply was the .243. It's not a cartridge I'd recommend to others, mostly because if you have to ask, you shouldn't use it. Since I was 10 years old, I've never been without a .243 in my collection, and I know what I can do with it, and well as it's limitations.

I'm not a long range shooter for the most part. I've taken a few (successful) long shots at big game, but I've taken a lot more of them at targets, jackrabbits, and coyotes. When required, I can make them, but I'd much rather get closer. Stalking is fun, and I enjoy it. I also enjoy the taste of venison, so I'll do what I'm capable of doing to put it on the table.

As I said before, a person should know their capabilities and limitations, as well as the capabilities and limitations of the cartridge they use. 500 yards is too far to shoot at elk with a 25-06 IMO, no matter the conditions. I limit myself to about 400 or so with my 7mm mag, even though I can hit them quite a bit farther than that. Elk are tough, so you have to hit them right, and hit them hard.

Daryl

jmr40
January 29, 2012, 02:17 PM
Some guys seem to think that if they don't have the skills and equipment to do something then it is automatically unethical for anyone else to do it. There are guys who have worked hard at becoming very good hunters and can get very close to animals. It is not at all unethical for them to use a rifle, handgun, long bow or some other weapon that most of us would never consider using. They know how to use it and can make it happen ethically.

The same is true of long range shooters. There are lots of guys who can ethically shoot animals at much longer range than the average hunter. It is not a matter of being too lazy to get closer. I can assure you they have spent the time at the range to become proficient to confidently take elk at 500+ yards. Just because I cannot do it does not make it unethical. I have a BIL who has taken several elk and mule deer at 700+ yards. So far none have taken 1 step after the shot.

I can assure you that the hunter that puts in the time to be able to shoot an elk or other larger animal at 15 yards with a longbow, or the guy who develops the skill to take game at 700 yards with a rifle has spent countless hours practicing his craft. Much more so than the average guy who limts himself to 300 yard shots with a modern rifle. Taking a 300 yard shot requires no more hunting ability than the guy who shoots at 700 yards and no more skill than shooting at 50 yards. With a modern rifle I can have a person who has never held a rifle hitting deer size targets 100% of the time at 300 yards on the 1st range trip.

Panfisher
January 29, 2012, 03:46 PM
Having enough gun is important, so is not having too much gun to handle. More important than both is having enough skill to make it work, including shooting ability, judging range, and woodsmanship.

mapsjanhere
January 29, 2012, 06:05 PM
Peet, unfortunately, the 308 was a Barnes 168 TTSX. I upgraded after the Norma Vulcan came apart in the first animal.

Colorado Redneck
January 29, 2012, 06:14 PM
Like many industries, the shooting business depends on sales. If we are all satsified with that .223 for varmints and the .270 for hunting, reloading components and firearms and all othr associated equipments sales would be pretty slow. However, if you need a 300 Win mag, and you need .204 Ruger then the marketeers have money rolling in.

I say this with a smile, because I am a victim of said marketing. A big part of the fun to me is getting a new caliber to shoot and load for. An old geezer can spend literally hours and days developing loads and shooting a new gun.
All part of my personal stimulus plan. Support your local gun shop. :D

rickyrick
January 29, 2012, 06:21 PM
Oops, I'll fix it later.

Brian Pfleuger
January 29, 2012, 07:01 PM
Peet, unfortunately, the 308 was a Barnes 168 TTSX. I upgraded after the Norma Vulcan came apart in the first animal.

Ah, ok. Well I wouldn't expected an exit on a frontal shot. :)
Sounds like it worked out ok.

PawPaw
January 29, 2012, 07:48 PM
I'm sure this has been said before, but so sick and tired of people trying to kill large animals with minimal cartridges.(can I shoot an Elk with a .243? or a Grizzly with a 30-30? )
In 1953 (http://www.levergunscommunity.com/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=35812), according to my sources, Bella Twin, a native girl (http://www.angelfire.com/on2/LandOwner/misc/Grizley1.html) shot a large grizzly near Lesser Slave Lake with a .22 Long. (not .22LR, the shorter version). In 1965, a fellow named Jack Turner killed the world record grizzly with a .30-30.

Is killing a grizzly with a .22 a fluke? Happily, it worked out for that young lady. Is killing a grizzly with a .30-30 a fluke? Hardly. Lots of animals have fallen to that cartridge. Is it the gun I'd use for a grizzly hunt? No, but it is certainly capable.

mr.t7024
January 29, 2012, 07:51 PM
I agree with tahunua001,nuff said!Cliff:D

Irish B
January 30, 2012, 02:21 AM
It's not about bringing enough gun It's about bringing enough knowledge and skill. You don't need a .338 to kill an elk. Karamojo Bell killed how many elephants with .256s, .275s, and .303s. This was because he took the time to really learn the anatomy of the animal he was hunting. These days I think big calibers make up for skill. Guys just want to make an easy sloppy shot without having to deal with the homework that comes first. There's a difference between skilled hunted and large caliber killing.

Gunplummer
January 30, 2012, 09:28 AM
Oh Boy! This is really timely. I live in a special regulation area in Pennsylvania. You can shoot doe until the end of January (Season ended Saturday). I shot a doe on Friday, and it was raining or I probably would not have been able to move around to a safe place to shoot it. I saw it was limping a little as it was feeding along and figured it had a lower leg shot off. Turns out it had a shattered bone below the shoulder blade, a real ugly wound with the shattered bone sticking out of the hide. I saw a hole in the hide near the spine and thought it was my exit hole. That was where something (Arrow,S-Slug, Bolt) had entered and then went out the shoulder. It is near a shot gun area and the hole was pretty big, so that would be my guess. It gets better. When I skinned it down, I found a healed over area where something had passed through below the spine at least a year before. There was even a piece of rib missing from the healed over area. That is the one thing I hate about this area. If you get a deer, it probably is shot up and you are lucky if the meat is not spoiled. I use a .223, .22 Savage Hi-Power, and have used .250's, .243's, and everything else you can imagine. I have never emptied a lever action (99 Savage, it would be embarrassing to be seen with a Winchester) or a bolt action or a pump at a deer. Bring enough gun my butt, bring enough skill.

PTS1
January 30, 2012, 10:39 AM
Bring enough gun my butt, bring enough skill.


Great comment! That really sums it up better than anything!

thallub
January 30, 2012, 07:44 PM
Bring enough gun my butt, bring enough skill.

Great comment! That really sums it up better than anything!

+2
When i read a thread like this one i'm reminded of a friend who often bragged of all the big game he killed. We went hog hunting at a wheatfield. The guy summarily shot a huge sow in the guts with his .300 Win Mag and someones magic bullet. The hog ran into a plum thicket. We kicked the sow out of the thicket and he shot her in the guts again. Finally after three or four shots we had a dead hog.

Then he wanted me to field dress his hog. Told him he could do it under instruction. The guy gagged and wretched at the stinking green goo as he gutted that hog. Strange, he never asked to hog hunt with me again.

tahunua001
January 31, 2012, 01:30 AM
Bring enough gun my butt, bring enough skill.
exactly the point I've been trying to make.

growing up I knew a guy(for the sake of the story, we'll call him scooter) who claimed and argued vehemently that the 300 Win Mag was the greatest deer round ever designed and constantly bragged about the deer that his dad had killed with the rifle he now used. me and my hunting buddies always just smiled adn rolled our eyes because year after year me(using my dads 243) and my best friend(using his dads 30-30) got our deer with 2 or less well placed shots while scooter came back weekend after weekend with a story about the latest buck that he had shot that got away.

ltc444
January 31, 2012, 09:19 AM
The only ethical question is can YOU take the game as humainely as possible. 1 shot 1 kill.

Most of the bigger is better come from paid/compensated gun scribes who are schills for the manufactures. There was a certain gun writer whom I had a great deal of respect for. I respected him until I learned that he faked his data.

When asked what gun is best, I ask some simple questions: Do you hit what you shoot at? Does it put the animal on the ground? If the answer is yes then that it the gun for you.

As to target shooters not being good hunters, a good target shooter has the skills to dope wind. I remember a top target shooter who was basically forced into an antelope hunt. Point of Honor. They walked out on the hunt. A antelope was spotted out about 500 yds. He dropped into a proper sitting position. Fired 1 shot and dropped the animal. To my knowledge he never hunted again.

Marksmanship trumps caliber and hot air everyday.

Wyoredman
January 31, 2012, 11:34 AM
I've seen elk die with one shot from a .243, and I've seen Bighorn sheep die with one shot from a .300 win mag. There was a true story about a grizz atack in Cody during bow season where one hunter saved another with one shot from his Hoyt. Dude was lucky!

The most important thing in hunting is being prepared and knowing the laws. I don't really think one persons preferance for caliber is any better than the next. Heck, i saw a guy hunting antegoats with an SKS!

To each their own if they can make it work. Marksmanship and knowing your limits is the most important.

Happy hunting!

L_Killkenny
January 31, 2012, 12:43 PM
In another thread here I expounded my thoughts that I no longer feel the need to handicap myself with a poor choice in guns and cartridge selection plays a part in that. But "the use enough gun" crap goes way over board. Magnumitus runs rampant today and it's amazing how cartridges that have proven themselves over time are no longer big enough. If I was going on an Elk hunt I'd probably swap out my .243 barrel for a 7mm-08, I use centerfires on predators not a .22M, I use a 12ga instead of a 20, use pointy bullets and guns that shoot them instead of classics like the .30-30 lever gun, etc etc.

But there is a line though and critters aren't armor plated.

LK

Bittervinom
January 31, 2012, 01:05 PM
If I could legally shoot deer with a .22 LR (under 75 yrds / head shot) I would do so and not waste so much money on ammo...But since I have to use bigger bullets to make P.E.T.A. and other animal nuts happy, that no animal suffers, I use these calibers on deer and if possible anything else I can hunt (large bodied animals) .243, .25-06, .270, 7mm-08, and my favorite .308. Why the hell carry something that's meant to kill Godzilla ???? Little guys I like my .17 hmr, .22lr .204 and .22-250. I did feed into some frenzies once upon a time of more gun "bigger the better". Now I know better and teach my boys the same.

jimbob86
January 31, 2012, 01:11 PM
I know all the "long range" shooters are callin me a dipstick right now, but I know my ability(or lack thereof) requires me to get closer.

There's a cure for what ails you, and it is trigger time, in the field, or as close to "in the field" as you can get.

rickyrick
January 31, 2012, 01:27 PM
I once found an old worn out dime store guitar at a place in which I was employed.


I fancied myself to be a guitar player when in reality I was a novice.


I made a comment that the guitar was crap and couldn't be played worth a darn.


Upon hearing this, and without saying a word, a coworker pulled some finger picks out of his pocket, put them on and commenced playing a real purdy classical guitar song.


Afterwards, I have always remember not to blame equipment for human shortcomings

JerryM
January 31, 2012, 01:38 PM
If one were hunting at a time when game was plentiful, seasons long, and hunters few he might use less than adequate cartridges.
However, the conditions today are much different, and during a hunt a person might get one chance under less than perfect conditions. In addition, no one is so good that they can always place the shot perfectly under field conditions.

Cartridges like the 30-30 and lesser ones have taken a lot of game. But if one is going to go to the effort and expense, and maybe get drawn once in years, it makes no sense to me to use less than an adequate cartridge. When you consider the expense of a hunt, other than local, I would buy another gun if I did not have one that was adequate.

We can argue the fine points as to what cartridge is adequate, but I would not hunt elk with 30-30 class of cartridges regardless of what your grandfather did.

If one wants to hunt with a muzzle loader then that is fine, but if you are going to hunt centerfire use an adequate cartridge.

Jerry

rickyrick
January 31, 2012, 02:40 PM
Good point Jerry, as I hunt for free, I never thought of that angle.

Brian Pfleuger
January 31, 2012, 02:54 PM
If one were hunting at a time when game was plentiful, seasons long, and hunters few he might use less than adequate cartridges.
However, the conditions today are much different, and during a hunt a person might get one chance under less than perfect conditions. In addition, no one is so good that they can always place the shot perfectly under field conditions.

Well, I suppose it depends on what and where you're hunting. I have a friend who spends up to 1 month at a time in Colorado (the entire bow season) hunting elk. (He does it with a 47 pound draw bow too) 4 weeks is a lot of hunting.

Here in NY, I start deer hunting with a bow in mid-october and the season ends around December 20th. That's 2 months and a week of hunting. Between me and 2 other guys, we might shoot 9 deer in a bad year, 12-15 in a good one and we'll see a few dozen more.

A once-in-a-lifetime sheep hunt is one thing. "Hunting" is quite another.

Besides which, very few people actually hunt with "marginal" calibers. It's the PERCEPTION of inadequacy far more often than the reality.

Used to be that the 30-06 was practically a "magnum" cartridge. Now, it appears to be barely adequate for medium sized deer. I don't think it's the deer or the cartridge that's changed.

jimbob86
February 1, 2012, 09:13 AM
If one were hunting at a time when game was plentiful, seasons long, and hunters few he might use less than adequate cartridges.


Because game is plentiful is an excuse to use an inadequate cartridge?

???

"There's lots of deer, so it's OK to wound a few, and not recover them..... never mind that they will takes weeks to die......"

Besides which, very few people actually hunt with "marginal" calibers.

....Dunno .... I have seen more than one "moonscoped" AR in western NE during deer season ..... maybe that's just my perception, though ......;)

rickyrick
February 1, 2012, 09:19 AM
I just read an article with pictures where all varieties of African large game were taken with a 30-06

Art Eatman
February 1, 2012, 10:30 AM
jimbob86, back when game was more plentiful, the critters were much less wary. At least, that's what I gather from writings from the 1800s. I guess that less wary = equals an easier approach to get within range of what we now consider marginal cartridges.

But my last mule deer was at maybe 25 yards, and I felt halfway guilty at using my '06. Shoulda been carrying a pistol. :D

Brian Pfleuger
February 1, 2012, 11:26 AM
....Dunno .... I have seen more than one "moonscoped" AR in western NE during deer season ..... maybe that's just my perception, though ......

I believe it IS a matter of perception.

For instance, I don't know many people who would proclaim a 357mag with a 10" barrel to be a marginal deer gun. It produces 1590fps with a 158gr slug for 887 ft/lbs.

The "mighty" 44mag with a 10 inch barrel produces right around 1200 ft/lbs.

A 223 with 55gr SPs can do 3,350fps from a 24" barrel, 1370ft/lbs, 20" barrel might be 3150, 1212 ft/lbs.

Now, that 223 only has about 1/2 the momentum of the 44mag at the muzzle but the sectional density is pretty close.

No doubt that 44mag load is going to blow right out the other side at any reasonable distance.... wasted energy.

Actually, I'd be surprised if the 223 didn't exit also, if you used a proper big game bullet at reasonable ranges but more of it's energy will be used IN the animal rather than the tree on the other side.

Also, keep in mind that while the 44mag and 223 are about equal at the muzzle, the 44 loses it's energy MUCH faster. By the time it's at 100 yards, the 44 is down to 825 ft/lbs, the 223 still at 1035.

jimbob86
February 1, 2012, 11:46 AM
For instance, I don't know many people who would proclaim a 357mag with a 10" barrel to be a marginal deer gun. It produces 1590fps with a 158gr slug for 887 ft/lbs.


I am not many, but I'm one.

A .357 is a handgun round. All handgun rounds are underpowered, or they would require a stock to hold onto properly......

For western Nebraska, unless the shooter will discipline himself to keep all shots really short, then most pistols/revolvers or even carbines chambered for pistol cartridges are just not enough gun. True, I'm sure there are hot loaded .357's that out of a rifle barrel will rival a .30/30 ..... they still don't hold a candle to an honest to goodness hi-powered rifle......

jimbob86
February 1, 2012, 11:55 AM
But my last mule deer was at maybe 25 yards, and I felt halfway guilty at using my '06. Shoulda been carrying a pistol.- Art

I'm sure the -06 worked just fine.

"In all things important, Happiness is having enough."

Brian Pfleuger
February 1, 2012, 12:18 PM
True enough.

Still, all cartridges have an effective range for any given task.

In terms of deer, that range is undoubtedly much less with a handgun that a 223 and much less for a 223 than most other rifles.

But, the general stance of the cartridge being "adequate" or "marginal" is a matter of assumptions. My assumptions are based on my own personal behavior because that's all I can guarantee. I would limit myself to appropriate ranges for whatever the cartridge might be. As such, there are very few "inadequate" or "marginal" cartridges.

I would (do), in most cases, choose a cartridge that WASN'T the limiting factor in my hunting but sometimes I don't. My 15" Encore Pro Hunter in 7mm-08 limits me to 100 yards or so in most cases, not because of the cartridge but because it's hard to aim.

The button buck that dropped where he stood at 40 yards would not argue the gun was marginal though.;)

Twillia43
February 1, 2012, 02:26 PM
I would rather see someone use a huge caliber and put um down clean and quick, than try to "out shoot" their gun, their is a family down here that shot 5 deer this year and didn't recover them (my friend and I found them), they didn't bother tracking them because if you don't see it go down you couldn't have hit it, I'm not sure wat caliber they were using, probly something in the 270 range, they take every shot they can, doesn't matter if the deer are running 200 yards up threw the pines and brush and the winds blowin 30 open fire, a .270 at 200 yards would be enough gun for a white tail but not with the menatlity people like this have... gives me a sick feeling

mrawesome22
February 1, 2012, 03:20 PM
I'd have no problem shooting an elk with a 243Win. BUT I would use the toughest bullet I could find. A bonded or monolithic bullet would work fine.

But as a handloader you learn about different bullet constructions. Most guys don't handload so they just use whatever comes in the box and many times it is the wrong bullet for the application.

Then again their are handloaders shooting at tough as nail pigs with varmint bullets:rolleyes:

Mike1234
February 1, 2012, 04:41 PM
A few months ago one of my neighbors was bragging about shooting a deer with a .22LR. I told him that .22LR isn't enough gun for deer. He said that's all he had at the moment. He said he shot it behind the ear and it went down immediately. (see the last sentence in next paragraph) I asked if he harvested the meat and he said yes... but only the backstraps and fed the rest to the dogs.

This is the same guy who bragged about shooting a feral pig with a 20ga. He said the pig ran off. I guess he saw some discomfort in my expression so he said he finished it off with a shot to the head. I asked if he intended to harvest the meat. He said he gave it to a neighbor who'll butcher and eat it. The following week the pig was back and he showed me the scar where he shot the thing... about mid-torso maybe three inches below the spine. BTW, I do agree that killing feral pigs just to be rid of them as an invasive species is fine. This is about how it was shot, not why... and it's about being truthful. This guy, a very nice guy otherwise BTW, gives me no reason to believe anything he says regarding his hunting ethics.

Some people just don't care about humane kills nor limiting kills to harvesting the meat or dealing with pest issues. These people will always use inadequate calibers if that's what's in their hands and they won't hesitate to shoot even with inadequate aim. I'll never understand that mentality.

Panfisher
February 1, 2012, 04:41 PM
There is a lot of difference between hunting deer with a .22LR and hunting them with a Muzzloader. Almost any cartridge does have an effective range, some may be measured in feet others in hundreds of yards. I think the crux of the argument goes back to carrying say a 7mm-08 Rem instead of a .300 Win mag on an antelope hunt. Regardless of what you choose to hunt with, bow, ML, pistol, stardard round, or belted magnum, as long as you know its capabilities and much more importantly YOUR capabilities and stay within them then it will work. I would much rather see someone take a plain jane old .270 he had uses so much it had the finish worn off than a brand new 30-378 Wthby that they hadn't shot enough for it to become second nature. Bad shots are bad shots regardless of the round used. Lots of game animals lost to poor bullet placement than poor choice of caliber/cartridge. A deer gut shot with a .300 Win mag will run off just as a deer gut shot with a .30-30 Win. Knowing when to NOT take a shot is just as important as taking the shot. I really don't think anyone is advocating use inadequate rounds for hunting, just saying you don't have to max out the firepower if you don't wish to.

JACK308
February 1, 2012, 04:53 PM
The all in one gun 45/70 deer to Grizz. elephant to.:D

WV_gunner
February 1, 2012, 06:06 PM
I use a .243 with 100 grain lead tipped bullets to hunt white tail. It's the smallest caliber I like to hunt with. For larger animals, which I've never hunted such as bear, I'd want something stronger like a .45-70 in my hands. My .243 has served me well and is a very accurate rifle. I'm comfortable with shooting deer up to around 300 yards with it, I've shot further too. But I do agree with the op to an extent, how many have shot a deer only to find it be full of .22 bullets or birdshot, or atleast have heard someone this has happened to? It's very dumb and happens a lot. Its been said that half of the deer killed in WV have been killed with .22s and that's probably right unfortunately. Many people poach around here so they want to be quiet, a .22 rifle works great for them. But not all of them are head shots and a few of those head shots arent kill shots. It frustrates me to hear about deer filled withbullet holes after a real hunter has took much of his time to hunt the deer and it's now wasted because of some idiot can't hunt and used a spotlight and a .22 rifle and only wounded the deer.
But other than the obvious, I don't think there are any minimum for deer. Anything stronger than .22lr is ok in my book for white tail. I know a guy that uses 7.62x39 and is good with it at 100 yards, with the original military sights. Me, I prefer a .243, a .243 mag specifically. They do make .243 shorts believe it or not. I'm also going to be using a 45-70 with open sights on the rainy and foggy days next season. And I'm wanting to start turkey hunting, I plan on using a Marlin Goosegun 12 gauge, that has a 3 foot barrel and a full choke. That should be plenty.

Twillia43
February 1, 2012, 11:39 PM
I believe rifles such as 30-30s are viewed a suffiecient on elk and larger game by some because thats wat our grandfathers and other ancestors used but let's not forget most times a family was very wealthy to have just one good rifle, they didn't buy a deer gun, bear gun, elk gun ect. They bought one gun an used it for everything and buy using it for everything they knew the rifle inside and out, they also more than likely didn't have money for a scope to top it and the scopes of the times were often never used because of fogging issues, let's face it with open sights anything past a hundred yards was completly covered when sighted with iron sights, thus giving a good refference, if you cant see the animal when you put the sights on it because the sights cover it the animal is to far, this also kept shots closer, Keeping velocity and knock down power up

Gunplummer
February 2, 2012, 09:23 AM
Been hunting deer there for over 20 years. A few years back I found a dead deer on Thanksgiving day down in a swamp. I figure it was hit the first day. I did not want to roll it around to see where it was hit because it was hot and fly blown. I saw a white spot on the base of one antler and looked closer. It was a small flaked area around a hole about .277-.284 big. (Soft points go through woody-like stuff like a wood pecker). I took a picture of it but don't use a computer enough to get it on here. Picture an 8 point rack heavy enough to have a bullet hole through the center of it. Anyway, just about any .270 or 7mm is a hefty round, but there lay a dead wasted deer. I don't doubt somebody just emptied out their rifle on a deer running away from them. I have shot doe with front legs missing (Some healed over), a buck with a back leg missing, one with a hole in the ear, gut shot, and various other gun related ailments. I don't ever remember running into a hunter with less than a .243 on the mountain I hunt in Pa., even though a .17 center fire is legal for deer.

Brian Pfleuger
February 2, 2012, 09:37 AM
Yep, that's the thing. Every story of legally shot deer that are gut/leg/antler/ear/face shot always seems to include fairly substantial cartridges.

It's not about the gun. It's about the person behind it.

I have only once shot a deer twice with a gun. That time was because he had a broken leg from being hit by a car and stumbled going over a log just as the shot went off.

I have wounded 3, all with a 12ga using slugs that produce either 1750 or 2500 ft/lbs energy and all at ranges under 75 yards.

It wasn't the gun that was inadequate.

2 of the 3 "should" have been good shots and I'll never know what I did wrong. The other was accidental, a deer I didn't see behind the one I meant to shoot.

Point being, it's "I'll never know what *I* did wrong." It wasn't the guns fault and it rarely is the guns fault.

jimbob86
February 2, 2012, 10:33 AM
They do make .243 shorts believe it or not.

Anybody got an idea what that might be? 6mmBR?

Brian Pfleuger
February 2, 2012, 10:47 AM
Anybody got an idea what that might be? 6mmBR?

Well, it's an odd way of referring to it, as a "243 short" as it's not the same relationship as a 22 long and short, for instance, but there is both the 243 Winchester Short Mag and Winchester Super Short Mag.

The later of which is an incredible but unfortunately "factory dead" cartridge. It will push a 55gr bullet almost 4,200 fps.

I'm looking for one now if anybody has one to get rid of... I've got a 270wsm for trade. ;)

Gunplummer
February 2, 2012, 10:47 AM
I think there is a new .243 short magnum out now. ???

bk688
February 2, 2012, 10:58 AM
I have no issue with people using whatever they want to take an animal so long as the animal is dropped quickly.

First, for those who think they can make a 500 meter shot, I't probably been 10-20 yeas since you've seen the Marine Corps, so you need to actually do some target practice at the range to see if you can still make a clean shot at that distance. And holding a 1 inch group with a scoped rifle at 100 meters does not count.

Second, any animal will drop with a .22 lr to the brain, but will it penetrate deep enough into the chest? Will it cause enough damage? Or, will that bullet just break the animals shoulder blade because you tried to take it with a 500 meter shot with a 30-30?

I'm not advocating any specific caliber here, because I tend to stick with what has worked in the past. I'm not saying I wouldn't get my sights on an elk at 500 meters with a Remington 700 / .308, but by the time I felt it was ready to start the squeeze (probably 10 minutes later) the darn thing would probably be gone. What I am saying is to actually check your skills on a regular basis and that there is rarely suck a thing as overkill.

mdd
February 3, 2012, 09:07 PM
I read the first couple pages of the thread and saw nothing I disagree with. Except this by bigfatts:

" It doesn't matter if it's a game animal or a pest or nuisance animal. Taking the chance of wounding something and leaving it to die a slow painful death either from the shot or starving because it's crippled is simply inhumane. "

Game animals I agree. Pest and nuisance in my world are coyotes. Except they aren't just pests or nuisances. They like to kill my calves. Cattle are at an all time high in price because they are at a record low in numbers. I have land payments, cattle payments, and equipment payments to make from my cattle sales. Every calf that I took to market in January of this year (born February through march last year) has 20 months of my time and work invested in it. More than that if you want to go back to sorting through and picking which bulls will go with which cows based on genetic combinations. 20 months to get a return on my investments of time, work, and money. If you don't raise livestock, you don't know the feeling of finding a newborn half-eaten by a coyote. If you don't know that feeling, don't preach to me about what is and is not ethical to use on a coyote. I'd gouge their eyes with a plastic spoon and let them starve to death if I could get close enough to one.

Gunplummer
February 3, 2012, 10:53 PM
I think the first guy would tell you "Don't bring a spoon to a knife fight".

Edward429451
February 3, 2012, 11:07 PM
It goes both ways, some will feed the ego by using too little gun and some feed the ego by using too much gun. I remember reading an old hunting guide and it said that you want to shoot a cartridge that'll give you 250 ft lbs at the animal.

I don't call people out on it but imo, these guys who shoot game at extreme distances aren't really hunting. I know a lot goes into the shot at that range and I think it would be an accomplishment to make that shot...but it's not hunting, it's more about the shot.

sc928porsche
February 4, 2012, 01:47 AM
I'm a bit fond of cannons and essentially lazy. Tracking game through 300 yds of dense brush isnt exactly my cup of tea. I prefer that the game drop within 50 yards or so. Since I quit hunting with the smaller cartridges all my game has remained within 50 yds of impact. Yes, I get as close as I can and yes, I put the bullet through the vitals. Ive had to track deer shot in the heart with 150 gr corelokt 06 for about a quarter of a mile (its amazing what they can do) but with the 300, 50 yds has been the limit.

Interior damage is much different too. With the 06, damage was kept close to the bullet channel. With the 300, internal organs were all damaged.

To each their own.

Mike1234
February 4, 2012, 10:58 AM
mdd... in your situation I can certainly understand taking every shot you possibly can even if you can't guarantee a clean kill. However, I'm sure you would never intentionally only wound a coyote knowing that the beast will suffer. I'm sure you'd agree that is indeed cruel.

WV_gunner
February 4, 2012, 08:01 PM
My problem with using big and powerful guns on animals is it destroys a lot of meat. In my opinion, a .243 does a lot of damage. Some guys use .300 mags and its way excessive.

And about the .243 shorts, I've never heard of a gun that uses them. But I seen a box of ammo at gander mountain. Weird store, carries a bunch of oddball stuff but can't even order 10 gauge shells.

thallub
February 5, 2012, 10:17 AM
My problem with using big and powerful guns on animals is it destroys a lot of meat. In my opinion, a .243 does a lot of damage. Some guys use .300 mags and its way excessive.

Bingo.

When i hunt in WV i take the deer to a processor who is a long time friend. By noon the first day of hunting season there are rows of deer awaiting processing. i always walk down the rows; amazed at how badly some are shot up. It's not unusual to see a deer thats been shot through both hams and both shoulders. When you look at the tags; the vast majority of shot up deer were killed by out of state hunters.

Most WV hunters pick their shots carefully and lose very little meat. The owner tells me hunters often get incensed when they get their shot up deer back in one grocery bag.

Mike1234
February 5, 2012, 12:09 PM
^^^ The title of the thread is "Bring Enough Gun", not "Bring Too Much Gun".;)

What's so difficult to understand about not using a .22LR on deer? The OP isn't suggesting using a .50BMG. He's just suggesting to use common sense.:)

Brian Pfleuger
February 5, 2012, 01:27 PM
Shooting deer through all their meaty parts isn't a caliber specific problem either.

I've seen deer shot with every power level imaginable, short of 50BMG. In every instance, from archery to 12ga to muzzleloaders and rifles, meaty parts that got shot get ruined. Meaty parts that didn't, aren't ruined.

Mike1234
February 5, 2012, 03:21 PM
...

Panfisher
February 5, 2012, 03:22 PM
I don't think anyone is advocating using less than enough gun. The debate comes in where is that line. Once you reach that mystical level of having enough gun for the situation, animal, range, and shooter all else is under the control of the one pulling the trigger. A miss or gut shot from a .30-06 is no better than a miss or gut shot by a .30-30. If no one wanted to use "marginal" weapons or methods there would be no archery or black powder season. In those cases the hunter must even better understand their and their equipments limitations.

Mike1234
February 5, 2012, 03:31 PM
^^^ IMHO, the OP expressed common sense boundaries regarding "bringing ENOUGH gun". That's my opinion too and, I'm NOT a hunter, but I do care about dispatching an animal as humanely as is practicable while still retaining the most meat.

Too many folks don't seem to care as much about humane kills as they do about saving 2 cents or bragging rights.

rickyrick
February 5, 2012, 05:28 PM
My interpretation of the op's post was an acceptable group of calibers for each type of animal. Not 22lr for a moose. It is all about common sense, and even more about using the right judgement when deciding to take the shot.

I think buck fever accounts for most of the injured animals. A hunter must pass on the shot if all is not within a predefined set of rules. If you have a mental checklist of firing rules then you have time, or may bypass buck fever all together. Each can have thier own set of parameters but....everyone should include mental and physical state of the hunter.


I use .223 on wild pigs, and I have caught crap for it. But because I am very disciplined about my shots, none have run away. This has been proved on many pigs too numerous to even count anymore.

reconcoupe
February 8, 2012, 01:16 PM
Stopped reading page 2, but still wanted to throw my experience in.

My first Mulie, 30-06 180 grain SP, 150 yds through the lungs, 160ish pound doe ran about 100 yards.

Brothers first Mulie, 243 110 grain SP (if i remember correctly), 200 yds through the lungs, 200+ pound buck took about 10 steps and dropped.

Had a friends dad who I hunted with a few times, day trips elk mostly, 25-06, took an elk just about every year. Watched him make a 300 yd shot on a nice sized 5x5, dropped where it stood.

Know your limits (yes I know for a fact I can make a Sub MOA shot to 800yds over flat land if i have my kestrel) know your rifle and ammuntions limits (I know how much est. energy all my rifles have, 223 all the way through 7mm remmag, has out to 800 yds, though I'd never make an 800 yd shot in the field).

The deer/elk/moose/bears haven't got bigger- while ammo performance and lethality has got better. Hunters have always made bad calls and lost alot of game, but this new fangled internet has probably made you more aware of those who do.

MJN77
February 8, 2012, 03:33 PM
I do most of my deer hunting with a .44-40 or .30-30. Never have lost one yet. With the .44-40, I have shot deer from 25 yards out to about 110 yards and none of them went more than ten yards after being hit. Like many have said on here, it's about knowing the limitations of you and your gun. Not what size cartridge you use. I have read about buffalo being killed in the 1800s with the old .44 rimfire Henry round, albeit from close range. Luther "Yellowstone" Kelly is said to have killed 42 of them with a Henry rifle. For those that don't know, it's kinda like a pistol round. The only deer I had to track (that I shot) was the first deer I ever shot. I was twelve and I shot a doe at about 20 yards with a .30-06. I was nervous and "jerked" the trigger. The bullet just grazed the deer's neck, but cut deep enough to cut her jugular. She went about 100 yards before she bled out. At least she was easy to follow.

tahoe2
February 12, 2012, 02:06 AM
thanks for the support! It's true I said "bring enough"--"not too much" , I don't even own a magnum rifle. 7mmx57, 8mmx57, .280 Rem, .300 Savage, .375 winchester; all of these have different limitations, but I know their limitations and use them accordingly for the task at hand. There seems to be a lot of emotion tied up in this topic. I agree with all those voices about having the skill to accomplish that goal(1 shot-1 kill), as I stated earlier in this thread, it is all of our responsibility to maintain proficiency of our craft to insure a quick & clean kill. I'm not the guy that missed the shot !