personally i would never use it because if your hunting trophies in MN I think it would kill them of lead poisoning before the wound would
Good golly kid, what you gonna do, grind it up and feed it to them in a bucket of oats. You have read the thread haven't you?
I would put the 410 slug near the bottom of the acceptable deer cartridges. I think this conclusion is fairly well support by the fact that it is such a controversial choice. If the 410 slug was well into either the acceptable or unacceptable group of cartridges the number of heated disagreements on the subject would not exist. After all my study and testing I believe the 410 slug is sufficient for deer assuming you also meet the two other area following this one. They didn't match the destructive power of my 41 and 44 mag revolvers but it easily matched or bettered the 357 magnum using 158 gr SP bullets.
But can we put some numbers to it, to the lethality of the 410 slug? If you read my sections on the 410 slug and testing 410 slugs you can see that most 410 slug have in excess of 700ft-lbs of kinetic energy at the muzzle. For comparison that is slightly more than most factory 357 Magnum cartridges fired from a handgun a little less than most factory 41 Remington Magnum cartridges fired from a handgun.
Although comparable in kinetic energy the 410 slug is a much different beast than either of these two well established hunting handgun calibers. The 410 slug although possessing a sizable amount of kinetic energy, it achieves this energy through the use of a light weight slug going relatively fast. A typical 357 Magnum hunting load is 158gr JHP and the 41 Remington Magnum are frequently loaded with 210 grain bullets. In comparison the 410 uses a relatively light slug ranging from about ~92gr to 114gr. So to achieve the energy it does so with a relative high velocity of 1750-1830fps, your 357mag and 41mag are both in the 1200-1300fps.
(2) Does the weapon have the effective range for the terrain and the discipline of the hunter?
The first part of this question is relatively easy. The 410 slug is a short range weapon, plain and simple. There is no doing anything to make it shoot further. Even if you can accurate shoot a little 410 slug out to 200 yards it has run out of enough kinetic energy for deer long before it gets that far. The light weight 410 slug has a very poor ballistic coefficient and thus has lost nearly half of there energy 50-60 yards down range. With the lightest Remington and Winchester 2.5 inch slugs I would not recommend going over 50 maybe 60yard and even then you need to have a good accurate hit. With the heavier Federal, 3inch Winchester or Brenneke slugs you might stretch it to 75 yards but no further. So if you’re going to hunt deer with the 410 slug you should be hunting for close range shots. If all your shots end up being longer range shots I would suggest picking another gun.
My own testing has been done on ice filled liter jugs in the dead of winter when it was around 8 degrees and it had been below 0 the previous night, those jugs were hard and solid. From 8 yards, the closest I shot, out to 33 yards, the farthest I shot, they pulverized the ice in those jugs and I was hitting those bottles with every shot with an old bolt action smooth bore with a modified choke. So much for not accurate enough.