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Old February 27, 2006, 07:21 PM   #1
rnovi
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Join Date: July 10, 2005
Location: So. Cal.
Posts: 401
First time Bunny-busting.

This is the first year I've ever experienced the joy of hunting. It started with chukar in the desert with three friends and I'm hooked. I managed to take six birds this season over four hunting days - I'd call that a successful first season!

So I get a call from one of my hunting buddies - going bunny hunting this weekend. The main purpose of this is to hone a few skills for deer season...and since I've never been deer hunting I figure anything I do will help. Check with the wife and day is clear.

Actually, she said "Good. I don't want you around anyway on Sunday." errrr...wait a sec hon...

Pack a rifle, coffee, blaze orange cap and my 6" GP100. Really, I should be using the rifle in preparation for the deer season but the GP100 fits so well in my hand... I spent a whopping $16 on an Uncle Mike's holster and cut the upper front 3" out of the holster to fit my Red-Dot equipped GP100. Amazing how easily a soldering iron with a blade tip cuts through cordura and then melts the edges so they don't fray.

The four of us get to the spot around 8am and unload. I strap on my revlover and a couple speedloads much to the dismay of my rifle totting friends. Dump a few .38 specials into my pocket for single spares, slap in my nifty low db earplugs and my camelback and off we go. We split into two groups of two, each group about 50 yards apart. I team up with my veteran hunting friend Ralph. I figure hey, he can teach me a thing or two as we go.

Next thing I know I hear the word "BUNNY!" and his rifle comes up. The GP100 slides out of the holster and I'm looking, finger off the trigger.

"Never mind. It went over the ridge."

We trudge off another couple hundred yards and crest the hill. We stop for a moment, gaze over the land and a bunny bolts from the brush not more than 10 yards away, streaking down the little valley in front of us. I take a few steps back and Ralph steps forward. A sharp bark and the bunny hits the deck with one shot from Ralph's Browning .308 lever gun. We pace it off at around a 40 yard running shot. The bunny was basically cleaned with the shot, near completely disembowled.

Ralph finished the quick cleaning while I squeezed a bit of water out of my camel bak for the rinsing. Pack it up and keep on going.

We wave to our buddies on the other ridge: first kill goes to us. A few moments later it sounds like they have encountered a mass "Rabbit Wave Attack". Six shots later they just shrugged and moved on.

Ralph and I laughed a bit and we stopped to take a look around. A bunny busts out from 20 yards away and I pull the GP100 out. The first shot goes a bit behind the bunny. Second shot is ahead. Third shot: hit somewhere in the hillside but no dust to note where. The bunny is breaking clear around 80 yards away when the 158 grain .38 special load catches it on a quartering away shot in the side, exiting just over the neck. It flops in the dust for a second when I hear:

"Lucky bastard" followed by "you won't be doing that again".

My first bunny was an 80 yard shot with a red-dot sighted revolver, shooting DA.

A bunny hopped along some 500 yards away. we could see the movement on the far away hill. Ralph looked at me and said "Fine. Hit that!". I held 8 feet over and pulled the trigger. Nope, I didn't hit the bunny. I was about 3 feet short. Still, that rabbit took off like greased lightning. That shot was close enough to get Ralph grumbling for the rest of the day.

The second bunny was dropped with a 40 yard broadside shot on the run with my second pull of the trigger.

The third bunny dropped by kneecaping at 40 yards out as well. The 158 grain SWC had punched right through both back legs right at the knees. I had to finish it off with a second shot from 20 yards. I really didn't want to see it suffer at all.

All in all, the four of us got five bunnies and I got three of them. Needless to say they were a bit miffed that a pistol shot better than their scoped rifles. We sat around and BS'ed each other, drinking coffee and smoking cigars.

It was a helluva day!


***retrospect***
This was the first time I'd ever hunted something other than a bird. I've done a lot of shooting but never really any hunting until this year. 36 years of life and this was the first time. I've seen plenty of blood in my life but this was the first time I've ever seen the destructive capabilities of a gun up close. What amazed me the most was just how much force a softloaded .38 special still brings to the table. Yes, it was just a bunny, but it was still a real example of what can happen in the nature of our sport.

It dawned on me, quite clearly, just how valuable the lessons of hunting and firearm safety really are. Oh sure, you can read about it, you can see pictures. But it's not until you are right there, up close and personal, with a rabbits insides turned out that it really bangs home.

I started hunting birds - it's strange. In the cleaning I didn't find one single pellet actually in the vitals area of the birds. Skin hits, penetration to maybe a half an inch. Even the bird that got blasted at point blank range (I watched the wad smack into it) didn't have pellets in the body cavity. I shoot a rabbit and there is no bullet to be found anywhere, just an opened up animal that needs to be dressed.

A very valuable lesson in understanding balistics and a very valuable lesson in life.

(PS: Turns out the wife wanted to do some lingerie shopping on Sunday... ! )
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Old February 27, 2006, 07:56 PM   #2
kingudaroad
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Join Date: March 11, 2005
Location: austin
Posts: 735
Quote:
going bunny hunting this weekend
Quote:
Next thing I know I hear the word "BUNNY!"
Quote:
The bunny is breaking clear around 80 yards away when the 158 grain .38 special load catches it on a quartering away shot in the side, exiting just over the neck.
Quote:
I held 8 feet over and pulled the trigger
Quote:
up close and personal, with a rabbits insides turned out that it really bangs home.
Quote:
Turns out the wife wanted to do some lingerie shopping on Sunday
Quote:
It was a helluva day!
Helluva day indeed
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Old February 28, 2006, 10:44 AM   #3
Duxman
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Join Date: February 16, 2005
Location: VA
Posts: 1,294
Very inspirational. Taking my first hunting class hopefully this Friday.
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Old February 28, 2006, 11:05 AM   #4
Wild Bill Bucks
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Join Date: December 28, 2005
Location: Southeastern Oklahoma, Next door to Sasquatch
Posts: 1,264
Hunting Rabbits with a .38 caliber, self defense hand gun, and a .308 caliber deer rifle? New one on me, we just use .22 rifle or 20 gauge shotgun down here.
Our rabbits here only weigh in at about 4 lbs though.
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