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Old January 6, 2014, 08:47 PM   #1
sbaker10
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Magnification for 200-300 yard coyote shots?

I am trying to decide what level of magnification I will need for coyote shots across a 300 yard open field, now behind the stand and to the sides is about 50 yards to the treeline and coyotes can come out any part of the field so I may take some shots at 100, even 50 yards, but the last shot a couple years ago I took was at the farthest end.

I am considering using a 1-4 power scope as It could be used for close range target shooting, home defense as well as mid range shooting. I'm not entirely sure what a coyote would look like at 300 yard though, Ive seen some pictures online and I could easily place rounds inside a targets head at 100 yards based off the pictures by 300 might be tricky, then again cameras tend to make things look farther away so it might appear a lot larger in real life. I can hit a coyote sized target at 150 yards using my mosin nagant so I can't imagine it would be hard to hit twice that with 4x magnification



Another option is just to buy a big scope as I will be sitting in a tree stand the whole time, it would let me zoom in as much as I like but the downside is Its only use would be coyote hunting as I dislike high magnification target shooting. That means 95% of the time it would just be sitting in the safe. And I would have to readjust it everytime I went hunting.


But what level is needed for coyotes in the 200-300 yard range? If decent marksmen only needs 4x Ill go with that but if someone who shoots better than me wouldn't make that shot I wouldn't want to either.
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Old January 6, 2014, 09:06 PM   #2
Bwell
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A 1x4 magnification will work just fine, I can hit a milk jug at 200 yards with my red dot. If you don't want to go with a higher mag scope that's what I would do.

I have two rifles I use for coyote, one with a 3x9 and a red dot. The 3x9 makes it easy to hit them at a distance, but the red dot it a little more challenging and fun.

Another thing you could do is buy a red dot and add a 3x or 6x magnifier with a swivel mount. That way if you need to reach out and touch something you can, but still use it as a close range gun when you choose also. Check out primary arms, their micro dot with magnifier is a sweet setup for a decent price.
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Old January 6, 2014, 09:11 PM   #3
sbaker10
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Originally Posted by Bwell View Post
A 1x4 magnification will work just fine, I can hit a milk jug at 200 yards with my red dot. If you don't want to go with a higher mag scope that's what I would do.

I have two rifles I use for coyote, one with a 3x9 and a red dot. The 3x9 makes it easy to hit them at a distance, but the red dot it a little more challenging and fun.

Another thing you could do is buy a red dot and add a 3x or 6x magnifier with a swivel mount. That way if you need to reach out and touch something you can, but still use it as a close range gun when you choose also. Check out primary arms, their micro dot with magnifier is a sweet setup for a decent price.
That was my other idea a red dot with a 6x magnifier for long shots and the normal red dot for anything else. But I wasn't sure if the red dot might be larger than the coyote then.

If a red dot will hit a milk jug than with some practice 4x should be plenty at 300, Ill hopefully have a few hundred to spend but I would prefer to spend a couple hundred on sight and mount and practice ammo for the rest. I used to be a good shot in my opinion but I've only just now started shooting again in 5 years so I am rusty
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Old January 6, 2014, 09:14 PM   #4
MarkCO
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Can and want are different words. I am a big fan of the Burris 1-4 MTAC as a do-all optic for a general purpose AR. The 1x at the bottom has some use up close and personal with both eyes open. I am able to shoot 10" plates out to 600 yards with almost boring regularity if there is no time pressure with the 1-4. So it can work. On my .300 BO, which I use for deer and hogs, I went to a 1.5-6, however it does not see any potential SD use in that rifle. At 6X on the same gun with the same ammo, I drop my 300M group size from 3" with the 4x to under 2" at 6x. Put the fixed 10X on and I can get under 1.5" at 300m.

If I had one rig and wanted it for yotes out to 300+ yards, SD and target shooting, I might be inclined to look at a 2-7 and slap a LG ND3AR on it. Open it up for night yote shooting and close it up for use as a laser to maybe 50m for defense. I guess you could get a fixed 5 or 6 and do the same thing, but not as versatile. I am not sure I would want to shoot yotes at 300m at 4x, but I could if I had to. 6-8x would be my choice depending on the reticle.
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Old January 6, 2014, 09:33 PM   #5
Nathan
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Not sure it is the best, but the Nikon Monarch 3 2.5-10x42 BDC really has this kind of shooting well. They also make a 2-8x32 BDC for a lighter package. Great way to shoot a coyote out to 600 yards with some level of accuracy.
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Old January 6, 2014, 09:38 PM   #6
jmr40
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A 1-4X will do what you are asking. More magnification would be helpful at longer ranges, or for smaller targets. A 2-7X might be another option. The 7X will help with more precision, but 2X really is a lot slower up close than 1X. A 3-9X or greater is another option, but really takes a lot of versatility away. It becomes a single purpose hunting rifle instead of a multi-purpose SD and hunting rifle. Just have to decide which is more important to you.
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Old January 6, 2014, 10:05 PM   #7
Willie Lowman
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I would not go with a higher magnification scope for hunting out to 300 yards.

I say that because of my experience shooting my 308 at similar distances. With the scope at 10x I have to search around to find my target at 300 yards.

I would feel more comfortable taking a shot on a 'yote at that distance with the scope dialed down between 3.5x to 5x.
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Old January 6, 2014, 10:13 PM   #8
sbaker10
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Thankfully the largest field is 300 yards or a bit less so I know what my maximum capability needs to be. My AR was intended to be a target/woods gun I just happen to shoot a coyotes with not the other way around so that's why I would remove a larger scope in between hunting trips. Ideally I'll be able to shoot them between 100-200 yards I just don't want to pass on a 300 yard shot because I can barely see him and he won't get closer
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Old January 6, 2014, 10:29 PM   #9
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My preference is a 2 x 7 or 2.5 x 8 always set at the lowest power unless and until I need a higher power. I have never recorded the range of the shot but I have a vague memory of the miles I tracked a wounded coyote.
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Old January 7, 2014, 11:45 AM   #10
603Country
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Quite an interesting sequence of comments on required magnification. I'm on the other end of the spectrum, in that my coyote gun (220) has a 6.5-20 on it and the rest of the rifles are mostly 4.5-14's. I normally have my scope set on 8 power for coyote/deer/pigs when I'm in the open. Up in the tangle, I go to the lowest power of the range. I don't have any problem at all finding a coyote with the scope on 8 power. Maybe it's just the decades of shooting that enable me to do that, but I sure don't see it as a difficult thing to do. Bottom line is that I would absolutely not even consider a 1-4 magnification range for use on a rifle I intended to use to hunt coyotes, but that's just me.

I will admit that last year I lost a coyote because my scope was set on 20 power (from a recent range session), and that sure caused me problems in finding him in the scope. My fault, dang it.

Still, buy what you feel most comfortable in using.
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Old January 7, 2014, 11:50 AM   #11
Brian Pfleuger
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This is exactly the situation where a 4-20x shines.

http://www.cameralandny.com/optics/minox.pl?page=66030

Any of the answer given in this thread might be considerations.
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Old January 7, 2014, 01:57 PM   #12
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I just dropped a coyote the other day at 302 yards.
The scope on my rifle is a Burris 3x9 power with the ballistic Plex reticle, I keep it dialed in on 5 power and very seldom change it.
About the only time I use 9 power is off the bench when I'm shooting paper.

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Old January 7, 2014, 08:08 PM   #13
Art Eatman
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Jumping a coyote or deer and needing to make a running shot means needing a wide field of view. That's low power. On slow moving or stationary critters, it doesn't really matter how high the scope goes.
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Old January 7, 2014, 08:37 PM   #14
sbaker10
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Can anyone tell me the closest effective use of a 2-7 scope? I am thinking I might get higher quality optics for my money if I were to look for a 2-7 but I still want my gun to be useable at room range if need be.
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Old January 7, 2014, 09:13 PM   #15
MarkCO
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I just spent about 15 minutes running some dry fire drills with three Burris Optics on ARs...a 1-4MTAC @ 1x, a 1.5-6MTAC @ 1.5 and a 2-7 FFII @ 2x.

The 1x really never goes blurry, the 1.5 goes blurry at about 3 feet and the 2x goes blurry at about 6 feet. Both eyes open, snap drills to an 8" plate, and accounting for mechanical offset at 5, 10, 15 and 30 feet, the 1x is just way easier than the 2x. The 1.5 seems about the same as the 1x once I got to 30 feet.

I just picked up a Mossberg MVP Patrol that I am going to use for practice for the kids, as well as Predator hunting, so it was relevant to my decision for that as well. While I think I am going to put a Burris XTRII 2-10 on the Patrol, for what you want, I still think your best choice is a 1-4 or a 1.5-6. If you want to spend more coin, you could go with a 1-5 or a 1-6.

I know some folks like BSA (I am not one of them) so you could always consider this: http://www.midwayusa.com/product/994...-reticle-matte
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Old January 7, 2014, 10:21 PM   #16
sbaker10
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Doesn't look like there is really a perfect scope for my needs. Anyone have any experience with how quick detach mounts hold when removed and placed back on the same rifle?
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Old January 7, 2014, 11:23 PM   #17
Art Eatman
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Looking back at the opening post, and looking at the primary uses, I figure that any reasonable-quality 3x9 or 2x7 would work just fine.

Self-defense at very close range with a scoped rifle is really a low-probability need which is more easily met via shotgun or handgun. Me, I wouldn't even worry about it. Just my own opinion, of course, but at five or ten yards I figure I could hit a large target by shooting from the hip. When I messed around with that in casual manner, hits were easy come by.

I'd set up for hunting probabilities, myself.
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Old January 7, 2014, 11:35 PM   #18
sbaker10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Art Eatman View Post
Looking back at the opening post, and looking at the primary uses, I figure that any reasonable-quality 3x9 or 2x7 would work just fine.

Self-defense at very close range with a scoped rifle is really a low-probability need which is more easily met via shotgun or handgun. Me, I wouldn't even worry about it. Just my own opinion, of course, but at five or ten yards I figure I could hit a large target by shooting from the hip. When I messed around with that in casual manner, hits were easy come by.

I'd set up for hunting probabilities, myself.

I think a 5.56 ar15 is a better defensive weapon than a handguns due to accuracy and capacity however you have a point in that a I'd there was a situation where 2x was too much it would be hard to miss from the hip.

I think in probabaly gonna go eith the 2-7 Redfield
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Old January 7, 2014, 11:50 PM   #19
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Not sure what type rifle you are putting it on, if it is an AR flat-top then a scope change is easy and quick. Otherwise I would opt for a 2-7 I have used a 2-7 Burris on an AR and it was quick and easy, not as quick as my 1.5-4.5 but much better for distance. Any good 2-7 or 3-9 should work just fine, even a good 4-12 would worry me at all, keep it turned to the low end and adjust magnification up as you need it. The higher magnification scopes when not used from a bench or at least a bipod appear to have a lot of movement at higher magnification but that may be my inner wobble.
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Old January 7, 2014, 11:58 PM   #20
sbaker10
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Originally Posted by Panfisher View Post
Not sure what type rifle you are putting it on, if it is an AR flat-top then a scope change is easy and quick. Otherwise I would opt for a 2-7 I have used a 2-7 Burris on an AR and it was quick and easy, not as quick as my 1.5-4.5 but much better for distance. Any good 2-7 or 3-9 should work just fine, even a good 4-12 would worry me at all, keep it turned to the low end and adjust magnification up as you need it. The higher magnification scopes when not used from a bench or at least a bipod appear to have a lot of movement at higher magnification but that may be my inner wobble.
Flat top ar15 I have the option of mounting the hubble telescope on it since I will only be coyote hunting from a supported stationary position and could simply remove the scope when not hunting but I was thinking with a 1-4 and I am hoping 2-7 I can still use it to knock cans over at 40-50 feet without having to hunt them down with the scope. Otherwise it seems kind of silly to have bought an ar15 instead of a bolt action if I'll only be able to use it at 75 yards and further
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Old January 8, 2014, 12:06 AM   #21
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Lots of people like super powered scopes. Others like low powered scopes. If it I was me I would look at some thing mid range. I like about 5 power.
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Old January 8, 2014, 09:53 AM   #22
Art Eatman
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I don't like to give advice. I much prefer to show examples of what I have done or what I have learned.

I've had no problem hitting prairie dogs to 300 yards with 7X. I've had no problem hitting a deer's neck at 25 yards with 2X and 3X--or in making a chest shot on a buck at 350 yards with 3X.

I've poked my .22 out the window and shot squirrels at 10 yards with 4X.

I have a Weaver K4 on my AR. I figure that if I can see the target, I can hit the target. So far, so good, for many and many a year.

IOW, I think folks worry too much over non-essential details.
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Old January 8, 2014, 10:27 AM   #23
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Agree Art, if he is looking for just shooting at Game and target shooting. When you add in the mix of HD, IMHO, it should be optimized for that. If you miss a yote or a prairie rat, no big deal, you find another one and get that. If you have a marginalized rig biased towards hunting, the one time you need it save your life, not a good choice then. Sure, the chances that you may need to use an AR to save innocent life is pretty small, but IF you must, it better work.
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Old January 8, 2014, 12:14 PM   #24
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My 2 coyote rifles are an AR in 223 with a 4 power Weaver, and a SAKO 222 Rem with a 4X-12X Redfield.
The 222 I usually keep on about 5-6 power. The K4 is not adjustable.

In the last 6 years I have killed more coyotes with my AR than I have with my SAKO.

I have killed a lot of them between 300 and 400 yards, so I have to agree with the gents here that say you need no more power than 4X for 300 yards or less.

Field of view is important, but magnification isn't so much.
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