View Full Version : Solid copperhead load for 12ga

July 30, 2002, 08:27 AM
A friend of mine has discovered several copperheads around a small pond and creek on his property. He claims this especially bugs him since children sometimes visit the pond and creek on hot days. He has invited me over to do what I can with my Mossberg 500.

Yesterday, I stopped by Wally's and picked out some Remington #8 shot 3/4oz 2 3/4" shells (listed at 1390 FPS). I didn't see a snake that day as I have before, but I did "mow" the banks of the pond for him. The shot decimated the vegetation quite nicely, but I wonder if the #8s have the punch to kill a large copperhead at 25'.

I am not too familiar with shotguns, being more of a rifleman myself. Does #8 shot seem too light? Would #7 1/2 or #6 serve the purpose better?

Most shot will be from 10' to 25' from an 18' cylinder choke barrel.


Al Thompson
July 30, 2002, 09:48 AM
I've killed a bunch of snakes with those loads. Pattern density is what your after and performance at 25 feet should be great.

Have your friend clear brush and rubbish away from the area if possible - that'll help the most.

July 30, 2002, 03:53 PM
most any shotgun load, will make a mess of most any living thing, as long as you hit it

July 30, 2002, 05:38 PM
I think that load would work pretty well for snakes. My trouble with snakes is that anytime I have a gun around, there are no snakes. But if I leave the gun in the truck/house/wherever, I always run into a couple.

Get those durn copperheads! My brother-in-law had a run in with one not to long ago.


July 30, 2002, 05:50 PM
Snowdog,8's will work wonders on them "short neckers" same pellet I use in the 44spl loads,one other thing he can try,,buy some "snake away" from the local feed and seed ,believe it or not it will work,some thing to do with the sulffer{sp?} in it

July 30, 2002, 06:36 PM
Hot weather, look for em with light at night.
First and last light of the day pretty good too.


Dave McC
July 30, 2002, 08:25 PM
A shotgun's overkill on a snake, but if that's what you have, use 7-9 shot. I prefer a hoe, long enough and doesn't tear up the meat.

Remove the head carefully, the jaws can reflex snap after the snake is defunct. Skin and dress,cut into 2' pieces. Rinse in cold water then soak in skim milk. Use Tempura batter or what you use on fried chicken, in hot oil. Watch out for bones...

July 31, 2002, 12:54 AM
I hang em vertically, skin, then strip the two loooong tenderloins off. Minimal bone problem.

Dave right.....caution around the head. Just gettin snagged on a fang can be a bother.


July 31, 2002, 03:46 AM
I've used skeet loads, from 12 ga down to 410, early & late in the day as CR Sam said. Good eatin' too.

But I gotta ask--I once lived and shared a pond with 3 neighbors, never a snake. Curious I asked my elderly neighbor whom lived there when pond built. He grinned, "notice the white ducks" Yeah I replied--"they keep the snakes down". Is this true?? I never doubted him, never saw a snake, and he shared a lot of "wisdom" , home maintenence, gardening, hunting etc.