View Full Version : Bee Hunting

December 14, 2008, 09:10 AM
Just thought i'd mention an experience i had with reloading shotshells.

When i was 16-18, i spent my summers working at a scout camp as a junior range instructor. We had a terrible time with bees building nests on and about the range and after thinking about it for awhile, i loaded a 20ga.shotshell
full of sand, found an errant hornet and vaporized him. Way to much power. We reduced the powder charge and soon found ourselves in demand as exterminators.

The most memorable mission? Clearing the indoor/outdoor cafeteria of bees. You could shoot an entire nest from 10 feet or so and it would basically disapear along with the wasps. Wingshots were classic pass shots.
The sand never damaged wallcoverings or painted surfaces, least not bad.

I'll bet many scouts wondered why the cafeteria floor was covered in sand next time they came through! J.R.

December 14, 2008, 09:43 AM
If that worked well, I would look at a different media like walnut hulls etc. to reduce barrel wear...

December 14, 2008, 10:28 AM
Good point. At the time we were using BSA supplied rifles and shotguns whick were donated by various(AMERICAN ONLY!! manufacturers. The shotties were standard topper model singles. We did clean them all (30+) daily, but wern't to concerned about long term reliability. Walnut shell media would do a good job if it were fine enough.

Only reason i mentioned this is a buddy of mine bought a gamo air shotgun, which flings a tiny cloud of #9 shot. He told me he had a ball around the farm shooting carpenter bees that were eating up his shed structure. The wasp nests were out of the question as they were to big for the load of pellets to demolish. He ended up running. I thought about it and told him that next summer, i'd have his solution:)

December 14, 2008, 12:45 PM
try moth hunting, load the shells with dust. find some apple orchards that will let you to pop them in. sounds crazy right. but i have heard of done overseas.

December 14, 2008, 01:15 PM
Fairy, pixie or angel?

Ok:) sorry. Guess it'll throw whatever you put in it.
A guy brought a 186? springfield to us one time, to see if the gun could be cleaned up and/or even fired. In checking the gun out we realized it was still loaded. We "wormed" and shook out the pillowtick wad and what appeared to be nails, cut into 1/16 inch pieces. Bout like modern day hevi-shot. If that, if sand, why not dust..J.R.

December 14, 2008, 02:39 PM
Our variation on this was loading 22 long rifle shells with salt. Pull the bullet with pliars, tamp in a tiny bit of tissue, fill with salt, and tamp another bit of tissue.
Shot from a revolver, they will drop flies, bees, etc. at up to maybe 6 or 8 feet.
Kinda makes me want to try it with 357's.:D jd

bottom rung
December 14, 2008, 11:35 PM
I wasted a box of .22RF shot shells on those pesky carpenter bees and missed every time! I was using my 10/22 which probably isn't the best gun for that job. I am thinking .22 revolver, but I like the 20 gauge idea. The neighbors wouldn't though.

December 15, 2008, 06:35 PM
I remember the sight of my dad, every summer, chasing carpenter bees with a badminton raquet.

I must have pestiological interest as i came up with the idea of the weed wacker. Hold the spinning head up in the air and every carpenter bee within their territorial area will come over to check it out. They don't seem to see the spinning string and arn't hard to put the chop on. Thing is, they are smart enough to remember and the ones that survive won't ever come in close again. Thats when you put the 20 on im:)

Death from Afar
December 15, 2008, 07:56 PM
I dont want to be a kill joy, but replacing factory loads with anything other the projectile of the same weight and caliber is a very, very, very, very , very bad idea. Guns have blown up for a lot less. :(

December 15, 2008, 08:09 PM
As i've stopped using shotgun primers as targets for my pellet guns, i see where you're coming from. "This is all a bad idea and no one should try this without the supervision of an expert." :D

Gotta say though, Most every handloader in existance is very careful in making their loads. Their problem, aside from a mismeasurement, would be using the wrong size projectile, in diameter or weight and using the wrong type or volume of powder.

In our 20ga. bee hunting days, we never even barely reached chamber pressure limits using our conventional wads ahead of a reduced load of powder. As sand wasn't to constrictive or heavy, Pressure was never an issue.

We were much more dangerous when driving intoxicated on the dirt roads around camp.

December 16, 2008, 02:25 AM
ive loaded op loads of black cats in my 12ga to fire into paper wasps nests before. its not a good idea, the nest gets busted apart and the air is suddenly filled with angry wasps that dont have to bother crawling out the .