View Full Version : Hunting with a .22 rifle or handgun???

Big Bill
March 2, 2009, 07:14 PM
What game animals or varmints/vermin do you hunt with your 22? What ammo do you use for the animals you hunt? What 22 tool do you use most (rifle, pistol, revolver). Don't you think the 22, given all the advances in ammo and guns, is much more versitle than it used to be? What is your favorite 22 hunting story? I want to learn.

Let's have some fun with this!

March 2, 2009, 07:55 PM
22 S&W pistol for hares grouse & ptarmigan Alex

March 2, 2009, 08:14 PM
22 rifles almost exclusively. Pistols are too loud. Other than that I use it for anything 20lbs and under.

March 2, 2009, 08:30 PM
.22 is great for rabbits and squirrels.

March 2, 2009, 08:41 PM
Rabbit, squirrel, crow, coon, possum, dillar, and snakes... with rifle... I am not accurate enuff to hunt with the pistol much yet.

March 2, 2009, 09:56 PM
I hunt rabbits and squirrels mostly with my .22 pistol, great fun. Patridge, coon, possum, skunks, porquipines, and others in that size range all get it with whichever I have or is closer. Add crows with the rifle but I have shot at least one with the pistol.
All my hunting ammo is HP. Won't hunt w/ solids, BTDT, very poor performance. Winchester Xperts and Power-Points in the Buckmark, strictly Power-Points in the 10/22. Winchester 36 gr HP's and CCI mini-mags are also top performers.
Personally I consider whenever Winchester came out with the 40 gr Power-Points to be an advancement. They are very accurate in my guns and by the accounts of many others. They also hit hard even when stretching the limits of the .22lr. Less meat loss than with hyper velocity rounds. 3 weeks ago I shot a crow at a measured 120 yards with one in my 10/22. (after having missed 2 over the past couple months from my kitchen window to the garden - 50 yards :rolleyes:)

March 2, 2009, 10:01 PM
everything rimfire legal

Big Bill
March 2, 2009, 10:28 PM
I was back in the mountains one winter day cougar hunting with two of my hounds and saw a pine pig (porcupine) across a narrow canyon I was in. So. I took out my Ruger Bearcat and shot him once and rolled him at about 60 yards. (One of my lucky shots I guess.) To a houndsman pine pigs are vermin. He was a big one, and I didn't want my hounds into that nest of needles.

James R. Burke
March 12, 2009, 07:20 PM
At one time or another I had about every style of .22 rifle or pistol. No doubt they are fun and cheap to shoot. Not that it should be used for everything but it has probably killed more game than any other cartrigde, but again it should be limited to the small stuff. I think there are some pretty hot .22 rounds being made with alot more quality to them. Still seems that the standard velocity are the most accurate, but I could be wrong on that. I know you can go from one extreme to the other as far as price goes. I sure dont shoot them as much as I did when I was younger, and not reloading. Now that I am reloading for the smaller stuff it's the 22-250, 223, 243 etc. Then of course there is the bigger stuff I load for deer, bear, etc. Do most for myself and wife, and no doubt some close freinds. I always use there gun and work the load up right. Seems I really got off the topic, but in general they are great, and lots of fun!

T. O'Heir
March 13, 2009, 11:39 PM
Ground hogs with Yellow Jackets out of a rifle. Handgun hunting isn't legal up here.
"...always use there gun..." Where? 'There' is a directional word. 'Their' is possessive. 'They're' is a contraction of 'they are'.

March 14, 2009, 12:02 PM
I have used 22LR and 22 WMR for grouse, rabbits, squirrels, etc. One shot to the head and no wasted meat. For vermin (varmints), I have used my 22LR for thousands of ground squirrels and jackrabbits, hundreds of rockchuck (marmot), even a few stray dogs and cats that had the misfortune to be out and about on my friend's property. I have never tackled big game animals with a 22 LR, but I knew an old guy who lived up in the hills that killed his deer every year with a 22 WRF (it wasn't legal, but at 50' a shot to the head puts them right to sleep).

March 14, 2009, 01:35 PM
I wouldn't do it, but I know a few guys who have taken deer with the .22LR. I don't think they were at very long range, but they insist that as long as you place your shot you'll get them. The advice they give is to shoot it right in the boiler room and then wait for a while. If you shot well it won't have gone more than a couple hundred yards. I wouldn't try it, but that's what I've been told.

Personally I wouldn't be opposed to shooting coyotes out to 100 yards or so. I have chickens and cats and dogs and kids so when they're on my property I'm mostly concerned about keeping my pets and family safe and not so much about keeping the coyotes. If they run a ways before they die that's fine and good, though I'd rather keep them since I'm not a fan of waste. I figure as long as I can punch a hole through a 2x4 its good for head shots.

If we're worried about being ethical I'd try to use something bigger on a coyote and shooting smaller stuff with the .22.

March 14, 2009, 01:43 PM
Squirrels and crows mostly.
I miss a lot now with my Ruger Mk II. I can still hit with the Marlin 60

March 14, 2009, 02:30 PM
Squirrel, rabbit, crow, wild coke cans;).

March 14, 2009, 03:25 PM
I shoot up to the size of a coyote with .22LR.

March 14, 2009, 04:04 PM
I don't know about versatility with more types of ammo. There are a few that can make the .22 LR do a bit more than it used to, maybe, but I have rifles that shoot bigger cartridges/calibers for the bigger stuff.

I use both rifle(s) and handgun(s) in .22 LR for various stuff. These days, mostly for keeping various predators (skunks, coons, the occasional bobcat) away from the chicken coup.

But, .22's are fun, cheap to shoot, and make for good practice. They're ideal for hunting small game up to the size of a jackrabbit or small fox, and will leave something to eat on the smaller edible critters.

About the largest critter I've shot with a .22 LR was a coyote, many years ago. I was using mini-mags, and had to shoot it several times to kill it.

And kill it I did, but not the way a small bore centerfire does. I called that particular coyote in while hunting rabbits, after a few of them started howling just over the hill from me and my buddy. We decided to try it, but the results weren't impressive.

Maybe it was just my shooting, but I never seem to have a hard time killing coyotes with a small bore centerfire. It's usually a bang-flop with a .223, 22-250, or .17 Remington.

Would I do it again? Around the hen house, yes. For fur hunting? Nope. I like to see 'em hit the ground when I hit them.


March 14, 2009, 06:56 PM
I have a Remington 597 HB .22 LR that I use on anything from rabbits, to coons and other pests, crows, squirrels. Pop cans.:D I usually shoot the Yellow jacket ammo out of it. I tried some cheaper ammo from walmart and the gun does NOT like that cheap crap. CCI or Remington ammo is all I shoot out of it now.

March 14, 2009, 11:20 PM
You are all full of questions.

As a youth, I had use of Dad's 22 LR singleshot. I guess I shot everything that was legal to shoot with that rifle, from mice to porcupines.

When I was in highschool, I bought a Ruger Single Six and really learned to shoot with it. I built a holster and took it everywhere except to school. I guess I shot more critters with that six gun than any other gun I ever owned. Flies, grasshoppers, mice, rats, gophers, muskrats, squirrels, cottontails, jack rabbits, porcupines, skunks, and bobcats, to name some. I have never taken a shot at a fox or coyote. I quit using Dad's single shot, after getting the Ruger, and never bought another 22 until many years later. I got a Marlin semi auto when my daughters and wife decided to take hunter's safety ed. They needed a rifle to shoot for the test. I have never hunted with it.

Ammo? I just bought the standard velocity stuff, Nothing fancy. Maybe hollow points. It didn't seem to matter much, if you made a good hit the game was yours.

I used to hunt bobcats with dogs and the sixgun was the gun I always took. One shot through the lungs always brought down the treed cat. It would not jump out of the tree with a lung shot, but after a minute or two it would bleed out and fall down dead. This was good as it would not claw and chew up the dogs.

Then comes the obnoxious cat that won't go up a tree, but wants to stand off the dogs on the ground. Usually an old male. Well, the dogs will eventually wear it down till it rolls over on its back then it becomes dangerous to the dogs as one will grab it and it will grab the dog usually by the head or neck, and start raking the dog with its claws of the hind feet. I didn't want to shoot for fear of hitting a dog, so I waded into the fracas and hit the cat a good stout blow over the noggin with the barrel of the six gun. End of cat and dog fight. On two occasions I killed a bobcat in this way with the Ruger Single Six.

March 15, 2009, 06:11 AM
the pistol cci stingers 32 gr hollows,the rifle win. wildcats 40 gr. solids.
nylon 77 rifle,or astra pistol.

March 15, 2009, 08:05 AM
G'day, many thousand rounds through a Stirling semi-auto. I preferred to use high velocity hollow points. The cheapest I could get. For a long time that happened to be Stirling also. Not the most accurate rifle or ammo but as a teenager the solution was to just keep pulling the trigger. From time to time I might also put the rifle to my shoulder and use the scope. Depending on my mood and location I would even shoot at rabbits at very extended ranges. Watch for where the bullets land, make an adjustment and try again.