View Full Version : Sunday Rabbit

June 11, 2012, 01:26 AM
Well I had the day off today and my wife and kids left town for a few days so I'm being a bachelor for a few days. Of course I hit the reloading bench and spent the day working up a couple loads to go try out for a couple rifles. Along towards evening I headed out with a friend for an afternoon/evening shoot.

The thought had occurred to me to go out east of town to shoot and try for a rabbit for dinner but due to circumstances I ended up not bringing my 22 rifle(s), and had disregarded the idea. As luck would have it, pulling into the shooting spot a cottontail crossed the road and hunkered down under a big cedar tree that had limbs all the way to the ground. I hadn't eaten much all day so I was hungry and I couldn't resist. Made the neck shot at maybe 5-8 yards, 158gr LSWC under 4.5gr 700x. It did the trick. It's rare for me to score a pistol kill, actually missed him the first shot. This is the first time out with this pistol, so the first shot turned into a ranging shot. We're zeroed in now though:)

Shooting went OK, I'm out of practice. Good news I have 2 loads to look closer at. The plan is to head back out tomorrow to try them out. Maybe catch dinner again, we'll see. Good meal to end the day. Not as good as momma makes it but maybe I can try again tomorrow.

June 11, 2012, 03:10 PM
Very nice use of the before and after picture theme. Great shot.

Cool Breeze
June 11, 2012, 04:59 PM
looks good to me!............although the rabbit is a bit bony lookin'....

but I ain't complaining

June 12, 2012, 07:53 PM
Very nice! And the women folk say we can't take care of ourselves ;)

June 13, 2012, 02:37 PM
That makes me hungry. We can't shoot cottontails until Sept. 1st here.

June 13, 2012, 04:22 PM
I've always been told that cottontails 'round here weren't safe to eat untill after the first hard freeze. Something to do with tulliramia (sp) and sick rabbits dieing. Not sure of the truth behind it, but your dinner sure looks mighty tasty!

June 13, 2012, 04:39 PM
I heard the same advice, Wy ...... and would not want to run afoul of the Game Warden in any case .......

June 13, 2012, 05:01 PM
Here in MO. we also always wait for a freeze before rabbit hunting,i've heard the same thing about the rabbit disease.

June 13, 2012, 05:02 PM
Yeah that's been the rumor for a long time. Tularemia is transmitted by fleas which contrary to popular belief are carried all year long. The take home message in my opinion, is to be mindfull of the diseases and how they are transmitted, watch for liver spots, wear gloves (I'm bad about that) and cook the animal thoroughly.

Here's a link from AZ Game and Fish: http://www.azgfd.gov/i_e/pubs/CottontailHunting.shtml

The cottontail season in Arizona is year-round. However, few cottontails are taken during the summer months due to hunter concerns regarding disease and parasites. Many myths exist among hunters (especially hunters from back East) concerning the “edibility” of summer rabbits. Cottontails (and the larger jackrabbits) are host to internal and external parasites (all year long, by the way). Hunters who improperly handle sick rabbits can be exposed to tularemia and the plague. This causes many hunters to look to other species as potential prey, particularly during the warmer months.

Since cottontails are abundant and very tasty, I don’t let these concerns stop me from hunting summer rabbits. My strategy is this: Wear rubber gloves when dressing the beast; let the rabbit cool (to help reduce external parasites) before carrying it on your person; wash your hands following handling and cleaning; and cook the rabbit thoroughly. You can also skin and dress the cottontail immediately during the hunt, reducing the chance an external parasite will switch hosts.