View Full Version : Goose loads?

Coop de Ville
April 21, 2001, 06:38 AM
Good morning all. I tied a search for this but haven't been able to find anything.

A friend will be travelling to Ohio to visit her father. Her father has gotten a nuisance permit to remove geese from his property. I mentioned bird bombs to scare them away. If you scare them enough times they get the point... or not. Killing a few here and there has the same effect (except now you have dead geese that will be picked up by the township). I digress. I have 0 experience hunting and was wondering what kind of loads (shot size) are typical on Canadians (geese). I was told that they could get as close as maybe 50 yards or so. I thought that was a bit far, but what do I know. My guess is one shot and then the rest fly away. My thought was if you know you only have one shot and one kill, you might want to try slugs.

Anyway, thanks for the help. -Coop

Art Eatman
April 21, 2001, 08:39 AM
I've been reading the occasional article about problems with geese, here and there around the northern, eastern parts of the U.S. All the artificially warmed ponds (power plants, etc.) have reduced the need to migrate further south. And, of course, all those animal lovers who think it's neat to feed the "pretty birdies".

Most goose hunters use full-choke shotguns, and #2 or #4 shot. If 50 yards is the minimum range, I'd go with either #2 or even "0" buck.

There is even an "Extra Full" choke tube for shotguns with screw-in chokes; it's intended for turkeys, which would make it a good answer for geese at 50 yards. (Often called "Turkey Choke".)

Barrel length has almost nothing to do with muzzle velocity and the "power" of the shot, once you're past 18 to 20 inches. The length affects the weight "out front" and thus the swing and balance of the shotgun.

Given the cost of regular, sport goose hunting, in these circumstances I think it would be worth getting a decent Remington 870 (vent rib, 26" or 28" barrel) with screw-in chokes and with the Turkey Choke insert. It would be an all-around gun, whether your geese, upland birds or home defense...


April 22, 2001, 01:27 AM
You may want to be certain of federal waterfowl hunting regs. I do believe that you MUST use non-toxic shot for any waterfowl - could be wrong - & do also check for max shot size allowed. Some strange fed regs about waterfowl.

(Quick digression - a local (Boulder, CO & no! I won't live there!) got a fed-fine for chasing a goose = "harrassing federally protected waterfowl" - some take this serious.)

We have local Canada geese that you just about have to kick outa the way so as to go about your business. I'd think that the "nuisance-types" aren't going to be way out there or too wary - big difference versus the wild geese.

It may be that you could walk up within 10 yds or so, pop the first (with any legal non-toxic shot - do check the regs) & still do anther two (3-round limit shell capacity) whilst they're taking flight & still way close.

Always best to pattern your shotgun with whatever you'll use (I've only bothered with turkey loads BTW) but the non-toxics seem to shoot tighter than does lead shot. Probably get away with a modified choke using steel.

If I had my druthers, I'd use a extra full turkey choke w/2 oz #4 (shot, not buck) lead - but can't. Agin the fed-stuff.

BTW, slugs WILL kill geese. ;)

April 22, 2001, 01:25 PM
If one has a "nuisance" permit, it is possible that one may use any firearm. Check regs.

If this is the case, I would use a scoped .22 autoloading rifle w/ subsonic rounds. I would think you could pop a few (low noise impulse) before the rest got really spooked.

Otherwise, I just happen to have a bolt-action 12 gauge that I would load up w/ T shot, put in the full choke, and let fly...

April 22, 2001, 04:51 PM
A 50 yard shot on a big bird like a Canadian with regular waterfowl loads isnt going to result in a lot of "one shot" kills. A slug would sure do the trick but might not be legal. Get as close as you can and hit them with a 3 or 3 1/2 inch F, T, or BBB. Is this the only place around they can come to feed? If you are the only one shooting at them, and there are other food sources available you might be able to run them off. If others are shooting at them too, or if you are on the only food source it won't be so easy. Hell we shoot ducks and geese EVERY day from the same blinds sometimes for a week straight. Twenty minutes after the shooting, they try to get back on the food. Dont use any lead shot, the Feds will hand your @ss to you. Check the local regs on hunting nuisance animals, you dont want to wind up on the wrong side of a waterfowl regulation. Will you have access to decoys? Will you be with someone who can call? Sounds like a nice problem to me :)

[Edited by CD1 on 04-22-2001 at 06:26 PM]

April 22, 2001, 07:30 PM
Damn thats a long shot. I'm from Texas and have hunted geese all of my adult life. Check with the laws and be certain you have to use steel shot. If not use a .22 rifle. If you still have to use a shotgun but not steel get some buck shot.

If you have to use steel load, F is a big as they make it. Go to my shotshell page and find a load but beware they aren't cheap. Your friend might also try some other loads like tungsten or bismuth, they have greater downrange power but are also more expensive.

If you don't have to kill them use a .22 and just shoot near them and hope they get the idea.

April 23, 2001, 11:42 AM
I third the check fed regs first.

I shoot the big geese, In WI it is not legal to use F shot, I have been using BB or BBB and have pretty good results.

If 50 yards is the actual distance of the shots I recommend a 10 guage. (12 g 3 1/2 is supposed to be THIIISS close to a 10. I dunno). I used my fathers 10 g to take my first few geese, and one of the shots was at least that far.
one of the shots was less than 10 yards. Both geese were DOA.

Since I bought my 12 g I have used 3" BBB or BB. Patterning is good. (I bought tungsten-iron, and didn't pattern. That is why I missed several geese. That load in my shotgun was 8" low @25yards!).


The way I (Conservatively) read the federal regs, if you leave the house to Waterfowl hunt and you have ANY lead shot "in the field" you are in deep goose doo doo.)

No OOPs, I forgot about that. No but sir I was gonna go pheasant hunting on my way out.


And I believe that most shotguns used FULL with lead shot, but STEEL is harder, and a lot of old shotguns have bulged barrels. There was a rash of this right after the regs changed. (Bulged shotgun barrel= junk)

I use a "FULL STEEL OR LEAD" choke in my shotgun, _I_ WOULD *NOT* use a turkey choke with steel in _MY_ shotgun.
I might not even use steel shot with a full choke in YOUR shotgun. (Maybe I wasn't clear. I don't think it is a good idea. With steel more choke is NOT better)

Sounds fun if you get to go. The geese who have not been shot at usually come around again soon, if you are hidden well and don't move, you should take care of many nusances.

Let us know how it goes.

April 23, 2001, 12:17 PM
To kill waterfowl your shot choices are steel, tungsten or bisimuth.

Bisimuth and tungsten can be fired out of any choke. Steel uses a modified choke MAX. If you shoot steel out of any choke tighter than modified it will blow the barrel or swage out the choke. It can and has blown out choke tubes.

Bisimuth and tungsten while pricey $1.5 per shot are the better choices for long range.

Al Thompson
April 23, 2001, 06:56 PM
OK - your choices while hunting may be steel, etc. But - getting a depradation permit changes the rules. Check with who ever issued the permit for specifics.