View Full Version : Shot size for dove, quail

August 29, 2001, 06:02 PM
Thanks for the helpful hints from all about dove loads for my 1100. I have decided to go with AA hulls (on hand), 209 primers, Universal Clays, magnum shot. Going for an 1 1/8 load. My next question is what size shot should I use. I can get many more pellets out of 9's, but are they big enough to kill effectively? Would it be better to go with a bigger shot 7 1/2's or 8's, I will not have as many pellets per round, but I do not want to wound.

Thanks for the help

Dave R
August 29, 2001, 06:18 PM
Most folks I know use 7.5's or 8's for Dove & Quail. My personal opinion is 9's are too small.

I'd use 9's only for breaking clays.

Dave McC
August 29, 2001, 06:44 PM
I've used both 7 1/2s and 8s, and think that the larger shot work better on dove. For quail, shots are taken closer, and the smaller 8s work fine.

As a loose rule, keep the 7 1/2s where shots run longer than 30 yds and 8s when they do not.If Modified choke is a good idea,usually so are 7 1/2s.

While I like 8 1/2s for trap and 9s are a traditional skeet favorite, I don't think they're good choices for game.

August 29, 2001, 07:19 PM
I usually use 7 1/2's but I'm going to try 6's this year for those distant shots.

August 29, 2001, 10:25 PM
I have used #6 with good sucess on dove and #8 for quail.

September 2, 2001, 08:10 AM
If you are hunting over pointers and are taking short shots, number 9's can be used quite effectively. I would make sure they are Magnum Shot. I have hunted with High Power number 9 reloads for quail and dove for years.

In the latter part of the season, I usually switch to 71/2's when the quail's feathers get tougher and harder to penetrate.

Good Shooting,

September 3, 2001, 11:33 AM
I was using a 28 ga. Red Label. With Federal 7 1/2's I was getting about 1`of 4. With Remington STS #8 target loads I was getting about 1 of 2 to 2 1/2 shots. Got my 15 limit. If you look at the shot size themselves there's very little difference. Maybe the Remingtons just pattern better or maybe I got into the groove as the hunt went on. Tried to limit to 35 yards or so. Some of the idiots there were shooting at 70 yards plus.:rolleyes:

Dave McC
September 3, 2001, 12:05 PM
Don't get me started about idiots and dove shooting....

In the right place and under the right circumstances,ESPECIALLY range, these smaller gauges can be effective.

As far as long range doves go, I'd consider 50 to be pretty darn far, and I like 40 yds much, much better, even with a good 12 ga and the right choke and load.