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Old December 14, 2023, 08:10 PM   #1
samsmix
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Hog hunting bullets and shot placement.

I'm going on a first time Texas hog hunt next fall. We will be using .50 Hawken replicas, and I was wondering what anyone with experience might think was a good projectile. Guns are 1:48" twist.
I was considering the 350gr T/C maxi ball over 70gr of 777.
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Old December 15, 2023, 10:47 PM   #2
bamaranger
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.50 Maxi's

I've not shot any hogs, but have used .50 caplock rifles on whitetails here using 370 Maxi's. In my little T/C White Mtn carbine I shoot 70 gr of FFFg, in the longer, heavier Renegade, I bump the charge to 80 gr'. I've had nothing but pass through's on the half dozen or so deer I've killed in the 125-150 lb range. I'd speculate that those 370 gr slugs were running near 1400 fps, and that's pretty serious medicine.

Hogs are reportedly a bit tougher than deer, but I cannot imagine one taking a well placed shot and expiring in short order.
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Old December 16, 2023, 01:08 AM   #3
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Anything but a CNS shot, hogs will run a bit. I use bonded bullets to ensure pass through to leave a big blood trail, so a hard lead ball should be dandy.
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Old December 22, 2023, 12:03 PM   #4
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I don’t have any experience with cap and ball and hogs but have been hunting them for 25 years. I currently use .308 Nosler E tip copper solids. The go right through and as long as placement is good the hogs always die. Free tip we hunt in an area that’s rolling hills and the pigs always run down to the lowest point near where they were shot at. They never seem to run uphill ever.
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Old December 22, 2023, 06:25 PM   #5
ernie8
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If you shoot them in the head they do not run at all .
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Old December 22, 2023, 07:20 PM   #6
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I know what you meant, but that isn't what you said. The head is a large appendage and the brain is very small on hogs. You CAN shoot them in the head and have them live and be just fine. The lower jaw is part of the head and is typically a non-lethal shot. The nose is often a non-lethal shot. Any non-penetrating glancing shot can't be counted on to bring the hog down, either.

You need to do significant CNS damage, in this case, brain or brain stem damage.
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Old December 23, 2023, 08:44 AM   #7
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Yes, I was not talking about shooting them in the nose .
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Old January 26, 2024, 03:05 PM   #8
rickyrick
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Here ya go.

Neck shots are the most effective in my experience. Most anywhere in the neck will kill them pretty quick, and presents the largest target.
If quartered away from me, I’d go low behind the front leg.
I rarely attempt head shots, but they are an option.




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Old January 26, 2024, 07:53 PM   #9
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Quote:
Yes, I was not talking about shooting them in the nose .
I have been dealing with hog myths and ballistic myth claims for so long now, it is hard to know what people are talking about when they make generalized statements such as "head shot" which does in fact include shooting them in the nose. So what you meant, wasn't actually what you said. Sadly, there are folks who do believe that bullets are magical, not subject to the laws of physics, and make "head shots" anywhere on the head and are surprised when the hog doesn't drop dead on the spot.

Excellent post rickyrick.
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Old January 26, 2024, 08:39 PM   #10
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The big one I shot a few weeks ago was about 225 . The shot was 130 yards with the Hornady .357 180 XTP From my .357 Bandit rifle [ What Win made into the 350 Legend ] . I hit him in [ to be exact ] the top left point of the above red square on the head . He dropped right there and just quivered . That is what I would call a head shot .
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Old January 27, 2024, 07:36 AM   #11
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I have been hunting hogs since 1985 and experienced a few strange reactions after the shot.

Smallest caliber used was by my cousin, a 22 mag from a CZ semiauto. Range was close and it took 4 to the shoulder area. Definitely not recommend and I absolutely feel there was a lot of luck involved with this one.

I personally dropped one under a feeder with a 117gr hp from a 25-06 that obliterated his heart at about 75gr yards. Never moved.

Another time I hit a 275lb boar in the neck with a 165 interlock from an 06. Shot was about 100 yards and predictably he went down right away, kicking a little. After returning with my tractor I was shocked to find him gone! I ended up finding him in the dense mesquite that is in the area and finished him with a 158sp 357 between the eyes. After skinning him I found that my 165 06 had just missed his spine, I fully believe he would have recovered had I not found him.

Most others were shot either just behind the ear or behind the shoulder, most dropped immediately (head shots) while the others ran for a short distance before expiring.

The smallest gun I have used was a 6mm Rem while the largest was a 444. 308, 30-06 and 270 being the most frequently used.
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Old January 27, 2024, 09:11 AM   #12
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One time checking traps I had a single boar in a box trap so I shot him in the top of the head with a 45 colt. The bullet exited somewhere low in the neck or chest, can’t remember exactly, I just recall seeing it striking the ground and blood pouring out. He immediately locked up and fell over.
I went to the truck to get the rope to drag him out of the trap, took a minute or two because the rope was under some hay. When I turned back around he was back on his feet milling around the trap. Kinda tripped me out.
I hunted them for a number of years in the rolling plains area of Texas then moved away, it was pretty fun, I mainly enjoyed being out under the stars amongst the mesquite and coyotes, laying in wait.
Now I live back in Texas, purchased my own little stretch of Deep East Texas forest. I have pigs within 200 feet from the back of my house, the one in the above picture is one of them.
It’s not nearly as convenient as one would think, by the time I get back there, they are gone lol. I’m on my third year and haven’t killed one pig, lol.
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Old January 27, 2024, 12:00 PM   #13
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Quote:
That is what I would call a head shot .
LOL, yes, this is exactly what I am talking about. That is a shot to the head, but so too is a shot to the nose or a shot to the jaw. "Head shot" leaves a lot of room for error and lots of folks think aiming anywhere on the head will make for a good head shot and that just isn't the case.
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Old January 27, 2024, 01:06 PM   #14
Pumpkin
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Anyone that thinks that the jaw or snout makes for a good lethal shot needs to keep with playing more hunting video games.
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Old January 27, 2024, 05:55 PM   #15
rickyrick
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I don’t think any is implying that someone would intentionally make a “snout shot,” but you can clearly see from the above pictured boar that most of the head is jaw and snout. Any error on a headshot will result in hitting jaw or snout.
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Old January 27, 2024, 06:56 PM   #16
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Well…I did shoot one in the snout. I was leaving the thick woods and would cross a wide power line ROW. Looked left and no critters. Looked right and there was a big old hog looking right at me. All I could see was face. He didn’t twitch. I didn’t twitch. Finally raised the 260 and shot him in the actual snout. He immediately became the Tasmanian Devil. Never saw him again. Scared the pee out of me. He was close. Could have had me.
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Old January 27, 2024, 10:36 PM   #17
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Anywhere from the spot between the eye & ear or just behind the ear is where I like to shoot a hog.

No tracking involved, but the twitch-flopping is pretty awesome.


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Old February 10, 2024, 05:53 PM   #18
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This boar weighed in excess o 3 50 pounds.
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Old February 13, 2024, 05:32 PM   #19
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30-30 is a keeper! - Jack
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Old February 14, 2024, 06:04 PM   #20
ernie8
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I need to get my scale fixed . I shot one that size or a little bigger and it only weighted 228 lbs .
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Old February 15, 2024, 11:23 AM   #21
Double Naught Spy
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Your scale is fine, but your eyes may need a little work. The issue is of photographic interpretation and perspective. You can make a small hog look big and a big hog look small.
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Old February 15, 2024, 11:42 AM   #22
rickyrick
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Looks solid either way, at least no one sat 10ft behind the hog in a hole for the picture.
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Old February 15, 2024, 09:35 PM   #23
Ricklin
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Jealous

I would really enjoy hunting those pesky critters. While I do understand the big problem they represent down South, I would enjoy the opportunity. It just strikes me as wrong to pay to eliminate vermin, on principal. Like most everything, if you are in the "right" part of the country it is all about your relationships.
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Old February 15, 2024, 09:54 PM   #24
rickyrick
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It just strikes me as wrong to pay to eliminate vermin, on principal.
I did it as part of my duties working part time on a moderately sized ranch in west Texas, killed hogs and coyotes… also did it for some others on a type of barter arrangement.

I’ll tell you, as soon as someone lets someone on their land for free, soon they start showing up with all their drinking buddies, 4wds, ATVs, fireworks and destroy the place in a weekend.

You have to be well trusted or have some skin in the game, sweat, blood or capital in order to get in some “free” hunting.
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Old February 15, 2024, 10:29 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rickyrick View Post
I did it as part of my duties working part time on a moderately sized ranch in west Texas, killed hogs and coyotes… also did it for some others on a type of barter arrangement.

I’ll tell you, as soon as someone lets someone on their land for free, soon they start showing up with all their drinking buddies, 4wds, ATVs, fireworks and destroy the place in a weekend.

You have to be well trusted or have some skin in the game, sweat, blood or capital in order to get in some “free” hunting.
A safety deposit perhaps? Buddy told me hog hunting trip would cost over a thousand. I simply can't.

I could be overly cynical. If a farmer can generate incomes from his hog problem, he probably would keep the problem going.

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Last edited by tangolima; February 15, 2024 at 10:37 PM.
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