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Old March 13, 2018, 11:49 AM   #1
PlatinumCore16
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Hog Bullets

So reading up on one of the other posts about hunting/ARs, a lot of people use ARs for hog hunting due to fast follow up shots. Many people say .223 is marginal on deer, but it is still used quite a lot (mostly about shot placement, but that's a different discussion). I did a search and read a few posts about smaller/slower bullets being used to kill pigs/hogs in various instances, so I'm curious: what is considered the minimum for a humane kill on a hog? Feel free to suggest kinetic energy levels, velocity, bullet weight, etc..
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Old March 13, 2018, 12:59 PM   #2
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what is considered the minimum for a humane kill on a hog?
In the hands of someone who knows how to use it, a 40 gr lead bullet out of a 22 LR rifle. It has worked a number of times for me. My favorite is a light load from a 45 Colt handgun using a 260 gr cast bullet at approximately 750 fps. A good hog killer and meat saving load.
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Old March 13, 2018, 01:12 PM   #3
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There are a bunch of folks that use the .223, but I'm not one of them. The 22 has to be placed exactly in the neck or head to drop them. My minimum is my Grendel with 123SST. I also agree with Dufus - my favorite is my 45 Colt Bisley with 275-285 Hard Cast at 1000fps. Blows through them to 50 yards at any angle. Watch Zen Archery's excellent videos, using the Grendel and the Creedmoor.
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Old March 13, 2018, 03:03 PM   #4
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A hog can weigh 60 lbs, or 600 lbs. What works well on the 60-160 lb hogs commonly shot, may not do as well on the rare 600 lbs hogs.

I think a 223 with a tough bullet designed to penetrate well should do just fine on hogs in 200 lb or less weight class. If hunting bigger ones then I'd move up to something designed for game that big. Which means 26 caliber or larger with proper bullets 120 gr or heavier.

The actual bullet is far more important than caliber. The solid copper bullets made by Barnes and others really penetrate deep and make smaller calibers much more effective. Some of the heavy for caliber bonded bullets are pretty good too.

I wouldn't recommend a soft, rapidly expanding bullet even in larger calibers such as 30-06.
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Old March 13, 2018, 03:21 PM   #5
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So what is the minimum for a humane kill on a hog? Where are you planning on shooting the hog? From how far?

A rule of thumb to realize is that with hogs, if you do not do significant damage to the central nervous system, either by direct or indirect trauma, the hog will run. Even with a good shot to the lungs or heart, so the matter is then one of how far it will run and can you find it? It is not a surprise to see a hog shot and part of a lung hanging out of the exit wound and the hog go 100-150 yards. I shot a hog where the shot destroyed the heart and it still went over 70 yards. I have seen hogs with a pierced heart that went well over 100 yards.

So how much time is acceptable for a hog (or any animal) to survive with a mortal wound for the wound to be considered humane? What is even worse is that sometimes they are shot, maybe even mortally, but because of adrenaline dumps, you can shoot them repeatedly and they don't go down unless you hit them in the CNS or the eventually die from blood loss. I have hunted with folks that would be hard pressed to make a humane kill with a 12 ga. rifled slug gun at 30 yards.

True story - I was talking to a buddy about a hog I shot and lost. He went into his recitation of Capstick and how you need to "bring enough gun." Two weeks later, he had missed a trophy buck at 75 yards with his 12 ga slug gun and had struck the feeder leg in the process. So I had to ask, "How much is enough gun for a miss?"

There is a guy on YouTube that head shoots hogs at 40-50 yards with .22 lr subsonic and does a great job with it. It doesn't take much to make a kill if you can place the bullet precisely where you want it to go and that spot is a critical spot.

Lots of people use .223. I have in the past and will probably do it again at various points in the future. I find nothing wrong with it as a hog sniping round. By that I mean, just like with the guy and the .22 sub sonic, it works very well for single shot kills, when the bullet goes where it needs to go.

Where lighter and smaller calibers have trouble is with less precise shots that do not hit immediately vital structures or do not hit them well. In doing less damage, the hog is less likely to collapse, so it is more likely to run farther, be lost to the hunter, and potentially survive.

Quote:
Watch Zen Archery's excellent videos, using the Grendel and the Creedmoor.
I watch his videos. In fact, I used to hunt with him. Good guy, fine hunter, but I don't recall him ever using a Grendel, although he hunts with a bunch of calibers. Maybe I missed it, but the only Grendel's I recall in any of his vids are my Grendels, LOL. I have killed several hundred hogs with the Grendel. It and the 6.8 are very comparable for typical hunting distances.

6.5 Grendel and 6.8 SPC are not the be all to end all of hog calibers, although both are quite good, particularly with good bullets such as Hornady SST or Berger VLD-Hunting. Both are far superior to .223/5.56 and are both still quite manageable for followup shots as needed, more so than with some larger calibers favored by many hunters, such as .308, .243, or even 6.5 Creedmore.

I went to the Grendel from the .308 after a surgery and by the time I had healed up enough to go back to .308 had discovered that I was not being less successful with the Grendel on hogs than with the .308. Between that, less recoil, and increased capacity, I stayed with the Grendel.

I like to try out different hunting bullets in the 6.5 Grendel. Some work much better than others. The nice thing about SST or VLD-Hunting is that both tend to do damage beyond the immediate wound channel, thereby increasing your odds of a successful, quicker kill. Both penetrate well, also. Neither is particularly meat friendly, however.

If you want to use a .223 and can make a steady shot and hit within a 2" circle at whatever distance it is that you are shooting, know your hog anatomy and where your shot is going to go relative to the orientation of the hog, then .223 can be fine. If you are not making CNS shots and hunting where thick brush is nearby, don't be surprised if you lose a bunch of hogs.
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Old March 13, 2018, 04:02 PM   #6
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Points all well taken. I have killed many hogs with the .223's, but have lost some as well. The 6.5 Grendel and Creedmore's are a great round for hogs, especially like was said with something like the SST bullets. Lots of damage to the CNS is the key...not a big hole through the chest.
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Old March 13, 2018, 08:30 PM   #7
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Most of my hogs are killed under feeders, at ponds or on wheat fields. Average shot is <75 yards, often much less. Be prepared for a double lung shot hog to run up to 200 yards. They often die with their tongues hanging out.

i've killed hogs using .22 LR, .22 magnum, .223/5.56mm and numerous larger calibers.
Pick the shots carefully and the .223 does a good job on hogs.

Years ago i began shooting hogs with .50 caliber inline muzzleloaders. The 250 grain .452 SST bullet in a crush rib sabot worked very well . The 300 grain .452 XTP Magnum bullet is a great hog killer. Best saboted bullet i ever used is the hard cast 330 grain flat nose driven by 120-140 grains of powder. That bullet destroys both shoulders of a 300 pound hog leaving a huge exit hole. It often leaves a long streak of blood and gore on the off side.

Killed some big hogs using .490 and .530 caliber patched round balls. Those round balls kill very well.

The sounders are on the wheat fields and the trapping is slow. There are numerous big solitary boars running around our lease: Recently i began woods hunting using a 9.3X62 mm rifle and 286 grain bullets. So far i've killed 7 boars over 200 pounds with that rifle. All were shot in the heart/lung area, none went over 20 yards.
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Old March 15, 2018, 06:00 PM   #8
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Hog are starting to show up on my farm here in Michigan, I carry a model 71winchester in 348 caliber, ok so you can kill them with a 223-22mag great but I want them dead right now !!!!
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Old March 15, 2018, 07:39 PM   #9
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Head shot. Even air guns work at 20 yards.
Head/neck shot for any .17-.243 center fire using monolithic solid copper bullet.
Any regular vital organ shots (very low to the chest on hogs) including head/neck shot .264 and up. Any standard SP bullet will do just fine.

I still prefer neck/throat shot 100% of the time given the opportunity.
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Old March 15, 2018, 09:21 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Zen Archery View Post
Head shot. Even air guns work at 20 yards.
Head/neck shot for any .17-.243 center fire using monolithic solid copper bullet.
Any regular vital organ shots (very low to the chest on hogs) including head/neck shot .264 and up. Any standard SP bullet will do just fine.

I still prefer neck/throat shot 100% of the time given the opportunity.
Air guns ..........quite the stretch in my opinion.

As for the rest of your advice........if your good at archery I suggest you stick with it.
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Old March 16, 2018, 09:48 AM   #11
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Air guns ..........quite the stretch in my opinion.

As for the rest of your advice........if your good at archery I suggest you stick with it.
No need for the Snark. I would ask that you look at Zen's video library. I wouldn't use my Sheridan, but I am comfortable with his remarks.
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Old March 16, 2018, 11:36 AM   #12
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Air guns ..........quite the stretch in my opinion.

As for the rest of your advice........if your good at archery I suggest you stick with it.
Some folks speak before they know of what they are speaking.
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Old March 16, 2018, 02:57 PM   #13
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Air guns ..........quite the stretch in my opinion.
I suggest if you don't know anything about air rifles, you take your own advice and talk about something else.

Mr Hollowpoint hunts with some nice Quackenbush air rifles and hunts hogs.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0eUx_oEpyTw
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=guB-o-6DrPA

Here are others using air rifles...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xDLGifC64IQ
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9mCTl0lGyuo
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZH3FBOQK6oY

There are a whole bunch more, but as can be seen, they can work just fine and dandy.
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Old March 16, 2018, 05:01 PM   #14
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DNS, I watched that first video you linked and it was impressive. A 430 grain bullet at over 800 fps sure did the job on that pig.
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Old March 16, 2018, 05:06 PM   #15
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I hog hunt here around the Charleston,SC area.
I only use the big calibers. Most of the time I carry a Marlin 45/70 or a .454 handgun. ( I do not use hollow points!) A bullet with a wide meplat works the best!

Hogs are tuff to say the least. Ive seen a 300lb'er get up after a neck shot from a 30-06 at 30 yards.......

I hope your a good shot with your small caliber.......................
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Old March 16, 2018, 05:25 PM   #16
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I only use the big calibers. Most of the time I carry a Marlin 45/70 or a .454 handgun. ( I do not use hollow points!) A bullet with a wide meplat works the best!

Hogs are tuff to say the least. Ive seen a 300lb'er get up after a neck shot from a 30-06 at 30 yards.......
Any of your calibers is capable of bringing down up to elephants, much less a 300 lb pig.

Is 300 the norm over yonder? They are rare here, although once in a while you can find one that big.

Our pigs do not take elephant cartridges to take them down. Any thing from 22 LR on up with an appropriate bullet will do the job.

I have shot one with my 460 just because. It wasn't a full house load and I just wanted to. I have only taken it out for that purpose just that once. Ir worked, but not an every day event by any means.

Most everyone down this way uses the 223 Rem with 60 gr or heavier bullets. I don't have a 223 Rem, but I have shot a couple with the nephews DPMS. I like the 308 Win for hog hunting. But I have used almost everything on them that I have.

Mt favorite is my 38-55 and a cast bullet. Mostly for nostalgia. Not much meat damage.
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Old March 16, 2018, 08:27 PM   #17
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Well I have learned something about air rifles.When I think of air rifles I think of the .177 cals I keep around for the grandkids to terrorize the squirrels.

My apologies.......I had no idea
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Old March 16, 2018, 10:41 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by Double Naught Spy View Post
I suggest if you don't know anything about air rifles, you take your own advice and talk about something else.

Mr Hollowpoint hunts with some nice Quackenbush air rifles and hunts hogs.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0eUx_oEpyTw
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=guB-o-6DrPA

Here are others using air rifles...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xDLGifC64IQ
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9mCTl0lGyuo
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZH3FBOQK6oY

There are a whole bunch more, but as can be seen, they can work just fine and dandy.
Lewis and Clark used air rifles to impress the Indians they encountered (fast shooting compared to percussions) and to shoot game animals, even grizzly I believe. So hunting big game with air rifles has been around for a while.
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Old March 17, 2018, 06:32 AM   #19
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so I'm curious: what is considered the minimum for a humane kill on a hog? Feel free to suggest kinetic energy levels, velocity
At least in .30-06, for big game like elk or black bear, I use 200gn or 220gn bullets, like Speer's Hot-Cor slugs. 220gns @ 2400fps.

If it puts down a bear, it'll put down a hog. On both critters, of course, shot-placement still matters.
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Old March 17, 2018, 08:11 AM   #20
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It’s a hog, y’all are overthinking it. You put lead in the vermin period, if it dies right in its tracks or a mile away, you did the job. Nothing humane about eradicating vermin.
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Old March 18, 2018, 09:11 AM   #21
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Its been my experience that hogs are typically shot while feeding. Their heads bob up and down quite a bit while feeding which in my opinion rules out a head shot. A broadside shot into the chest organs is quite effective indeed assuming a decent cartridge is used. My daughter has taken big mulies in South Dakota shooting the 64 grain bullet (.223) as loaded in Winchester ammunition. Penetration and expansion were adequate. I prefer my 30-30 carbine for hogs shooting 170 grain Winchester ammunition. I have toppled them out to distances of approx 125 yards or so.

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Old March 18, 2018, 04:28 PM   #22
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A 556 can be perfectly adequate for Russians. My youngest daughter celebrated her 19th birthday by killing a 250 pound Russian with her birthday Ruger AR 556. One shot between the eyes at about 20 feet. One excited kid and one proud Dad.

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Old March 18, 2018, 04:34 PM   #23
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A wild boar isn't considered a game animal. It's an invasive pest. You are basically doing an extermination, not a hunt. So you are not constrained by game hunting laws.
I would go with 55 GR FMJ 5.56.
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Old March 18, 2018, 05:25 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Saltydog235
It’s a hog, y’all are overthinking it. You put lead in the vermin period, if it dies right in its tracks or a mile away, you did the job. Nothing humane about eradicating vermin.
I've got to agree with Saltydog here. Where I live hogs are vermin. You shoot them with whatever gun is near at hand. We almost always aim for the head or neck because if you miss, who cares. As a matter of fact, if it's around a food source they'll come right back if you wait a few minutes. If you just nip 'em a little, who cares. If you want an "eater" head or neck still the best shot.
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Old March 18, 2018, 06:07 PM   #25
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convert your 223

Convert your 223 to a 6.8 SPC and use 120 grain SST. Hit them in the center of the neck=D.R.T. good 6.8 chat room with all your information.
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