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Old October 8, 2008, 07:33 PM   #1
zombie0hour
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Biggest Animal A .22-250 Can Take Down

I was just curious about what the biggest animal a .22-250 can take down effiectivly. Would it be ok for deer, but no bigger? I live in Arizona if you know the laws on this caliber please tell me.
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Old October 8, 2008, 07:44 PM   #2
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I hunt with a 22-250 for deer. I got one with this gun and my dad the same. His was taken at about 40 yards and the damage was incredible for this little rifle. I took mine at about 200 yards, it didn't exit, nor did it do much damage. If I wouldnt of got a vital shot, like I did, I dont think we would of found that deer. So I would stay under 200 yards. I use Remington round nose 55 gr.
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Old October 8, 2008, 07:52 PM   #3
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Stay under 200 yards ok, any more yardage and i think i might not be able to hit vitals im not the best shot as it is. I will keep in mind that the .22-250 is a good deer rifle since i am not so excited to use my moms 30-6 becasue of the recoil
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Old October 8, 2008, 07:54 PM   #4
Art Eatman
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The bulletmakers' R&D of the last dozen or so years have come up with decent bullets for use on Bambi. The lighter, varmint-style bullets have always worked, but also have always been subject to blowup if there is an inopportune hit on a rib or upper leg bone.

So, IMO, as usual, it's a skill thing, for those who can stay pretty-much close to perfect in shot placement.

Note that in Arizona, Coues deer are smallish, but are commonly seen at longer distances. Most Coues hunters seem to specialize in the gear and ability to hit at 300 to 400 yards--which, for me, is beyond .22-250 ethics.

To me, a shootable mule deer buck would be a bit on the large size for any centerfire .22, just on the issue of penetration on an angling shot. Up close and in the neck, yeah, maybe so. Again, a skill-level thing...

My 2¢,

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Old October 8, 2008, 08:09 PM   #5
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Thanks alot for the information guys, on a side note however why is it all of the shots that you should take are at the heart, lungs and such instead of the brain? If a shot to the brain usually kills a human why is it so ineffective against an animal?
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Old October 8, 2008, 09:08 PM   #6
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1. It is such a smaller target.
2. try and stay away from nervous tissue damage (Chronic Wasting disease).
3. Many do go for a head shot, Then after a bad hit and a lost animal most will go for a boiler-room shot.

MN just legalized .22Center fire cartridges for white tail hunting. But they do require a good bullet. (No varmint bullets allowed).
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Old October 8, 2008, 09:34 PM   #7
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.22-250 will work fine on deer in the hands of an expert with the proper bullet. But you should learn to shoot the .30-06. The recoil isn't bad, recoil is mostly a mental game. With the proper form and mindset the 30-06 won't hurt any healthy adult.
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Old October 8, 2008, 10:32 PM   #8
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I think you can get .224 bullets up to 70 grains. I wouldn't hunt deer with the 52 gr HPBT match grade bullets I use for Varmints. As previously stated, the damage is massive from a hollow point moving at 3800+ fps...
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Old October 8, 2008, 11:00 PM   #9
zombie0hour
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What is Chronic Wasting disease?
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Old October 8, 2008, 11:02 PM   #10
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I'd stay away from .22 caliber for deer. It's illegal here anyway.
You can get lighter loads for the .30-06, as well as recoil pads that reduce felt recoil. Give it a try.
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Old October 8, 2008, 11:12 PM   #11
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.22-250 is a bit different than a .22 Buzzcock, its not a rimfire its a centerfire and it releases 1.7k pounds per square inch of energy with a 65gr load, compared to the 150 pounds per square inch of a .22LR. Big differnce my friend.
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Old October 8, 2008, 11:33 PM   #12
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I agree with Art that the lighter weight .224 projectiles, 55 grains and under, could fail to get adequate penetration on whitetail deer. I know that back in the 60s my Dad used a 220 Swift and also a 225 Win and he said he made some dramatic DRT shots with them. Conversely he also had a couple of dramatic failures. Later in the mid eighties he used the .22-250 with the 70 grain Speer and it worked fine. I myself have killed a couple of deer using the 70 grain Speer and the results and wound channel were just as good as a 6 mm Rem or .243 Win will provide.

In short if you are going to use the .22-250 on deer and hog size game, you will be better off using the heavier bullets. I've never used them, but the 60 grain Nosler, 64 grain Winchester and similar should all work.

I know people will insist that the 55 grain and others work and kill larger than varmint game, but they weren't designed for it. They were designed to rapidly expand on varmint size animals.

As to what is the largest game you can kill with a .22-250, I would say that with the heavier bullets, like the 70 grain Speer, that you could take on anything you would take on with a .243, 6 mm or anything else in that class.
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Old October 8, 2008, 11:40 PM   #13
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To me it is not about can it kill a deer but can it do so ethically...

I will admit to having killed one deer, a doe, with my 22-250. It was a neck shot at about 70 yards. I will also admit that I will consider doing so again but I will not take a shot at a deer over a hundred yards with it. And even then I will only aim for the neck. My 22-250 will shoot less than 1/2 groups at 100 yards so I am not worried about making this type of shot with it. As far as beyond 100 yards I do not have the confidence to make a neck shot much beyond this...not because I can not hit what I am aiming at but I am concerned with the variables, wind etc at beyond 100 yards. And again I am not talking about a heart lung shot here but a neck shot and down here in Tx that is not a real big target. So for me anything beyond 100 yards is unethical.
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Old October 9, 2008, 12:26 AM   #14
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Quote:
What is Chronic Wasting disease?
It's like Mad Cow disease, but it effects deer, moose and elk instead of cows. As far as I know, there hasn't been a documented evidence of it causing disease in humans, but it's probably not a good idea to be a test case if you don't have to.
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Old October 9, 2008, 03:07 AM   #15
phil mcwilliam
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I have shot a number of fallow deer with a 22-250. Shot placement is critical & you must be prepared not to shoot unless the perfect situation arises. Forget shots that may require shooting through long grass or even light twigs. As for the biggest animal a 22-250 can put down, well some 25 years ago I was on a month long hunting & fishing trip in the top-end of Australia. At that time the National Parks decided to eradicate feral Water Buffalo from from the top-end fearing a tuberculosis outbreak may threaten the cattle industry. For a bet I stalked within 75 yards of a feeding bull Water Buffalo. Using a termite nest as a rest, the Buff which was standing broadside was dropped with a single shot behind the ear with a 55 grain Winchester factory round. Yes- I was young & foolish, & No - I don't recommend the 22-250 for Buffalo.
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Old October 9, 2008, 04:48 AM   #16
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A 22-250 is illegal here also but even if it was not I would not use simple because it's unethical for deer size aniamals.
With that said if I was a wimp or a women and didn't like the recoil of a larger caliper I would try using a muzzle break on that larger caliper.
There are calpers like the 243. or 6.5mm that work okay at the min if you are looking for a smaller caliper but I would not go lower.
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Old October 9, 2008, 06:23 AM   #17
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I would not use a .22-250 for anything larger than a coyote. Hogs and even smallish deer would get something larger. Just because you could kill an elephant with a perfectly placed .22LR doesn't mean you should.
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Old October 9, 2008, 07:02 AM   #18
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Quote:
I was just curious about what the biggest animal a .22-250 can take down effiectivly. Would it be ok for deer, but no bigger? I live in Arizona if you know the laws on this caliber please tell me.
The biggest problem with the .22-250 isn't in its ability to kill deer or larger game it is in its barrel twist rate. The twist rate is so slow it usually will not stabilize the better hunting bullets and you are stuck with varmint bullets. These bullets are designed to come apart on impact thus leaving a shallow non fatal wound on larger game.

As far as I know AZ requires most hunters to take a Safety course and caliber restrictions will be covered in it. Plus your big game regulations should be found at the sporting goods counter of most department stores. You shouldn't rely on other people to find your hunting regulations if you are serious about hunting in the first place.
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Old October 9, 2008, 07:06 AM   #19
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My father's .22-250 has a one in 12 twist and it does just fine with bullets up to 55 GR.

Personally I would consider the .243 a much better light deer round.
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Old October 9, 2008, 08:07 AM   #20
camper4lyfe
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In NY, it's illegal (because it's unethical) to hunt deer with anything .22 caliber or smaller. Also, for the majority of the state, it's illegal to hunt with a rifle.
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Old October 9, 2008, 09:01 AM   #21
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Ethics

Why is it unethical to hunt deer with A 22-250 cal. if it is legal in your state? If A person follows the game laws in the State where he hunts, why would anyone say he is unethical just because he uses A certain Caliber that you don't use. I've seen Deer lost by hunters using just about every caliber I can think of including the 22-250. Is it more ethical to shoot A deer in the A-- with A 30-06 than it is A 22-250.? No, I don't think so. If anything is unethical its the Hunter not the Bullet and it has nothing to do with the caliber he is using.
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Old October 9, 2008, 09:26 AM   #22
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Quote:
Why is it unethical to hunt deer with A 22-250 cal. if it is legal in your state?
Legal does NOT equal ethical. Ethical is a higher standard (usually). Just because you are allowed by the law to do something does not mean it's the right thing to do. How many corporate leaders did unethical but legal things that contributed to our current economic difficulties?

So just because the gov't says I can use a certain, small caliber doesn't relieve me of the responsibility of considering whether it will give the high probability of a clean kill that the ethical hunter strives for.
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Old October 9, 2008, 09:53 AM   #23
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When I was in the AK ARNG I was the XO of A Co. 1/297th Inf which consisted of eskimos on St Lawrence Island in the Berring sea, SW of Nome.

I flew into the Airport which is a short distance from the village of gambell. The natives would come out on snow machines to pick up the passengers and cargo. While we were circling to land I saw a polar bear on the edge of the run way. When we landed I discovered one of the guys in my company had killed the Polar Bear with one shot from a 220 Swift. Not my ideal for a gun for hunting critters that eat you but these guys are a differant breed.

One time I went out whale hunting with them, they don't use harpoons anymore, they shoot whales. There are several guys in a whale boat. I've seen them with everything from a 458 Win to 222 Rem. We didnt get a whale then but the next day the same boat did. I asked the Boat Capt. how many times he shot the whale, he said "box and a half of 458 and 2 1/2 Boxes of 222." I concluded that eskimos dont shoot good, they just shoot lots.

Also in the Sears Mall in Anchorage they use to have a stuffed Brown Bear, with a plack about the hunters, Apparently the Bear was shot three times by the AF Col Hunter with a 375 H&H, it started chewing on him and was finely killed by his hunting partner with another 4 rounds from a 375. (Side note, the AF Col recovered and married Miss Alaska).

So basicly any gun will kill anything, or maybe it wont, wheather its a good ideal or not is something else.
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Old October 9, 2008, 10:40 AM   #24
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Quote:
if you know the laws on this caliber please tell me.
That is part of your job as a hunter, to learn the laws of your state.

The way I read your post, your only options are the 22-250 or the 30-06? I have read (absolutely no personal experience) that the managed recoil 30-06 ammo does well. I would give that a try before I would hunt deer with a 22-250.

Anyone else you could barrow a rifle from? (Uncle, cousin, etc). I would be looking for at least a .243.

Everyone has a different situation, and I don't know yours.
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Old October 9, 2008, 10:53 AM   #25
Art Eatman
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sureshots, in this particular deal that we're talking about in this thread, ethics is tied to your own personal ability to achieve a higher level of perfection in shot placement than might be needed with something like the '06.

A skilled rifleman who can control his adrenalin can commonly make shots that a lesser shooter cannot.

Sure, guys have been crippling and losing deer for forty forevers, and that won't ever end. Sometimes it's from unethical shots; the old, "You just shouldn't have tried that shot; you already knew better." Sometimes it's just from plain old incompetence. What cartridge was used is irrelevant.
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