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Old September 25, 2012, 01:06 PM   #26
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I use a Benelli Sport II in 20 gauge with my own #5 shot loads in Remington high brass hulls.
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Old September 25, 2012, 02:17 PM   #27
Dave McC
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Some thoughts on guns and loads for wild birds.....

Pheasant hunters do a lot of walking. That A 5 might seem a bit heavy three ridges away from the truck.

Brister,et al, suggested most folks would find 7 lbs as a practical ceiling on an uplander. I personally find that shotguns lighter than 6 lbs are hard to shoot well, so let's aim for in between.

IMO, big loads are called for here. I like 1 1/4 oz of 5s, and that means 12 gauge. I have seen plenty of ringnecks harvested with 7/8 oz of 7 1/2s, but those were closer shots than some of us see much.

Action type? Whatever floats your boat. I recall one jack pine savage long ago whose weapon of choice was an old "Long Tom" cut back to about 30" and with a Polychoke installed. He was deadly with it.

Chokes? For all around use, Mod is hard to beat.
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Old September 27, 2012, 09:28 PM   #28
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I mostly use a Browning Double-Auto (steel receiver variant), choked modified. There are times and occasions when I use either No. 4 or No. 6 shot, but mostly "premium" No. 5s.
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Old September 28, 2012, 12:07 AM   #29
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I grew up pheasant hunting in the midwest and there if you didn't have an 870 12ga with green Remington Express 5's, you were some kind of alien.
That said, I hunt upland quite a bit and over a flushing dog...the birds are up and gone if you can't get on them quickly.
I carry a Browning Silver Hunter 20ga 28" with Fiocchi Golden Pheasant 3" 5's and that combo has killed more birds than I ever have with a 12ga.
First it an extension of my arm.
Second, it's light. Unless you're living in SD or shooting at a preserve, pheasant guns get carried a lot and shot a little....a heavy shotgun is heavier at the end of the day.
It functions perfectly and the recoil of a light shotgun pushing 1 1/4 ounce of lead is pretty soft for the followup shots (yes, I miss them, too).
Buy a pretty's not a duck blind in a salt marsh, it's upland. Buy something that's nice to look at.
After listening to a lot of people talk about their favorites and spending some real money on poor-fitting shotguns, I decided to buy what feels right, rather than what someone told me was right.
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Old September 28, 2012, 01:00 AM   #30
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I typically hunt over dogs, so a Browning Auto-5 or Remington 1100 20 gauge usually works just fine in the early season. Late season, it's pretty much a 12 gauge game, and I really like my Citori.
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Old September 28, 2012, 06:06 PM   #31
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The 12 ga double Fox Sterlingworth my Grandpa gave me worked fine in N side of Toledo pheasants in the late 50's. Now it is all condos and my old bedroom is a meat dept in a Kroger store--yuk.

Best pheasant hunting anywhere!! Excellent for rabbits also.
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