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small game: shotgun vs. rifle

Old 08-13-2014, 09:51 AM
Typical Buck
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Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: North Central Illinois
Posts: 848

BlaZer, I see you are from Illinois. I am too, and primarily use a shotgun because most of the public land around me does not allow rifles at all. I would use a .22 more if I could for squirrels, though. I use a very light shot for squirrels (7 1/2 or 8) -- Kills more like a blunt force instrument, and I rarely have much penetration or many pellets in the meat.
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Old 08-14-2014, 02:22 AM
Nontypical Buck
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Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: MICHIGAN
Posts: 2,568

My brother in law stood in a line for 2 hours before th4e nearest Gander Mountain opened last Saturday. He got some 22LR ammo at 12 cents a round and said it was empty aisle when he left the store.

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Old 08-14-2014, 05:47 AM
Giant Nontypical
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 9,230

I use a shotgun for birds but a .22 rifle for rabbits and squirrels. I've been known to head shoot the occasional blue grouse back in my native CO with a .22 as well. By the way, shooting grouse with a .22 is legal there. I've also been known to use my RWS pellet gun in .177 for rabbits and squirrel as well.
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Old 08-14-2014, 07:07 AM
Typical Buck
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 749

Shot is not hard to pick out of the meat if it's in their. I used # 7 1/2 once while primary grouse hunting seen a squirrel and took the shot. The squirrel just chartered at me had to shot them a seconded time. Now I carrie some #6 with me.when I grouse hunt in case a squirrel shows up. Know plenty of people's that head shot grouse with a 22. My cousin used to carrie some shot shells for his 44 magnum just for grouse at close range under 10 yards he was deadly. But as you are a beginner and have not killed a lot of squirrels.I would stick with your shotgun for the time to you get some more under your belt and good luck.
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Old 08-14-2014, 10:25 AM
Nontypical Buck
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Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Alberta Canada
Posts: 1,081

22's rule for small game.
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Old 08-22-2014, 07:07 AM
Fork Horn
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Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Maryland
Posts: 129
Thumbs up .22 & shot gun

Early squirrel season because of leaves, I use a 12 gauge, with #6 shot, Mod choke. When leaves are gone I use a .22 rifle. Rabbits i like my 12 ga, o/u. Bird's ,12 ga o/u shotgun .
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Old 09-11-2014, 04:58 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Roane Co. WV USA Member since 11/1999
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My 15 yr old son and I only use a .22 for our small game. It is good as it gets.....
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Old 09-11-2014, 07:03 AM
Typical Buck
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: southwestern va
Posts: 753

ive always heard, rifle if you want to hunt, shotgun if you want to eat lol

early season i often take a 20g due to the leaves. Ive found i like to use express loads in #4 shot. There are less shot so the meat doesnt get torn up, and also they seem to penetrate all the way thru the squirrel unlike 6s or 7s that sometime stay in the body.

late season i like to take a 22 or 17hm2, sometimes an air rifle.
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Old 09-25-2014, 09:29 AM
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 81

i use a pellet gun with hollow point pellets
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