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Beginning to squirrel hunt

Old 09-14-2019, 05:16 PM
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Spike
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Default Beginning to squirrel hunt

Hey all... Unfortunately as a kid I told my dad and uncles I had no interest in hunting and never went. Now that Iíve raised my family my wife and I want to hunt.

Here is the deal... Iím picking up a 22 rifle for her but we need 2 guns to hunt together. Since Iíve started shooting clays with folks at work, I need a shotgun. I have read that you can hunt squirrel and rabbit with shotguns.

Question is do any of you use a shotgun for these hunts and will a 12 gauge (what all my clay shooting buddies have) be unrealistic for such small game.

Sorry for the length but wanted to paint the picture for you.
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Old 09-14-2019, 09:52 PM
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I carry shotguns for small game every year. I have a bad habit of buying single shots whenever I see them cheap. And I like to take them hunting.

Pick up some #6 Remington game loads and go shoot some bushy tails.

-Jake
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Old 09-15-2019, 03:11 AM
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Shoot them in the head or you will be spitting bbs. I hunted squirrels with a. Savage 410/ 22 shotgun/ rifle OU, from the time I started hunting at age 12 until I no longer hunted them in my 20s. It was the perfect squirrel gun
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Old 09-15-2019, 04:16 AM
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The .22 is probably the most used squirrel rifle out there. The 12 gauge shotgun also takes a lot of squirrels, but as mentioned, you will get shot through out the meat. Stick with #6 or #5 shot, and don't shoot if the squirrel is too close or there will be little left to recover. I personally have been hunting squirrels since I got my first pellet gun at age 10. I have progressed over the years from .22 rifles, to .22 hand guns, .32 Black powder percussion guns, and finally to .32 black powder flint locks. I no longer need to see how many squirrels I can get. I prefer a quality hunt using the methods and equipment that my fore fathers used.
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Old 09-15-2019, 05:48 AM
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I am now 72 years old and have used a 20 ga. shotgun since about 13 years old. My dad used a 12 ga. pump for squirrels and rabbits. You are fine, just follow the advice of these other guys. Don't shoot them too close unless they are very close and the head shot is there and use smaller #6 shot. I don't kill many squirrels these days but back when young they were part of our freezer stash for the winter. Make it fun for her, you won't regret it.
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Old 10-19-2019, 09:56 AM
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I am not sure about this.
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Old 12-10-2019, 05:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Messer73 View Post
Hey all... Unfortunately as a kid I told my dad and uncles I had no interest in hunting and never went. Now that Iíve raised my family my wife and I want to hunt.

Here is the deal... Iím picking up a 22 rifle for her but we need 2 guns to hunt together. Since Iíve started shooting clays with folks at work, I need a shotgun. I have read that you can hunt squirrel and rabbit with shotguns.

Question is do any of you use a shotgun for these hunts and will a 12 gauge (what all my clay shooting buddies have) be unrealistic for such small game.

Sorry for the length but wanted to paint the picture for you.

you cant go wrong with a scoped 22 or 17 but Iíve used shotguns quite a bit as well but there are pros and cons to both. With a 22 you can take them with head shots and have increased distance, and youíll never have to worry about biting down on a piece of shot. A shotgun is better for thick brush and if they are moving around you have a lot better chance of hitting them. Ive used everything from 410-12 with full choke and number 6 shot. It all comes down to personal preference and the area your hunting. Try different types of firearms and see what works best for you.
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Old 12-11-2019, 04:27 PM
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They're too quick for me, hah. I've tried once, but didn't get a single squirrel for the whole day.
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Old 12-12-2019, 09:28 AM
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I prefer a .22. Don't own a .17, but that is a good choice. 12 gauge is fine except you are over gunned which is way better than under gunned. A .410 for the child may be a good choice.

Keep in mind the shot is normally upwards. Unless the tree is offering a backstop, the rifle bullet will travel a long distance following a miss.

I used a Ruger 10/22 with hollow points. No longer hunt them as I do not eat them. Sure is a fun hunt though.
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Old 12-16-2019, 07:19 AM
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My two favorite guns for squirrel hunting: Is my 22lr, scope sighted, Yonkers Kimber Classic bolt rifle, and my rear leaf iron sighted Winchester 1300, black laminated stocked, 12 gauge pump turkey shotgun.

I prefer using 22 long rifle subsonic ammo...because the muzzle report spooks the squirrels less.

But on public hunting lands...I feel that shotguns are safer to use on squirrels than a rifle.

I've giving up using #6 shot for squirrels, and now prefer the #5's.

If you can afford using 3" magnum turkey loads for squirrels...I do not feel that you are overgunned by using them.

Amplified hearing protection for squirrel hunting is a plus for detecting squirrels...not to mention your ears.

Gray and mountain fox squirrel calls do work...

Lightly pan fry them...then throw them in a pressure cooker along with your favorite recipe --- Ooowee...I guarantee.

Good luck...

Last edited by Erno86; 12-16-2019 at 08:39 AM. Reason: added a sentence
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