63 replies [Last post]
WesternHunter's picture
Joined: 05/05/2006
Posts: 2374
223 for deer

All in all for deer I think anyone is wise to stick with higher velocity cartridges in calibers from 6mm to .30 cal with projectiles weighing in the 100 grains to 165 grains range. Just my opinion

Location: California
Joined: 09/06/2008
Posts: 1071
223 for deer

I don't think it's a question of the round being able to do the job (if properly placed, bring on the hammer) because it can. The problem lies in getting such a small projectile there. In a heavy wind, through brush, weeds or any of the things we dont worry about on the range that we must contend with in the field it's just too small. Under perfect range conditions it would be adequate. Throw in some complications and you have a problem. Add to that the fact that deer are so resilient for their size. I once saw a small Oregon blacktail doe run about a hundred yards after being hit with a perfect chest shot with a 7m Wby Mag. She ran so far and fast I didn't believe she had been hit at all. My friend ( a more experiecned hunter than I) calmy informed me she would be dead right over a hill, about a hundred yards off. I bet him ten bucks he was wrong. I lost ten bucks. Had he been shooting a 223 I might have had more bucks but less doe. Sorry could'nt resist that. Bad humor aside you get the point.

Location: Butte, MT
Joined: 01/02/2006
Posts: 234
223 for deer

I shot a handful of whitetails with a .222 back in my younger days. Seemed to work just fine. That's about all I can really say.

I wouldn't hesitate to use a .223, just not as a first choice. It is small, but if you hit the deer where it should be hit, believe me, there is no problem.

frontier's picture
Location: Hawaii
Joined: 07/16/2008
Posts: 56
223 for deer

I have shot Feral Pigs, Feral Goats, And Mouflon Sheep with a Model 700 in .223 Rem. I am still trying to build up the courage to take it out after Axis Deer because with my luck I will run into the biggest buck I have seen in my life and the shot would be just out of the range of my .223 ! I have seen many deer fall to less than a .223 but I have seen just as many get away wounded never to be found due to the poor blood trail that they left behind.


Joined: 10/07/2008
Posts: 21
223 for deer

i know its not an option in colorado .243 min

Location: Somewhere Up There
Joined: 01/06/2007
Posts: 217
223 for deer

I've put down more wounded animals (esp. antelope which are even smaller than the avg. deer) that have been maimed by 223 diameter bullets than I can count. I cannot stand seeing the things used for big game.

Location: Seattle, WA
Joined: 08/29/2007
Posts: 190
223 for deer

Guys in Wisconsin shoot deer with 223 rounds, I have a guy in my camp that uses a M1 carbine with that junk little 30 cal round and he shoots deer each year with no problems. I would not think twice about letting go on a deer with a 223 up to around 200 yards or so deer are not hard to kill or very tough I mean the 243 is an excellent choice and the 223 is not that much different on performance. IMHO

Location: new brunswick
Joined: 03/09/2007
Posts: 164
223 for deer

In defense of the .30 carbine, with good soft point ammo its delivering as much energy and speed as a .357 magnum and those kill deer.
The .223 is fine as long as your able to stay within your personal limits, if thats 50 yard broad side shots then don't push it, if its nothing less then a magnum shooting premium bullets do that or if your part of the stick and string crowd smack anybody that even draws back on a running deer.

Location: Montana
Joined: 10/24/2006
Posts: 449
223 for deer
WesternHunter wrote:
All in all for deer I think anyone is wise to stick with higher velocity cartridges in calibers from 6mm to .30 cal with projectiles weighing in the 100 grains to 165 grains range. Just my opinion

Thumbs up Amen

Location: USA
Joined: 06/04/2006
Posts: 166
223 for deer

Any center fire rifle is legal for deer in Texas, and the 22-250 was once the most popular whitetail rifle here. Many today use the 223 because of the popularity of the little black rifles that every want-to-be GI seems to own a few of. In the 1940s durring WWII I killed probably a hundred or so deer with a single shot .22lr to feed three pamilies of aunts, and cousins who moved onto my grand father's ranch in the north end of the Texas hill country, while their men were fighting a war. It was imposible to get meat, because of Gov inforced meat rationing. Not saying it was legal, but in that war you did what you had to do. We ate a lot of wild game! I used the .22 because we couldn't get ammo for any of our other rifles. Brick Wall,)

However, haveing said that, I have taken whitetail with a 223, but it was simply because that was what was in the pickup rack at the time.

I personally think the 243 win is the best deer rifle ever , with a good 100 gr bullet, at 2900-3000 fps, and in many states the .22s are illegal for deer anyway. The 100 gr .243 bullet will buck wind far better than any .22 bullet. It is my personal opinion that all the .22 cal cartridges should be illegal for deer hunting except in a survival sittuation, but as long as it is legal, and the 223 floats your canoe, paddle on down river. Think

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