13 replies [Last post]
Location: Idaho
Joined: 06/01/2004
Posts: 1046
Shot size suggestions

Yeah, I shot # 5 this morning, with greater effectiveness (it seems). My eyes are not all that great (for tracking, it seems ... too much computer time). And, yeah, I may even put # 4 on the menu.

While I was cleaning the bird I got yesterday I recovered some of the # 6 ... whoa they seemed small. I cut open a round of # 6 lead upland shells, to compare. Yeah, # 6 is too small for Mallards, except perhaps early in the season when they hardly have a layer.

Location: Western ans Northern Canada
Joined: 06/26/2007
Posts: 78
Shot size suggestions

Wow,I'm so lost now in the world of steel and bismuth shot. Is lead shot banned in all USA or just some states?
I used to to use (lead) #4 for ducks and #4 buckshot for geese! No peppering them and leaving them to die some where,you hit and kill,or miss.
But the the rules have changed now.
I hope someone can enlighten me on steel loads equal to my goose loads...
I like heavy shot,obviously...

WesternHunter's picture
Joined: 05/05/2006
Posts: 2374
Shot size suggestions

Are you kidding??? #4 Buckshot for geese??? WTF??? I must say that buckshot no matter what size is way too big and way too over destructive for any size bird, including the largest geese. Not to mension that #4 buckshot will travel much farther than the most powerfull steel shot. Not real safe to be shooting buckshot into the air. Lead has been illeagal for waterfowl nationally in the USA since 1991, and some states and areas are considering only steel shot for upland birds too. No way man, go with a smaller steel shot size for geese.

For geese in steelshot I stick with BB in modified choke, but have use T shot too before, but have never gone any larger than T shot though. Here in Colorado you can't use anything larger than T shot for waterfowl or any other birds. For ducks I use #2 high velocity steel almost exclusively, and try to shoot all my birds beyond 20 yrds out to no farther than 45 yrds, 50 yrds or so. I' always killed em out of the sky just fine. Keep in mind that waterfowl are in range when they are inside of 50 yards, and definitley no farther than 60 yrds.

Another idea that seems to be lost on a lot of hunters today (especially new hunters) is the idea that when they see game they think that they have to shoot it. There are certain things you must consider before taking the shot, be it big game or small game. Is it too close? Will I damage too much meat? Can I make this shot? Is it too far? What's beyond my target? Is it a safe shot to all but the game? Can I retrieve my game once it's down? All things that must be considered before firing.