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 Post subject: Pheasant Shot Distance
PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2012 6:54 am 
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Regarding your hunting experience, what is the most recommend (efficient) shot distance for pheasant ? Being accurate - shotgun chocked half/full.
Watching videos about pheasant hunts, it looks like, that hunters are shooting at very very long distances :shock: or it is just illusion, when watching it on TV ?


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 Post subject: Re: Pheasant Shot Distance
PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2012 7:30 am 
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Joined: Tue Dec 27, 2011 5:50 pm
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Location: SE Ohio...where ruffed grouse were
Pheasant shooting or pheasant hunting...pheasant hunting with flushers or pointing dogs?

Pheasant hunting with pointing dogs....stepped on 'em to 40 +yards at the shot.
Beyond that...pretty much let 'em go, unless wounded perhaps.
Self-jumped birds...between those distances.
What distance one should take any shot is not based on the choke or load but the particulars of the shooter and the existing conditions.

Re TV, distance perspective can be difficult, as can any perspective.
Sometimes I see the pheasant wobble yet the host calls a miss and, oddly enough, on those birddog trial shows it even looks like hunters are actually trotting or sprinting after their dogs....and that can't be, surely.


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 Post subject: Re: Pheasant Shot Distance
PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2012 7:40 am 
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I love 16ga, but now, I am thinking, that 12ga is better than 16th for pheasants...
How do you think ? Longer distances requires heavier load.


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 Post subject: Re: Pheasant Shot Distance
PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2012 8:35 am 
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16 is a fantastic gun for Pheasants.

As to range it depends on conditions, gun, choke, shot, shooting ability,shot the bird gives you etc..etc.

As a generalization inside 35 to 40 yards.

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 Post subject: Re: Pheasant Shot Distance
PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2012 9:10 am 
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For pheasants I am using No.3 Rottweil Tiger cartridges. Load weight is 1oz.
Also, Rottweil Waidmannsheils from Rottweil Premium line are very good, but load is heavier - 1 1/8 oz (31 gramms).
Shotgun is an old side by side, made in 1946, 16ga, chocked half and full.


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 Post subject: Re: Pheasant Shot Distance
PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2012 9:36 am 
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Location: Montana
I think 40 yards is still an accurate shot. I shot one this year from about 50 yards using 3 inch praire storm. I wouldnt have taken that shot but my saftey on the gun kept jamming so i finally to it flipped in time and took a quick shot and dropped it right there with a clean kill. Its hard to tell but as long as you dont rush the shot and lead the bird by about a foot, you should get em.


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 Post subject: Re: Pheasant Shot Distance
PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2012 10:23 am 
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I use a 16 bore over dogs and seem to find the 1 1/8 oz load plenty. As to range? I like to use open chokes and shoot them closer as it just works better. One memorable long range shot I made on a pheasant was 140 yards. The bird was flying over and fell about 50-60 yards after the shot and the dogs ran him down after about a 80-90 yard chase so it was 140 yards. I use the 12 mostly in NO-TOX areas and use the standard 1 1/8oz 2 3/4 inch equivalent loads. 3's work real well in steel as do 5's up close. I just like my shots within 40 yards as the dogs seem to get less exercise.

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 Post subject: Pheasant Shot Distance
PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2012 10:46 am 
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I would think that a 16ga 1oz load would be perfect for pheasants.

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 Post subject: Re: Pheasant Shot Distance
PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2012 10:52 am 
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In your opinion, which cartridges are better for pheasants ? With plastic wad or without plastic wad ?


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 Post subject: Re: Pheasant Shot Distance
PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2012 5:42 pm 
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If you have a good load that patterns, its the pattern that kills pheasants. I have, through the years, come to prefer a little heavier shot charge than the 1oz. Also with lead I use either copper or nickel plated shot.
As to wads, some "eco-friendly" loads are out here I think that use card wads. I had some Bismuth loads that used them but used a plastic shot sleeve. Tom Roster believed that the best loads are those using a plastic over powder gas seal, a fiber wad and a plastic shot sleeve that covered the whole shot column. His attempts were to get the tightest possible patterns, but I have experimented with that type of combo and they do work well. The Bismuth loads had a cardboard cup for an over powder wad I would like to be able to try as it would seal better than a standard card wad. Some of the black powder people have had success with paper shot sleeves to avoid leading and protect the shot.

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 Post subject: Re: Pheasant Shot Distance
PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2012 6:19 pm 
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Sonder wrote:
Regarding your hunting experience, what is the most recommend (efficient) shot distance for pheasant ?


Sonder, have you ever been pheasant hunting? It seems you are from Europe somewhere, so the distances will vary according to the hunt style. There is no "distance," it is going to vary whether you are trying for a driven hunt, rough shooting, etc., etc. In Illinois, USA, a shot could be from 15 yards to 55 yards for wild pheasants.

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 Post subject: Re: Pheasant Shot Distance
PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2012 6:22 pm 
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Chaco1 wrote:
16 is a fantastic gun for Pheasants.

As to range it depends on conditions, gun, choke, shot, shooting ability,shot the bird gives you etc..etc.

As a generalization inside 35 to 40 yards.



Good advice.


A side note.
Many years ago I was working at a gun dog kennel. On this particular day we were working pointing dogs on planted pigeons. All of the dogs were in the trailer when we noticed one of the pigeons had gotten up from the "plant" prematurely. The bird was a considerable distance from us and we speculated just how far. To give me a shooting lesson and as an example of his skill, the owner ( he claimed he had been a "Penn. Live Bird" champ in the past) of the kennel picked up the L.C Smith and fired the tight barrel at the pigeon in crossing flight. Shooting 1 1/8oz. of # 5s I think. The bird's flight was only a few feet above the ground when he fired and the bird dropped. I stepped off the distance to the downed bird. It was 70 yards.
I'm 6'-5" with a long stride so the distance was probably a little greater.


Last edited by Wildwood on Sat Jul 14, 2012 5:10 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Pheasant Shot Distance
PostPosted: Fri Jul 13, 2012 3:22 pm 
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I shy away from putting numbers on how far I kill birds because I don't know. I can guess but that is all it is unless I can measure it. Where he hits the ground is not usually how far he was when he was shot. As already pointed out, pheasant hunting conditions vary quite a bit depending on a number of factors. Under some conditions, 1 oz. of lead (or even less) will do fine. I have killed them with a .410. Late season, wild flushing N. Dakota pheasant can make you wish you were shooting a 10 ga. mag. I know a N. Dakota farmer & guide that shoots them in late season w/ 1 5/8 oz. lead 4's loaded in a 2 7/8" 10 ga. hull. He shoots a Browning 3.5" BPS but only uses that load when birds are flushing extremely wild. I have found that 1.25 oz. of lead 5's in the standard 2.75" 12 ga. hull will kill pheasant farther than I should be shooting at them. I have to believe that a lessor load will wound a lot of birds in extreme conditions, although they work as well as anything else within their effective range.
If I could get the pheasant to cooperate & get them to flush at the range I prefer, I would program them to flush so that my shots would be about 25 yds. & I would shoot an open choked SXS.


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 Post subject: Re: Pheasant Shot Distance
PostPosted: Sun Jul 15, 2012 9:08 am 
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Location: Nebraska
Like Randy stated, big difference if on a driven pheasant shoot or a wild pheasant hunt in the Plains.
I use the heck out of the 16ga for pheasants. Mostly 1 or 1 1/16 oz loads.
Having been on a few "tower" hunts, a 12ga with 1 1/8 or 1 1/4 might be better. This would be similar to driven shoot.


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 Post subject: Re: Pheasant Shot Distance
PostPosted: Mon Jul 16, 2012 6:10 pm 
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I've not seem too many things on TV that are like real life. If there weren't something amazing/stupid/crazy/unreal happening every few minutes, it wouldn't be on tv. I've shot plenty of pheasants over pointing dogs with a skeet choked .410. Then there have been those hunts when an antiaircraft gun wouldn't have had the range necessary.

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 Post subject: Re: Pheasant Shot Distance
PostPosted: Tue Jul 17, 2012 12:49 pm 
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Location: BRANCHVILLE, s.c.
Perception can play a big part even in real life. TV distorts things even more. I distinctly remember one whitetail buck I killed when I was in my 20's. The deer was running full throttle but he was in easy shotgun range & I put all 12 "OO" buck out of Dad's 30" L.C. Smith through his heart & lung area. The buck was dead instantly. From the viewpoint of the hunters on the other side of the field, it looked like a real loooonng shot but it was only about 35yds. None of the hunters that saw it believed what they thought they saw & only after the driver verified my story would they believe that I killed it with one shot. It was an easy shot in actuality. I have seen people blaze away at pheasant you couldn't reach with a 30-06 & when the same bird came by me & I killed it at a comfortable 30 yds., they would run 100 yds. to claim the bird.


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 Post subject: Re: Pheasant Shot Distance
PostPosted: Wed Jul 25, 2012 12:41 pm 
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4 shot if pushing, 6 shot if blocking or on a wing.


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 Post subject: Re: Pheasant Shot Distance
PostPosted: Sat Jul 28, 2012 5:00 pm 
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Location: Hudson, Wy
Many variables here. I have shot a good many of these wonderful birds with guns ranging from the 28 ga. up to the 10 ga. I like #6 in the skeet barrel of my 28, but #5 in the imp. mod. barrel. I have learned to stick with #5 shot in 20, 16, and most 12 ga. applications. With a tight bored 12 or my 10 ga., #4 is tops for long shots, those at 50 yards or better. I am speaking of quality magnum lead shot, American size standard, not British. For steel: #3 or even #2 in the larger gauges.
A very serious note about plated shot: much of it is JUNK! I have tested the nickle plated stuff from Ballistic Products and it is no harder than cheap chilled shot. There appears to be no antimony content at all. I also acquired some Lawrence copper plated shot and it is better, but not as hard as regular magnum grade shot. It must have some antimony, but not enough. I never tested Win. Lubaloy or Remington copper plate (never had the opportunity to get any for loading), but have heard that it is 5 or 6 percent antimony. I do know that when I can crush a plated pellet by squeezing it against a magnum pellet of the same size, it is over priced garbage.
As far as shot distance goes, it depends on where, when, and how you hunt. Late season roosters on ground that has been hunted regularly may require some pretty long shooting. Opening day birds, birds buried up in cattails after a big snow storm, or planted birds will usually give mighty close shots.
A 12ga. gun choked half and full should be a good weapon to 40 to 50 yards with proper ammunition and a shooter who is competent at such distances.

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