New to hunting, want to use my Silver Pigeon - advice needed
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Author:  BroHawkeye [ Fri Oct 30, 2020 9:14 pm ]
Post subject:  New to hunting, want to use my Silver Pigeon - advice needed

Good Day All,

This is my first post to this forum (any firearm forum actually), I hope you all are doing well & can provide any insight and experiences to my question below:

Background: In short, I have never been hunting before, but I am wanting to give it a "shot" this year. I've grown up shooting, ever since I was a kid, and I like think of myself as pretty proficient all around. IRT hunting, I'm wanting to give bird hunting a shot first before going after anything bigger. I would like to use my 12ga Silver Pigeon S (manufactured o/a 2004, I received it used so not entirely sure of the exact year) - it was my first shotgun (received it as a gift), and I learned how to shoot clays initially with it (competed a bit with it as well). I would like to use it as I try out hunting since I feel the most proficient with it, and it is the least monetarily valued firearm I own out of my long guns. The only rounds I have shot out of it are your typical #7 & #8 target loads, and the chokes I own for it are: 1 cylinder choke, 2 improved cylinders chokes, 1 modified choke, and 1 full choke.

RFI: I'm currently stationed out in NC (CLJN) for any guidance on hunting-isms out here, and as a reference I'm interested in Pheasant and Quail, but I'm open to other birds. My only points of reference are the various clay courses I've shot (trap, skeet, wobble, etc.).
- For various types of birds, what have you used as loads?
- Will I notice a huge difference in performance between 2 3/4" vs 3"?
- What shot have you typically gone with that works well out of the the Silver Pigeon line for those birds or others?
- In general, do I need to repattern my gun for the distances that I can expect to encounter the birds? Again I have no previous reference as to how near or far the target will present itself - I'm familiar with my pattern for the previous course distances and loads mentioned above.
- If I decide I like hunting and want to try for something larger at some point, such as turkey or even a deer, can my the Silver Pigeon reliably handle those heavier loads?
- Will steel shot effect my barrel negatively? I understand that I would need to get beefier chokes that can accept steel, but can the chromed barrels handle it? The barrel was produced o/a 2004 based on the serial number search I did on Beretta's website.

Thank you for your time everyone, I look forward to any recommendations or guidance you can offer!


Author:  Bill M. [ Sat Oct 31, 2020 8:57 am ]
Post subject:  Re: New to hunting, want to use my Silver Pigeon - advice ne

Comments in no particular order or form.

Great field gun. Works fine with steel shot with the right chokes. Will not hurt the chrome. Look on the choke and see if it is rated for steel shot. If not, buy some that are to shoot steel. Yes, you personally will notice the difference in shooting 2 3/4 " and 3" shells based on recoil. I would not use 3" shells unless hunting waterfowl with steel shot. And I personally would use a different no tox rather than steel for waterfowl. Tungsten matrix or bismuth for that. What shells to shoot depends upon the game hunted and the hunting regulations for the area you are in. Upland game, quail, pheasants, rabbits, doves just use a standard 1 1/8 hunting shell #7.5 with lead shot if legal in the area. Start with the IC/Mod choke and adjust for the hunt if needed. Sure, the gun will work for turkey. Overall, for hunting, I personally would stay away from steel shot and use the more expensive but much better options.

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