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 Post subject: 28 gauge non toxic loads for pheasant?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 11, 2020 8:06 pm 
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I have a Ruger Red Label 28 gauge I love, but since a preserve nearby I used to frequent mostly for training one dog or another closed up, I haven't used it. Just can't get over leaving the 12 gauge behind when I'm out after wild birds. There is another preserve up in MN I started going to last year to get my dog a head start and we made some overnight trips up there just because it was fun - took one of my daughters and my wife on different trips.

I'm thinking of taking the 28 along and using it on a quick hunt just to see how it performs - the kicker is the preserve is non toxic shot only and I just can't convince myself there are any non toxic loads out there that would be effective, and sure never stumble on any that look promising at any gun shops.

Has anyone had any experience with non toxic shot for pheasants in 28 gauge and if so, what worked (if anything) and what didn't? Hunting a preserve over my setter if that context helps any, and nice, strong roosters, for the most part. Thanks!




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 Post subject: Re: 28 gauge non toxic loads for pheasant?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 12, 2020 8:32 am 
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Joined: Sat Feb 16, 2019 3:03 pm
Posts: 218
Kent Bismuth Upland and Hevi Shot has 28 gauge in Bismuth, Steel and Tungsten. If you have had no problems bagging pheasants with lead shot in your 28, you won’t have any problem with these loads if you keep your shots within a reasonable range hunting over a pointing dog. I also have a Ruger in 28 gauge.


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 Post subject: Re: 28 gauge non toxic loads for pheasant?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 12, 2020 12:55 pm 
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If you are hunting over a good pointing dog, I'd suggest the 28 ga Kent Bismuth Upland load in 7/8 oz #6 shot. Years ago Federal used to load a 28 ga 7/8 oz field load (lead) that I killed many pheasants with over a pointing dog and liked it very much. I'm still pissed at them for discontinuing it.

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 Post subject: Re: 28 gauge non toxic loads for pheasant?
PostPosted: Sat Oct 17, 2020 11:11 am 
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Joined: Sat Oct 17, 2020 10:58 am
Posts: 6
So many of the reserves are opting to be non-tox shot only. I love pheasant hunting with sub-gauge shotguns as well as waterfowl hunting. I have fallen in love with the Hevishot family of shotgun shell offerings. I find that I able to cleanly take birds with fewer shots when I use Hevishot. When I use my 28 gauge to pheasant hunt I use the Hevishot Hevi-Bismuth 2 3/4 4's. I can take virtually ANY flushing pheasant that the 12 gauge guys can. It's due the Hevi-Bismuth density and the energy they hit with downrange.


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 Post subject: Re: 28 gauge non toxic loads for pheasant?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2020 10:40 am 
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Joined: Fri Mar 01, 2019 1:36 pm
Posts: 1129
Location: Endless Mountains of PA
UplandHunter44,

I agree the Hevi-Bismuth shells in a 28 gauge gun make all the difference, have used them from time to time with great success. Inside 35 yards they take Pheasants with authority. However in my 12 gauge L.C. Smith #5 gun they take both Pheasant and Ducks out past 40 yards very nicely. Hard hitting shells that get the job done, no matter the gauge gun being used. Be prepared to get out your wallet, they are not cheap.

RST is now building 2 1/2" Bismuth shells for the Classic American and German Best double guns.

Pine Creek/Dave
L.C. Smith Man

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 Post subject: Re: 28 gauge non toxic loads for pheasant?
PostPosted: Sat Dec 05, 2020 4:59 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 19, 2020 2:20 pm
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PineCreek, I agree with Upland about the Hevi Bismuth. I have been using it for both waterfowl and upland game. I have been able to use my 20 and 28 gauge while pheasant hunting and frankly do feel that I am NOT at any disadvantage range or energy wise. I absolutely smoked a flushing rooster at well over 40 yards last week with my 28 gauge 2 3/4 6's in the Hevi Bismuth Waterfowl.


Last edited by Northern Pintail on Sun Dec 06, 2020 10:57 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: 28 gauge non toxic loads for pheasant?
PostPosted: Sat Dec 05, 2020 11:22 pm 
Diamond Grade

Joined: Mon Jan 11, 2010 10:37 pm
Posts: 1098
Location: colorado
Tss #7’s will anchor pheasants. Not cheap, but works very well. Hawglips brings it in and has several good 28g loads. There is also https://www.super18tungstenshot.com/col ... /frontpage


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 Post subject: Re: 28 gauge non toxic loads for pheasant?
PostPosted: Sun Dec 06, 2020 12:15 am 
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slotracer577 wrote:
Tss #7’s will anchor pheasants.


That's far too large in TSS for pheasants, so you are reducing your pellet count needlessly. 1 oz. TSS #8 is an easy 65 yard+ pheasant load.

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 Post subject: Re: 28 gauge non toxic loads for pheasant?
PostPosted: Tue Dec 22, 2020 8:54 am 
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Joined: Sat Oct 21, 2017 4:49 pm
Posts: 36
Pine Creek/Dave wrote:
UplandHunter44,

I agree the Hevi-Bismuth shells in a 28 gauge gun make all the difference, have used them from time to time with great success. Inside 35 yards they take Pheasants with authority. However in my 12 gauge L.C. Smith #5 gun they take both Pheasant and Ducks out past 40 yards very nicely. Hard hitting shells that get the job done, no matter the gauge gun being used. Be prepared to get out your wallet, they are not cheap.

RST is now building 2 1/2" Bismuth shells for the Classic American and German Best double guns.

Pine Creek/Dave
L.C. Smith Man


Pine Creek/Dave, the Hevi Bismuth is effective way past 50 yards. I have been using my new Beretta 20 gauge with Hevishot Bismuth Waterfowl 3" 4's while duck hunting this winter and love how hard these shells hit. I do mostly sunken pit blind hunting and there has not been a shot that I could not make with my 20 gauge and the Hevishot Bismuth.
If you factor in how FEW shots you shoot to cleanly take a single bird (not all the clean up shots trying to recover a wounded bird) then really the Hevishot is not that expensive. I shoot signifcantly less ammo to get my limit than I ever did with steel shot. Merry Christmas to everyone


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 Post subject: Re: 28 gauge non toxic loads for pheasant?
PostPosted: Tue Dec 22, 2020 9:00 am 
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berettahunter wrote:
Pine Creek/Dave, the Hevi Bismuth is effective way past 50 yards.


That's guidance from an aspiring cripple-master.

It is a nutty statement-- more Hevi-Shot spam, the world's worst and most dishonest shotshell company. Bismuth is less dense than lead, and is no 50 yard pheasant load out of a 20 gauge, much less a 28 gauge . . . much less "way past 50 yards."

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 Post subject: Re: 28 gauge non toxic loads for pheasant?
PostPosted: Tue Dec 22, 2020 8:20 pm 
Tournament Grade

Joined: Sat Nov 14, 2020 9:38 am
Posts: 113
Location: North Bay Area
I live in California and made the switch to non lead back in 2016.

I don't have a 28, but I've shot the following with success out of 12s and 20s for a min now.

Hevi Teal #6
Hevi X #4 and 6s
Hevi Bismuth #6
Kent Bismuth #6


Last edited by Novak77 on Tue Dec 22, 2020 9:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: 28 gauge non toxic loads for pheasant?
PostPosted: Tue Dec 22, 2020 8:27 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jan 11, 2010 10:37 pm
Posts: 1098
Location: colorado
I really like #7 tss in the 28 for pheasant. Deadly at long ranges. Load is one I got from Hal Abbot.


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 Post subject: Re: 28 gauge non toxic loads for pheasant?
PostPosted: Fri Dec 25, 2020 9:57 am 
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Joined: Sat Oct 17, 2020 10:58 am
Posts: 6
Novak77 wrote:
I live in California and made the switch to non lead back in 2016.

I don't have a 28, but I've shot the following with success out of 12s and 20s for a min now.

Hevi Teal #6
Hevi X #4 and 6s
Hevi Bismuth #6
Kent Bismuth #6


Same here Novak77. It's non toxic all the way for me as well. Like you, I predominately use a 12 and 20 gauge but both waterfowl and upland game. One thing that I believe most hunters don't realize is that you can opt for a smaller shot size when using the Hevi-Shot shotgun shells choices you mentioned above. Our duck season so far has been less than stellar but should start to pick up after Christmas (HOPEFULLY) and Hevi X 3" 4's and 6's is what I am using this year as well. I used the Hevi-Bismuth Upland 2 3/4" 5 shot in South Dakota pheasant hunting and was really pleased with how effective they were on pheasants at both close and long range shots.


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 Post subject: Re: 28 gauge non toxic loads for pheasant?
PostPosted: Fri Dec 25, 2020 12:21 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 01, 2019 1:36 pm
Posts: 1129
Location: Endless Mountains of PA
Randy,

No matter which shells I use I do not shoot Pheasants at any where near 50 yards, and I have been hunting for over 50 years now, and have killed a lot of Pheasants here in Pa & Montana. No need to try a shot near 50 yards to begin with. Most of my Pheasant gunning is done 35 yards and in, over a darn good dog.

Most people are poor distance judgers and are actually shooting birds under 35 - 38 yards when they think they are gunning birds at over 50 yards.

Merry Christmas!

Pine Creek/Dave
L.C. Smith Man

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 Post subject: Re: 28 gauge non toxic loads for pheasant?
PostPosted: Fri Dec 25, 2020 8:53 pm 
Tournament Grade

Joined: Sat Nov 14, 2020 9:38 am
Posts: 113
Location: North Bay Area
UplandHunter44

That Hevi X stuff is awesome. I still had half a case left over from last year and I am kicking myself for not buying more this year lol.

We've been putting the hurt on divers, but the puddle ducks seem to be late again this year.

Good luck out there.


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 Post subject: Re: 28 gauge non toxic loads for pheasant?
PostPosted: Sat Dec 26, 2020 3:57 pm 
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Pine Creek/Dave wrote:
Randy,

No matter which shells I use I do not shoot Pheasants at any where near 50 yards, and I have been hunting for over 50 years now, and have killed a lot of Pheasants here in Pa & Montana. No need to try a shot near 50 yards to begin with. Most of my Pheasant gunning is done 35 yards and in, over a darn good dog.

Most people are poor distance judgers and are actually shooting birds under 35 - 38 yards when they think they are gunning birds at over 50 yards.

Merry Christmas!

Pine Creek/Dave
L.C. Smith Man


I'm sorry for your plight.

Have you considered that the "Endless Mountains of PA" are not comparable to the non-existent mountains of Kankakee and Ford County, Illinois? You don't have to be any judge of distance at all when you use a laser rangefinder . . . you know exactly where they were dropped at, to the foot. No guessing is required.

This time of year, a 5 hour walk with the dog might result in one rooster. When you are hunting 300 acres of CRP, it is all grass, and pheasants don't need to fly. The smart ones don't and they will never get shot at. Most of what is left is the smart birds, that have to be smarter than coyotes and red-tailed hawks every day of their lives.

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 Post subject: Re: 28 gauge non toxic loads for pheasant?
PostPosted: Sun Dec 27, 2020 9:49 am 
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Joined: Thu Jul 16, 2020 2:10 pm
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I hunted this last fall for pheasants using my 28 gauge and non toxic shells from Boss Shotshells. They have a copper plated bismuth that I found worked extremely well


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 Post subject: Re: 28 gauge non toxic loads for pheasant?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2020 9:38 pm 
Diamond Grade

Joined: Fri Mar 01, 2019 1:36 pm
Posts: 1129
Location: Endless Mountains of PA
cfrobco,

Tell me more about these Boss copper plated Bismuth shells, where to purchase them and what do they cost? Do they make them in 7 /1/2's or 6's. Sounds like something I should be looking to purchase for jump shooting Woodies.

Randy while gunning your eye does the distance judging not the laser, no matter the habitat.

Pine Creek/Dave
L.C. Smith Man

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Pine Creek Grouse Dog Trainers
Charlton Heston NRA Speakers Bureau Member
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 Post subject: Re: 28 gauge non toxic loads for pheasant?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2020 9:53 pm 
Shotgun Expert
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You can get Boss from Boss: https://bossshotshells.com/ .

Laser rangefinders are training aids . . . no guessing. It doesn't take very long at all to improve your distance awareness, with a laser rangefinder constantly reminding you.

I used to play a lot of baseball and pheasant hunting is similar to baseball ranges. Home to 1st is 30 yards, home to second base is 127 ft. 3-3/4 inches or just over 42 yards, while home to the pitchers mound is 60 ft., 6 inches. There is your typical 20 / 30 / 40 yard increments right there.

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 Post subject: Re: 28 gauge non toxic loads for pheasant?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2020 10:05 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 01, 2019 1:36 pm
Posts: 1129
Location: Endless Mountains of PA
Randy,

Are these the non-toxic shells they are selling to the CA boys that have 5 shells in the box for the cost of $28.00 per box. If so I am definitely not interested in them.

I have no trouble judging distances while bird hunting, never needed a range finder to shoot birds. Those that due better find a different sport to participate in.

Pine Creek/Dave
L.C. Smith Man



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