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Many state-owned lands here in the NW require use of non-toxic shot for upland birds (mostly quail, some pheasants, etc.). Anybody have experience shooting small steel at quail? The smallest I can find is #6 steel, which seems big to shoot at quail, but I guess maybe not because its lead equivalent is roughly #7 1/2.

Other non-toxics would work, but it gets pricey when you get into large quail coveys. You can go through a lot of shells in a hurry.

Suggestions? :?
 

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I have shot quite a few clay targets and doves with #7 steel and some #6 steel, but for quail I would go with #6 steel to maintain pellet energy and not hurt you pattern denstiy too much.

If they are very close (25 yards) it probably doesn't matter much, but as your shots get out past 35 yards the #6 steel will be carrying more pellet energy which is a good thing.

The Win. Xpert line has both 12ga 1 oz and a 20ga 3/4 oz #6 steel loads. They are very affordable ($6.00/box at Bass Pro and Acadamy) and seem to work just fine on targets and doves.

Remember to pattern your load and choke to make sure it is putting an adequate number of well distributed pellets in the pattern at the distances you normally shoot and go to it.

Good luck.
 
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