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What is your favorite gun and load combo for pheasant hunting?

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  • DakotaMan
    replied
    OH... sorry for the slip on the case length... you are right of course. I think my preference for #4 shot comes from childhood. We ate a LOT of pheasants growing up and I found it was a lot easier on our teeth to have fewer pellets in the pheasant. They were also easier to clean. They do require that you let your pheasant get out to at least 30 yards before you shoot or you could shred them. I've never minded that because I love to follow a crowing rooster for a while anyway before I end the show.

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  • Ontario Honker Hunter
    replied
    Ithaca is right, when hunting the federal refuges and compelled to use steel shot it is best to bump up a couple of shot sizes. I'd use #4 or #5 shot and definitely a 12 gauge.

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  • ITHACASXS
    replied
    In NY with state stocked birds, I use 12 gauge skeet/IC with my Citori. On very windy days along Lake Ontario, I've switched to modified. The loads I like are Fiocchi Golden Pheasant 6 or 5's. If using steel, I like 3 or 4's high velocity. Though stocked, the birds that survive get crazy and tough late in the season.

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  • Trapper Vic
    replied
    20 ga s/s CZ + prairie storm

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  • Sourdough Dave
    replied
    over-under 12 ga with lower barrel firing first and choked IC, upper is choked Mod. and fires second for a tighter pattern more in line with sighting plane for the longer follow-up shot. High base #6 is the load though #5s are good if they are flushing farther out. I am fond of Federal Premium ammo.

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  • Ontario Honker Hunter
    replied
    Dakota, I think you mean 2 3/4" shells? The only 2.5" shells I have seen were collectibles.

    You do make a good point. A 20 or 28 gauge may do the job fine IF you're hunting over a pointing dog and the birds aren't too spooky yet. But those who hunt over flushers (e.g. labs or springers) can expect longer shots. On the federal refuge I will switch to my goose gun because the birds are so spooky long shots are about all I'm going to get. But for hunting the irrigation ditches and canals on block management I'll go back to modified. The way this pup is working out I'll probably shift to improved cylinder but I think I'll stick with 12 gauge. That way I can use the same gun for goose and pheasant hunting. Last year I'm guessing I shot at least 35 roosters and only mangled two of them and one of those the last day on the federal reserve with the full choke 870 and 3" mag (all I could get in steel at the end of the season). He doubled back from the dogs right past me before getting up. Shooting off the wrong foot and turning, that was a tough shot. I should have waited but figured it was going to take more than one round to connect anyway. Poof! Wouldn't have got the second shot as the 870 jammed ejecting the 3" shell (as usual!). I must say, however, that I believe the biggest reason I wasn't blowing up the birds was I just wasn't shooting very well. Very rarely did the birds pick up more than a couple of pellets so usually just the edge of the pattern. One of my late son's special needs teachers is after me to join the local trap club. Maybe shooting will improve this fall. I'm not in any big rush to see things change though. I like to take my time filling my limit. As much time as I can.

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  • DakotaMan
    replied
    Rem 870, 2 1/2 inch shell with 1 1/4 oz #4 shot loaded real hot. I use a full choke most of the time because where I hunt, South Dakota pheasants often get up near max range or I am blocking a field with pretty long range shooting possible. I love the days when they are dumb enough for modified choke though.

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  • Del in KS
    replied
    Beretta 686 Silver pigeon 28 ga O/U with WW 1 oz loads of #6 shot will kill the biggest rooster if I am on target. OR my 687 EELL 12 ga with 1 oz loads of #6 or 5 shot with same results if I do my part.

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  • 99explorer
    replied
    Twenty gauge side-by-side double (IC&M) with #6 shot.

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  • Dangle
    replied

    20 ga O/u, or same ga. autoloader, and 1 1/4 oz. of 6's. Make the bird be in range, and get out front...dead ringneck.

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  • Ontario Honker Hunter
    replied
    And I should be able to get away with less punishing loads too.

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  • Ontario Honker Hunter
    replied
    I use Browning A-5 Light 12 with modified choke and Federal Hi-Velocity #6 shot. I think things are going to change this year though. Turns out my eyeballs are quite fragile (in addition to fragile retinas) so I have been ordered to acquire something with less recoil to hunt geese (I use 3" 870 shooting hard-kicking very high velocity steel). That Light 12 belts me pretty good shooting those loads. Also, for shooting over the flushing labs that gun and shell combination was excellent. However, my Brittany pup is really coming into her own so I'm thinking I'll need a more scattered pattern for closer shooting.

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  • Treestand
    replied
    My Browning Mod.2000/12Ga,23/4" Mod/Chock with a Mix of #71/2,#6,#6.

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  • RES1956
    replied
    12 ga Kent Fastlead #5, 1 3/8's oz in a 2 3/4's in configuration through a modified choke. This combe will probably kill'em farther than most can hit them.

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  • philbourjaily
    replied
    12 gauge O/U or double with IC/Modified chokes.
    1 1/4 oz 6s when I shoot lead, which is rarely.
    1 1/8 oz steel 3 or 1 1/4 oz. Kent Tungsten-Matrix 5 or 6 for non-toxic

    Leave a comment:

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