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I really want to start hunting predators, what is a good gun and in what caliber?

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  • I really want to start hunting predators, what is a good gun and in what caliber?

    I really want to start hunting predators, what is a good gun and in what caliber?

  • #2
    a bolt action with a Leupold scope on it will be fine. Caliber can be .223 or 22-250 . these are probably the most popular rounds for varmints.

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    • #3
      I personally use a .243 with a Varmint Load which is 80 Grains and boy can it reach out there. I never saw a coyote while actually hunting them, but I use the .243 Winchester that is. That's my opinion.

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      • #4
        I like using a ar-15, it's light weight and packs enough punch at a distance.

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        • #5
          Remington R-15VTR is where it's at if you want a semi-auto and have over a grand to spend. There are other AR platform guns you can use, but this one was born to shoot yotes. I really like the Remington Model Seven Predator. They make a pump rifle in all camo. They also make a Model 700 VTR that's worth a look. Savage makes the Model 10 Predator Hunter, also good. Ruger's Mini-14s and their bolt guns are worth a look too. Name a riflemaker, and they probably have a gun that is designed for, or at least well suited for predator hunting.

          .223 is good and cheap, .22-250 is a little better and not as cheap, .243 is awesome.

          If you don't have much money and don't mind a little mutilation, a Marlin XL7 in .25-06 would kill them very dead, and doubles as a big game gun.

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          • #6
            243 is the best caliber for coyotes i think and i killed my first buck with that same gun also

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            • #7
              Depends on where and how you hunt. I hunted the prairies of South Dakota and most coyotes were already running 100-400 yds by the time I saw them. Some were standing or laying down 200-500 yds. here is the progression I went through over 42 years and 40-50,000 rounds
              - Started with a 6.5mm Carcano, it cost about $25 and I was on the right track but the barrel burned out
              - Went to a 30-06 and .308 but they were like shooting a sling shot after 200 yards... too much lead required... could never judge it and I never did learn how to get the coyotes to pose
              - went to a .220 Swift... loved it inside 200 yards.. it hit where I aimed no matter how fast they were going, but it literally died after 200 yds and the wind drove me crazy out there too
              - Tried a .243 and again, it was too slow beyond 200 yds... still needed too much lead and elevation
              - Tried a 25-06 and it was the cat's meow. It hit where I was aiming like the .220 Swift except it didn't stop... I could nail them out to 400 yards and out to 200 was easy again. (.75 grain bullet at 3750 fps and .87grain at 3600. = tough medicine), by the way it was great for prairie dog, deer, antelope and about anything I really wanted to get.
              - .223 Bushmaster Varminter - Came on the scene a couple of years ago. I use only when I feel like cheating. It can never replace the 25-06 for pure speed and accuracy but boy does it knock em dead. You keep the cross hairs on them, you see the bullets hit through the scope if you miss and you adjust and squeeze til they crumple. Not really sporting but if you need to eradicate coyotes, it is hard to beat. (50 grain bullet at 3300 fps not too shabby). Accuracy plenty good for prairie dogs (1/2 MOA) and although less than ideal, it will plink deer and antelope using the 55g bullet. It plain fun to shoot. It is slower than the .243 and dies faster but you can fill the air with lead. Good luck with your choice... let us know what you choose.

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              • #8
                I like the .243 as I can use it for deer as well. I shoot Hornady 58gr. VMax for varmints but I don't hunt many areas where I can take shots past 200 yds so wind bucking and ballistics are less critical than at longer distances.
                I use a CVA Optima Elite. Probably not the best choice as it is single shot but it is what I have to work with. I would love a nice varmint rifle but that is definitely not in this year's budget. Good shooting!

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                • #9
                  I agree with DakotaMan . I got my 25-06 about 45 yrs ago and haven't looked back. Its on its 2nd barrel.

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                  • #10
                    Why shoot coyotes at such long ranges? Most, if not all of the coyotes I've killed have been called into less than 100 yards, and I've shot at least 2 this year with in 30 yards! Remington 700 BDL Varminter SPS in .223. I think a .243 may be a little on the heavy side, depending on if you want the pelt in tact or are just in the business of shooting coyotes. .17 HMR is also a good choice for coyotes.

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                    • #11
                      I like the .243 which can put down a coyote and i killed my first (and all my) deer

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                      • #12
                        i would use a 243

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                        • #13
                          I would probably use either a .223 or a .243 like Hunterkid94 said.

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                          • #14
                            I've shot the most coyote with the 25-06 and second most with the 22 mag. If I had to chose one caliber for the way that I hunt it would be the .223. Most of the shots that I take are on the short side of 100 yards and the 223 has more than adequate power for this type of shooting. The last three coyote I've shot have been with the 22 mag. at close range and this cartridge did an excellent job with no trailing chores.

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                            • #15
                              Bushmaster AR-15 with a 20 inch barrel is a great gun. Its a .223 that shoots well and is very reliable.

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