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I an going to start hunting this fall after taking the hunter safety course and joing the local rod and gun club. I was thinkin

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  • I an going to start hunting this fall after taking the hunter safety course and joing the local rod and gun club. I was thinkin

    I an going to start hunting this fall after taking the hunter safety course and joing the local rod and gun club. I was thinking of starting with rabbit. There is a large area of private farm land where the owner said I could hunt. I was thinking of starting with a 12 ga then moving with experience to either a 22 air rifle. does this sound logical?

  • #2
    starting with a shotgun is a good choice. as Phil Bourjaily said, it is easier for a shotgunner to learn to aim a rifle than for a rifle shooter to learn to not aim a shotgun. after you have a little experience hunting the rabbits with the 12 gauge, move up to maybe a .22 rimfire or the airgun you mentioned. I would suggest that you get a .22lr rather than the airgun, since it is a very versatile caliber, capable of taking squirrels up to foxes. with a 12 gauge and a .22, you can hunt everything from squirrels to deer. hope this helps some.

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    • #3
      Thanks, for the help that was kinda along the lines I was thinking. I already have the air gun but am never opposed to picking up another rifle.

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      • #4
        That sounds like a fine plan starting withthe shotgun. I would agree with Habben in that I would probably start with a 22 rimfire rather than the pellet gun.

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        • #5
          I agree with the above on the .22lr, but i would limit it to rabbits crows and squirrels. I hit a fox one time and thought i had a good hit. It got away and i never found it.

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          • #6
            I think you should start with, and stay with, the 12 gauge shotgun.

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            • #7
              99explorer, thanks for the answer. Is there any particular reason why?

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              • #8
                You can just about hunt everything with a .22 and a 12 guage. For the .22 suggest you start with a bolt action instead of the usual semi-auto. The bolt is inherently a safer rifle and likely (but not always) will be more accurate. Suggest an O/U double or pump for your first shotgun.

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                • #9
                  Hi...


                  The 12 gauge is a commonly used rabbit gun.


                  For my own use, however, I would rather use a 20 gauge, or even a .410 shotgun (preferred) for rabbits.


                  For squirrels, the air gun would be fine. For overall small game hunting with a rimfire cartridge, I prefer the .22.

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                  • #10
                    A .22 rifle would be better than the air gun.For hunting rabbits the best way is to flush them and shoot them with a shotgun while running, in my experience this is the only way to hunt them. I've tried waiting and stalking them with a .22(its extremely difficult to hit a running rabbit with a .22) and I had a very low success rate compared to using a shotgun. A .22 is great for squirrel but not rabbits.Are you going to hunt anything else because I would recommend hunting some squirrel too because squirrel season often starts earlier than other game seasons and lasts longer.

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                    • #11
                      Small game is a great start. In your state squirrel might open before rabbit, so if you are anxious to get in the woods, that's is were you should start. Rabbit isn't a bad choice though. And a 12 gauge is the way to go, especially if you eventually want to hunt birds.

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                      • #12
                        I started off with a .22 caliber air rifle, then went to a .22LR and finally a shotgun as I learned to hunt for small game. That worked out fine for me but in the early going, I shot mostly squirrels and a few rabbits. After I graduated to the shotgun, I focused primarily on rabbit and pheasant hunting because I got a LOT more game.

                        Most rabbits were on the run when I saw them and they dissappeared in the brush so quickly, I seldom had a rifle shot. The shotgun however, let me get them before they dissappeared. If you are going to hunt rabbits, the shotgun will be your best choice by far.

                        I'll never forget the sight of my younger brother shooting his 12 gauge at rabbits at about the age of 10. He was slight of frame and weighed about 90 pounds soaking wet. He stood on a tree stump and we flushed rabbits toward him on numerous trails converging at the stump. Every shot blew him completely off the stump and he would scramble to climb it again before the next rabbit arrived. He shot about a dozen off that stump one morning before we finished. He was a very determined rabbit hunter and now he is the same with with ducks, geese, pheasants, deer and antelope.

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                        • #13
                          JMO~ A 22/Cal Air rifle has NO place on a Rabbit Hunt!
                          A Shotgun in 12,16,20,28,410Ga is a small Game Sporting arm, and can be used for Big Game also, a 22Lr Rifle or Hand Gun is fine to Pop-off Coyotes,Fox,Bobcats,woodchuck
                          ground squirrels,P-dogs. I don't like shooting a 22Lr up in to Trees.....but that just me.

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                          • #14
                            it's seems like a good decision but however dont use a 22 for rabbits there fast when you flush them so stick with a 12gauge for rabbits.

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                            • #15
                              Well that's ok but I use a 20 gauge or a 12 gauge depending on where I'm hunting just stick with a shotgun hunt south facing slopes in the morning looking for bunnies trying to catch some sun.

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