I have a problem in my garden with grey squirrels. They have destroyed most of my bird feeders and have had a go at my tool shed and motorcycle shelter. Chewed up a lot of stuff in the shed and have eaten a bit of electrical insulation on one of my bikes! Anyhow I decided to tackle the pests. I shot about four of them in a 10 day period with my HW77 in .22 cal. All four squirrels were killed with a single shot to the head or heart area.
However I had a go at one with my HW95K in .177 yesterday and my first shot hit the squirrel about 1/2" behind the ear. The pellet went straight through and the poor animal span around in a small circle until I put another .177 pellet close to the first shot but he was still spinning. I finally gave up and severed his head with a garden spade whilst it was still breathing.
I am a bit annoyed with myself but I did think that a 11.8 ft.lb .177 pellet at 20 yards would be enough for an out right kill.
Was I foolish to use a .177 on a squirrel? What do other people use?
Youve done nothing wrong bud I fully switched to .177 at the beginning of the year and iv had no probs. What happend was probably just a spazam, iv seen rabbits leg it off after iv put a .22lr in there head.
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those grey squizzers are hard bastards. Even a good head shot @ 20yds can still se em spinning matrix style then running off .
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No problems with .177. four of the damn things today using my r10 in .177 with barracuda hunters. Didnt even twitch on three but the fourth did the full olympic gymnastics routine before just fell over stone dead. Checked all four and all four were clean head shots just between the eye and ears. Just nerves
Shot one clean through the chest at 25 yds front on with the rimfire using 40grn hollowpoints last week and made a full 15 yds before it gave up the ghost. the entry point between the front legs and exit halfway down the back. I was curious so put a stick in the hole and it went fully through and out the exit hole with a whole bunch of mess on the end. So no you havent chosen the wrong calibre just sometimes the nervous system take over much to our amazement and sometimes displeasure,
So much so, I prefer something bigger now on that particular varmint, after being a 177 groupie for years ..............
You'd have probably found that something with less speed or a heavy pellet out of a pcp would have worked better
11ftlbs in 177, seems to kill best - assuming everything is shot spot on
At that range, your FULL power 177, simply doesn't transfer much energy into tissue, miss by a micro fraction and you have just seen the results for yourself
Personally I think the small pellet traveling so fast just makes a small neat hole without enough energy transfer & soft tissue damage, so I no longer own one .20 is the minimum I now hunt with, but far prefer .25-FAC.
But plenty of people will always argue that .177 works,
At that range use a flat head pellet like RWS super mag which I use which is very good ,I have some you could try.
I have shot lots of squirrels over the years , head shot squirrels can jump around like a gymnast with a rocket up his bum even tough they are dead . A good shot in the chest , heart and lungs seem's to knock e'm down with much less movement . Lately i have been using h and n barracuda hunter hollow points to good effect in .22 cal out to 3O yards , going to give them a go in .177 anybody used them on squirrels how good are they
Shot a few recently with rws hobbys, instant kills not even a twitch
As stated above squirrels are just... "HARD"
IMO they are the toughest in the list of quarry for airguns @ sub 12ftlb.
All squirrels I have shot, OK, all 6 of 'em have been head-shots. and all with a .22. Not all of 'em bounced around like jack-in-the -boxes though, some seem to staple themselves to trees even though they are dead (or appear to be) after a few secs to a minute or more. Once the muscles relax and they drop and are retrieved I have without exception seen the brain-box either partially or completly destroyed, from vsrying trajectories. Perhaps next time I'll try for a heart shot as a comparitor but I have always previously gone for head shots on all quarry so it will be very odd and against the grain to go for any other target area.
So at the end of the day "SQUIZZERS IS 'ARD B'STARDS" and that's that!
Last edited by Rod; 28-12-2012 at 10:01 PM. Reason: added cal. detail
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Cage traps are very effective and as bait Monkey nuts. then despatch the squirrel once caught
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I shot one on one occasion with my 22lr from 45 yards. It was sat on its back end, bolt upright chewing a nut in its front paws. The shot hit the chest spinning the nut in the air. The squirrel ran 6' to its left up a tree to about 12' up, then along a branch from where it fell to the ground. On inspection, it's spine was severed in two, with most of its internals hanging out of it's back.
As posted by others. Shot placement is key and I would say 22 all the way. Forget the smaller Cal's and try to stick with headshots all the way. Squirrels are truly tough. Avoid bodyshots too, their fur and skin is almost like a natural Kevlar.
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Heart shot with a FAC .22 Pro Elite that was a complete pass through and the squirrel crawled away until I put the next shot in the head point blank.