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What can I shoot with an air rifle?
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Woodburner



Joined: 28 Apr 2006
Posts: 2860
Location: Essex
PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 08 12:27 pm    Post subject: What can I shoot with an air rifle? Reply with quote    

Which of these can I shoot with an air rifle? Rabbits, squirrels, magpies, pigeons, and pheasant, oh and muntjac, if they are good eating.

Also, what are the limitations on where I could shoot them, and are there any limitations on when, for any of them?

marigold



Joined: 02 Sep 2005
Posts: 12433
Location: West Sussex
PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 08 12:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I dunno what you can shoot with an air-rifle, all I ever shot with one was the heads off daffodils (my mother was not amused) .

Sorry , helpful person will be along soon...

tahir



Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 42429
Location: Essex
PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 08 12:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Muntac with an air rifle? I can't imagine there are any out there powerful enough to kill something that large.

Mary-Jane



Joined: 13 Jan 2005
Posts: 18396
Location: The Fishing Strumpet is from Ceredigion in West Wales
PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 08 12:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

tahir wrote:
Muntjac with an air rifle? I can't imagine there are any out there powerful enough to kill something that large.


Good God no. You would never shoot Muntjac with an air rifle. You would only wound them and leave them in agony. I wouldn't even use a shotgun personally. Brown Bear will be along later with some sensible advice no doubt.

Last edited by Mary-Jane on Mon Aug 02, 10 8:31 am; edited 1 time in total

gil
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 08 Jun 2005
Posts: 18300
Location: Scotland
PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 08 12:46 pm    Post subject: Re: What can I shoot with an air rifle? Reply with quote    

Woodburner wrote:
Which of these can I shoot with an air rifle? Rabbits, squirrels, magpies, pigeons, and pheasant, oh and muntjac, if they are good eating.

Also, what are the limitations on where I could shoot them, and are there any limitations on when, for any of them?


Muntjac - no, too big
Rabbits, squirrels, magpies, pigeon, pheasant - yes, BUT

effective range of an air rifle is 25-30yds
Therefore you have to get quite close to them to be sure of getting a good, clean shot.
You also have to be quite a good shot to hit them when they are moving (running, flying)

Squirrels spend a lot of time in trees (possibility of ricochet off branches/trunk if you miss). Do NOT shoot red squirrels.
Magpie - I wouldn't eat this unless I were desperate, so unless you have a serious problem with them as pests, prolly not worth it
Rabbits - more likely to be on the move at dawn / dusk, though obviously around at other times. You will need to sit downwind and very still for quite a long while, possibly in cold, rain, or a cloud of midges.
Pheasant - often slow-moving, slow-witted. Large-ish. Perfect quarry.
Pigeons (wood) - smaller; don't spend as much time on the ground as pheasant. Tree comments apply.

Shoot where : on your own land; on someone else's land with the landowners permission

When :
pheasant season Oct - Jan in Scotland; Oct - Dec (I think) in England. They're a bit small earlier in the season, so best left till start of Nov.
Rabbits, squirrels : all year

Don't shoot things in their breeding season, nor when they have young to care for.

vegplot



Joined: 19 Apr 2007
Posts: 20215
Location: Ynys Môn
PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 08 12:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Extract from the BASC website.

BIRDS: (covered by the open general licences) crows, rooks, jackdaws, magpies, jays, woodpigeon, collared doves, feral pigeons.

MAMMALS: brown rats, grey squirrels, stoats, mink and rabbits

All birds are protected, and although there are seasons when you can legally shoot game, and some wildfowl, they are not suitable quarry for air rifles. However, as long as you are complying with firearms law, you can shoot certain pest bird species. These are covered by open general licences which, in simple terms, mean you can shoot the birds listed, provided you have the landowner’s permission and provided you are doing it for one of the reasons allowed by the licence.

These reasons include:
• to protect crops
• to protect game and wildlife
• to protect public health or safety

BASC recommends that anyone wishing to take bird pest species should read BASC’s advice on general licences - click here.

You can shoot mammal pests at any time provided you have the landowner’s permission. Air rifles are suitable for: brown rats, grey squirrels, stoats, mink and rabbits.

http://www.basc.org.uk/content/airriflepractice

Rob R



Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 29934
Location: York
PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 08 12:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Barn doors.

KILLITnGRILLIT



Joined: 14 Sep 2006
Posts: 894
Location: Looking at a screen in the front room
PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 08 1:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I would have to say that you need to hit a 2p size target 4 times out of 5 on a regular basis before you step out into the world of killing animals and birds.

Muntjac........hell no!




.

mochyn



Joined: 21 Dec 2004
Posts: 24291
Location: mid-Wales
PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 08 1:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Rob R wrote:
Barn doors.


Not all of us.

Actually, I'm quite good with an air pistol.

mochyn



Joined: 21 Dec 2004
Posts: 24291
Location: mid-Wales
PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 08 1:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

KILLITnGRILLIT wrote:
I would have to say that you need to hit a 2p size target 4 times out of 5 on a regular basis ...


At what distance?

Brownbear



Joined: 28 May 2007
Posts: 14930
Location: South West
PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 08 1:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

You have to get head shots with an air rifle. If you just have a vast number of bunnies, and want them dead, a .17HMR will kill instantly with a central chest shot, which makes lamping them at night easier.

I would only use an air rifle when considerations of safety rule out all other arms.

vegplot



Joined: 19 Apr 2007
Posts: 20215
Location: Ynys Môn
PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 08 1:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I shot a rabbit in the head with an air rifle just once. First and last time. It didn't die as quickly as I would have wanted and I dare say, for a short while, the bunny thought the same.

Jonnyboy



Joined: 29 Oct 2004
Posts: 23924
Location: under some rain.
PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 08 1:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

vegplot wrote:
I shot a rabbit in the head with an air rifle just once. First and last time. It didn't die as quickly as I would have wanted and I dare say, for a short while, the bunny thought the same.


With any firearm there is the risk of wounding. Being able to quickly despatch a wounded animal is an essential skill to learn when shooting any live quarry. IMHO.

vegplot



Joined: 19 Apr 2007
Posts: 20215
Location: Ynys Môn
PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 08 2:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Jonnyboy wrote:
vegplot wrote:
I shot a rabbit in the head with an air rifle just once. First and last time. It didn't die as quickly as I would have wanted and I dare say, for a short while, the bunny thought the same.


With any firearm there is the risk of wounding. Being able to quickly despatch a wounded animal is an essential skill to learn when shooting any live quarry. IMHO.


When I reached 15 I bought a shotgun and used that instead.

Brownbear



Joined: 28 May 2007
Posts: 14930
Location: South West
PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 08 2:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Jonnyboy wrote:
vegplot wrote:
I shot a rabbit in the head with an air rifle just once. First and last time. It didn't die as quickly as I would have wanted and I dare say, for a short while, the bunny thought the same.


With any firearm there is the risk of wounding. Being able to quickly despatch a wounded animal is an essential skill to learn when shooting any live quarry. IMHO.


True - but the less energy a projectile delivers, the less likely it is to kill outright. A .17HMR bullet only weighs 17 grains, not much more than a .22 air rifle pellet, but if fired at clay or wet earth will blow out a hole the size of a grapefruit, whilst an airgun pellet will just disappear into the ground.

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