Pellet gun for turkey hunting?

Discussion in 'Turkey Hunters Forum' started by Squaller, May 10, 2013.

  1. Squaller

    Squaller Elite Refuge Member

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    It has peaked my interest...

    I would likely have access to hunt a couple areas where a shotgun would not be allowed (and I do not have the time or inclination to use a bow anymore)...

    One is a larger ranch, but a couple of smaller properties with not-so-understanding neighbors...

    It is legal here in California as long as it is a .20 cal or larger pellet... Looking at the arguments, those who do it say it is ethical and challenging... Birds need to be close and head shots only... Generally 20 yards or closer is considered top range for the most part.

    Those against it say there is too much chance of a near miss and crippling birds...

    What say you here???

    Where would you try to put the pellet (I cannot see hitting that moving bobbing head even at close range)? From those who do it there seems to be some dissagreement... Some say the head, and others say the base of the neck while in strut... But would a good pellet gun (say .22 cal) be able to penetrate the breast if you missed the base of the neck with a bird in strutt?

    I have looked at threads discussing pellet guns, and I still have no idea what I would get or how much FPS I would really need?

    As I said, I am interested in the idea, but not sold on it... Input is welcome...
     
  2. Jay L

    Jay L Senior Refuge Member

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    some of the new pellet guns are tack drivers at 25 yards and have plenty of fps. If someone has the patience to really waits for close shots I would bet it could be done without any more worry of crippling an animal with a bow.
     
  3. TooTall

    TooTall Elite Refuge Member

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    There are a couple other options out there as well. Killing a turkey with a pellet gun seems like a long shot to me with too much chance of crippling the bird. I would look into either a cross bow: they shoot just like a rifle and are deadly as anything and they run about the same price as a good pellet gun, or a .45 or .50 cal airgun: these operate off of a contained air canister that can hold from 3 to 5 shots worth of air depending on how much pressure you want behind your bullet. People routinely kill deer with large caliber air guns, I'm sure they would work fine for turkeys.
     
  4. CUTTERS DADDY

    CUTTERS DADDY Elite Refuge Member

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    Marc,
    You can use .177 or larger in California for turkey now...Most are over 1,000fps.
    Shoot them in the brain to put them out. Would not recommend any other shot location. Have had a friend hit one in the spine but that was pure luck. If you miss you might still have a chance for a second shot (unless you have to pump).

    ?311. Methods Authorized for Taking Resident Small Game.
    Only the following may be used to take resident small game:
    ?(a) Shotguns 10 gauge or smaller using shot shells only and incapable of holding more than three shells in the magazine and chamber combined. If a plug is used to reduce the capacity of a magazine to fulfill the requirements of this section, the plug must be of one piece construction incapable of removal without disassembling the gun.
    ?(b) Shotgun shells may not be used or possessed that contain shot size larger than No. BB, except that shot size larger than No. 2 may not be used or possessed when taking wild turkey. All shot shall be loose in the shell.
    ?(c) Muzzle-loading shotguns.
    ?(d) Falconry.
    ?(e) Bow and arrow (see Section 354 for archery equipment regulations).
    ?(f) Air rifles powered by compressed air or gas and used with any caliber of pellet, except that wild turkey may only be taken with a pellet that is at least 0.177 caliber.
     
  5. skiebuster

    skiebuster Elite Refuge Member

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    I would do this if legal here. only if I had no other option..

    If you do it and succeed, please post picts and story!
     
  6. Burm

    Burm Senior Refuge Member

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    Having no experience with shooting a turkey with a pellet gun or rifle, I'd still say go for the head/neck. If you hit him, he should be dead, if you miss, it'll hopefully be a clean miss and less risk of wounding. Besides, with the lack of sound a pellet gun makes, I'd think you might have a chance at getting another shot. I've shot turkeys with a shotgun before and had others stand around like nothing ever happened.

    Give it a shot, sounds fun.

    --Burm
     
  7. Squaller

    Squaller Elite Refuge Member

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    Yes, you definitely want a head/neck shot...

    Some advocate shooting at the head only when the bird is alert... Clean miss or solid kill...

    Others advocate shooting towards the base of the neck while strutting... The neck when shortened gives a thicker target, and at the base there is a pocket where a .22 cal pellet can easily penetrate to the vitals (supposedly)... Plus it is a far more stationary target than that bobbing head...

    The base of the neck sounds like the better option, but how big is that spinal column? Can a pellet reach the vitals on a turkey if the neck is missed or would a near miss on the neck simply be a wounded bird?
     
  8. CUTTERS DADDY

    CUTTERS DADDY Elite Refuge Member

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    [​IMG]

    I would guess that a going away shot to the back of the head might be best.
     
  9. dakndug

    dakndug Moderator Moderator

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    Benjamin Nitro Piston .25 cal is what I'd go with. 2 choices, head/neck or
    like a bow shot right above the legs would work to, but you may have a chase.

    Good Luck!
    Doug
     
  10. turk2di

    turk2di Refuge Member

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    Interesting to think about....head shots only I would think....
     

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