.22 Rat Shot for Snakes?


May 26, 2005, 11:14 AM
Has anyone ever used this for snakes? If so how close were you and how big was the snake?
I've used .38 spl. shot before to good effect. Was curious about .22 which seems too little to be effective.

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May 26, 2005, 11:20 AM
depends on the gun a 22/45 Ruger it is ok in but when I used it, it made the snake coil up damaged, but not dead. a follow up to the head with a REAL .22 round did it ok though ;)

I would say the .22 is better than nothing, but plan on a follow up. (Coup de gras)

- by the way I was within 5 feet

Art Eatman
May 26, 2005, 11:26 AM
I used a S&W snubbie kit gun with .22 ratshot on one rattler.

The muzzle was maybe three feet from his head. Dead snake. Not a very big snake; maybe three to 3.5 feet long.


May 26, 2005, 03:51 PM
Ruger Mk II, maybe 3 feet, water moccasin, 3 head shots to kill it.

I'm not sure what kind of rat shot I was using, but it doesn't cycle through any of my .22's. Anyone else have problems with that?

May 26, 2005, 03:57 PM
I've never been able to get it to cycle in a semi auto.

My use of it is pretty much limited to revolvers - where it functions perfectly. its the first round up - I assume it is also a pretty good non lethal deterrent to the 2 legged critters I might meet on the trail - and if I need something mor powerful - thats just a trigger pull away.

May 26, 2005, 04:14 PM
The reason it may not cycle could be because of the very low powder charge in the round. Took one apart and only a quarter of the case had powder, rest was pellets.

May 26, 2005, 04:48 PM
I've used the 'bird' shot on many rattlers..works fine if you hit center to rear of the head.....back off...watch...be sure.

It's been known that even 'dead' rattlers can get ya (mostly handler errors and reflex from snake nerves).

May 26, 2005, 05:29 PM
How bout a stick? Or a shovel?

May 27, 2005, 12:10 AM
"How bout a stick? Or a shovel?"

Tain't long enough! :what:


May 27, 2005, 06:52 AM
Well of course shovel or other implement if you want to pick him up...
I took the head off of mine to be sure afterward. didn't want the dogs playing and getting a "reflex bite".

May 27, 2005, 01:39 PM
Don't know about .22 shot but I prefer a My Ruger Super Single Six with .22 magnum shot shell. Nice, lighter alternative to .38 shell shot in my Ruger GP100.

May 27, 2005, 03:51 PM
I think the stuff by CCI with the plastic capsule is a little better than the old crimped case stuff. None of the Long Rifle stuff has thrilled me on dangerous snakes. I use the 2 1/2" .410 in my ADC derringer.

May 27, 2005, 04:20 PM
if you do reloading...(and i assume you have a .38)


May 28, 2005, 09:40 PM
i had to be within inches with a marlin 39a and cci .22 shot shell for a one shot kill. tried a couple of days ago from a second story window at a snake on my pond bridge about 30 feet two shots to the head and he crawled away don't think it killed him but he has not been sunning on my bridge any more.

R.H. Lee
May 28, 2005, 10:14 PM
I wouldn't think a .22 case could hold enough shot to be effective. Why not just hit it in the head with a .22 solid or hp?

May 28, 2005, 10:28 PM
oh it will kill'm but you got to be close, so close a big stick, hoe or shovle would work as well.

May 28, 2005, 10:56 PM
My mother tried the CCI 22LR snake shot (#12 shot) from a revolver and was not impressed. She fired twice from 3 feet and could see the shot pattern hit all around the head, but it didn't pentrate the skin and only annoyed the snake. She went back to regular bullets after that.

I loaded some 38 special snake shot loads using the Speer shot cups, but never tried them on live snakes. The load was roughly a 1/4 ounce of #9 shot (about 100 #9 pellets). I patterned them on cardboard and the shot was evenly spread and the pattern was roughly an inch in diameter for every foot of distance to the target. Using the provided speer loading data, they were light 38 loads suitable for any 38.

The main advantage to loading your own was cost since a box of 50 reloaded snakeshot didn't cost much more than a factory 10 pack. They are also available for 44 revolver loads.

May 29, 2005, 12:51 AM
It "patterns" very inconsistently, in part due to your gun's bore/rifling spinning the stuff off on odd tangents and less-than-perfectly-symmetrical patterns. That's why shotguns are smooth-bore.

I once had a well-used .22 bolt-action rifle that did OK with snake-shot... out to about 15-20 ft. I used it to nail the industrial-sized Woodpeckers that liked to attack my house's wood siding at daybreak. Even then, the shot's killing power was spotty, so I went to a 20 gauge with skeet-shot.

The best use I've discovered for .22 snake-shot (handgun) was for shooting an infestation of mega-nasty Bumblebees. At 5 ft., it drops 'em about 75% of the time. Makes for great practice.

As for using .22 snake-shot as a first-shot/non-lethal "warning" on some street-punk mugger: Get Real, wake up and smell the coffee, and take a firearms self-defense class from one of the reputable experts. They'll tell you that IF you're EVER justified in shooting someone, then you're justified in shooting 'em 'til they stop any aggressive action that threatens your life. That means Shooting To Stop. Period. If you blast some miscreant's face with shot, his lawyer will sue you for his client's now-desperately-needed plastic surgery... on top of all the other "damages", like Stress, blah-blah, etc.

NO police organization issues snake-shot to its officers for good reasons (although certain depts. overseen by urban-liberal-pacifist mayors/commissioners, etc., would prefer their cops be armed ONLY with floral-scented/low-fat/organic insect-spray and -- for extreme situations -- rubber bullets... for their single-shot guns. If you "really don't want to kill someone, just hurt 'em a little," leave your snake-shot loaded gun at home and pack a John Kerry For Prez lapel button. You could hurt some mugger with its rusty pin -- plus, just like the Senator -- they'll be militarily qualified to be awarded a Purple Heart. (Those pin-pricks bleed... and sting somethin' awful.)

Of course, I don't play some Bambi-hugging PC politician on TV, so my suggested uses for snake-shot -- fun as they may be -- might just bring the Sierra Club and MoveOn.org/U.N. Peace Police down on your head.

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