night hunting gun?


March 28, 2009, 07:51 PM
I am an avid night time predator hunter. I was wondering what yall think would be best for my situation. Biggest animals are bobcats maybe coyotes once in a long while. 60% of my shots are under one hundred yards. The other 40% are from just over 100 yards to over 200 yards. I have a 22 mag and two options to replace my 221 fireball with. The options are listed in the poll. And may I ask you to explain your why you vote the way you do.


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March 28, 2009, 08:30 PM
How do you hunt at night at those distances? How do you light them up? How can you tell what is beyond your target?

March 28, 2009, 08:38 PM
well we are on the family ranch which is very open in some places and i know where all the livestock and houses are by heart. I use a 1 million candle power spotlight and a 16x scope on my big guns so I can identify the animal before firing. I always always always always identify the species before the shot. If it is a coon let it walk most of the time. Grey fox are close cats are usually out there a pretty good ways.

March 28, 2009, 10:00 PM
I used to night-hunt predators pretty avidly, using a .22-250 Winchester M70 with a BSA illuminated mil-dot scope. Had a big-a$$ light like the OP. I was quite pleased with the optic and the gun, but was never as successful as I would have liked. Several times I knew lots of coyotes were nearby, but I just couldn't get them out of the cover.

Anyway, the .22-250 would usually put down a predator that I could hit with it, but didn't like to shoot through any brush or tall grass. Might have been the 40-grain Hornady V-Maxes I was reloading. When I borrowed my buddy's .243, I dropped them 100%. I don't think I'd like a .17 for anything but close-in shots, but I don't have any experience with them.

Not much help, I know.


Big Bill
March 29, 2009, 01:24 AM
It's illegal to hunt anything here at night.

March 29, 2009, 07:56 AM
well i have a 22-250 and an ar15 but i want something quiet

March 29, 2009, 01:47 PM
I'd just use my .22 mag. I have a lighted reticule scope that I was using for night hog hunting for a while. I'll probably stick it on another rifle for a night scope. Also have a red spotlight that will clamp to it. It's good for about 100 yards which is about all you're going to see a hog at night, anyway.

March 29, 2009, 02:49 PM
i'm not hog hunting predators are completely different and are a real challenge so you need to be able to deliver quick accurate shots out there before you are winded.

March 29, 2009, 03:00 PM
Unless you want to carry 2 rifles, it would seem to me that you already have the optimum rifle with your 221 for all the ranges you mentioned.
You can load the 221 nearly as cheap as the 17 HMR costs and it reaches out twice the distance.
The 17 fireball is basically duplicating your 221.


March 29, 2009, 04:48 PM
Well i would like very much to keep my 221 but alas to no avail. I am selling it that is why i was thinking the 17 fireball would be best to replace it. I seem to have a lot of trouble with the action. Whoever buys it will be told of the complications i have had with it.

March 29, 2009, 06:33 PM
If I understand correctly, you already have a .22 Magnum. I would set up some 20-oz bottles of water at a measured 185 meters, and verify you can hit them solidly at that distance. If you can't, get more gun. If you can, you're good, right?


March 29, 2009, 10:33 PM
not necessarily i would prefer cats not to run as we call for a contest and can win a pretty penny if we have them we weigh in. Also the furs sell on top of that so the less lost animals the better. The less fur damage the better.

March 30, 2009, 09:02 PM
I'm not sure I understand your reply. Who are you addressing?


April 10, 2009, 09:08 PM
BLAH!!!!!!!!!i hunt with a double barrel stevens 1907 12 guage! thats hunting ever try to hit a rabbit in a half moon -3/4 moon? bet not its fun as heck though. hightech scopes llalalalladaadada waste of money when you can get ammo.
i got a ole military deuce witha IR light! grab some gen 1 optics and then go shootin coyotes like its daytime!

April 12, 2009, 09:53 AM
I use, either my ar-15 5.56 nato or my sks with a night vision scope. The ar is nice for longer shots. But I usually take the sks due to the fact that I don't feel bad aboout beating it up. And that 7.62 leave a dirty hole in a cyote!
By the way,,,,5.56 will kill a good size hog with one shot. It's all about placement.

April 17, 2009, 09:40 AM
I'd prefer .223, but the .17 will fill your needs well.

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