Which rifle for coyote hunting?


December 30, 2010, 06:04 AM
I'm just getting back into hunting again...I missed out on this year's deer season but would really like to start coyote hunting soon. I have a couple buddies that have hunted them before but need your opinion's on what rifle I should take out with me.

1-Marlin 30-30 lever action (if I take this rifle I will need to take some time and see if the scope is still sighted in).

2-DTI AR 15 currently has no optics so I'd have to rely on just the irons. I want to get a good red dot optics but not sure how well they work for coyotes?

3-Savage 93R17 .17 HMR. This is currently my most accurate rifle I have. The thing is a nail driver but is the .17 HMR good for coyotes is my question?

Coyotes here seem to be very big...I hit one early in the morning 2 months ago with my car. The yote weighed just over 60 pounds.

Again I've never really tried coyote hunting so its all new to me, I just want to make sure I have the right tool for the job. Thanks!

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December 30, 2010, 07:29 AM
All of them. The 17 keep shots under 75 yds and use the 20 gr bullet.

December 30, 2010, 08:22 AM
I agree with cowpoke in using the 20gr loads in the 17HMR, on the larger game like coyotes. They possess a heavier jacket and they allow better penetration than the more frangible 17gr V-Max. Some rifles do not handle the 20gr load as well as the 17gr.

Optics for the AR would be the best investment, as the 223 is a pretty fair round for harvesting coyotes. That would be my choice.


December 30, 2010, 08:43 AM
i would go with the AR and get a good set of optics for it in the future. i have never had much luck in getting coyotes to come in close enough to feel comfortable shooting at them with a .17

December 30, 2010, 10:33 AM
1 or 2, either sight in the 30-30 or if you can hit stuff with the open sights on your AR then use that. If you can call them in to 75 yards (often times you can) then you can hit them with either of the first two setups which are both better for coyotes. In fact you should be good out to at least 150 yards with a scoped 30-30. You really have to pick your shots with a 20gr bullet, with the others you don't.

December 30, 2010, 11:10 AM
I would get a couple riser blocks for the AR and mount a decent 2x7 new/used scope on it. If you can call em in close the 17 sounds like it is worth a try but by then you might try a shotgun. Is that an option for you?

December 30, 2010, 11:20 AM
I would go with the AR. I agree with Brandon, you may have a long shot and the 17 won't hack it.

December 30, 2010, 11:37 AM
the 30-30 would be fine but you stated the scope is not sighted-in. How about the AR with iron sights? are your eyes not good enough for irons (like mine)

Black Butte
December 30, 2010, 11:56 AM
The Winchester Model 70 Coyote in 22-250 Rem.

December 30, 2010, 12:01 PM
All three of those rifles will take a coyote if you make a good shot.

December 30, 2010, 03:06 PM
Thanks all for the advice. I'm going to go with the 30-30 for now as I really dont want to spend a lot of money on optics for the AR just yet. I bought some of the new Leverevolution Ammo for the 30-30. 160 gr. This ammo seems to be getting a lot of positive reviews. I know everyone has their own input on the better caliber and while I was at a few gun shops each person offered their input based on other hunters experiences along with their own. All agreed on the .223 being the best. The .17 HMR was getting mixed reviews most said it was underpowered. They claimed the 30-30 was too big and wouldn't reach out as far as the .223 which may be true, but unless they want to buy optics for me then I will stick with the 30-30 and sight it in.

For those of you that hunt coyotes I know they are some very tricky animals to hunt, any suggestions for a new coyote hunter? Tree stand or sit on ground. Do you call them in? What time of day is my best bet to see one? I haven't heard any "yapping" in a few months but we have seen signs of them on our property recently so I dont know if they found a new home and cross onto us when traveling. According to some articles I've read they roam a large area in their travels.

December 30, 2010, 04:09 PM
Calling works pretty well if they aren't used to being called. About any sounds can work including the coyote sounds. Ground or a stand can work fine. You must be very still, though. Use the setup best for the wind. Early and late are best, but in cold weather
they may come in any time of day. Read as much as you can. I sometimes use a 22 magnum, a scoped 30-06 ( with accelerators or a 110-125 grain spire point) , a 12 gauge shotgun, a 22 mag. Ruger single six, and sometimes an open sighted mosin nagant ( with the solid core bullets), or any two of the above, depending on where I'm at and what weather conditions I'm in. Have fun.

December 31, 2010, 12:47 AM
Good choice on the 30-30 in my opinion. With leverevolution ammo and a scope you are good out to 150-200 yards, which is all you need. If you are hunting semi-flat area I recommend a small chair to sit on for extra elevation, and shooting sticks or a mono-pod as a rest. If you are hunting hilly country set up near the top of a hill so that you have some elevation and sit on your duff. If you are on a budget you can make shooting sticks very easily with rubberbands or a screw to hold the sticks together.

I give this advice a lot and I think nobody listens but the single-most important thing I did when getting into predator calling was to frequent http://www.predatormasters.com/forums and read a lot of posts. You can get the jist of how to set up and what not, lots of good info there from guys who kill a bunch of coyotes.

As far as calls, I have had great luck with this:http://www.cabelas.com/product/Hunting/Hunting-Game-Calls/Predator-Miscellaneous%7C/pc/104791680/c/104725980/sc/104513580/Primosreg-Mastering-The-Art-Predator-Pak/707951.uts?destination=/catalog/browse/hunting-hunting-game-calls-predator-miscellaneous/_/N-1100098/Ns-CATEGORY_SEQ_104513580%3FWT.mc_id%3D58000000001698151%26WT.srch%3D1%26WT.tsrc%3DPPC%26WT.z_mc_id1%3D138348393%26rid%3D20 The DVD is good, it teaches you how to blow the calls and shows stands so you can get an idea of how to do it.

Another great call is this one:http://predatoruniversity.com/zen/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=7_1&products_id=18&zenid=136ac2d0e217385ffd026d0cfefa293d
And how to blow it: http://www.custompredatorcalls.com/predu/TT_Custom_Predator_Calls.html Just listen to Tony blow and try to sound like him. He kills a BUNCH of dogs yearly.

If you really want to call and kill coyotes, this advice will get you started. Predator hunting is a lot of fun and very rewarding but it takes some effort and practice. I'm no pro, but I do call and kill coyotes. Have fun!

December 31, 2010, 06:12 AM
Thanks for the info. I wanted the AR set up for home defense purposes mostly and really didn't want to spend money on seperate optics for hunting. I had my grandfather's 30-30 with a scope already mounted and figured I would go with that. Everyone I talked to said the 30-30 is more than capable of killing a coyote it just may do more damage to the hide?

As for the setup we have 65 acres of overgrown field and woods. Three small creeks run through the property. The north side of the property has a very deep gully, the bottom of which has one of the creeks (the deepest one). That is the spot I'm thinking of hunting from. My buddies brought over an electronic predator call a while back. Had the coyote "howling" call and injured rabbit call. We didn't see anything that day but it was in the middle of the day and it was very warm so they might have not been moving.

December 31, 2010, 06:35 AM
Your 30-30 will be a good coyote gun plus I think it is a better choice for next years deer season. Now go get them yotes.

December 31, 2010, 09:39 AM
If you are concerned about damaging the hide with the 30-30, then shot placement just becomes that much more important. Let us know how things turn out. Good luck!

December 31, 2010, 09:52 AM
take the scope off the 30-30, and install it on the ar-15. nothing really wrong with the 30-30, but a 223 in my mind is an almost perfect coyote rifle.

December 31, 2010, 06:11 PM
I thought about taking the scope off the 30-30 but since the rifle and scope aren't mine, I'd rather just hunt with the 30-30. Hopefully I'll be able to buy the rifle off the owner.

January 8, 2011, 11:15 PM
blondes or brunettes....pick your poison.....I like making my own decision, dont really care for others opinions on something like this.

January 8, 2011, 11:32 PM
Are you planning on harvesting the pelts?

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