Deer/hog gun?


December 3, 2011, 03:03 AM
Howdy all. I'm a newbie hunter. I know .243 is good for white tail, but is it adequate for feral hog as well? Would I be better served with a larger caliber? Any and all advice is appreciated.

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December 3, 2011, 03:21 AM
With good bullets, yep it'll do just dandy. Personally, I prefer the 7mm.08 nowadays. But I have killed them with everything from .223, .243, .30/30, .444mar, .308, .270, .416rig, 470NE, .357mag, .44mag, .500S&W. Probably killed more with the .30/30 and .444mar than anything but I love me old leverbabies :)

Dr Dave
December 3, 2011, 04:40 AM
FF, which ammo would you recommend for .243 hog hunting?

41 Mag
December 3, 2011, 05:48 AM
It will work just fine. Stick to the 100gr bullets if they shoot well in your rifle. Also don't shoot them like you would a deer or they will leave you hunting them down. Their vitals are a bit further up than on a deer. Put your vertical post on the front leg, horizontal about three inches up from the bottom of the belly, and aim right on the shoulder. This will give you a heart lung shot. Or even better yet, your horizontal level with their eye, and the vertical on the ear, this will drop them in their tracks.

Go here and check out the vital area locations and other Tips and Tactics, - Anatomy (

December 3, 2011, 06:40 AM
Unless you also want to include varmint hunting....then I'd go with a 7mm-08 over the .243

Both are based on the same .308 cartridge case (necked down), some choices from that same parent cartridge case are:

. 243
.338 Federal
.358 Win.

But, the .243 will work fine if you choose a good bullet and place shots carefully.

Ammo for the .243 is probably a little easier to find as well.

December 3, 2011, 10:00 AM
I know guys who kills A LOT of hogs with a 223, so yes, your 243 will work fine. Like has been said, bullet selection and shot placement will be more critical with a 243 than with a larger caliber.

Hunt and have fun!

December 3, 2011, 01:07 PM
If your rifle likes it I would recommend this

If you reload, any 100gr controlled expansion bullet out of the .243 should do well. Hogs aren't armored troop carriers but the bigger boars are pretty darn tough customers and that shield they have will stop an ill performing bullet/cartridge combo.

December 3, 2011, 02:08 PM
Thanks everyone. I don't plan to hunt until next year. That's why I'm starting my research now. plus it will give us time to learn and become comfortable with shooting the rifle. It will be myself and my son (10 years old) learning together along with help from more experienced hunter friends. We've found a rifle that we are both comfortable with that fits in our very limited budget. I'd rather spend more money on optics. I've pretty much settled on the .243 but I'm still considering the 7mm-08. I've heard that that round is also good for young shooters.

December 3, 2011, 06:48 PM
I too would suggest you go for the 7mm.08. I have fallen in love with it myself. Have a couple already and a new toy on the way. AR10 in 7mm.08 that will be dedicated to just hog hunting. You are correct that it is a great cartridge for youth and for us old farts with sore shoulders. Very limited recoil with fantastic performance in terminal ballistics. My almost 8 year old daughter handles a 7mm.08 with ease in bench rest positions as well as prone.

der Teufel
December 3, 2011, 07:09 PM
There's an old saying among engineers that goes something like: "If you put n number of people into a conference room to solve a particular problem, you will invariably get n+1 opinions on how to solve it". :)

I think the suggestions regarding the 7mm-08 are probably good advice, although I admit I have never shot one. With that in mind I recognize that my opinion doesn't count for much on that topic.

I have shot a hog with a .223 using an AR-15. I only used it once. Immediately afterwards I bought a Bushmaster ORC in .308 (effectively an AR-10) which is what I now use. I've shot a dozen or so hogs with .30 caliber rifles and I just like the extra hitting power.

So the folks who like to use .223's on hogs, and who have good enough aim to put the bullet where it needs to go should keep using them. Me, I'm not such a good shooter (only qualified as Sharpshooter in the Army :o) so I go with the larger caliber. That's my story and I'm sticking with it.

The point of all this (if there is one) is to say that if you're going to be sharing this rifle with your son, you obviously want a compromise between what he can handle now and what he might want later. Another option would be to get a rifle for which managed-recoil ammunition is available -- Later, when he's ready, he can start using higher powered ammo.

December 3, 2011, 08:08 PM
7-08 is probably better, but if you have a .243 and feed it 100 grain stuff, it'll work fine and you won't need to buy a new rifle. :D On the .308 case, I have a .308, myself, but it does recoil a might more, though it's no where near bad. They all work fine. Six of one hand half dozen of the other IMHO.

Black Horse
December 4, 2011, 12:47 AM
I have killed hogs with both...but, I sure like my 7-08. But, both are real effective killers. Head and spine area shots...boom, boom, out go the lights!

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