Caliber Over Kill


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BigN
February 5, 2012, 04:58 PM
Is there such a thing as overkill when shooting a particular breed of animal/varmint? Dead is dead, is it not? I shoot coyotes with anything from a 204 to a 300 WSM and 15 calibers inbetween. I pick a gun I want to hunt with that particular day and that's what goes, without regard to caliber match to what I'm shooting. I don't think there is such a thing as overkill. Does the animal know and feel slighted that you're using a 7 Mag as opposed to a 223? Others have said here that it's "unfair" to shoot a woodchuck with a 257 Mag? This makes no sense to me whatsoever. Can the animal outrun a 243 bullet better than a 300 WSM? It's a totally ridiculous argument as far as I'm concerned. I understand not taking a 17 caliber bear hunting, I think we all do. But "overkill" is nonexistent. Anyone else think this is just silly?

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Sam1911
February 5, 2012, 05:15 PM
If you can make a shot ethically (you are proficient with the weapon) and safely (you aren't endangering anyone shooting a .50 BMG toward a neighborhood or something) and you aren't destroying the valuable parts of the animal through excessive wounding, "Overkill" is just a term for inefficiency.

As long as you aren't wasting a quarter of your deer or blowing apart a decent pelt, and you don't cause undue suffering, or endanger anyone, then "overkill" comments aren't really a judgement, just an personal preference.

ldhulk
February 5, 2012, 05:15 PM
I guess you could use a 50 BMG for prairie dogs if you can afford it. It's just that magnums usually cost more to shoot, kick more and make more noise. You may in some places annoy neighbors more shooting a 300 magnum than you would with a 30-30. You can kill a deer as dead as it needs to be with a 300 Savage, out to farther than I have any business trying, so why burn more powder? Of course, if you only have one rifle, and it is a magnum, that's what you use.

rcmodel
February 5, 2012, 05:16 PM
No, I don't think it is silly.
I have hunted coyotes for 50+ years here in Kansas, and Colorado.

In my younger days I didn't have a varmint rifle, so I used a 30-06 with 110-125 grain hollow-point handloads.

More then once, I blew a leg clear off a coyote and had it run off in the brush to die where it was never found.

I learned later that a 22-250 or .220 Swift anywhere in the front shoulder area dropped them DRT right where they stood just about 100% of the time.
Because the little bullet at very high velocity got inside and exploded like a bomb.

Later still, I built a 25-06 as what I thought would be my "ultimate" coyote rifle.
And I lost more coyotes with it then I ever did with the 22-250 or .220 Swift.

Same deal, too much power just blew on through, or blew body parts off, without the massive energy dump inside the boiler room of the two fastest .22 varmint rifles of the time.

The other thing is, we can't be flinging .30 cal Magnum loads across the landscape around here without risk of a richocet taking out somebodys Herford cow, or 1/4 $mil John Deere tractor.

The .224 & light bullet 6mm varmint rifles are way much safer.

rc

Robtattoo
February 5, 2012, 05:17 PM
If you're not bothered about meat or fir, then no, there's no such thing as overkill. Dead with a .338 Lapua is just as dead as with a .22 mag. Dead is dead.
The trouble as I see it, is that some folks will assume that if you're using a .338 Lapua for coyotes, that you need that caliber or bigger to kill coyotes. These people then get online where they can be 'experts' & start telling everyone else that .338 Lapua is suddenly the minimum required for 'yotes.

My biggest issue with the 'Overkill-magnum' mindset, is that a lot of folks, mainly inexperienced hunters, or dumbasses that really should know better seem to think that you suddenly need 'overkill' calibers. The number of people I've spoken to recently, either online, in gunstores or at hunting shows that tell me that a .243 is inadequate for Tennessee whitetail is unbelievable. They also keep telling me that my 1885 High Wall in .45-70 is a sub-100yd rifle........umm.........

Sorry, kinda slipped off on a tangent there!

Gunnerboy
February 5, 2012, 05:38 PM
That coyotes with the 06 can be fun , especially when there still pups and your using bear loads :evil:

Art Eatman
February 5, 2012, 06:02 PM
I guess I could use the word "overkill" when using a lot more gun than is really needed for a quick clean kill. Maybe. :)

Messing around with this, I'd sort call an '06 a bit of overkill inside a hundred yards on Bambi. An 85-grain in a .243 has worked just as well. But IMO that .243 load is sorta "underkill" at 500, where the '06 works quite nicely, thank you.

Sam summed it pretty well, IMO...

MCgunner
February 5, 2012, 06:03 PM
It would seem to me that .458 Win Mag on squirrels would be a bit much unless you can always make head shots. :rolleyes:

Getting a proper caliber for the game to be hunted is the best excuse in the world to tell the unknowing wife. Why fight that? :D

bison
February 5, 2012, 06:04 PM
I was at the range yesterday watching a guy shoot his new Marlin lever gun chambered in some gargantuan round that he proudly told me was developed in the 1800's to shoot buffalo or the like. The rounds looked like my thumb. I asked what he was going to use it for and he told me he wanted to take it hog hunting, then went further and told me he'd use a guide that used dogs. I looked at his target (we were on the 25 yard range) and it was obvious that the recoil was causing him to flinch as there were holes across over a 12" diameter. I for one would never want to be around him in the field with dogs barking, adrenalin pumping, hogs running around, and him with a cannon that he can't control.

So yes, I think there certainly is overkill if you can't control the gun you're shooting.

Malachi Leviticus Blue
February 5, 2012, 07:13 PM
It would be unethical to literally destroy a game animal with an overpowered round e.g., 30-06, or 7mm on cottontails. Other than that type of scenario, Id say no, shoot what youre comfortable with that gets the job done.

we are not amused
February 5, 2012, 07:20 PM
rcmodel;

I would like to point out that if you had hit that coyote with the 30-06 in the shoulder area, it would have killed them just as dead as the .220 or .22-250. If you were using hand loads, it would be quite easy to reduce charges if so desired.

I agree with you on the need to be mindful of what is beyond your target. But you need to be just as careful with a 22-250 as you do a 30-06.

My father rather distrusted coyote hunters, and would run them off if he caught them attempting to hunt coyotes on our property, and considering that it was considered great fun by some of the locals to get all liquored up and pile into a pickup truck and go chasing through the pastures shooting anything that moved, I agreed with him. Too many would leave gates open, cut fence wires and run over calves. Not the best ambassadors for responsible hunting out there.:rolleyes:

I have hunted coyotes, but never in that manner, and since I was doing predator control, usually at long range, I used a 30-06 with a scope. I found with great amusement, when we started raising Texas Longhorns instead of Herefords, that they were better at coyote control than I was.

I do believe in using an appropriate caliber for the target, but I didn't have a .223 rifle back then, and was using Dad's 30-06 and his ammunition, (I was doing it for him). I never had properly hit coyotes run off with a leg blown off, and I was using his ammunition for White tail deer, because it was what we had, some times I was even using old military FMJ rounds, so that Dad could reload them for deer season. I don't remember loosing too many coyotes due to them running off after having been hit. Flat out missing some, yes.

Shot placement is crucial, whether using a .22 LR or a .300 magnum, as is being sure of your target's background.

armoredman
February 5, 2012, 07:29 PM
I'm sorry, I was often told 22 mag was a good caliber for a 20 pound coyote. Hadn't tried it, but my Dad told me about dropping 'yotes with a 22lr, if I remember the stories correctly - too late to ask him again.

T Bran
February 5, 2012, 08:04 PM
A lot of what we see on these forums is mindboggling to me. Overkill only really applies to an animal that you intend to eat or skin. If varmit controll is the only goal as long as you can ensure a quick humane kill use what you wish.
I do think it wise to use a bullet that selfdestructs to avoid ricochets as they can go a long way (prehaps further than you can see).
I try to use a bit of common sense. Keep in mind that many new hunters are reading these replies and we have a duty as vetrans to steer them in the proper direction.

tikka-guy
February 5, 2012, 09:10 PM
So yes, I think there certainly is overkill if you can't control the gun you're shooting.

In my eyes, this is the key. Most people think "overkill" applies to what the bullet does when it hits the animal, but that's only a portion of it. I think there is such thing as "overkill", but too much meat damage is only one of the factors. Avoiding practice because a 300 mag kicks too much is overkill. It prevents you from being as proficient as you should be. You'd be much better off with a lesser caliber that you can master more easily.

There is a factor of bullet construction as well. I haven't done it, but I imagine shooting a deer at 25 yards with a 7mm mag with a lightly jacketed round will probably result in a poor performing bullet.

For my purposes, I would gain nothing choosing a caliber bigger or faster than a .308. Well, besides a sore shoulder and a lighter wallet. It would still kill deer, but there's minimal return on investment, if any. That is the definition of overkill to me.

Loosedhorse
February 5, 2012, 10:15 PM
None of us would take a deer and leave the meat out to rot. Similarly if you're using a round that will spoil something that could otherwise be recovered and used, that's not ideal. Of course, spoiling "a little" extra bloodshot meat is not spoiling an entire animal.

Other than that, shoot away. If you're shooting pest animals that won't be recovered anyway, overkill is fine. And on dangerous game, overkill is much to be desired, IMHO, as long as you can still shoot true and won't injure another animal with a pass through.

john wall
February 6, 2012, 12:02 AM
http://i256.photobucket.com/albums/hh175/ShootingCoach/Tenmil.jpg

Overkill? :what:

armoredman
February 6, 2012, 12:22 AM
Are ye trying to shoot the target or set it on fire?

Art Eatman
February 6, 2012, 10:46 AM
I've always tried for a particular place on a critter, not just "aiming somewhere in the brown". So, if I don't shoot into the eating part, I don't ruin edible meat. Seems easy enough to me, no matter what I use.

But a Federal Premium High Energy load for an '06 is not at all the ideal thing on coyotes if saving the hide is important. :D

Kingcreek
February 6, 2012, 12:27 PM
Overkill is when the animal is dead AND reincarnated before it hits the ground.

brnmuenchow
February 6, 2012, 03:39 PM
I go with it all depends on what you are trying to accomplish as well.
If you are trying to get rid of pesky varmints, coyotes, etc.. etc.. on your ranch or whatever than go with what you got ex.: .22lr.-.500NE dead is dead.
If you are trying to get pelts and meat, you might want to choose more carefully.

MCgunner
February 6, 2012, 03:55 PM
Well, 50 caliber skins 'em as it kills 'em. Takes a lot of work out of hog hunting. :D

It would be unethical to literally destroy a game animal with an overpowered round

Depends entirely upon WHO'S ethics you're talkin' about. Ethics vary.

Besides, some folks don't eat what they kill. My cousin in law has never eaten any of the African game he's got the mounts to prove he's killed, just donates what's left of the meat. If there could have been a few more ounces left, I don't think any of the native tribes have complained.

Me, I've killed coyote and don't really wanna eat 'em. .308 killed 'em as dead as anything else. My uncle-in-law shoots hogs off his place with a .22 cause he's not a gun guy, only owns an old .22. Sometimes they don't die immediately. He figures they will eventually and that's all that matters to him. To him, they're just big rats that cost him money. Me, I eat the hogs I kill, but that's me. People on this very board have chewed me out for not killing piglets I've let go even if I wasn't gonna eat 'em. I let 'em go because I didn't wanna clean 'em and if I ain't gonna eat 'em, I ain't gonna kill 'em. But, that's me and I see their side of things perfectly and accept their reasoning. Works for them, me, I'm different.

plumberroy
February 6, 2012, 06:10 PM
It would seem to me that .458 Win Mag on squirrels would be a bit much unless you can always make head shots.


On the lighter side I can not legally use a 44 mag handi rifle to deer hunt in the state of Ohio ,:rolleyes: but they are perfectly fine with me using that .458 win. mag. to hunt squirrel or rabbits :confused::eek::confused:
Roy :banghead:

Freedom_fighter_in_IL
February 6, 2012, 06:15 PM
Well BigN, as I said in the other post that got you thinking about this, when yote hunting, less can help in many factors. You, like I, have many rifles and cartridge choices and you know what each of them is capable of. What I said in the other post was basically meaning lower cost per round and a hell of a lot less noise and recoil. RC also pointed out a VERY key component, SAFETY. You went out intentionally after yotes with a 7mm Mag. That little yote body will do little to nothing to even slow that bullet and you now have to wonder, "well just where did that bullet go off to?"

Yes the animal will be just as dead (in some cases) but there are many more factors you need to address when choosing your rifle for a particular quarry. When predator hunting, your smaller, faster, more "explosive" cartridge/bullet choices are best used. So to answer your question, yes there certainly is such a thing as "overkill".

wankerjake
February 6, 2012, 07:40 PM
Getting a proper caliber for the game to be hunted is the best excuse in the world to tell the unknowing wife. Why fight that?

I like it!

Fall Guy
February 7, 2012, 09:08 AM
I haven't done either, but my guess is that a 375 H&H would probably make less of a mess than a 25-06 if you happened to clip the shoulder of a deer inside 200 yds or so. My experience is that high velocity tends to destroy more meat than energy. Some call it the "eat right up to the hole" concept.

I guess in the woods where you can't be too picky about shot angles I would call a .264 Win Mag "overkill".

RhinoDefense
February 7, 2012, 10:16 AM
I think of matching the caliber to the game in the way of making a solid and quick kill that doesn't destroy a lot of the meat. For non-game animals, dead is dead.

Arkansas Paul
February 7, 2012, 01:12 PM
The other thing is, we can't be flinging .30 cal Magnum loads across the landscape around here without risk of a richocet taking out somebodys Herford cow, or 1/4 $mil John Deere tractor.


Is there a such thing as overkill? No, IMO.
However, in the above situation you need to excercise common sense when choosing a round. There is a such thing as overgunned in some situations. That's why some counties have gone to shotgun with slugs or BP only, to keep those things at a minimum.
If there is no concern of what is beyond your target though, shoot what you want and let others do the same.

Sniper66
February 9, 2012, 12:27 PM
I am of the opinion that the caliber should match the task, whether shooting meat animals or varmints. I am primarly a small game/varmint hunter. When shooting prairie dogs, I use .22, .17HMR, .223, .204, and .243, in that order. My goal is to eliminate as many of the pesky critters as possible to help out my rancher friends. So, when I slip into a field, I do so as quietly as possible and shoot the quietest rifle I have at the closest dogs to avoid scaring off the others. When I use the .243, I only do so with very long shots and it makes quite a bang. I prefer the .17HMR as much as possible. In the wide open prairie it barely makes a sound and the neighbors in the next mile section never hear it. For coyotes, I prefer the .223 or .204 shooting V-max bullets. My reloads for both are between 3500-4000 fps and pack quite a wallop. Certainly my .243 will dispatch them quickly, but I don't really need it. I shoot squirrels and love to eat them, so I make head shots with my .22 when I can. In late fall or early winter, when there are no leaves and I can spot squirrels 75-100 yards away, I shoot my .17HMR. Still try for the head or shoulder, which leaves the best meat intact, even with the 17gr V-Max. I shoot pheasants with heavy field load 7.5 or 8 instead of the usual 5s or 6s. I find that it whacks them like hitting them with a tennis racket and is less likey to penetrate the breast. My brother is a deer and big game hunter. He has killed dozens of deer with his .243 and everything else, bears and African big game, with a 300 Weatherby mag. So, these are my ideas.

Tom

natman
February 9, 2012, 12:50 PM
Overkill is underrated.

IMO, there's no such thing as overkill. There is such a thing as using a heavier cartridge than is strictly necessary, but as long as you can still shoot it accurately and don't mind the recoil, go for it.

There is such a thing as underkill. Sure a might drop to a [insert small cartridge here] [I]this time, but you will have a larger probability of a cartridge related failure than if you used something a bit bigger.

Rule of thumb: Look at the game and decide what cartridge is most suitable for it. The problems come from picking the rifle first, then the cartridge, then trying to talk yourself into believing that it's enough for elk, just because somebody somewhere shot an elk with it once and it died.

Tom Held
February 9, 2012, 10:33 PM
Shot placement is still the key regardless of the firearm. There are air rifles now perfectly capable taking foxes and coyotes cleanly, easily equivalent to 22 long rifle. I've hunted in Africa and the preferred caliber for ALL game is the 375 H&H regardless if you are hunting dangerous game or 20 pound Klippspringers or 1,000 pound eland and the damage to plains game game using solid bullets is virtually nothing but a small entrance and exit hole.

788Ham
February 10, 2012, 01:33 AM
I believe there is such a thing as overkill. My opinions only! Why do most folks feel comfortable using a .300 Win. Mag to hunt deer? I don't know why, but it seems to me thats whats considered overkill. If the same deer can be killed DRT with a .250 Savage, or a .243 at 200 yards, then "why" do folks think a .300 Win mag is better? Because it throws a bigger, heavier bullet at 2000 fps faster, makes it a better round, rifle? I don't see the reasoning of this. I've seen in our hunting party on one occasion, a guy with a .300 H&H gut shot a deer at 75 yards, when told he probably ruined a lot of meat, his response was, "Well, I hit the ba***rd didn't I?" This is my feelings and thoughts on being over gunned and why overkill comes about. I understand also, that a lot of folks use the .300 caliber rifle for elk, a bigger, heavier animal, but come on, using a 250 grain bullet for deer? If this is the only firearm in your stable, I guess thats all you've got, but bigger doesn't always make it better.

Friendly, Don't Fire!
February 10, 2012, 01:37 AM
When I used too small a rifle to hunt woodchucks, most times, they would scurry back to their hole in the ground leaving a trail of blood, making me wonder if it was a good shot or not.

NOT ANY MORE!
A .270 shows me immediately whether the shot was good! Nearly ALL shots are Good when using that caliber against a woodchuck!
The local coyotes and foxes love me (until I see THEM).

Freedom_fighter_in_IL
February 10, 2012, 01:53 AM
LOL, FDF??? A .270 for woodies? Lawdy buddy, you really don't like them do ya! I like watching them literally explode when I hit them with a 50gr V-Max out of my .220swift :what: Or hitting a P-Dog with the same and watch a "star burst" :D

Friendly, Don't Fire!
February 10, 2012, 01:56 AM
LOL
I've met the red mist of vaporization before!:uhoh:;)

Steel Talon
February 10, 2012, 02:03 AM
Well for some people "Regular Dead" just isn't good enough:neener:

Arkansas Paul
February 10, 2012, 03:15 AM
Overkill is underrated.

Love it. That's gonna be my new motto. :)


I've seen in our hunting party on one occasion, a guy with a .300 H&H gut shot a deer at 75 yards, when told he probably ruined a lot of meat, his response was, "Well, I hit the ba***rd didn't I?"

You can't use one moron as an example and apply that logic to everyone who chooses to hunt with a larger caliber than you do. And you're right, bigger doesn't necessarily mean better. But if it's what snaps your cap, then go for it.

I think it's hilarious that so many people are so personally invested in what someone else chooses to use. If Billy Bob Joe Danny Frank wants to use a .470 Nitro to hunt whitetails, it's his money and his shoulder. As long as he isn't endangering anyone, leave him alone.

Freedom_fighter_in_IL
February 10, 2012, 03:36 AM
As long as he isn't endangering anyone, leave him alone.

That right there is my point exactly. Under certain hunting conditions and on certain animals, there is indeed a serious safety issue. Other than that, whatever floats your boat, paddle away!

T.R.
February 10, 2012, 08:11 AM
I feel that overkill regarding hunting is a foolish concept.

But overkill regarding other subjects has some merit. For example, two people living in a 6 bedroom home is overkill.

TR

natman
February 10, 2012, 08:24 AM
I'd rather use a cartridge that's a little more powerful than necessary than a cartridge that's a little less powerful than necessary.

buck460XVR
February 10, 2012, 03:02 PM
Overkill only happens when one is substituting caliber for skill or when the choice in caliber presents a safety issue. Other than that, dead is dead. Amazes me when folks cry overkill when I mention hunting deer with my .460. Mention hunting them with my .357s and they scream "undergunned".:rolleyes:

Use what you have, what your comfortable with, what your good with and what works. Other folks should do the same.

Maxicooper
February 13, 2012, 04:55 PM
Would .375 H&H for hog hunting be overkilled?

Tom Held
February 13, 2012, 05:06 PM
Not at all if it kills the hog and you can afford the ammunition. A friend of mine who hunts africa once a year hunts hogs first just to get practice swinging the rifle, bringing it up quickly, getting off two shots and reloading with two more held in his left hand between fingers (sxs rifle). Says the practice is valuable particularly if you plan to hunt dangerous game. You don't always get to shoot off of sticks or a rest.

nathan
February 13, 2012, 05:36 PM
If you shoot a dove with 00 bk then what s left is barely nothing. I d say that s overkill. you kill it alright but no meat to bring home which is the purpose to take out game.

Tom Held
February 13, 2012, 05:44 PM
A 375 is just like any other dangerous game rifle. But if you're shooting solids they do less damage than a 22-250 or 243. Just an entrance and exit hole on small game.

wildchild2010
February 13, 2012, 05:46 PM
No such thing as over kill, unless you destroy the meat you want to eat, then yes it is over kill.

What toilet paper is better the cheap or the expensive one?

WardenWolf
February 13, 2012, 10:28 PM
8mm Mauser for javelina. It's one of two choices I have. That, or my SGL-21 with 7.62x39 roundnose soft points. The Mauser will wreck the meat unless I shoot the thing in the head. On the other hand, the power of the 8mm round pretty much guarantees a kill if you get a hit in or in close proximity to the brain. Needless to say, I'm going for the AK.

Art Eatman
February 14, 2012, 06:54 AM
Dunno 'bout "overkill", but I'd venture that sometimes an '06 hot load is more than is needed:

http://thefiringline.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=16431&d=1135262262

quartermaster
February 14, 2012, 07:26 AM
I believe that overkill doesn't come into play if the safety factor is considered as well as ethical kills without wasting meat if the game is to be consumed. If a 300wsm is to be used for coyotes or woodchucks, hopefully the correct bullet would be used to prevent richocets and make immediate kills. Even a coyote doesn't deserve to suffer.

Why have 16 different calibers if the selection is irrelevant to the game being hunted?

H&Hhunter
February 14, 2012, 10:05 AM
I haven't done either, but my guess is that a 375 H&H would probably make less of a mess than a 25-06 if you happened to clip the shoulder of a deer inside 200 yds or so.

THIS ^^^^ is exactly correct.

A 375 is just like any other dangerous game rifle. But if you're shooting solids they do less damage than a 22-250 or 243. Just an entrance and exit hole on small game.

This is also correct except you can add in expanding bullets as they do less meat damage as well.

Would .375 H&H for hog hunting be overkilled?

I am going to throw in my $.02 for what it's worth as I have killed a bunch of light game with heavy DG rounds. Including the .375H&H, .404 Jeffery, .416 Remington, .458 Lott, .470NE, and I've seen light animals killed with the .500 NE and .500 Jeffery.

First off the .375H&H gets WAY more credit for being a "heavy" caliber than it deserves and that's because it kills game and acts like it should be a heavy caliber. But in reality it's not. The .375H&H is at the very bottom end of the legal medium calibers for dangerous game hunting. It puts out just over 4,000 Ftlbs of energy with a 270 or a 300 gr bullet. The rifle is very flat shooting with a 250 or a 270 gr bullet and with a 300 or 350 gr bullet tends to act just like one of it bigger 40 cal+ cousins on game. With the 270 or 250 gr loads act more like a .338 or big .30-06.

Almost all of the new super zipper .33's like the RUM's and Weatherby and such put out more muzzle energy than a .375H&H heck a .300 Weatherby class .308 with a 180 bullet matches the energy of a .375 H&H. I don't consider a round to be a "heavy" until we get to .458 cal and up, 500gr bullet and up and then it has to put out 5,000 lbs + muzzle energy. I think that there is a lot of overestimation and misunderstanding about the .375H&H due to it's African roots and the stories that people read about it that tend to place it in the realm of African heavy game hunting legend. Capstick wrote about the .375 as if it were the hammer of Thor. It's really not all that powerful but it does kill far greater than it's numbers would indicate on paper. And that is due in large part for the simple fact that it's easy to shoot and folks tend to be very accurate with it. Always amazing to me when in the field folks find that I am hunting deer or elk with a .375H&H and invariably if they aren't in the know will comment about using an "elephant" rifle for poor little old elk. Of course the same is not said about a .338 WM which puts out just about the same muzzle energy with a 20 gr lighter bullet at the same velocity as my 270 gr load and it does so with .037 less muzzle diameter? For all intensive purposes the same power level capable of all the same things that the ole H&H is the only difference being perception as Capstick wrote about the .375H&H and not the .338 WM.

The .375H&H is a fairly mild round to shoot and even with expanding rounds does less meat damage than a super velocity light round does. The .375H&H does what it's been doing well for over 100 years now it provides just enough power and penetration on heavy game and performs like a champ on everything else. I've killed multiple hundreds of head of game with a .375H&H from coyotes to cape buffalo the majority of shear numbers being feral hogs but a good amount of my elk and caribou and stuff like that were with a .375H&H and I've never once found the H&H to lacking in any way especially in the meat damage department. My go to load is a 270 gr TSX @ about 2700 FPS. It simply does not tear up meat.

I've poked multiple hogs and other light stuff like wildebeest in addition to elephant and buffalo with my .470 NE and my .458 Lott, again it simply does not tear up meat like say a .300 mag or a 7MM tends to. Nice clean entry and exit holes and that is with expanding bullets these big rounds simply zip through light animals and don't transfer a lot of energy leaving minimal damage. The same can be said for all of the heavy and medium rounds I've mentioned above.

Here is the one and only thing that I will caution about using heavies on light game. BEWARE of what's behind the animal these big heavy rounds will over penetrate and they carry a LONG way after sailing through a critter, they don't act like your "average" deer rounds. I just about killed a hunting partner one time with my .470. I didn't know that he was up the same draw I was working. I jumped a hog and shot him in the rear as he ran off. The 500 gr Barnes went all the way trough the hog lengthwise exited the neck hit the ground and I heard it whine off into the nether lands of Western Texas.

My buddy was about 200 yards up the draw and told me later that he heard me shoot and then heard what sounded like a buzz saw go flying by, very close to his head. It was my "spent" expanded bullet zinging away that went by. Y'all be careful out there playing with these heavy rifles.

Maxicooper
February 14, 2012, 09:20 PM
The .375H&H is a fairly mild round to shoot and even with expanding rounds does less meat damage than a super velocity light round does. The .375H&H does what it's been doing well for over 100 years now it provides just enough power and penetration on heavy game and performs like a champ on everything else. I've killed multiple hundreds of head of game with a .375H&H from coyotes to cape buffalo the majority of shear numbers being feral hogs but a good amount of my elk and caribou and stuff like that were with a .375H&H and I've never once found the H&H to lacking in any way especially in the meat damage department. My go to load is a 270 gr TSX @ about 2700 FPS. It simply does not tear up meat.


Thanks for the post. The box below has just got my name on it. :D

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7069/6878705469_82407f2d86_z.jpg

Now, I'm ready for "Hogzilla" !!!

H&Hhunter
February 15, 2012, 12:19 AM
Yep that's the ticket right there! Have fun.

beehlebf
February 15, 2012, 03:37 PM
Overkill is fine as long as the hunter doesnt believe that they absolutely need a 300 win mag to hunt a whitetail at a 100 yards. I hate that.

sugarmaker
February 15, 2012, 04:46 PM
My .375HH has shot 2 squirrels under a birdfeeder and 1 woodchuck at the edge of my lawn. 235 grain speer at 2970.

It was early spring, leaving my moms house, and a pesky squirrel appeared under her feeder. I was carrying the .375 out to the car so...I used it. 26" a bolt stainless stalker, leupold 1-4. It looked like the squirrel had swallowed an M-80, perfect fountain pattern. I found a kidney 15 yards from the feeder. Another appeared, same effect except that one was closer to the garage. I ran in to wash vaporized squirrel mist from the side of the detached garage before it dried. Could not reach the smear the head made when it bounced off the soffit nor could I get the front leg off of the roof - left that for the crows.

The woodchuck died instantly and my then 5 year old son observed that its heart was lying a few feet from most of the rest of the body. None of these animals ran under a building or into a woodpile to die and stink up the building.

Geno
February 15, 2012, 07:03 PM
In my experience of hunting Russian boar for the better part of 20 years now, there are few round that match, let alone exceed, the killing power of either the .444 Marlin, or the .45-70 Gov't.

Yet, people call the .375 H&H Mag over-kill?! Seriously? The boar I have killed with .444 and .45-70 have dropped within 15 feet. Some dropped instantly. The boar I shot with my Sig-Sauer 202 Safari .375 H&H Mag, with factory loaded Federal Premium, 300 grain Nosler Partitions, ran 200+ yards, and took near 3 minutes to drop-dead, and nearly 4 minutes to "expire". I hit it 2 times at 100 yards, and took out the heart and lungs.

Give me a big, slow bullet any day. Ain't no such thing as "over-kill", but in someone's mind.

Geno

Maxicooper
February 15, 2012, 07:40 PM
Or stop a charging 400+ lbs hog like this one .....

KZWuAdZXHb8?hd=1

with this .........

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7069/6878705469_82407f2d86_z.jpg

:D

H&Hhunter
February 15, 2012, 09:47 PM
I'd hardly call that a "charge" that was a pig coming down a trail and at the last minute realizing that there was a person there. He chuff's a warning dodges and escapes to the cover on the other side of the road.

Freedom_fighter_in_IL
February 16, 2012, 01:04 AM
Yeah that was nowhere NEAR a charge. That was just an "Oh crap what the hell is that in the road" response. This is more of an escape charge but still, just, dayumn! http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=5WwK_1SFE_8

MCgunner
February 16, 2012, 04:36 PM
That's a cool vid and typifies a hogs response, one swat at the irritation and get out of Dodge. :D I've seen a guy cut up from a hog, big scar on his chest that got sewn up, but he was on a pig with a knife when the pig got loose. I've never known anyone hunting or just walking around get attacked by a hog. It just don't happen.

MCgunner
February 16, 2012, 04:40 PM
In my experience of hunting Russian boar for the better part of 20 years now, there are few round that match, let alone exceed, the killing power of either the .444 Marlin, or the .45-70 Gov't.

Yet, people call the .375 H&H Mag over-kill?! Seriously?

The .375 makes a LOT of energy and is capable of taking Cape Buffalo. I wouldn't use a .45 70 on Buffalo unless I had a death wish. If I had a .375 (I don't, no reason, I only hunt hogs and deer mostly and a .308 is plenty) I'd use it on hogs, though. I mean, why not? :D Hell, if I had a .600 nitro express and wanted to shoot something with it, why not? I ain't worried about killin' 'em too dead.

Freedom_fighter_in_IL
February 16, 2012, 05:13 PM
MC, the only problem with the Nitro's (I have a couple so I know) is that they tend to kill on BOTH ends!!! :what:

MCgunner
February 16, 2012, 05:18 PM
Good point. :D

Loosedhorse
February 16, 2012, 05:31 PM
I wouldn't use a .45 70 on Buffalo unless I had a death wishI'd be happy to use it. In fact, what I'd really like to use is a handgun. Some folks use bow and arrow (http://www.shakawasafaris.com/bowhunting-3b.html)...but that's not for me.

Now, would I want to depend on a .45-70 or handgun to stop an angry buff? No. But that's what the PH's rifle is for! ;):D

Black Butte
February 16, 2012, 05:46 PM
That coyotes with the 06 can be fun , especially when there (*SIC) still pups and your using bear loads :evil:

*They're

That sounds cruel, not "fun."

horsemen61
April 14, 2012, 05:13 PM
A question for everybody do you believe in overkill
I personally don't

EddieNFL
April 14, 2012, 05:16 PM
There are no different degrees of dead.

Shoobee
April 14, 2012, 05:16 PM
In most applications, yes, I do believe in over-kill.

Three of anything normally is a sure guarantee that one of them will work.

Two of anything is a bare minimum. This is called backing up.

Only one of anything and at best you have merely a possibiity of success.

These principles apply to anything.

ApacheCoTodd
April 14, 2012, 05:16 PM
Hell yeah... I personally have over-killed a turkey among other things.

beeb173
April 14, 2012, 05:19 PM
.50 BMG on the night stand for home defense?

firesky101
April 14, 2012, 05:19 PM
Overkill no, over penetration a big yes. I did watch a guy go after squirrels with a .375 h&h once they did not look any more dead than the ones i shot with .22LR, they were just in more places.

Loosedhorse
April 14, 2012, 05:23 PM
"Overkill is under-rated." :)

For standard hunting, there's not much advantage in "overkill." For dangerous game, I personally think there's a lot of advantage.

For SD, I don't believe in overkill. But I am a disciple of "overstop." :D

Shoobee
April 14, 2012, 05:26 PM
Unless you want a long tracking job ahead of you, there are plenty of applications for over-kill in hunting buck deer and antelope.

But the principle applies in almost all aspects of living as well.

Sam1911
April 14, 2012, 05:31 PM
<Merged.>

Ky Larry
April 14, 2012, 06:06 PM
If you can hit what you're shooting at well enough to ensure a humane kill, then there is no such thing as overkill.
A slob hunter with a .460 Weatherby Mag will probably gut shoot as many animals as a slob hunter with a .243 Win. Caliber size will never replace marksmanship.

Shoobee
April 14, 2012, 08:26 PM
You keep believing that ... .

Then one day when you empty your rifle, you will wish you were the one with the magnum instead.

Seen it happen.

ApacheCoTodd
April 14, 2012, 08:31 PM
<Merged.>
What does merged mean in this post? I'm sure once explained, I'll have a DUHH! moment.

CB900F
April 14, 2012, 11:35 PM
Fella's;

Now keep in mind here, the tongue is quite firmly lodged in the cheek. But. I do believe that using the 16" Naval rifle on coyotes in Central Park NYC could be considered overkill. I can also understand that some, depending on where the mayor was located at the time, may argue.

900F

Mike1234567
April 15, 2012, 12:03 AM
I believe in using MORE THAN ENOUGH. I believe that using BARELY ENOUGH AIN'T ENOUGH. I believe that USING 10X MORE THAN ENOUGH is dangerous and silly.

Freedom_fighter_in_IL
April 15, 2012, 03:53 AM
ApacheCoTodd, Post number 64 was actually a new thread that was started and since the subject was mirrored to this older thread, Sam "merged" them together rather than having 2 threads with the exact same subject matter.

Sam1911
April 15, 2012, 08:45 AM
What does merged mean in this post? I'm sure once explained, I'll have a DUHH! moment. FFIL got it.

If we end up with two (or more) threads on the same subject at the same time, or close enough, we'll often "merge" the two into one thread. Keeps the site a little tidier, but more importantly, it gives the people who want to discuss that topic the benefit of seeing everything their fellow members have to say on the subject. Rather than Group A posting here, Group B posting over there, and a few folks responding to both, just repeating themselves.

x_wrench
April 15, 2012, 08:47 AM
in my experience, over 40 years of hunting, i have seen many whitetails, shot well, that ran 50 150 yards. but every one that i have ever shot with my 300 win mag, or 45/70, have droped on the spot, save one. and that one ran about 60 yards. because the bullet went through a 4" oak tree before hitting the buck. before my magnum days, i used a 30-30. and chased several animals. fortunately not more than 80-100 yards. my wife shot an 8 point with that 30-30, using winchester silvertips, at about 40 yards. she hit one of the lungs and the heart. and we had to chase that one almost a mile. he just was not going to give up, until there was no blood left in him. personally, when someone says to me that my rifles are overkill, i ask them how far they have to chase deer, and then tell them i only have to walk to where they were standing at the time of the shot.

Art Eatman
April 15, 2012, 10:50 AM
Cartridge wars will be a "forever topic", I reckon. I guess that compared to the WinMag, the .243 is a pipsqueak. Howsomever, I have a couple of dozen kills with the .243 and I don't recall any of them needing any chasing or tracking. Pretty much just folded up and quit standing. Mostly at around 100 to maybe 150 yards...

I've done about the same with my '06, as far as any tracking: Didn't have to.

I'd figure that either would be overkill on a prairie dog, though. :D

ApacheCoTodd
April 15, 2012, 12:37 PM
FFIL & SAM - thanks for the explanation.

As for the thread - I see vastly different points of view with regards to what constitutes overkill.

I guess a 300 WinMag for varmints isn't over kill if one can afford it, the condition of the carcass is of no matter and one gives not a whit about overtravel.

Me personally - well, I believe the concept of overkill does exist as evidenced by a young hunter listening too intently to the stories of old time turkey hunters spinning yarns about the near mythical contest between an elusive, wily and near psychic quarry requiring - on the part of the hunter - the abilities of a sniper and the equipment of a ninja. Over learning and over gunning/loading resulted in a righteously exploded - almost calymored turkey which laying there wasted and dead was a result of overkill.

Another possible perspective could be not necessarily in the result but in the preparation for the hunt. A friend of mine, in preparing for his first elk hunt selected a new 7mm Mag and in sighting it, found the recoil a bit of a surprise. Once committed to the rifle he wouldn't consider changing but the practice firing left him unenthused about continued training so, off to the great elk north he goes.

Now, the combination of tales of super-ballistic acts on the part of the 7mm, a lack of experience with elk, trepidation on the part of Jim regarding recoil and a lack of experience with the rifle for the same reason led to more than one multiple-ass-shot elk littering the region. For these reasons, in his preparation for the hunt - I would say 7mm Mag for him at that time was overkill.

I can't help but feel, less rifle would have led to more familiarity with it (more practice), required better stalking(less perceived range) and even if the first couple go arounds didn't result in a filled tag - would have made him a better hunter. To me, it was overkill in preparation for the hunt for that man while a 7mm is by no means overkill in general for an elk.

RevGeo
April 15, 2012, 12:51 PM
Dance with who ya brung. Just know the right steps for the partner of the moment.

EmG
April 17, 2012, 09:14 PM
to me overkill is useing a gun that is to much for the person shooting it, when i was younger I had trouble shooting my 308 because the recoil was too much for me and i developed a flinching problem and I couldn't hit what i was shooting at. i went to a 257 roberts that has very light recoil. now I dont have any problem with recoil and hunt with a 7mm remington magnum. the bottom line is its more important to use a gun you can hit your target with! I love my 7mm mag but more because of its flat trajectory than the extra power. a good shot with a smaller gun is much better than a bad shot with a big gun!

Lloyd Smale
April 18, 2012, 06:01 AM
Im with emg ive found that for the most part guys who claim that a certain caliber is overkill really just mean they cant handle it or wont take the time to shoot it enough to master a bigger gun. Guns up to even the 300 wby and 338mag surely dont recoil so much that they will physicaly hurt even a teen age shooter. My daugters routinely shot them with they were young. they were never told that recoil is painful and considered guns like 7mags easy to shoot. If you cant handle or dont want to take the time to master a bigger gun thats fine. Alot of hunters dont shoot 20 rounds in a year out of there guns. but it erks me to read guys slam them because they just are to wimpy to shoot one.

WardenWolf
April 18, 2012, 08:31 AM
Someone brought up a good point, with some people equating overkill with a weapon that kicks too hard or costs too much to shoot for the job you're doing. I remember shooting my father's old Remington 700 in 7mm Rem Mag when I was 14 or 15. I shot it twice, and had no wish to shoot it again. Same with my father. Granted, this was back when Remington's idea of a buttpad was a hard rubber block that was about as soft and flexible as the wood it was attached to. But the point stands, I definitely would not want to put myself through sighting in and practicing with that thing just to hunt a squirrel. What would I get myself? A very sore shoulder, and, if I was lucky, a small tuft of squirrel fur; everything else would be blown away.

Sam1911
April 18, 2012, 08:37 AM
"Overkill" = inefficiency (cost, pain, weight/bulk) + excessive risk of unintended damage (shoot through, ricochet, where'd-that-bullet-go?) + diminishing returns (destroyed game)

And most of that is mitigate-able, or of subjective value.

JShirley
April 22, 2012, 10:02 AM
I was at the range yesterday watching a guy shoot his new Marlin lever gun chambered in some gargantuan round that he proudly told me was developed in the 1800's to shoot buffalo or the like. The rounds looked like my thumb

Sounds like a .45-70, if it was a Marlin. People can mis-manage even relatively minor calibers, so just because one guy can't handle a .45-70 doesn't mean the caliber is overkill.

I've only killed 1 deer with a .45-70. But not only did the deer fall decisively, no excess meet was spoiled. As some others have pointed out, higher-velocity rounds frequently tend to cause more tissue damage.

Bullet construction is an important part of the equation. Distance from the target can be, as well. A relatively fragile bullet hitting an animal at close range may result in a large, shallow wound and a slow death for the animal. That same bullet at distance may have perfect expansion and penetration for a clean kill. My buddy Byron lost a deer while using a 150-grain CoreLokt from a .300 WinMag because of this. When he walked to where the buck had been hit, part of its shoulder was lying on the ground. It ran away on three legs and died. Byron went to 180-grain bullets or premium bullets with sturdier construction after that.

John

T.R.
April 22, 2012, 03:21 PM
I don't go in for overkill because of how our Dad raised us up as kids.

I continue to hunt deer with my older 30-30 within the forest and foothills. It's never let me down. I've also had good luck with 35 Remington, 44 MAG, and .308 rifles.

TR

dubya450
April 22, 2012, 11:37 PM
What bothers me is someone that says a 338 wm is way to much for anything in north america let alone for deer. In reality most 338 wm loads will do less damage than many "normal" deer calibers that are high velocity, expand rapidly, and transfer much of its energy right into the animal. It just a matter of people THINKING that just because a 338 is a bigger bullet than a 270 that it will blow a deer in half. Ridiculous.

JShirley
April 23, 2012, 04:39 AM
...just like that 1800 fps . 45-70 had perfect performance on the buck I shot...just like the performance of the .35 Whelen when I used it. (It was underkill when Byron used his Whelen on a hog*. He stopped using CoreLokts all together after that. )


*took 2 shoulder shots, one on each side

Bmac1949
April 26, 2012, 10:02 PM
If you look around on You tube there is a video of some jackass killing a white tail doe with a Barret 50cal. It literally turned the deer inside out. That my firends is over kill. Had it been Al qaeda not so much.

Freedom_fighter_in_IL
April 27, 2012, 12:32 AM
If you look around on You tube there is a video of some jackass killing a white tail doe with a Barret 50cal. It literally turned the deer inside out. That my firends is over kill. Had it been Al qaeda not so much.

Unless that person was using a HE round of some sort, I find that statement to be highly suspect at the least. A white-tail really wouldn't have enough resistant mass to sufficiently cause a .50cal round to expand enough to dump all that energy into the body cavity. Now I am assuming you are speaking of a full load .50cal from a Barret cooking off at normal speeds. Even at 800 yards, that bullet would zip right through a deer leaving 2 .50cal sized holes.

SimplyChad
April 27, 2012, 04:41 AM
No firefighter ive seen the video. It kinda disemboweled the deer.

Art Eatman
April 27, 2012, 09:10 AM
A high-energy bullet into a full paunch definitely creates hydraulic pressures which are beyond containment by the hide and side-meat muscle. Little or no expansion of the bullet is needed.

A fifty on a little whitetail would be about like a .243 on a jackrabbit. Yuck.

M.Weier
April 28, 2012, 05:10 PM
From a reloaders standpoint, instead of calling it "overkill", lets just call it "powder wasting" :what:

WTBguns10kOK
April 28, 2012, 11:37 PM
Unless that person was using a HE round of some sort, I find that statement to be highly suspect at the least. A white-tail really wouldn't have enough resistant mass to sufficiently cause a .50cal round to expand enough to dump all that energy into the body cavity. Now I am assuming you are speaking of a full load .50cal from a Barret cooking off at normal speeds. Even at 800 yards, that bullet would zip right through a deer leaving 2 .50cal sized holes.

Didn't really think before you wrote all that, eh?

Freedom_fighter_in_IL
April 29, 2012, 12:20 AM
Didn't really think before you wrote all that, eh?

Of course I did. Do you realize the resistant mass needed to open up a 700+gr bullet? The reason .50cal is good for personnel is the size of the bullet itself. That's a big bullet to pass through a human body. Yes it will transfer a lot of energy, but "blow up" a deer? Naaaaaa I highly doubt it. Now, if you have a VERY soft point that will open up that large mass enough to cause transfer of energy, then yeah I can see it popping a deer paunch like a water balloon, but anyone know where these can be obtained? Maybe a match grade hollow point but all the match grade BMG ammo I have ever seen is solid lathe turned.

WTBguns10kOK
April 29, 2012, 02:15 AM
Of course I did. Do you realize the resistant mass needed to open up a 700+gr bullet? The reason .50cal is good for personnel is the size of the bullet itself. That's a big bullet to pass through a human body. Yes it will transfer a lot of energy, but "blow up" a deer? Naaaaaa I highly doubt it. Now, if you have a VERY soft point that will open up that large mass enough to cause transfer of energy, then yeah I can see it popping a deer paunch like a water balloon, but anyone know where these can be obtained? Maybe a match grade hollow point but all the match grade BMG ammo I have ever seen is solid lathe turned.

Still haven't watched the video, eh?

ZeroJunk
April 29, 2012, 10:55 AM
Most people I would think feel like something from 243 up through 30-06 are proper for deer. If you are going to get out of that box I would rather see somebody go up than down provided you can hit where you are aiming with it.

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