What to use for Coyote?


February 19, 2014, 06:45 AM
I've never been Coyote hunting before. I'm going with a couple guys from work in March. We are going to spot light them at night and have a predator call.

My two choices are my stock Arsenal SLR-101S or my Dragunov Tiger with a 4X scope and bi pod. I'm pretty good with both at 100 yards but better with the Dragunov.

Whats better, prone using the bi pod, scope and only having 10 rounds vs standing, having open sights and 30 rounds?

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February 19, 2014, 07:36 AM
IMO, A scope will be much better at night. Depending on what kind of light is used, & where it is positioned, open sights might be hard or impossible to see. Prone with a bi pod may not be good either, if you will be calling brushy country. Sitting, with a long bi pod or using shooting sticks is the most common shot I get at coyotes, but I do not hunt them at night.

February 19, 2014, 08:31 AM
At night you need a quality scope. 30 rounds is pretty useless for coyote in my experience. Shots generally need to be taken quickly at intermediate ranges as they don't tend to hang around too long once they get in close. It's not uncommon to take a shot on a "loping" coyote so maneuverability is a good thing. I don't normally hunt from a prone position but that will depend on the terrain. Sitting with a bi-pod is what we normally do.

I generally use a bolt gun nowadays but occasionally carry the AR.

February 19, 2014, 08:38 AM
I would also use the scope rig.
Ammo.. Soft point... something that expands quickly. Coyotees do not have alot of mass. Big game ammo weill slice through with little or no expansion similar to FMJ. I have no love for coyotes but I also do not want them crawling across a field and a slow death.
For 100 yards plus I use a caliber.243 with 70-85 grain SP or HP. Less than 100 I use my own soft cast bullets in any rifle I want to use. Under 50 yards I will carry a revolver with my own soft cast or a rifle. River bottoms I am partial to my 12 guage with buckshot. I do not hunt for the pelts.

Art Eatman
February 19, 2014, 09:46 AM
My experience in calling at night is that most shots were around 40 yards, give or take. A scope is pretty much a necessity, IMO.

Most shots were offhand or were from some field-rest position. A fair number were from leaning on the truck. :)

Personally, I like a .223 or a .243.

An '06 is sorta messy: http://thefiringline.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=16431&d=1135262262

February 19, 2014, 10:07 AM
I'd want a scope too. As for mag capacity, I've yet to shoot more than 3-4 times at a 'yote, even in daylight, when they are running across a 40 acre open field.

February 19, 2014, 10:49 AM
Great question, I'm hoping to go 'yote hunting in a month or two, and not to hijack the thread, but if those who have experience in the matter would harp in I'd appreciate it.

Here's where it stands, We have at our disposal as what I consider viable hunting guns an AKM, SKS, 2 Mosin's one Scoped, 2 Mossy500's(12ga) one with a Scope and Rifled Barrel, the other with rifle sights. I also could buy one of the AK mounts which attaches to the side, and put a Holographic sight on top of the AKM. The longest shot we will have to make is not likely to be more than 50 yards, it could go up to 100 though. We have PPU Soft Points for the 7.62x39 and 7.62x54R, and Foster/Sabot slugs for the 12 gauges

Right now I'm thinking that my best option would be to put a Holo' on the AKM, and let my friend use the Scoped 12 gauge, and if a third goes hunting to use the scoped Mosin.


February 19, 2014, 11:03 AM
Nice shooting Art.

I say use whatever puts em down. Id say if you can't hit one with 10 rounds then you probably won't hit one with 30 either:)

February 19, 2014, 05:35 PM
Thanks. Maybe I should get some soft point 7.62X54R for the Dragunov? That, my AK and SMLE are my only centerfire rifles. The bipod on the Dragunov is only 9 inches tall if I remember right. Maybe one of those tall mono pods?

February 20, 2014, 08:55 AM
At night you want a scope with a lighted reticle. Use a "Kill Light" in red. The coyotes can't see red. You can light up their eyes from out to about 200 yards. The lighted reticle makes it muck easier to see their eyes. Have dropped them in their spot up to 150 yards at night.

Art Eatman
February 20, 2014, 11:08 AM
While you might center a coyote in your light while sweeping the surroundings, quickly move so only the edge of the light makes his eyes show. IOW, don't spook him. I've used a red lens cover on a Q-Beam, and often use my Streamlight SL 20.

Call; sweep; if you see a coyote, get the light off him and call more softly. Then, quick flashes, holding the light so you know you'll only hit him with the edge of the beam.

February 23, 2014, 05:31 PM
I've hunted a few times at night, but I've always used a scoped rifle. But as for the weapon of choice, and since I don't hunt them for pelts, I use super high velocity super light HP's from either a .243 win, .270 win, or a 7mm RM. I like watching them explode into mush, but to each his own.

The best experience I ever had was a coyote standing up hill of me more than 100 yds., probably closer to 150 yds.. He was standing under a big ceder tree canopy. I shot him with a hand loaded full charge of IMR-4350, a Sierra 90 gr. with a 270 win. pushing upward of 3700 fps.. That dog vanished upon shooting him, and when my nephew and I climbed the hill to investigate, we found him smeared across the under side of the canopy, soo cool. We actually didn't find him until some blood dripped down on my nephew's head, thus looking up.

But more to your question. I would definitely use a decent optic. Trying to align iron sights in the dark is going to be nearly impossible. You won't be able to see the iron sights, you'll see the dog in the light, but not the sights on your firearm unless someone is standing behind you illuminating the sights, but even then....


February 24, 2014, 07:53 PM
Be sure of what's way behind the coyote when flinging heavy .30 cal bullets at them.
Especially at night when you can't see what's behind them!

Heavy hunting bullets will ricochet off the ground and continue on further then you can believe!

That's why a small caliber high-velocity varmint bullet is a much safer choice.
Those bullets break apart / blow up on ground contact and will present very little if any ricochet danger to livestock, farm machinery, or homes.

The same cannot be said about 7.62x54R hunting or mil-sup bullets!


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