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Shotguns vs. Bears

Discussion in 'Shotguns' started by monduconstruct, Jul 7, 2010.

  1. monduconstruct

    monduconstruct Well-Known Member

    I was reading a story on reddit this morning about grizzly bears in Alaska and got to thinking ... could a shotgun stop a bear? If not a grizzly, could it stop a black bear? My gut tells me any buckshot would just piss it off, so maybe a slug would slow it down? I don't live in a bear-prone area, but did grow up in one.

    Just curious if any of the shotgun enthusiasts on THR have any knowledge on this topic. I think bears, grizzlies in particular, are completely fascinating and would love to see one someday - from behind some bullet proof glass hopefully.

    ps. Here's the story I was reading for any curious: http://www.kaniut.com/abtsam.htm
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2010
  2. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer member

    Shotguns are the weapon of choice for most professionals who have to deal with problem bears after maulings, etc. A slug (or even heavy buck) has all the penetration needed for close range encounters with bears.

    Some of those guys also use iron sighted rifles. I recall an old .375 H&H cut down to 20" in use by one biologist a few years ago. But, most of them now carry shotguns and nothing fancy or tactical, mostly short-barreled Remington pumps.
  3. ArmedBear

    ArmedBear Well-Known Member

    When men were men!:)
  4. FightDiary

    FightDiary Member

    Slug in the brain will kill anything im sure. Under stress you might drop a shot but if you could mix up the rounds in your shotgun your laughing.
  5. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

    Correct me if I am wrong, but I believe Alaska Fish & Game LEO & biologists are issued 12 ga pump shotguns & slugs to deal with big angry bears, and whatever else comes along that needs killing.

  6. monduconstruct

    monduconstruct Well-Known Member

    like this one?

    [Image removed]

    Thank you guys for the comments - I was very surprised that they issue 12 ga. for this very purpose. Where would you shoot at a bear? You could easily miss the head, so center mass?
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 7, 2010
  7. Youngster

    Youngster Well-Known Member

    I encountered an overly curious brown bear one time, held up my 870 in profile and watched it retreat immediately! I'm pretty sure that bear at least would agree that a shotgun is enough for bears. :D

    My load of choice in bear country is some kind of Brenneke or Gualandi slug, plenty of folks use Foster slugs and even 00 with success but I'm more confident in a tough, deep penetrating slug design.
  8. ArmedBear

    ArmedBear Well-Known Member

    Did you rack the slide?:D
  9. heeler

    heeler Well-Known Member

    Shotguns,especially a 12 gauge with the right slug is bad juju.
    I have an old hunting magazine from the 1970's that has a story by the late outdoor writer Bob Brister,who while in Africa on a hunting trip and during an after the hunt campfire drinking session made a bet it was more than powerful enough at a correct distance to kill a cape buffalo.
    His associates laughed at this.
    So he used his Perrazzi over and under 12 gauge using Brenneke slugs and went out that next day with his friends and killed a cape buffalo.
    The distance was about 25 yards if I recall.
    That article always impressed the hell out of me.
  10. ArmedBear

    ArmedBear Well-Known Member

    Why did he bring his 12 Gauge Perazzi to Africa?
  11. heeler

    heeler Well-Known Member

    Armed Bear,they were hunting some sort of bird called a sand grouse.
    He most likely was hunting other game as well
    His friends wisely backed him up with their powerful center fire rifles if his mission went south with the cape buffalo.
    Of course they did not have to come to his help.
    It was a very impressive story.
    As was most anything the guy would write about.
  12. Ditch-Tiger

    Ditch-Tiger Well-Known Member

    Pumpshotgun + slugs = poormans express rifle
  13. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer member

    Center of mass IS the head!

  14. monduconstruct

    monduconstruct Well-Known Member

    touche salesman
  15. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer member

    I don't think the state of Alaska issues shotguns, though there may be a mixed bag available at field offices.

    The people I've met who do this are pretty particular about what they want and so they have their own guns. The state Troopers often have to deal with this situation and they have the standard cop Mossberg. But, the real pro's from F&G use what they want and that's typically (from what I've seen) a Remington 870.

    You might be surprised to learn that they don't always go after a bear following a mauling or killing. A lot of times they just write it off as a sow with cubs or whatever and no action at all is taken. And of course, they usually can't ID which bear did the act and they aren't going to mow down every bear in an area just because some hiker got mauled.

    When a bear is wounded in an attack (often the case) they do go after them and it's a dangerous business. When they go after a bear it's usually two or three guys and though I don't think there's a protocol, it wouldn't surprise me if at least one of those guys is armed with a rifle in case the bear is spotted at long range.
  16. nathan

    nathan Well-Known Member

    A 3 inch slug is good medicine .
  17. BADUNAME37

    BADUNAME37 Well-Known Member

    I agree, a 12 gauge - ESPECIALLY with a rifled barrel for slugs and any 3" Magnum reputable slug would kill darn near anything, I would think!
  18. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

    You don't need a rifled barrel for slugs.

    Which would you rather shoot a big bear with?
    A Sabot slug from a rifled barrel, which basically throws a .50 cal pistol bullet.

    Or a 1 1/4 once, full 12 bore Brenneke slug from a smooth-bore, which hits like a brick outhouse and cuts a 3/4" hole all the way.

  19. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer member

    The brain is much lower in the head than people think. Between the eyes is not a good shot, because at best you will only crease the top of the brain cavity. The brain is directly behind the nose/mouth.
  20. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Well-Known Member

    Guys, you should clear off the poster as it's violating some core rules. Also, that's a zoo bear. The real ones are leaner, stronger and faster. They don't pose.

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