First time Florida Hog hunter with questions on rifle caliber choice

Discussion in 'Hog Hunting' started by grey2112, May 24, 2009.

  1. grey2112

    grey2112 Well-Known Member

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    The wife and I are thinking of trying our hand at Florida hog hunting. Most will be stalk hunting in relatively dense brush with some clearings here and there. Probably have our best chances at them at dawn and dusk.

    She already is set up, I think, pretty well - a Tikka T3 Lite in 6.5x55 with a Zeiss 3.5-10x50 with Zplex reticle. Good punch and penetration, light recoil.

    I have a Tikka T3 Lite in .223, but don't know if that is a little weak for this application. I reload and have a wide selection of bullets, so if the .223 with a heavier bullet would do the trick on Florida hogs, that would save me some money! I also have a Tikka M695 Whitetail Hunter in .30-06, but it is quite a bit heavier than the T3 Lites.

    I do have a number of ARs in .223 and .300-221 (Whisper) - the 8" barreled .300-221 is nice and lightweight as well.

    I was considering getting either a T3 Lite in .308 or 7mm-08. The 7mm-08 intrigues me due to the lighter recoil and ballistics of the cartridge, and would assume it would handle hogs quite well.

    It will more than likely sport a Weaver Classic Extreme 2.5-10x56 with illuminated reticle - yes, a bit big and heavy, but I think a perfect choice for low-light and brush shooting. I could go with a 1.5-4.5x24 illuminated reticle version of the Weaver as well, and have some other Zeiss scopes, too, but I like the idea of maximum light transmission from the Weaver.

    Thoughts, comments, and opinions welcome!
     
    Last edited: May 24, 2009
  2. Stormrider

    Stormrider Well-Known Member

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    I just got in from hog hunting. It was the first time I got to use my 300/221 AR to shoot at something besides paper and steel. I managed to shoot one hog. She wasn't very big but the bullet was impressive. We were hunting at about 11 pm and it was dark enough that we couldn't really see the hogs at 25 yards, so I lit them up with a flashlight and shot a small sow. I was using M118LR 175g bullets running just under 1600 f/s and when I hit this sow in the left rear leg it went all the way through the body and out the right front shoulder. She didn't move 10 feet. Total penetration was 14-16 inches. I'm going to be using the 300/221 AR for hogs again. Great fun!
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2009

  3. grey2112

    grey2112 Well-Known Member

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    Excellent - my 8" barreled one should be pretty light-weight with FF handguards - I like the idea of using a semi-auto with heavy bullets loaded down for 250 yard max shots, which makes sense against hogs.
     
  4. Strokerace_dave

    Strokerace_dave Active Member

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    grey use what you have, I have killed hundreds of hogs through depredation permits using a 22 hornet and 46 grain hollow points, I have also shot them with 223, 243 and 300WSM. The smaller rifles be really precise in your shots, I like a brain or neck shot with anything I am shooting for hogs, they are very touh but easily killed with this shot.
     
  5. dust

    dust Well-Known Member

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    Do you load your whisper for subs, or supersonic? I would think that a big bullet subsonic would be fine, and less chance of scaring the others away. And I just really want to hear more about pig whispering
     
  6. grey2112

    grey2112 Well-Known Member

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    I can do both - I may try the subs - a 220 grain SMK bullet loaded at about 1050 fps.
     
  7. dust

    dust Well-Known Member

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    REALLY want a whisper, but don't know how they sound without a suppressor.
     
  8. cavtrooper94

    cavtrooper94 Well-Known Member

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    The whisper with a PS-22 night sight in front of an ACOG is the ultimate pig gun. The 8 inch barrel may resrtict you a little, but if you make a head shot and keep it from squeeling other pigs won't care much and wll hang around allowing you to get multiple pigs.
     
  9. purpledragon

    purpledragon Well-Known Member

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    If I were going to hunt wild hogs in fairly thick brush on foot stalking them,I would choose a weapon that was fast handling,open sights 444,45-70,450.I have hunted hogs off and on for over 40 years, and when they run out of the brush in your direction you better be able to react and shoot fast and hit your mark.Just my two cents worth.........Good Luck
     
  10. Locknload

    Locknload Active Member

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    Grey,
    Curious, did you and your wife go play with the central or north piggies and how did the hunt go for you?
    Best,
    Ed
     
  11. gunuserc15

    gunuserc15 Member

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    I agree completely with Dave here. It's all about shot placement. I dropped a 220 pound boar from a distance of 50 yards with a AR-15 in 5.56 firing a 62 grain FMJ. I shot it just under the left eye and it dropped DRT. I didn't get a chance to disect the head to see where the bullet went but it didn't come out of the head. I think it may have bounced around inside, not real sure. Let me know if you'd like to see some pics.
     
  12. Chas1

    Chas1 Well-Known Member

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    Congratulations on getting one. I prefer an M1a 20 round clip loaded with 147's peep sight...quick in the brush but good for those rare in Florida longer shots.
     
  13. Bruce Rickey

    Bruce Rickey Member

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    If you are spot and stalk hunting for pigs then I would not hunt with subsonic or small calibers. I have had very good luck with my 270wsm using 130 grain bullets on normal sized pigs. The thing is that you never know when you are going to run into a big boar. They are tough and can be very mean. My father shot one with his 30-06 180 grain bullet in the ear. the bullet did not make it out the other side of the brain case or if you like skull. The 400 pound boar did drop in it's tracks, but if you were spot and stalk hunting and did a chest cavity hit with a 223 you might be in trouble if he gets too close. I have a friend that had a close call with a big boar. His friend shot a big boar with a .50 black powder. The bullet hit the cartledge shield at an angle and bounced off. The boar got angry and charged. My friend had his black powder rifle and hit the charging boar in the X that is made between the ears and eyes (brain shot) and the boar piled up only 10 feet from in front of him. Too close. If I were spot and stalk hunting and thought I would run up against a big pig then I think the best rifle would be the Marlin lever action guide gun in 45-70 using 350 or 400 grain bullets.
     
  14. Chas1

    Chas1 Well-Known Member

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    I'll stick with my M1a cause as soon as the first shot hit em the second ones already on it's way and so on.