Hog durability question

John Klingenberg

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Nov 13, 2018
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I used to cull hogs on several big ranches and I've seen them take a lot of lead from various magnums. Over four years two of us averaged over 450 a year, not including ones we didnt find or bother to follow up. Mind you this wasn't sport hunting, it was more like get at least one good bullet in and shoot the next one. The amount of damage they can take is amazing. The spine in their neck area is very low, more like in the center of the neck. Above that is all muscle and hide. A hit in the spine or below is usually fatal but above the spine? I've killed some with huge chunks of meat missing there that had healed over from previous gunshot wounds. My opinion is a shoulder shot normally does the job or at least anchors them enough for follow up. Their internal anatomy is not at all like you picture on deer or other grazers. The heart is higher, the spine is lower down in the body etc.

Just saw the pictures were posted.
 

del2les

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Oct 24, 2007
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South Central, CO
Yes....I had this happen before and with a neck shot that did not hit the spine and only stunned the animal. I had shot 2 down within 25 yards of each other, and when I had approached the first and kicked it to make sure it was dead, I heard a noise behind me and turned to see a full charge coming at me! As I stumbled backwards with my rifle slung over my shoulder, I quickly drew my sidearm, a 44mag Blackhawk, and luckily placed a 240 JSWC under his left eye with only 9 feet left!
 

John Klingenberg

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I did learn a heck of a lot about bullet construction in those days. I sure wish I had the opportunity now to try out modern projectiles. The peanut fields around Rule Texas produce some giant hogs. The average mesquite brush hog we shot ran 2-250 with a few exceptions. Those peanut eaters averaged a full hundred pounds heavier and it wasn't uncommon to get a 450. Ever try to load a hog that big? Theres literally nothing to hold onto, their hocks are too big around to grip. We had to use hayhooks to load them!
 

Tim Sharp

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Oct 2, 2018
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Dallas
I did learn a heck of a lot about bullet construction in those days. I sure wish I had the opportunity now to try out modern projectiles. The peanut fields around Rule Texas produce some giant hogs. The average mesquite brush hog we shot ran 2-250 with a few exceptions. Those peanut eaters averaged a full hundred pounds heavier and it wasn't uncommon to get a 450. Ever try to load a hog that big? Theres literally nothing to hold onto, their hocks are too big around to grip. We had to use hayhooks to load them!
Wow...450!!
 

CA48

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Nov 18, 2009
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Texas
Hogs are no doubt durable. When we used to hog dog some of the boars would have scarring on the shoulders that had healed over. Sometimes we would cut into it and sure enough there would be Bullets in the shoulder. I’ve killed a lot of hogs with all kinds of cartridges. The only one that really dropped them in devestating fashion consistently was my 338 EDGE AI. I liked to put 300gr bergers on the shoulder knuckle as it really made that bullet open up quickly and no big hogs ever walked away from that type of shot.
 
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Varmint Hunter

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Dec 26, 2001
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3,865
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Long Island, New York
A 6.5 Creed on the shoulder dropped him but the next 3 9mm bullets to the head failed to kill him. Now that's a tough SOB!

IMG_5022.JPG
 

lejuch

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Mar 1, 2016
Messages
94
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Texas
I did learn a heck of a lot about bullet construction in those days. I sure wish I had the opportunity now to try out modern projectiles. The peanut fields around Rule Texas produce some giant hogs. The average mesquite brush hog we shot ran 2-250 with a few exceptions. Those peanut eaters averaged a full hundred pounds heavier and it wasn't uncommon to get a 450. Ever try to load a hog that big? Theres literally nothing to hold onto, their hocks are too big around to grip. We had to use hayhooks to load them!
Killed a bunch on my buddy’s ranch north of Rule on and near the river....
 

Opus

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Mar 7, 2018
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Phoenix, Az
I too, have my own story of placing a 165 grain SST from my FNH SPR .308 into a hogs shoulder at 325 yards, watched it drop, saw the rear leg kicking then left to find my son to celebrate and help me retrieve it. Got down there on the quad, blood spot but no animal...searched and searched didn't ever find that critter. Yet the same rifle and load dropped a hog at 600 yards the day before.? The Rancher claimed that he's seen this happen more than once at his 325 yard feeder. Shrugs...
 

CA48

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I’ve shot several boars in the 200-300 lb range with factory 308win 150gr core lokts. At 100 yards if you put it in the shoulder it gets to the center of the hog in the vitals and stops there then they run 100-200 yards and die. If you put it behind the shoulder it will pass through sometimes depending on the size of the hog and they still run a little ways. I can see how the one at 325 ran off if it was a center shoulder shot. I assume your 600 kill was more behind the shoulder to allow more penetration/damage.
 

Craig Miller

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Nov 28, 2018
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Cypress, TX
I’m also from Texas and generally kill a hog or two every year during deer season. I’ve recovered all but one. Most have been 100-160lbs but we estimate, based on game camera footage, that the one that did get away was about 300lb. I shot it with a 123gr SST from a 6.5 Grendel. Didn’t bother looking for it after it got back up. Should have pumped another couple rounds into it after it dropped to be sure. If I’m going out hunting for hogs, I now take the .270.

I have cousins who live outside Bastrop. One has a picture of a hog hanging from a cattle scale off the bucket of the front end loader on their tractor that was shot with a .300WM using a thermal sight. Scale reads 608lbs.
 

John Klingenberg

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Nov 13, 2018
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834
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Michigan
I too, have my own story of placing a 165 grain SST from my FNH SPR .308 into a hogs shoulder at 325 yards, watched it drop, saw the rear leg kicking then left to find my son to celebrate and help me retrieve it. Got down there on the quad, blood spot but no animal...searched and searched didn't ever find that critter. Yet the same rifle and load dropped a hog at 600 yards the day before.? The Rancher claimed that he's seen this happen more than once at his 325 yard feeder. Shrugs...
That's the exact rifle I used for years except mine was the shorter PBR. Really an accurate rifle but I hated those magazines. I finally ground off most of that collar looking thing on the front and it worked perfect after that. If I had to be honest I'd say I actually shot the most with a fairly accurate 7.62x39 in an AR platform. Hirtenberger used to make a 154 grain softpoint that worked really well and my local hardware had a lot on hand. Cheap and effective.
 

CA48

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Nov 18, 2009
Messages
1,068
Location
Texas
I’m also from Texas and generally kill a hog or two every year during deer season. I’ve recovered all but one. Most have been 100-160lbs but we estimate, based on game camera footage, that the one that did get away was about 300lb. I shot it with a 123gr SST from a 6.5 Grendel. Didn’t bother looking for it after it got back up. Should have pumped another couple rounds into it after it dropped to be sure. If I’m going out hunting for hogs, I now take the .270.

I have cousins who live outside Bastrop. One has a picture of a hog hanging from a cattle scale off the bucket of the front end loader on their tractor that was shot with a .300WM using a thermal sight. Scale reads 608lbs.
This winter I let a buddy use my 6.5 Grendel with 123ssts to kill a 300+ lb boar I had been watching. We went out at night under moon light in a creek bottom. When the boat came out he put one right behind the shoulder at 15 yards. The hog ran off and we tracked it in the mud for 150 yards. I got to a thick patch of salt cedar basically solid brush. I could hear the pig breathing heavily coughing blood. Called my buddy over to finish him. The hog was deep in his layer. There was literally a tunnel the size of the pig to get in there. I told my bud to crawl up in there and dump the mag on him. It took a sec to persuade him but he finally took off crawling. He got in there shot 5 times at point blank with the hog set sideways. The hog drops then gets up to charge him and he starts dumping rounds. Luckily the first shot on the charge was a head shot and dropped him. Hell of a night and made my buddy’s hunting season. It’s a handy gun but you will be tracking unless it’s a headshot on the big ones
8BCF81C5-E17B-4702-9FB0-AC0AD8531735.jpeg
 

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