View Full Version : Big Geese small shot

08-16-2000, 06:22 PM
How do you all feel about guys who use small shot on geese? By small I mean #2 shot or smaller. Several guys I hunt with swear by #4 shot for geese while I prefer at the min. BB's. Granted I have seen birds cleanly killed with both.

08-16-2000, 06:27 PM
Back in the days of lead shot I used to use 2 3/4" #4 shot for big geese with VERY good success. With steel I don't go below BB. If you shoot Tungsten you could probably go back to #2 or #4 with good success but IMHO small steel just doesn't get the job done on big honkers.

08-16-2000, 07:05 PM
My experiance small shot (1's) are very lethal at all ranges given that they are handloaded with lots of speed. Most hunters are not great shots so they ass shot a lot of geese, and with 2's this usually results in a cripple/flyaway. The large shot gives more knockdown effect when you shot the back half of the bird. Many of us assume that makes bbb's more effctive, when shot placement actually has a lot to do with it. Each person has to take into account how they hunt and what circumstances the load is going to be used in.

08-16-2000, 07:05 PM
I use 4 for early teal season then I use 1's in steel for ducks and geese and when duck season is over for geese only, I use bb bismuth or Winchester HV bb's 3 1/2" 12ga.
I don't see any problem with 4's on geese at less than 20 yards, my brotherinlaw swears by 4's on geese, but I rather have a little more power in my punch.

Goose huntin' is the best but I Go4Ducks2 (http://sites.outdoorsite.com/outdoors/go4ducks2)

08-16-2000, 08:04 PM
The patternmaster choke will give better results with steel shooting smaller sizes. The shot string is shorter and delivers more pellets upon impact thus giving more knock down power. I shoot mostly BBs for geese but have killed them with 1&2 shot using the PM choke with know cripples last season. I think if you give the chokes a try you will very pleased with the results.

Bob Alfieri, Take a Kid Hunting

Bill Collector
08-16-2000, 08:18 PM
I am a believer in pattern density over shot size. If the hunting is good, and the birds are readily decoying, I prefer #2 over all else. It doesn't tear up the mallards that fly by, either. If the hunt is questionable, I think BB is a good bet. If you are pass shooting, or don't have any hope for bonus ducks, BBB or T is a great load as well. For Sept Goose, when I won't be able to shoot ducks, I will probably shoot the bigger shot, even if they are decoying nicely.


PS - All shot sizes refer to steel.
Bill Collector

A few short of the limit!

[This message has been edited by Bill Collector (edited 08-16-2000).]

08-17-2000, 09:59 AM
I have wacked a couple geese with 4's while hunting ducks on water. I think you get a much better kill with 1's and up at most goose hunting ranges. I mostly use BB or BBB's for geese. In Canada when both ducks and geese are very close 1's are my all around load. Now with the new heavy shot 4's would be fine for decoying geese.

"We're All About Geese"

08-17-2000, 03:06 PM
Let's put a twist on the original question about small shot for big geese, how small a gun is too small? A couple years ago we had a guides only hunt on Christmas day at the club I worked at with 5 guys in the pit we had one shooter and 4 back-up's we killed geese with handloaded bismuth #2's out of a .410 At the end of the day we had 5 geese and no lost birds. I have guided many youth and lady hunters with 20 guages and always felt they would be better off with a light 12.

08-17-2000, 06:33 PM
Early to mid season I use 3" 2's for ducks and geese. I shoot the 3" 2's with 1 1/4 shot, speed kills when it comes to steel. I'm shooting geese with feet-down,wings back peddling, you don't need all the big stuff. Your talking 15-25 yards. Late in the season I do switch to BB' and BBB for geese
(because of the heavier down) especially if you have to take them at long ranges by that I mean 30 to 35 yards due to the hunting pressure and being a little wary. I have taken geese with 3" 4's just to prove that you can kill them at the first ranges I mentioned above. They were killed rather quickly I might add. I have not experienced that many cripples when shooting 3" 2's
1 1/4 at those ranges, but there are times when I have shot BB and BBB and experienced cripples as well. It all comes down to shooting straight and at ranges you are use to shooting at. If you don't feel comfortable taking the 35 to 40 yards shot by all means don't let come in a little closer if you don't have a choice, then go to a bigger shot, but on the flip side, you have lesser pellets that might connect. Good luck.

Shoot'em between the eyes, this should solve all your problems.

[This message has been edited by Mallardslayer (edited 08-17-2000).]