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Can I use a ,17hmr for coyote?


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#1 Fred Schapp

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Posted 06 January 2012 - 05:34 AM

I'm in CT and am limited on State Land to .22 lr caliber (or less) or shotgun with no larger than #4 shot. I know I could use the .17 hmr on fox but don't know if i'm pushing it for coyote. The coyotes run a little large around here, and i'm planning on not having any shots past 75-100 yrds due to the terrain/thickness of brush and undergrowth.

#2 Scott

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Posted 06 January 2012 - 09:10 AM

It is not advisable to shoot a coyote with a caliber with such low kinetic force.

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#3 NASA

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Posted 06 January 2012 - 09:35 AM

You'd have better luck with a shotgun than with a HMR. Practice your calling and all your shots could be at 25 yds. or less.

#4 Rich

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Posted 06 January 2012 - 10:09 AM

Go with 4 Hevi-shot.
Ronnie Robison tested hevi-shot for the company a few tears ago and he found that 4 hevi would penetrate a coyotes skull at 60 yards. As Tom advised get them in as close as possible.I would be comfortable shooting them at 30-35 yards with 4 hevi

#5 JD.

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Posted 06 January 2012 - 11:38 AM

WOW Rich!! Penetrated the SKULL at 60 yds! I know that's not a guarantee of anything but impressive nonetheless. Do you by chance have any comparison charts or studies of any sort about different shotgun loads/ coyote loads, interesting stuff.

To the original question......there are indeed people who kill coyotes with a .17 hmr, many claim it does just fine, I tend to believe that most of those claims are made by people who killed one or two and then claim that they are a good coyote rifle.....they are not. If it's all you have then get it sighted in and go for it but if it were me I would grab the shotgun. My experience with the HMR has taught me exactly what Scott said and shows in the charts.

Some years ago there was a discussion on this very subject and I believe it was CT also....can you use a .22 mag? I guess my point is....is it rimfire only?

#6 Scott

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Posted 06 January 2012 - 12:26 PM

I have shot 3 coyotes with a .17 HMR. A double at about 10 yards. Called in a pair while calling fox. Pair came charging in I barked at 10 yards and both stopped. drilled one in the chest and he began spinning. Switched to 2nd which was quartering away walking looking over her shoulder at the 2nd. I barked again and she stopped 12 yards. Shot her and she started jumping and spinning. Swung back to first and he was down but very much still alive. Put another bullet in him and he was out. Swung back to female and she was down and stopped moving after a few more seconds. My point- even at a super close range with solid, quality shots into the vitals, it's not a sure deal. You're going to have runners and a follow up shot will be needed. You'll loose some. .17 grain hollow points used. 3rd coyote I have on film. 100 yard shot and he ran few hundred yards. Not a good scene.

Picture of 2 coyotes in explanation above.

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I was hunting for a good fur gun for fox and bobcats and went first with the Savage .17 HMR. I shot 30 foxes with it and had mixed results. I shot 1 smaller sized bobcat at 25 yards straight in the chest and he went down like a sack of potatoes. Not even a twitch.

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In the end I sacked the .17 hmr all-together as I felt its a round more in tune with rabbits, woodchucks, squirrels, and mammals of that size. Marginal performance if you are looking at targets of average size.

#7 JD.

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Posted 06 January 2012 - 12:44 PM

Scott, I"ve hunted coons quite a bit and decided to try the hmr only to discover that it took more shots than a 22 lr (by far) to kill a coon and God forbid you may have to shoot through a twig or something of that nature. I used that gun for my daughters to shoot PDs , accurate little gun and round but many times it wouldn't even clean kill a dang PD. Rabbits? Maybe. I figured you fox and cat guys would like it but after seeing it's lack of killing power I sure wouldn't want to risk a 200 dollar cat getting away. If it was all I had, I would use it.


I remember the first coon I shot with it, 10 feet up and I was maybe 15 feet from the tree, right in the face, coon stayed in the tree, 5 more shots and the coon falls down, I'm thinking something bad has happened to the scope between the range and the field, check the coon, of the 5 shots in the body, 2 splashed, the first shot to the head actually hit the coon square on the chin and blew the end of his lower jaw up.......6 total shots and 3 found there way inside the coon, I think he died from laughing at the HMR.

#8 Tim A.

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Posted 06 January 2012 - 01:10 PM

Scott you got a energy chart for a shotgun useing buck-shot???????

#9 Smithers

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Posted 06 January 2012 - 01:34 PM

Woodchucks are tough little bastards. I would use a heavier caliber for them than the HMR. I shot one through the ear, literally, with an arrow and that sumbitch ran into its den with the arrow sticking out of its head like Steve Martin. Then after some pestering at the back of its den the thing came out of it's den with the arrow still sticking out of its head, alive and well. Shit, leave the HMR for chipmunks, not the beastly woodchuck.
Yes, you could use an HMR for shooting coyotes and I could use a tack hammer to frame a house.

#10 Scott

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Posted 06 January 2012 - 01:47 PM

Scott you got a energy chart for a shotgun useing buck-shot???????


I've told you a number of times that if you think a shotgun shooting shot can't kill a coyote at 60 yards, drag your old stank ass out to AZ and Rich and I will shoot at you with our 870s from 75 yards with #4 buck and see if you are left standing.




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