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Tips on choosing the best shot shells

Struttin’ Time:

Turkey season is here again. Wow. I want to talk about one of the most important and most overlooked tools we can have in taking a turkey once we find it — the shotshells we use.

First, we need to get a good turkey choke that matches the gun. The choke tube I use is an Undertaker with a constriction of .660. Remember, what my gun likes may not be what your gun wants, or likes. I bought several turkey tubes before finding the one my 9200 Mossberg turkey gun really liked.

I will hear from some Struttin’ Time readers, “Well, I just use my trusted shotgun that my grandpa gave me and it works just fine.” True, but now firearms are made for hunting a certain type of game, thus, the turkey gun. They are camouflaged, they are shorter, quicker to move around and are fitted with TruGlo sights.

The thing to remember is that any shotgun and shot will kill a turkey as long as they are big enough to do the job. Caution: I would never attempt to kill a turkey with a .410 gauge shotgun.

As much as it pains me, I need to tell my new friend Hunter, who thinks I am the “greatest hunter” to ever live, that I am the world’s worst shots. Once many years ago I shot 13 shots in Florida and never moved a feather. I have come close to a repeat to that several times in different states, but turkey hunting should be a one-shot sport. My shell of choice is the No. 5 Kent, 3 inch with 2 ounces of powder. They match my gun and won’t break the bank. When Remington and HEVI-Shot were making shells I used those, but they were expensive — about two dollars a shell — and of course Remington and HEVI-Shot ended their relationship.

I will not try to tell you what you think is your best shot, I will tell you that I shy away from Federal, Triple Beard, and BXD, some because of the price, one that I just don’t like. When and if you want to go long range, there is only one shell — the Winchester XX Long Range. They are mixed with Tungsten and will reach out to about 40 yards. I use them on my Wyoming and Kansas hunt, only.

In closing, let me recommend that you go out back and shoot your gun to know what your gun likes. Good hunting. It is time to rock and roll.



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