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Squirrels


harrycatcat1
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I'm going to have to up my game, but I don't know how really,  I am hitting squirrels with the air rifle but sometimes when they hit the ground they do a houdini on me and just dissappear.

Where I am shooting its ferns and brambles mainly.

I don't count them unless I find them. Could do with a terrier for when they hit the ground.

Edited by harrycatcat1
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With the ground cover so thick at the moment they can be hard to find, I shot two Thursday morning,  the position I'm shooting from means they drop and roll down the hill.

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It doesn't look it but there is a short steep bank where they roll down into ferns,  it took a good while to find one of them even with the thermal and it was just lay under the ferns.

Definitely helps if they drop where you can see them.

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I've had this quite often and reasons can vary, with .177 the pellet can pass straight through and not impart enough shock to kill immediately, try using a heavier pellet (I know Stu's going to argue that one) but it worked, to an extent, for me. If you are certain you are hitting them in the head with a .22 then maybe a case of inconsistent pellets causing a slight deviation, or even Buck fever? (even at my age I can experience this and I often have to fix the crosshairs on a Squirrels head then move them away again for a few seconds to calm my nerves down before replacing them and slipping the trigger.) 

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I had this ; whack into one only for it to go spinning across the ground and disappear,, zero was slightly out so  I put a small spinner target up on my feeder about the size of a 5p piece , check zero against this before shooting now 

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Even head shots bounce about a fair bit and certainly body shots with an air rifle you will have one or two crawl away ...I have found them 10yrds away when hit fair and square mid ships with a sub sonic 22RF.  Tough little brutes and quite pleased they don't grow as big as labradors.

Not wishing to creep into your thread but all three of these got hit square on the bonce at 18yrds and did not go anywhere although one did bounce around for a while.

These are 15, 16 and 17 from that small copse on the new golf course set up. The copse is only about 60yrds triangular and I think I have recued the population there for a while so set up another flip top 300yrds away. Well give that week to settle in and then hit each alternately a week about.

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1 hour ago, Walker570 said:

Even head shots bounce about a fair bit and certainly body shots with an air rifle you will have one or two crawl away ...I have found them 10yrds away when hit fair and square mid ships with a sub sonic 22RF.  Tough little brutes and quite pleased they don't grow as big as labradors.

Not wishing to creep into your thread but all three of these got hit square on the bonce at 18yrds and did not go anywhere although one did bounce around for a while.

These are 15, 16 and 17 from that small copse on the new golf course set up. The copse is only about 60yrds triangular and I think I have recued the population there for a while so set up another flip top 300yrds away. Well give that week to settle in and then hit each alternately a week about.

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Well done 👏 the thing is the ones I'm shooting at are at the tops or near the top of fir trees. You can hear the "thwack" when the pellet hits them. It's probably the distance I am taking them at 🤔 there is a distinct different sound when I miss and the pellet hits the branch.

I have only ever caught one on the feeder, saying that I don't sit waiting for them. Might have to start doing that. There seems to be a lot of food around and they are ignoring the feeders at the moment 🤔

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36 minutes ago, harrycatcat1 said:

Well done 👏 the thing is the ones I'm shooting at are at the tops or near the top of fir trees. You can hear the "thwack" when the pellet hits them. It's probably the distance I am taking them at 🤔 there is a distinct different sound when I miss and the pellet hits the branch

Apologies if your well aware of this, you may be hitting high when your shooting at elevated targets, have a practice on some pine cones, chances are you are clipping the top of the squirrels head because gravity has less effect on the shot.

Don't range to the squirrel,  range to the tree trunk when your shooting in the tree tops, a dead branch is definitely good for practicing on, and it's very satisfying when you connect and the squirrels plummet to earth .

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2 hours ago, Walker570 said:

These are 15, 16 and 17 from that small copse on the new golf course set up. The copse is only about 60yrds triangular and I think I have recued the population there for a while so set up another flip top 300yrds away. Well give that week to settle in and then hit each alternately a week about.

I was surprised at the distance I saw squirrels going on the golf course Nev, probably because it's open between the copses,  they looked like hares.

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Yes, not that big fortunately but I saw five or six racing across the fairway last time I was there but this morning not a sign. My offerings must be better than the millionaires living along the 18th fairway:yes:  We will see if alternating on a weekly basis pulls more in. I am sure there are a whole load more to come. It is a problem that I am restricted to about one and a half hours before the players turn out.

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I don't do it so may be wrong but shooting vertical or almost at a tree rat sat on a branch you will be looking at mostly body and the bottom of it's head. Are you hitting body shots and not the head purely by mistake. The hit on a body is much soft than the definite THUD as lead hits brain box. If so those tree rats will die but may scamble off across three or four tree tops before dying.  A head shot normally results in total paralysis and it may hang for a few seconds by one leg and then bounce around after hitting the ground.  A brain shot is very distinctive.

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26 minutes ago, Walker570 said:

I don't do it so may be wrong but shooting vertical or almost at a tree rat sat on a branch you will be looking at mostly body and the bottom of it's head. Are you hitting body shots and not the head purely by mistake. The hit on a body is much soft than the definite THUD as lead hits brain box. If so those tree rats will die but may scamble off across three or four tree tops before dying.  A head shot normally results in total paralysis and it may hang for a few seconds by one leg and then bounce around after hitting the ground.  A brain shot is very distinctive.

I reckon mine must be mainly body shots 😳 due to the angles.

4 hours ago, Mice! said:

Apologies if your well aware of this, you may be hitting high when your shooting at elevated targets, have a practice on some pine cones, chances are you are clipping the top of the squirrels head because gravity has less effect on the shot.

Don't range to the squirrel,  range to the tree trunk when your shooting in the tree tops, a dead branch is definitely good for practicing on, and it's very satisfying when you connect and the squirrels plummet to earth .

Thanks 👍

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Build yourself a hide , mines made of pallets, a tarpaulin bit of camo netting, got a fishing chair in it , 15 meters from feeder and sit and wait early morning and evening seem to be the best time, if you’re lucky you can grab some zzzzzzs in there too 

C33B4B50-306D-4488-A5E7-AF76A01E5D76.jpeg

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As already suggested build yourself a hide near the feeder, they will not show much interest at the moment but when winter starts tickling their tails they will start to rely on the feeder for food, between now and then they will become accustomed to your feeder and visit it regularly in the colder months, use your time to build a hide that you can relax in comfortably.

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3 hours ago, sam triple said:

Build yourself a hide , mines made of pallets, a tarpaulin bit of camo netting, got a fishing chair in it , 15 meters from feeder and sit and wait early morning and evening seem to be the best time, if you’re lucky you can grab some zzzzzzs in there too 

C33B4B50-306D-4488-A5E7-AF76A01E5D76.jpeg

I’ve rented worse places than that for a week’s holiday!

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33 minutes ago, harrycatcat1 said:

The concensus is a hide would be good so over the next week or so that is my task.

Thanks 👍

 

2 minutes ago, London Best said:

I’ve rented worse places than that for a week’s holiday!

🤣🤣

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53 minutes ago, harrycatcat1 said:

The concensus is a hide would be good so over the next week or so that is my task.

Thanks 👍

See if you can pick up an IBC frame or maybe the complete unit  .   The inner plastic makes a perfect weather proof roof and you can easily put legs on them to make head clearance.

Then either camo netting or stack natural materials as above. I have three or four tucked in places on farms I shoot over. Easily moved as well. 

 

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Edited by Walker570
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