Trouble shooting geese

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Trouble shooting geese

Postby Huntman27 » Wed Sep 25, 2013 5:21 am

I don't no why but for some reason I've had a bit of trouble shooting geese this season. For example the other day I had a pair come in and they came in right to my decoys. They were no more than 40 yards away and I popped up, put the bead right in front of its head and shot 3 times. Nothing dropped. They came back around and only had time to put one shell in and this time I really took my time and they didn't even flinch. I was shooting 3 1/2 bb hevi shot. Any idea on what I could be doing wrong???????
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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby Gunnysway » Wed Sep 25, 2013 7:10 am

Face down on the gun?
Choke?
Shot size?
Flock shooting?


There are so many variables to shooting, it would be nearly impossible to diagnose it without watching you.


Go to the range, pattern your gun and shoot some clays.


I got nothin' else...


Good luck,

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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby tornadochaser » Wed Sep 25, 2013 7:13 am

If they were locked up at 40, should have let them get to 20. Pattern that tungsten. I've gotten some crap patterns with large tungsten when overchoked.

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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby Black Smoke » Wed Sep 25, 2013 8:49 am

I'll be honest and I'm not bashing hevi shot but my buddy let me shoot some last year and I absolutely hated them. I shoot fasteel 1625fps or hypersonics 1700fps with patternmaster choke and all you have to do is beak'em and they're going to drop at that yardage no doubt about it. Seems to me like hevi shot is hyped up quite a bit.
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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby KillerKowalski » Wed Sep 25, 2013 9:31 am

Now, I shot Heavy Shot for geese last year. The exact same load. Geese were dead before they hit the ground. Granted, I wasn't taking 40 yards shots with it. If birds are finishing at 40 yards, then your decoy placement or your blind placement is not correct. Birds should be finishing 10-20 yards away from the tip of your barrel. IMO, taking a 40 yard shot is about the lengthiest shot I will ever even think about. I want a direct hit with enough impact power that I am not wounding a bird. If I wing a bird, it is only due to my aim being off and not the shell make, model, size and/or length.
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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby bobalong » Wed Sep 25, 2013 11:06 pm

Follow through and stay down (cheek ) through the shot. These are the first two things I check if I start to get off a bit.
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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby BBK » Thu Sep 26, 2013 2:12 pm

Two things.

1. 40 yards right in the decoys? 40 yards is not a decoying shot IMO
2. "put the bead right in front of its head and shot 3 times". At 40 yards you should be shooting at least a 5-6 foot lead in front of his head, you likely shot WAYY behind him.
Last edited by BBK on Sat Sep 28, 2013 1:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby Huntman27 » Thu Sep 26, 2013 5:37 pm

It wasn't even a 40 yd shot I said at most. Afterwards I paced it out and it was about 30 yards and I think I led them enough because they were locked up and were barely flying
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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby O.D.Lid » Sat Sep 28, 2013 12:39 pm

:huh: I don't know where I read it but... the article said every time a goose flaps his wings he travels 11'! I can't remember if it was while migrating or just an average distance traveled but I would guess you were shooting behind them.
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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby BBK » Sat Sep 28, 2013 1:33 pm

Huntman27 wrote:It wasn't even a 40 yd shot I said at most. Afterwards I paced it out and it was about 30 yards and I think I led them enough because they were locked up and were barely flying


If his wings were locked he was moving at a very good clip. A goose can fly nearly as fast as a teal if they want to. They just look like they are going slow because they are so big, in reality they travel pretty quick! The only time a goose goes slow is if it is on the ground or back peddling about to land.

When scared, each wingbeat of a giant canada is about 10-15' of travel forward. So if we say they flap every second, that is 15fps or about 10mph. 1 flap per second is very slow, I would say to triple that for a fleeing goose. That is why most guys shoot way behind geese, they just don't realize how fast they are moving.

30 yards, incoming locked goose... I'd put my lead at about 5 feet in front of his nose. The only time I'm putting the bead right in front of his face is if he is about to touch his feet on the water/ground.

You shouldn't be shooting at incoming locked geese though, let them come in until they either turn to abort mission or until they are about to touch the water/ground. If you shot him locked at 30 yards you should have let him come in a little bit further. 30 yards is a pretty long shot for the first shot. I'd be surprised if many of us could hit a locked goose at 30 yards with any sort of reliability. If you don't connect with the first shot you have an awkward erratic flying goose at 40-50 to try and scratch down. I'd take a passing shot at 40 any day over a locked goose at 30.
Why do I shoot 3.5" for geese? Because they don't make a 4" yet!
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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby kcidkcus » Fri Oct 04, 2013 9:05 pm

Could be flinching. Just a tiny jerk from flinching can cause a miss... I'm guilty of it. Just practice holding steady and shooting stationary targets and mentally tel yourself not to flinch and not to close your eyes. A lot of guys close their eyes right before they fire. After a 100 rounds give or take you should be set. May wanna check the pattern board as well. I had a gun that started shooting way low and to the right. There's a ton of things it could be
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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby Take em boys » Mon Oct 07, 2013 10:39 am

prob gonna get flamed for this but when I first started goose hunting I hated it I got 2 my first year while my dad and his buddies were making piles I got so frustrated that my 2nd year I pretty much just duck hunted I slowly got back into geese and now 13 years later I don't own a duck decoy and have a trailer full of geese the technique I have been using the last few years is I aim to hit a wing 1st shot seems to blast the wing by 2nd and 3rd shot their far enough away im still aiming at wing but getting bb's in the neck to head area as well, hit a goose in the head/neck and they can lock up and soar break a wing they cant go any were and more times then not your filling up lung and heart cavities as well


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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby fax6202 » Mon Oct 07, 2013 5:36 pm

When wing shooting you NEVER aim, it's not a rifle. Spent time at the range, preferably sporting clays or FITASC if you compete. Op mentioned flinching, that very well could be an issue, especially with 3.5" loads. If it persists, go get a lesson. It's money well spent. I did years ago and I went from the 60's in sporting clays competition to solid 80+. A pro will pick apart all bad habits, we all have them at least occasionally. After I started shooting clays non-stop I have very little difficulty hitting birds and it's not from talent, rather lots of practice. Good luck
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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby Black Smoke » Tue Oct 08, 2013 6:50 am

^Agree... Practice, Practice, Practice. You don't need someone to train you. Shoot clays with your normal 8 shot loads or whatever you prefer then take about 5 of those 3.5" shells and shoot with those or mix them in. You'll get it, don't get discouraged and just keep practicing.
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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby dakotashooter2 » Wed Oct 09, 2013 10:21 pm

It's also possible tou shot over them. If they are locked up and dropping fast enough a bead on the head may not compensate for the drop. I shoot much better on birds on the rise.
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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby spit note » Wed Oct 16, 2013 5:22 am

You need to shoot where they're going and not where they've been.
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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby rebelcj7 » Wed Nov 13, 2013 10:12 am

I would guess distance played a bit part of it. I see a LOT of guys shooting at geese way to far. Hevi Shot is a GREAT load and will smoke em, you still have to get them in range.
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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby dsm16428 » Thu Nov 14, 2013 6:50 am

rebelcj7 wrote:I would guess distance played a bit part of it. I see a LOT of guys shooting at geese way to far. Hevi Shot is a GREAT load and will smoke em, you still have to get them in range.


:huh: Wait?! A hevi staffer saying geese at 40 yards weren't...IN RANGE?! :lol: Rebel, do you ever hear the stuff you post in your head before you start typing? At 40 yards ANY non-toxic load in the correct size (LIKE HEVI SHOT BB!!) will straight out flatten any goose that flies. I swear. It's like you guys (with few exceptions), see the words "hevi shot" and something turns on in your little bird brains that makes you start typing! Doesn't matter what you type, as long as you're typing. You guys getting paid by the word? :rolleyes:
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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby Got5dux » Wed Nov 27, 2013 11:16 am

Keep your head down on the gun and lead the goose low. Remember a shotgun shoots up to where you eye looks. Sounds like you may be shooting "over" your target. Easy to do if your gun isnt properly mounted due to heavier than normal clothing and shooting out of a layout blind.
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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby Takeem406 » Wed Nov 27, 2013 7:46 pm

Black Smoke wrote:I'll be honest and I'm not bashing hevi shot but my buddy let me shoot some last year and I absolutely hated them. I shoot fasteel 1625fps or hypersonics 1700fps with patternmaster choke and all you have to do is beak'em and they're going to drop at that yardage no doubt about it. Seems to me like hevi shot is hyped up quite a bit.


Not supposed to run anything faster than 1550 through your Patternmasters. The wad travels too fast for the stud ring to catch the wad properly. Plus you get fewer pellets with the faster loads.



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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby AFISHN » Thu Nov 28, 2013 6:42 am

I am with BobAlong's suggestion.
Also it's easy not to follow through when you see the slow beating of a goose's wings,thinking they are not moving fast.WRONG.
They are moving much faster than your eye and brain perceives .
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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby clymerfowler » Tue Dec 17, 2013 9:10 am

Takeem406 wrote:
Black Smoke wrote:I'll be honest and I'm not bashing hevi shot but my buddy let me shoot some last year and I absolutely hated them. I shoot fasteel 1625fps or hypersonics 1700fps with patternmaster choke and all you have to do is beak'em and they're going to drop at that yardage no doubt about it. Seems to me like hevi shot is hyped up quite a bit.


Not supposed to run anything faster than 1550 through your Patternmasters. The wad travels too fast for the stud ring to catch the wad properly. Plus you get fewer pellets with the faster loads.



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a 1 1/8 ounce load of steel is a 1 1/8 ounce of steel. it doesnt matter if its traveling 1550 fps or 1700 fps.
Last edited by clymerfowler on Tue Dec 17, 2013 1:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby don novicki » Tue Dec 17, 2013 9:28 am

Best advice I can give is..............when you think they are close enough wait a few more seconds and then smoke em! :thumbsup:
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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby noweil » Sat Dec 21, 2013 11:10 pm

Huntman27 wrote:It wasn't even a 40 yd shot I said at most. Afterwards I paced it out and it was about 30 yards and I think I led them enough because they were locked up and were barely flying


The locked up and barely flying remark speaks volumes. If they are in the air they are moving. I've seen them hang on the wind but that's as close as I have come to seeing them barely flying.
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Re: Trouble shooting geese

Postby Mike657 » Thu Dec 26, 2013 1:14 am

I use a 10 gauge for geese, since I can get a higher volume of bbs down range. If 3.5inch shells out of a 12 gauge make you flinch a ten might be a good idea. It has alot less recoil then a 3.5 12.
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