Favorite Grouse, Chukar load

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Favorite Grouse, Chukar load

Postby bluewing77 » Fri Aug 01, 2008 10:21 pm

i will be chasing those birds for the first time in october, what loads do you guys prefer?

i was thinking 1 1/8 oz. #6 out of my pop's early 1970's Wingmaster 12 gauge should work.
(i'll save myself the extra headache of guns and airports for this trip, even though i'd like to pack my Light 12)
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Postby AAR » Sun Aug 03, 2008 9:55 am

For the plains grouse (sharptails/prairie chickens) you need something with alot of kick. Especially with them being so wary. I like 4-6's 3in shells 1 7/8oz. You walk a long ways per shot, so they need to fall or give yourself the best chance.

The forest grouse you can use just low brass dove loads, but I personally will only use #6's or #71/2 high brass from now on.

Went last year and hunted two states, both had blue and ruffed, one state I had some nice high brass 6's and dropping them like flies. I then go to WA and used up all the other shells so had to buy cheap dove loads, was just not very effective and will never make that mistake twice.

Chukars........well..........., I will never forget my first venture after wild Chukars in Nevada :hammer: Just need something with some punch, from depending on how your hunting them you should be getting not too far of shots. Just some high velocity 2 3/4 #6s would be my call

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Postby sherlockbonez » Wed Aug 06, 2008 6:27 pm

I usually shoot ruffies with whatever target load I have around. 7.5s.
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Postby Kiskadinna » Fri Aug 08, 2008 10:13 pm

For ruffed grouse, I tend to use a 6 in the early part of the season if there is more vegetation. as the season gets later, I prefer a 7.5 or 8 - especially as the leaves drop. In the bitter end, the birds get more wary, and bunch together. Then I may switch back to a 6 in a 3" 20 gauge load for a little bit of reach. Always a 20 for me, but certainly can't go wrong with 12 too.
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Postby Pumpgunner » Sat Sep 13, 2008 10:10 pm

I used to use the Bismuth no-tox upland load of 1 1/4oz #6s, since it's out of production I'm trying the Remington HD in the same size and weight this year. I like a skeet or IC choke early in the season for grouse. Where I live we get a lot of big blues, I like to hit them hard and keep them down because grouse have an amazing ability to disappear on the forest floor if they're wounded. I use the same load on chukars, they're an incredibly tough little bird and I've seen them get absolutely hammered, crash and cartwheel, and get up and take off running, so I think 6's and even 5's with a modified choke for longer range aren't too much! Good luck, you won't find better eating wild birds than grouse and chukar and the hiking you do while hunting is a bonus. Plus, after a month of shooting at grouse flying through aspens and firs shooting ducks in the open is a piece of cake!
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Postby ksduckslayer » Mon Oct 13, 2008 4:13 pm

for bigger grouse i use 23/4 fiochi 5's

for chukar...high brass 6's of some kind...

smaller grouse are on the high brass 71/2 route

this also depends on the enviornment and distances that you will be shooting at. No set of rules that apply to all situations!

Best of luck hunting
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Postby carsonr2 » Fri Oct 17, 2008 5:50 pm

High brass 6's for ruffed grouse.

Low brass 8's for woodcock.

I'll be chasing them this weekend for the first time here in NC. I'm used to the flat land aspen of MI, should be fun in the mountains.
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Postby Force Fetch » Mon Oct 20, 2008 3:40 pm

Winchester AA Heavy Handicap Trap loads with 7.5 shot. I buy them by the flat and get lots of birds, chukar, hunts, sharpies, and a ditch parrot or two over pointing dogs.
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Postby desert setter » Mon Oct 20, 2008 5:54 pm

I stand where Force Fetch does, I typically shoot 7 1/2s for all of the birds mentioned with both 16 and 12 guages. I will occasionally switch to 6 shot for late season birds like chukar that may not be holding as well. I shoot 6 shot if using a 20 guage.
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Postby bluewing77 » Tue Oct 21, 2008 2:03 pm

the Wyoming blue grouse hunt fell through, too much snow. the duck hunting was pretty good. maybe chase chukars (sp?) next time i'm up there.
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Postby Tealer » Tue Oct 21, 2008 3:09 pm

Winchester AA handicap trap loads, sounds dumb but they pattern well and those birds are not that though.
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Postby floating redneck » Tue Nov 04, 2008 7:25 pm

been hunting grouse since i could walk with 20ga 6s never had a problem ic choke early mod late fall winter
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Postby Sagebrush » Thu Nov 06, 2008 1:28 am

small bird ,small shot...........etc.

I use 7 1/2 lead for most of my close range shooting for the energy and the amout of pellets in the 1 1/8oz payload.

For later in the year when the birds get smart or for larger birds
6 or #5's will work for the longer distances and tougher birds.

I have been known to load some Elephant loads that put them down for keeps, but who will shoot 4 dram loads of 1 1/2 oz of #4's at 1330 fps.
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Postby Old Wanderer » Sat Dec 20, 2008 11:47 pm

I really like the Fiochi Golden Phesant brand loads for grouse...They are nickel plated, and pretty high velocity...Kills the birds pretty well.

Gauge wise, sometimes my Merkle 16 S/S, Sometimes my 28 Ga S/S.

I will sometimes load a 7.5 shot in the 1st barrel and a 5 in the second. All depends on what the birds are doing.
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Postby Ryan Hill » Sat Feb 21, 2009 7:43 pm

I use both 2 3/4 3 3/4 dram 6's, usually Federals or Kent Ultimate Lead. I like 6s because it doesn't tear the bird up too bad but it's lead, so it hits hard. As far as chukar, I'm privileged enough to hunt with two amazing english pointers, of which i've never seen bust a bird until we bust them, even on 500 yard points. I really never have to shoot at a chukar that has busted further than 10 yards in front of me, and for that I give thanks. :rofl: Even under different circumstances there's no need whatsoever to shoot bigger than 6 for chukar, pheasant, sage hen, grouse, etc.
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