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I just bought my 6-year-old a 4-10 and have thought about taking him out to take a crack at the ducks. If he happens to nail one, will a 4-10 bring it down?
 

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A 410 in the hands of a good shot and good judgement will bring down a duck,under the right conditions.I think a youngster would have to be lucky to score with a 410,but I would think you run the risk of him just crippling the bird.The choice is all yours,he's your boy and its great that you plan to take him hunting with you,thats being a good dad.He'll thank you for it for a lifetime,my only advice would be to make sure his first experience turns out well so as not to discourage him.Good luck.
 

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I have to disagree with the previous poster comments, a 410 would be a piss poor choice for ducks. You would have absolutly no big quanity of shot in a typical loading and the pattern density would be crap.As I type this, " I've also recall never seeing a steel load offer in the .410 caliber" by any of the big 3 mfgs. I could be wrong but that should give you a hint that the 410 is not gear'd or reccommend for ducks.

If you have a yound boy, you can easily find a nice 20ga and use the loads available for it and have a much higher chance of nailing a duck with it than .410. If he is very recoil shy, then fork over the money for a 20ga in a semi-auto model. I hunted with folks that have brought their kids to the field or blind and they all where using 12or 20ga shotguns and did just fine.
 

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Noway,I have to disagree with you.I never said that a 410 was a good duck round,only that some hunters are actually good enough to take a duck with one.I've seen it done.One gent actually brought done a goose with a 410,but he was a shooting champion for his local gun club.And yes you can buy 410 shells loaded for non-toxic rounds from some manufacturerers.The average hunter and certainly a small boy would not fare well with a 410 ,as I stated.The question I answered was "will a 410 bring down a duck ",and the answer was "yes"but only in the hands of someone who knew how to do it,not a small boy.My apologies if my answer confused you.
 

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I agree DOG - learning to be a good sportsman and hunter is very difficult with a .410 - I have shot pheasant over a pointer with one, but a small child will not take ducks - payload in the shotshell is too small except for the best gunners and at birds no more than 20 yards out.

I would suggest a 20 guage. Even then, on waterfowl, there is alot more skill involved to take ducks and geese regularly than can be learned with a .410 - even with the hevi shot. The twenty will give the youngster soft recoil and you can purchase youth stock. I prefer EVERYONE learn to shoot with a pump (like everyone should learn to drive a standard shift), but an auto reduces recoil even more.
 

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Do not get a 410--it will discourage the boy because he wont be able to drop anything. Few people could. The recoil difference between a 20 guage and 410 is un-noticable. Good for you for passing on this tradition--I wish my father took that kind of time with me.
 

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I use to hunt dove exclusively with a 4-10 double barrel, and got to the point where I could kill more with that than my 20 gauge, but would never dream of taking it out for ducks, just like I would never take my 20 out after geese
 

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YUMMMMM Controversy

:rofl:

How long will it take?
 

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Dogman said:
A 410 in the hands of a good shot and good judgement will bring down a duck,under the right conditions.
I don't think it could be put any better than that. I agree with everything you said dogman.
-Erik
 

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A .410 used with good judgement is gonna be better than a 20ga used with poor judgement....anyday. A .410 is not a poor choice for starting out a young shooter, so long as the adult involved takes the time, care, training, and guidance with the young hunter to ensure it's used within it's limits. You can also start a shooter out younger with that .410 and not turn them off to recoil than you can a 20ga. I have a 7-yr old who killed his first duck with his FIRST SHOT at a duck this year. With #5 bismuth, he stoned a bird with a headshot. He's been shooting that thing since he was five, and had already killed some doves and squirrels with it.....under guidance, judgement, shot selection, etc. That gets him a jump on most who are waiting around to be able to handle a 20 gauge. That's not the correct path for every child. Every child is different. He has been ready for shooting. His older brother, my 8yr old, is not...even now. He needs more time and guidance and practice.
It's not very prudent to inject opinion into the minor details of how others raise their children.

Now here's the kicker: He'll move to the 20ga as he gets ready. He'll move to taking birds on the wing when he gets ready. He could also care less that his first duck was on the water, as it decoyed and landed just like it's s'posed to. He's been on several trips where that opportunity never presented itself within his range/accuracy limitations. He learned patience and judgement from that. He'll learn that taking them on the wing is the true essence of the sport, but he'll be hooked long enough to figure that out. :biggrin:

Some folks may want to subject young kids to 20 gauges or want to wait until a kid is old enough and big enough to handle amost 20 gauges. That's fine. SOme kids, it's probably best. I have one that that'll likely be the case. However, I'd rather properly teach them how to use that .410 in a hunting environment and enjoy their time with it.

The Bismuth 4, 5, and 6 shot .410 loads are deadly to 25 yards, if well placed. Too bad they're no longer made....Hevishot classic doubles in .410 is it for now. :biggrin:
 

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Dang! I was brought up on a 410 from 7-12 yrs old, then promoted to a 20 gage SxS. It ruined me for life. I haven't missed being in a blind since 1932. Killed a lot of wood ducks with it. I still have both guns and they are in excellent shape. Ned S the young 79 yr old who is snockering ducks and geese with 7/8 oz loads at 1724 fps.
 

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My first shotgun was a 20 gauge when I was 9 years old. I don't know how old your boy is, but when I got it I couldn't have weighed more than 80 pounds. You can find alot more ammo for a 20 gauge than a .410 and you boy will want to move up from a .410 to a 20 gauge one day, then he'll want to go from that to a 12 gauge. Save some money for you and him and start him with a 20. It's a pain to buy .410 shell because quite a few places sell them under the counter because they can me used in some pistols. I'd recommend the 20 anyday, it's a great all around round and it doesn't kick to bad. Of course any kids first gun will kick bad to him and leave them a nice bruise, but that just gives his daddy something to brag about and something for him to show off to his buddies.
 

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Bring your Kid Duck Hunting on some Creeks........410 will kill a duck easy within 20 yards......And yes they make steel shot for 410's..........I have a 410 pump.......And some afternoons when i get off work i like to walk the creek behind my house and shoot a couple wood ducks with it........Its light, and queit........These people making these judgements have never tried a 410 on a duck.........Dont bring it out to a blind and hunt, but for creeks they will work great
 

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I don't know of any factory steel shot loads for a .410. The only non-tox load I know of currently in production is the Hevishot Classic Doubles load. :biggrin:
 

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I started my son on a .410 at 6 years old and he has killed squirrells and quite a few clay pigieons. This year at 9 years old he saved up and bought a berreta 391 20 guage, the recoil is still a little much so i have been buying fiochi trainer loads wich are very soft shooting. My opinion is to go small at first and avoid the recoil prevent a flinch and teach him to get the ducks inside of twenty yards, that is more important in the long run then killing a bunch of birds anyway. When he outgroes the .410 it will still be a great rabbit, squirrell and plinking gun for the rest of his life, I've had mine for 25 years and still shoot it every year.
 

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I cut my shotgunning teeth on a 12 ga at the rip old age of 8. I'm not saying that is for everyone, but you use what you got on hand and can afford. .410 is in my oppion a little small for ducks. Not because of the power, just too little shot to fill the gaps in the pattern at more than 15 - 20 yards.

It doesn't matter what size gun you shoot, #4 shot from a 10 ga has the same power/velocity as #4 shot from .410 the only difference being amount of shot. They will travel the same distance, but at 40 yards the 10 ga will have a higher shot density in the test pattern than the .410.
 
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