How to kill a 'chuck with a .22 RF? - Graybeard Outdoors
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-28-2019, 12:13 PM Thread Starter
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Default How to kill a 'chuck with a .22 RF?

This may sound like a strange question but...How do you kill a woodchuck? Specifically, where do you hit them for a quick kill with a low-noise 22 LR?


In the past, I've always got one-shot quick kills with 22 center fires but these are not an option for me now in many cases. I have to shoot in areas where people complain of gunshots, therefore suppressed subsonic or low-noise 22's are the only option. Ranges are now typically 20 to 35 yards.


Last year I shot several chucks and I thought that head-shots would be the best option as opposed to going for heart/lung shots. I guess they have small brains because none of my head shots were one-shot kills, with the animals requiring several more shots to finish them while they thrashed around dragging their heads all over the ground smearing blood...not a desirable situation. I don't like to create suffering.


To make a long story short, I cannot loose a wounded animal and I need to do the job while attracting as little attention as possible. Advice?
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-28-2019, 12:35 PM
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I'd go with an accurate head shot or two with expanding bullets. Depending on your state, a suppressor would be a good thing to have.
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-28-2019, 12:52 PM
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use a bow
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-28-2019, 01:51 PM
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Don't go for just a head shot, go for a specific area of the head.
In the ear hole or just behind the ear for a side shot.
The base of the skull for a rear shot.
From the front,a line between the eyes if he's on all fours, or right up his nose if he's upright.

And use a rifle that's capable of hitting those small targets, and use hollow points.
Groundhog hunting was my favorite sport when I lived in Illinois, and I only used a .22lr

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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-29-2019, 10:46 AM
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Hmm, never had one move after a hit to the cranium with a Remington Subsonic .22lr. Well, except for them hoisting their tail in the surrender quiver.

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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-11-2019, 05:56 PM
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#1). If you can find a Remington model 550 semi automatic rifle, WITH a clean power piston, [Please don't complain if you find one that has not been properly cleaned since Ike was in the White House and they stopped making them, it will not work until cleaned! I believe the schematic is available thru Browenells. I would dry lube the piston. Graphite is the oldest. The micas are also options. And now the dry silicons??] It will semi automatic with .22 CB caps. (Short case, not long.) At least mine will. This is less noise than my pellet gun, --very old Benjamin. I am entirely in favor of very careful head shots into the brain. I had a sniper tell me he always aimed for the mouth. Bullet will got thru the "brain stem" and it is "lights out." Otherwise, you can put multiples into the body. .22 Short bullet, less power but enough ventilation and it is over very quickly/ very soon. Regrettably these guns were being made as the "tip off" grooves were coming in and not all have them. Red dot or green dot would be handy. I think barrels were 22 inches.
#2). I was shocked the first time I fired "standard velocity" long rifle in a target rifle. Barrel was 22 or 24 inches. Again, about the same noise as my pump up BB gun. I would fire without discomfort indoors without hearing protection. Again, somewhat less power than "high velocity" but it is much more bullet placement. If you read and compare the ads, these low velocity loads are just the old "standard velocity" loads of yesteryear. Get a gun with more than 18 inches of barrel and the pressure is down a bit, yes you lose a bit of performance, again, bullet placement. I never have experimented with the "target pistol" loads. May burn out even faster and make less noise in a rifle.
#3). Executions. Thru history there have been those who seek suffering. Eg. Burning for max suffering. Then there were the "lights out" crowd. "Hanging" with the drop was developed in Fort Smith, AK as i understand. Body weight dislocates the neck, damages the spine, and it is over. Old man Keith wrote of a woodsman in his area, Idaho/MT that would shoot his "deer for meat" in the back of the head where the spine joins the skull with a .22 rimfire hot rod of the day. 45 grain bullet. Then he got to butchering. If you can locate this area and put any projectile more than a BB from a Daisy... Should get the job done. Wildest story were the mighty men of the orient who would hunt tigers... Perch above, like a cat, drop on the tiger, and try to break neck/spine with a "karate chop." Not for me... As suggested the bow and arrow is a great option. Then the crossbows. And if you look, you can find sling shots with rubber bands and an "arrow rest" so you can shoot arrows. Put a broad head, sharpened of course, thru the mid section and it won't be long and flopping will be very limited. Luck. Happy Trails.
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-11-2019, 07:27 PM
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Bottom line is this. Groundhogs have weak, vunerable heads. When I first started shooting woodchucks many, many years ago I only had a Marlin Model 60, but it would put 10 on a dime at 50 yds.

Body hits just sent the rodents down the hole, but hitting them in the head, from the ears up guarenteed an anchored critter. Closer is better.

Hope this helped.
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-14-2019, 10:23 PM
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A friend of mine has a raccoon problem and he shoots a lot of them. He uses a scoped 22 and shoots mostly CCI shorts and takes only head shots. The brain shot will do in any chuck at the ranges you are shooting.

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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-14-2019, 11:40 PM
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I remember having a pretty good deal on some winchester wildcat hollow points on sale at the local hardware store waay back in the mid-1980's
I used them for hunting racoon.
One night the hounds were hot on some coon and treed them in a great big ole cottonwood tree next to a shelterbelt of trees.
Three winter prime racoon way up in the tree (chrustmas tree we called it) the eyes gleamed and blinked like christmas tree lights, my younger brother and his school chum used semi-autos to try and knock the coons down but they learned using the spray and pray method of hunting and didnt have any luck dropping anything.
After they both ran out of cartridges, all that was left was the cartridges I had in my pocket (.34 gr wildcat hollow points on sale specials)
I used my Marlin Glenfield model 110 single shot to pick the three out of the upper branches.
All were head shots.
The coon dropped right out.
It was later on we loaded the coon in the truck and headed home with the dogs.
Funny thing was a about 4 miles down the track the dogs in back started kicking up a fuss.
Those hollow points just slpattered on the coon skull's knocking them out and we had 3 groggy raccon milking around in the pickup truck box.
Those hollow points never entered the brain pan, they splattered on the skull knocking the coons out.
Use 40 gr std velocity for peneitration and low noise.

That was happeded way back then.

So today you could have quite an arsenal in your favor.
Id pick up any and all types of CB, BB rimfires, std velocity short, high velocity short, .22 long std velocity and long rifle as well as high velocity LR and see how they penetrate a block of green firewood at various ranges.
Maybe pick up a couple air rifles.
Like a mid price .177 cal break barrel and an assortment of pellets.
I can tell you will need to be close and have power to get a .177 wadcutter pellet to penetrate anything, dome would be little better.
For a killing type air rifle pellet your going to have to have a spire tip type if you want penetration.
You could invest in a upper mid price .22cal or bigger air rifle .25cal as well.
Test them at different ranges.
Too far out the velocity bleeds off enough you wont get the penetration your looking for.
So know the type bullet your slinging.
And its effective range.
Just because you can hit a target at long rang does not mean you can kill it.
And what does all that long winded stuff I just said mean?
Spend some time shooting real critters at various ranges.
You will learn what works and what wont work for you.
Might invest in some good quality optics.

Thats just my 2 cents on wounding and stunning furry critters that dont like being killed.
Imagine a bad shot knocks a eye out and it escapes, but it will never end up in a sympathetic persons yard it will go straight to the community blabber mouth bunny hugger neighbors yard and lays there looking as near death as possible gasping its last in front of their back back patio door.
You can bet bunny hugger is gonna raise a stink n call cops the game warden and the 6 O-clock news, tweet to everyone who will listen and facebook all about it in graphic detail.

And why would I say all that?
Well I know a certain pair of fellows that had to do a little jail time for something like that.
In Northeastern Nebraska.

These fellows have some serious jingle invested in nv optics.

A good way to hone your skills?
https://youtu.be/54DrQLwgvpg

https://youtu.be/C7ZDZTv2ZU0

Last edited by Rex in OTZ; 06-15-2019 at 12:38 AM.
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-15-2019, 04:43 AM
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While this isn't what you're asking about... Low velocity cast bullet loads out of a rifle with a 22" or longer barrel can be quieter than .22 rim fire and pack more punch.



Like a round ball load out of a .45-70 with around 4 grains of Red Dot... I have a Lee mold that's for a .32 pistol but I shoot them out of my .300 blackout with 2 to 3 grains of Red Dot. Also very quiet and more punch than a .22 rim fire.


If you can get one shot kills and don't shoot all the time, it'll be hard for neighbors to know it's not an occasional car backfire...


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