Author: Richard Bogath is an NRA certified firearms instructor, certified hunter instructor, youth league pistol coach, professional hunting guide, published author, writer for several online publications, blogger, lecturer and proud dad.
November 12th, 2014
You’ve got one of the best high-power predator killing rifles that money can buy.
Your mounted scope allows you to zero-in on a fox’s canine tooth at four hundred yards.
You’ve been practicing spectacular move-and-shoot techniques out to a thousand yards.
You’re gonna get yourself a predator this year if it kills you.
All set up on your stand, rifle ready and willing, calling out and shining your CoyoteLight…
Four minutes later, the fox/coyote/bobcat bursts out of the woods at seventy feet—and you can’t see a thing through the scope because it’s just too damn close.
Bet you wish you had brought out that old grungy shotgun that Grandpa passed down to you a few years back, huh?
Truthfully, a shotgun—any shotgun—can be a predator hunters best friend and should be strongly considered for any hunt with possible close-in encounters. Yes, maybe you’ve got a set of angled iron sights on your AR setup that can help you with a closer shot, but nothing like a shotgun can give you a spread pattern of predator-specific-designed shot that can take down your prey with even marginal aiming skills and less-than-ideal trigger control.
Predator hunting can happen fast and close up just as easily as it can occur tediously slow and from across a field. I always bring the shotgun with me (yes, your 1967 Remington 870 pump is just fine) with a couple of nice tungsten-alloy based shot material. For me it’s as simple as dropping the bolt-action .243 (equipped with a bi-pod, I prefer to not think of myself as stupid) and grab the shotgun laying on the ground next to me with a dry condom over the muzzle to prevent any dirt or snow from getting inside. Yes, i’m completely serious. Pick up the scatter-gun and shoot right through the condom to take out the running coyote or scampering fox.
Of course, equally acceptable would be that your buddy has the shotgun and you agree in advance that depending on distance, one or the other of you will take the shot. Limitations of the shotguns range will dictate—but I like to be safe at 50 yards or closer for the shotgun blast.
Don’t forget your old friend, the shotgun for your next predator hunt. She might be your new best friend when things are up-close and personal.