Has anyone used 20ga slugs on deer

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Has anyone used 20ga slugs on deer

Postby berudd » Tue Oct 19, 2010 3:47 pm

I'm looking for some first hand experience with 20ga slugs on deer. I've read the info and the ballistics and now I'd just like to hear from those of you that have used it or perhaps been on a hunt where someone used it to hear how it performs in the real world.

I'm thinking of getting my son a 20ga for his first gun and thinking the Mossberg 500 Super Bantum looks pretty good. We are not allowed by law to hunt with a rifle from the ground so a slug seems a good option. I may just get one anyway because it would also be great for dove and ducks as well. My question center on effectiveness on deer (and in NC they ain't huge) and recoil. He's a tough kid but I don't want to give him something that will beat the joy of shooting out of him.

So, who has used them and what are your thoughts?


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RE: Has anyone used 20ga slugs on deer

Postby willseyville » Tue Oct 19, 2010 7:33 pm

bruce i been shooting a mossberg bantum for the last 5 years .i bought it for turkey hunting but i loved how light it was that i got a slug barrel for it for shells i use remington buck hammers  as long as you keep your shots around 80 yards one shot kills are no problem[:)] wayne

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RE: Has anyone used 20ga slugs on deer

Postby Proline » Tue Oct 19, 2010 11:33 pm

The 20 gauge is more than adequate.  I bought my son the Remington 870 youth model with rifled barrel. I use it much as he does especially when still hunting. It is short and light and comes up quick. Taken deer with it with no problem.  Find a load that shoots well out of it and you'll like it. My next gun will be scoped 20.  The older I get the heavy the 12 is. Oh yeah, My cousin started both his boys out with the Mossberg you are looking at and had no problems with them.

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RE: Has anyone used 20ga slugs on deer

Postby Patriot » Wed Oct 20, 2010 1:41 am

I started off with a 20ga Mossberg as well for my first few years of hunting (Wisconsin).  Kills 'em just as dead as a 12ga.
Paul K. "aim small, miss small"

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RE: Has anyone used 20ga slugs on deer

Postby retiredsailor » Wed Oct 20, 2010 5:11 am

Many years ago, I bought an old Sears 16 guage pump from my dad (he didn't give guns away........but would offer them for a good price.) While on active military duty, hunted several years on a military reservation where one had to use shotgun with slugs. That old smoothbore 16 guage would kill 'em dead, but not much good beyond 50 yards or so. Accuracy was the primary drawback. Probably should have invested in a rifled barrel, but after moving to another state where I could use high powered rifles, haven't touched that ole 16 for several years, other than to clean it regularly and enjoy the feel of handling it. Still a good rabbit, bird, squirrel gun, and expect I'll leave it to one of my sons or grandsons at some point.
Whatever you go with, the rifled barrel would certainly be a very wise investment.
It isn't what happens to us, it is how we deal with it, that matters most.

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RE: Has anyone used 20ga slugs on deer

Postby BearSnot » Thu Jan 27, 2011 7:11 pm

I own a 12 ga. Mossberg 500 with a rifled barrel and rifle sights. I used that gun to hunt deer for 3 years and ended-up buying a 12 ga. H&R Ultra Slug because the Mossberg couldn't group worth a damn beyond 75 yds. I keep the mossberg for home defense now. As for 20 ga. for deer I believe that at 125 yds or less, 20 ga. should do the job but if you will ever take shots beyond that range, go with 12 Ga. During my last sight-in trip to our local range, my 12 ga. H&R Ultra Slug was shooting 2 1/2 inch groups at 150 yds from a sandbagged benchrest. My Ultra Slug prefers Federal Hydra Shok slugs and I killed a nice 9 point last year at a ranged 156 yds. That buck dropped where he stood . . . . he didn't even move an inch. Now I believe in killing deer humanely and because of my own personal shooting abilities, limit my shots to 150 yds or less but I have a friend who has killed deer cleanly at 215 yds . . . of course, he is 27 years old with eyes that are the same age and I am 64 years old with eyes that have seen better days. A 12 ga. slug will kill deer cleanly at distances in excess of 200 yds but I believe that anything beyond 125 yds is really pushing the knockdown power of a 20 ga. Oh, it may kill the deer at 175 yds but how cleanly and humanely is the question.

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RE: Has anyone used 20ga slugs on deer

Postby JFry1969 » Thu Jan 27, 2011 10:40 pm

A couple of years ago I bought a 20ga H&R ultra slug. It was reasonably priced (new $250). I went with a 20ga instead of a 12ga because of the weight diff. I use Hornady SST's and absolutly love them. The only thing I dont like about them is they dont leave a blood trail like you would think they would. Ive killed several deer with this gun, all does, and none of them have went more than 50yds. The closest shot was 40 something yds and the farthest was 153 steps, I dont have a rangefinder but Im 6'4 so pretty close to yds. The latter dropped dead where she stood, center punched both lungs. I believe good optics make the gun and practice, practice, practice. If your going to get it for your kid then a 20ga is a good choice but like Clint Eastwood said" A man has to know his limitations" especially with his weapon of choice in order to make a clean kill. Good Luck!!

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