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#3210126 - 08/15/19 05:12 AM 204 w/35 berger vs coyote
Spidicus Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/04/18
Posts: 45
Loc: Nevada
Finally got my first shot on a coyote with my 204 shooting factory hsm 35 Berger's. The coyote was facing me head on at about 80 yards I aimed at the center of the chest. The coyote ran after the shot and not recovered. The aim was a little higher on the chest.
Any thoughts from members who shoot 204 with 35 bergers??
The shot was right above alot of sage I suppose its possible that the bullet hit some sage twigs before impact. I did not see any blood where the coyote was standing when shot at. This was at night in the desert under red light.

I dont think it was a miss since this rifle will shoot 1.25 groups at 200 yards..and I shot a small Jack in the heart at 75 yards on the stand right before this coyote stand.


Edited by Spidicus (08/15/19 05:18 AM)
_________________________
Predator Rifles:
Ruger American .22WMR
T/C .204
Dtech AR15 .223

Shots/Kills this season
Coyote:0/0
Fox: 0/0
Ringtail cat 0/0
Bobcat: 0/0
Reset new season 11/1

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#3210128 - 08/15/19 07:40 AM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: Spidicus]
obaro Online
Die Hard Member II

Registered: 09/14/04
Posts: 1429
Loc: Monument kansas
With the details you have given I would guess you got it right in thinking maybe you clipped some sage. I have had really good luck with that bullet in my 20Practical, every shot I have had at that angle was DRT.

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#3210140 - 08/15/19 09:44 AM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: Spidicus]
jetman Offline
Die Hard Member II

Registered: 01/07/11
Posts: 1233
Loc: almost Canada
Dead on shots can be challenging.
Excitement being a huge factor.
There is a LOT of coyote that is NOT a fatal shot.
An inch either way and its just all fur and shoulders, no blood for a long time. A little high and your in to the head a horrible target to get a kill shot. If your sighted in at 200 yards you will be slightly high at 80 and the height of your scope is still in play they close too. A piece of brush is probably the culprit but other things could happen too.
IN MY MIND
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#3210146 - 08/15/19 11:13 AM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: Spidicus]
tawnoper Offline
Die Hard Member

Registered: 02/24/03
Posts: 560
Loc: West coast
My favorite shots on called coyotes is straight on, they usually drop on the spot. Shot quite a few with 35gr Berger. Very frangible bullet but will do the job. If you even slightly clipped a sage, the bullet will not make it to the target.

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#3210151 - 08/15/19 12:20 PM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: Spidicus]
Utahcaller Offline
Die Hard Member

Registered: 04/06/05
Posts: 552
Loc: UT
Never had any problems killing Coyotes with the 35 grain Bergers and the .204 Ruger. By far my favorite bullet with this cartridge. Kills them very well out to 300 yards....

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#3210176 - 08/15/19 07:31 PM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: Spidicus]
derbyacresbob Online
Die Hard Member with a vengeance

Registered: 04/05/07
Posts: 4271
Loc: Kern County, CA
Have you shot that rifle at paper since that coyote got away?

I almost always shoot my rifles at paper after I miss a coyote or the coyote gets away. 99% of the time the rifle is still right on. If your rifle is still shooting great then you have your confidence back and you should have no negative thoughts as you are squeezing the trigger on the next coyote.
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#3210215 - 08/16/19 09:42 AM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: Spidicus]
songdog Offline
Die Hard Member III

Registered: 10/10/01
Posts: 3231
Loc: Elizabeth.Colo.
one thing for sure is the bullet didn't hit where you intended, because if it had the coyote wouldn't take a step. In other words, the arrow is not to blame, the indian is.
The 35 gr. Berger is a popular bullet and for good reason. It performs well on coyotes.


Edited by songdog (08/16/19 09:44 AM)
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Calling coyotes is easy. Killing them is slightly harder.

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#3210218 - 08/16/19 10:22 AM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: Spidicus]
Tim Neitzke Offline
Moderator

Registered: 02/04/04
Posts: 15726
Loc: Michigan
Miss....
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#3210231 - 08/16/19 12:46 PM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: Tim Neitzke]
Softpoint Online
Seasoned Member

Registered: 02/24/16
Posts: 126
Loc: Washington
I hit a coyote with a 35g Hornet SP bullet dead on in the chest. It ran off as it must of splashed.


It wasn't a miss unless falling on the ground with all 4 sticking straight up and quivering is a new tactic by coyotes.


This is why I'm sticking to 55gn bullets or better out of a 223. Little fur damage and very few run offs. (Can't remember the last run off?)

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#3210244 - 08/16/19 03:25 PM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: Spidicus]
Utahcaller Offline
Die Hard Member

Registered: 04/06/05
Posts: 552
Loc: UT
Iíve killed enough Coyote with 25,30,and 35 grain bullets in 17 cal and 20 cal to know that they do a great job of killing Coyotes out to 300 yards. But thatís at 4000 fps. Not 35 grain Hornet bullets at 3000 fps.... Big difference......

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#3210261 - 08/16/19 08:34 PM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: Spidicus]
SnowmanMo Offline
Director/Moderator

Registered: 09/23/08
Posts: 3248
Loc: Phoenix, Az
Originally Posted By: Spidicus
Finally got my first shot on a coyote with my 204 shooting factory hsm 35 Berger's. The coyote was facing me head on at about 80 yards I aimed at the center of the chest. The coyote ran after the shot and not recovered. The aim was a little higher on the chest.
Any thoughts from members who shoot 204 with 35 bergers??
The shot was right above alot of sage I suppose its possible that the bullet hit some sage twigs before impact. I did not see any blood where the coyote was standing when shot at. This was at night in the desert under red light.

I dont think it was a miss since this rifle will shoot 1.25 groups at 200 yards..and I shot a small Jack in the heart at 75 yards on the stand right before this coyote stand.


I am not surprised. Could it have been a miss? Absolutely. Might have been just good old coyote fever. It would depend on the coyote's reaction to the shot that would tell me if it was a hit or a miss.

But I can tell you, from personal experience, that a high dead on chest hit, with a light bullet, can get runners. Myself and AzBushman ran into this very same thing a few years back with Hornady 32gr Vmax factory loads. I personally saw him shot several coyotes, smack dab in the high center chest, and they turned and ran. Some dropped, while others got away. Many of them nipped at their hind quarters, which seemed odd. One in particular came in, 50 yards out, dead on, SCHWACK! High dead center hit. Coyote turned towards it's flank, spun and ran. Luckily I had it covered with my shotgun and straffed him, putting him down. Now when we looked at the coyote, there was no hind end hit. So why were they turning like they were being hit in the hind quarter? We surmise that the bullet was passing over or through the vitals and expanding late into the gut. Many coyotes turn towards the area of pain and nip at it, so we think that this is what was happening. Of course, none of the coyotes shot would stand for an interview, so am I 100% sure? Nope. But I can tell you that when we switched to a 45gr SP bullet, our runners stopped. We have had DRT's ever since. So I am going to stick with the 45gr bullet myself.
_________________________


Mama always said, coyotes are like a box of chocolates...



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#3210263 - 08/16/19 08:50 PM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: Spidicus]
000shock Offline
Seasoned Member

Registered: 01/14/17
Posts: 114
Loc: Dickinson, ND
I was going to bring up the 45g softpoints also. Ive talked to some guys that call with 204ís and they load a vmax or sbk in the chamber and follow up shots are spís. First shot can usually be well placed, while follow ups or trying for the double are on the run and more likely to hit bone. Ballistic tips splash, softpoints smash!

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#3210264 - 08/16/19 08:59 PM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: Spidicus]
songdog Offline
Die Hard Member III

Registered: 10/10/01
Posts: 3231
Loc: Elizabeth.Colo.
OK, if Ballistic tips splash and softpoints smash, what does a hollow point do, because that's what the bergers are.
Funny how lots of guys have great success with a bullet and others can't kill a rat with the same bullet.
_________________________
Calling coyotes is easy. Killing them is slightly harder.

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#3210265 - 08/16/19 09:06 PM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: Spidicus]
Utahcaller Offline
Die Hard Member

Registered: 04/06/05
Posts: 552
Loc: UT
Have shot Coyotes with the 45 grain soft points too. They anchor them very well too. But from my experience they donít kill any better than the 35 grain Bergers. Iíve never had a problem with runners with the 35ís at least no more so than any other .22 and smaller caliber. Most of the runners were shot placement, not bullet performance.


Edited by Utahcaller (08/16/19 09:07 PM)

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#3210266 - 08/16/19 09:25 PM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: Spidicus]
capitol Offline
Seasoned Member

Registered: 09/03/04
Posts: 493
Loc: U.S.A.
I started using 204 for Coyotes in 2005. I called in and shot several and a pattern started to show itself. *Splash Hits*

At first the HUGE holes were cool and I liked it, but soon I realized what was happening.

The 39gr SBK were hitting the Coyote and just exploding. I have pix but it's unnecessary.

After I got tired of the splash, shoot again and hope it stops running saga I switched to .243 55gr Nosler bullets.

I load them just under 4000 fps and WOW what a difference. NO Coyote runs away! Once hit they are anchored to the ground and most are DRT.

My two .204 Ruger rifles are now squirrel guns and they are AWESOME in this roll.
_________________________
I worked all week, it's Saturday and I wanna kill something - Byron South

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#3210307 - 08/17/19 09:34 PM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: Spidicus]
ibschmidty Offline
Die Hard Member

Registered: 12/07/07
Posts: 559
Loc: Down wind
I really love the 32gr blitzkings out of my 20 Practical. I am going to slow it down a bit though. I had two runners last year from shots but I'm pretty sure it was my shot placement rather than the bullet.
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Guns only have two enemies: rust, and politicians.




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#3210373 - 08/18/19 06:02 PM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: Spidicus]
BangPop Offline
Die Hard Member

Registered: 11/05/10
Posts: 566
Loc: USA and Proud Of It
I used the 35 Berger in my 20x223 improved for a year and a half and stopped because of inconsistent performance. Some of them just melted to the ground without a drop of blood and others, hit right where they should have been, had splashes with HUGE holes and a second shot to seal the deal. I never knew what the next shot was going to do. YMMV.

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#3210375 - 08/18/19 06:18 PM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: songdog]
243kimber Offline
Die Hard Member

Registered: 08/14/09
Posts: 747
Loc: madison county illinois
What you said happened to me, several times. From the 70 grain Nosler ballistic tip in 243 win, to the Sierra 85 gr HPBT, to the Berger 88 varmint. One power said you need at least 10 experiences of hits to properly make a proper decision on a bullet's performance. I guess I just gave up too quickly after having run-offs, or not DRT's.
Im now taking capitol's advise. I built a 6-284 that sends a 55 gr bal tip @ 4320 fps. Haven't hunted with it yet. Just putting the finishing touches on it now. I have used the 55 bal tip @ 4000+ in the past, and they were all, DRT's. Being a reloading junkie, i wanted to experiment a little and try LR for a change.
I will be trying to save some fur, so I might have to poke around a bit with some other bullet designs. I bought a boat load of different light 6mm bullets. Im keeping a close eye on my round count. I know @ these speeds it's a barrel burner, but for now, I just want them dead, after having all of the run-offs over the last several seasons.
The 69 Bergers will be my next go-to. The combination of BC's and flat shooting trajectory is really where the sweet spot looks to be.
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God Is Not Great. by Christopher Hitchens.
Sam Harris at Notre Dame. 'Morality and The Christian God'.
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#3210377 - 08/18/19 06:58 PM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: Spidicus]
Ducksoup Offline
Die Hard Member II

Registered: 11/20/03
Posts: 1416
Loc: Tacoma, Washington
I'm guessing miss. I've shot several coyotes with the 35 grain Bergers and they've always dropped in their tracks when shot in the chest facing me. On one occasion i had a small female come into my calls about 75 yards away and below my location. I barked and stopped her and placed the crosshairs right on her chest. She dropped instantly, no big surprise. The surprise was I noticed the entry wound was about the size of the end of my thumb which really had me curious as to why such a large entrance wound? I found the answer later when i was dragging her out i noticed blood coming from her chin. Apparently just as i shot she lowered her head and that 35 grain Berger hit right on the point of her chin, exited a couple inches under her chin and then re entered in her chest. The bullet had expanded about double in size but it still did it's job on that coyote. I shoot Bergers almost exclusively out of my main ]coyote rifles. The .17 Remington, my .204 and my 22-250 and none have ever let me down!

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#3210379 - 08/18/19 07:18 PM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: Spidicus]
BOBTAILS Offline
PM senior

Registered: 03/28/05
Posts: 8976
Loc: behind the crosshairs
Switch to 32 grain blitzkings and youíll never look back!
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Guns have ony 2 emenies- Rust and Politicians.

Wolves don't lose sleep, over the opinion's of sheep.


Carver Predator calls Prostaffer, Made in the USA!!
www.carverpredatorcalls.com





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#3210390 - 08/18/19 10:36 PM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: Spidicus]
Coyotejunki Offline
Die Hard Member with a vengeance

Registered: 04/03/04
Posts: 4769
Loc: MO
Originally Posted By: Spidicus
Finally got my first shot on a coyote with my 204 shooting factory hsm 35 Berger's. The coyote was facing me head on at about 80 yards I aimed at the center of the chest.


You made a bad shot. Either missed, or hit the shoulder. Sage could have messed it up.
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#3210415 - 08/19/19 11:55 AM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: Coyotejunki]
tawnoper Offline
Die Hard Member

Registered: 02/24/03
Posts: 560
Loc: West coast
Originally Posted By: Coyotejunki

You made a bad shot. Either missed, or hit the shoulder. Sage could have messed it up.


Yup. This right here ^

I'm the first to say, never say never, cause just about anything can happen, but that straight on 80 yard shot on a coyote, hit dead center in the chest is probably the lowest percentage run off shot you'll get. They usually dont move, they tip over. If you hit a shoulder, different story.

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#3210419 - 08/19/19 12:55 PM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: Spidicus]
Utahcaller Offline
Die Hard Member

Registered: 04/06/05
Posts: 552
Loc: UT
From what Iíve seen shooting both the .204 Ruger and the 35 grain Bergers over the last 15 years, they perform about the same way the old Berger 25 grain Match did in both my 17 Remington and 17 Tactical. With the exception of alittle bigger hole and an exit now and again. But they die the same way....

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#3210427 - 08/19/19 03:16 PM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: songdog]
000shock Offline
Seasoned Member

Registered: 01/14/17
Posts: 114
Loc: Dickinson, ND
Originally Posted By: songdog
OK, if Ballistic tips splash and softpoints smash, what does a hollow point do, because that's what the bergers are.
Funny how lots of guys have great success with a bullet and others can't kill a rat with the same bullet.

Only reason i didnt address the hollow points is because i havent done anything with them yet myself. I dont reload yet, and check for the hsm ammo everywhere i go into but no luck. When i find some, i plan on getting 35 and 40 grainers because they are so successful. I have had 32g vmax get straight to vitals with one shot and splash on another on the same coyote. Not sure if first or second shot splashed, but one of the two sure did. Ive never heard anyone claim they have had a splash with a 45g sp. The cattle bone that i shot with one punched clean thru, and im confident would do the same on a yote.

If someone is struggling with killing a rat with any bullet, get a .22 pellet rifle. Mine hasnt let me down yet on anything up to skunks.

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#3210775 - 08/24/19 10:48 AM Re: 204 w/35 berger vs coyote [Re: Spidicus]
zr600 Offline
Die Hard Member II

Registered: 02/21/14
Posts: 1322
Loc: North dakota
Proably just a clean miss. It happens we get excited or human error, unfortunately we are not perfect and can pull a shot or not notice that branch thatís in the way. I shoot a coyote with my 22-250 and 65g seirra gameking bullet known to be a tough bullet, anyways I miss judged the distance hit low and must have pulled the shot or anyways it landed to the right and low. Found the coyote it was anchored but not dead. The shot hit entered on the right shoulder low and exited by his private parts. So it missed the vitals or scrapped them and the guts was lots of blood he would have died just would have been slow and painful so a second shot put him out of his misery.

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