Air Rifle - Pest Control (Rabbit)

#1
Hi All,

There is a probability I may be opening myself to some ridicule and abuse here but I'm going to ask anyway.

I have about 5 acres of land which at present is being over run by bugs bunny and his million relatives.

I've been thinking about shooting as an option to try and reduce numbers, I'm not thrilled at the idea of a lengthy licensing process (due to the fact I'd probably not get an Fire arms cert as officially I'm not res in the UK 90 days due to tax) so have been thinking about air rifles.

I have established (google is my friend) up to 12 ft lb is legal without a cert and I believe up to .22 but all the websites I've visited specifically seem to focus on the power rather than calibre.

I've arranged a visit to a local gun supplier next week for a "chat" but don't want to go in there blind and end up being sold something that won’t do the job and looking like a mug in the process. So putting aside my ability to actually shoot the thing and the ethics of cruelty from the pc brigade, I have a number of questions that I hope someone with more knowledge than me can can answer;

1) (most important) is an air rifle suitable for this kind of use
2) If it is what sort of range are we talking about – Eg How close would I need to get to ensure a relativly clean (read without casuing undue suffering) kill

I should point out from what I’ve read I meet the requirments of the law using it on my own land.

3) I realise this is how long is a piece of string but any advice on model or price ? something mid range, I don’t want something that will fall apart the first day ?
4) Type of shot ? I didn’t even realise until today there are different types of pellets
5) Anything else I should have thought of ? or any other advice ?

Many thanks in advance, and I realise I sound like a walt but hey, I’ve got to start somewhere and ask the question….

Best Wishes

Ian
 
#2
Glossing over all your questions mate, Where do you live? Can I come and shoot them for you?
 

The_Duke

LE
Moderator
#3
Air rifle is fine for this, up to around 30 yards depending on your accuracy, power of rifle, consistency etc. In real terms, it is as far as you CAn coNsistently place a head shot (around the size of a 10p piece).

I used to use a pre-charged pneumatic with Crossman pellets in .22 calibre. Some prefer .177 for the flatter trajectory, so as ever there is a lot of personal preference involved.

Which rifle I will leave to others who are more up to date, but whichever you chose, try a selection of simple round nosed pelLets to see which the rifle fires best with. The shape gives stable flight, but also enough "impact" to do the business.
 
#4
There's a bit of information on pellets LINK

also the Air Gun forum is good
Airgun link

I use a .22 underlever for rabbit & squirrels and find that 25 to 30 yards is about right for a 12ft/lbs airgun.

edit: spelling as usual
 
#5
Try the company pellet in the company rifle.

The old webly Vulcan was rated at 12 ftlb s firing Webly pellets.

Other manufacturers pellets were - different :D

Buy some Ballistic putty and stick it in an old baccy tin and fire a few different types to see the pest /optimum penetration depth.
 
#6
Christ - That was quick !

And thanks.

Commzmeanzbomz - Co. Durham.

Others, thanks for the links and the info. Surprised at the range of 30 yards. Starting to think this might actually be a workable idea.

Think if I go for this, some target practice sans bugsy may be in order

Cheers
 
#7
Gutted Mate, bit too far for me! Have fun though, bunny shooting is fantastic fun and they taste great too!
 
#8
I bought a .22 Webley when I was a kid, but the farmer's boys swore blind that the .177 was better, even if you typically had slightly fewer ft lbs - no manufacturer (I think) makes a different chamber/spring for the .177 to take account of the lower ability of the smaller base to turn pressure into velocity.
 
#9
I do a fair bit of bunny bashing for the other halfs parents on their land it's great fun and a cracking way to stock up the freezer :)

I use a Air Arms Tx200 Mk2 12ft/lb in .22 with a bushnell 3-9x40 mil dot scope it's a cracking combo for the range I usually shoot at (about 25 to 30 yards) and if the pellet it perfectly placed then you get a nice clean kill.

As for type of pellet for the rifle you choose well it's all about trial and error. You can get selection packs of pellets that allow you to find out which pellet works best with your rifle without having to buy them 250/500 at a time.

Good luck and have fun

ND
 

Ravers

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#10
I've got a Webley Tomahawk .22 with a Webley silencer and scope which came with it as a package deal. I've had it since I was 16 and it is still going strong many years later despite never being serviced and very rarely cleaned. I've only ever had to zero it once, the day I got it and since then it has shot reliably and accurately, I use it mainly for crows and pigeons up to around 30 metres, but I have nailed bunnies with it in the past with no problems too.

It's a simple break barrel so there is no need for charging or air pumps or any other shite. You can just go out with a tin of pellets and the rifle and shoot indefinitely. It's a bit bulky and weighs a bit, but I quite like that and it definitely gives it the feeling of sturdiness, it's been dropped a few times and has lived a real harsh life but is still going strong. I can wholeheartedly recommend one of these if you can find one.

 

Ravers

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#11
I've been looking around and it appears the Tomahawk has been discontinued, however Webley have a rifle in their range called the Longbow which looks almost identicle it can be had for around £250 negative scope or silencer which is about what I paid for the Tomahawk.

In my opinion this is a serious bargain bearing in mind you are getting something that will last for years.
 
#12
I am also looking to purchase an air rifle to get back into shooting without the hassle of FAC etc.

I have recently purchased 'Airgun World Buyers Guide 09' from Smiths for £9-95, approx 100 pages of info on most type of air weapons, prices, calibres, purpose etc. (rifles from £100 to over £1000).

Worth popping into Smiths and having a look at before handing over cash to a dealer for a rifle.
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
#13
5 acres is big for an air rifle, to be honest its big for a rimfire. You dont have to be resident for tax purposes to have a UK fac, it just has to be kept at your normal UK address. Ex_Stab will confirm but you can shoot happily away with a .17 rimfire, put it away in your gunbox, alarm the house and go overseas for as long as you want as often as you want provided you dont breach the conditions of the ticket!
 
#14
The old adage used to be .22 for fur , .177 for feather.....

Flat headed pellets are considered to pass the most amount of shock into bunny, giving a better chance of clean kill.Pointed pellets run the risk of penetrating further and not killing Bugs outright.
Lotsof info around on net. BASC will have a lot of people on their books who will gladly come out for a bit of sport and reduce rabbits , others on here will know better the laws regarding how these things are done.
Weirauch have a good selection of robust, accurate rifles
http://www.airgun-hunting.co.uk/

http://www.basc.org.uk/

Some Good info here
 
#15
DB216LOKDVR said:
I am also looking to purchase an air rifle to get back into shooting without the hassle of FAC etc.

I have recently purchased 'Airgun World Buyers Guide 09' from Smiths for £9-95, approx 100 pages of info on most type of air weapons, prices, calibres, purpose etc. (rifles from £100 to over £1000).

Worth popping into Smiths and having a look at before handing over cash to a dealer for a rifle.
I was in WHsmiths this morning looking at that very mag. Very shiny stuff, got my slumbering kit tart aroused
 
#16
I used to shoot a lot of rabbits with air rifles. with a lot of practice you can take rabbits out to 50m if you have the skill to place a pelet in the head at that range. As some one already recomended your max range should be the range you can get 5 out of 5 pellets in a 10p coin. the one thing you need from the firle is that it is close to 12ftlbs wheather it is .22 or .177. I prefer the .177 for the flatter trajectory but that is just personal preferance. A pre charged pnumatic with a silencer will will be much more quiet than a silenced spring or gas ram air rifle. What ever you choose good luck.

Dave
 
#17
thegimp said:
DB216LOKDVR said:
I am also looking to purchase an air rifle to get back into shooting without the hassle of FAC etc.

I have recently purchased 'Airgun World Buyers Guide 09' from Smiths for £9-95, approx 100 pages of info on most type of air weapons, prices, calibres, purpose etc. (rifles from £100 to over £1000).

Worth popping into Smiths and having a look at before handing over cash to a dealer for a rifle.
I was in WHsmiths this morning looking at that very mag. Very shiny stuff, got my slumbering kit tart aroused
The problem with 'Airgun world' and 'Airgunner' magazines is that they rely on advertising, not copy sales. They never properly critique the kit. Everything is always 'super, smashing, great' like that Paul Whitehouse character from the Fast Show,'Brilliant'

GunMart and Shooting Sports are abit more sober and realistic, but the best advice is to be found on shooting forums.

Interesting point to note: Britain leads the world in Airgun Technology.
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
#18
Air arms are made around the corner from me, I used to do some of their range testing for them!
 
#20
The_RTG_Medic said:
3) I realise this is how long is a piece of string
You're not wrong there mate.

.177 or .22 - no hard or fast rules these days everyone has their own opinion as to which is best and why.

Think first about how much you want to spend as this may have an impact on what type of rifle you buy, PCP or Springer (including Gas Ram). Also bear in mind that you will want a decent scope as well.

As you will have seen PCP's tend to be more expensive. Not just the rifle but there is also the charging system - pump or bottle. But they are very accurate and in my opinion have the edge beyond 30 yards (cue springer fans!). Spring powered rifles can be got for less cash, are self contained and easier to maintain.

I bought myself an Air Arms S510 last year and have been bowled over by it. Deadly accurate and if I miss its my fault not the rifles. It may be a while before I go back to a springer.

If the gun shop that you are going to is any good then they will have a good stock of PCP's and springer's for you to try. Also ask away with any questions, again a good shop will be able to give you some good information.

Happy Shopping!!!

Regards,

Q.

PS - I am in the south of Durham if you want to have a look and a go of a PCP then feel free to PM me. I shall be back from the Lakes by next week.
 

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