Shot Size For Hungarian Partridge


Dear Technoid :

Size 7 1/2 shot is great for our little hungarian partridge at reasonable distance. What about the Rem STS 1 1/8 oz target load of 7 1/2 for long range partridge at 40 or 45 yards ? The STS shells maintain impressive pellet count at that range, but is the pellet energy enough to cleanly take the hungarian partridge ? I usually avoid shots at that distance, but in late season, that’s all you get, and size 6 patterns have too many open gaps for this small bird. What do you think ?…

Jim

Jim,

It’s always a balance between shot size and shot count. If you reload or perhaps call RST, you might try #7s. If your Huns are walk up and thus flying away from you, I personally would probably go for 3-1/4 dram 1-1/4oz #6s and choke tighter for 40+ yards. Of course, if you get a close shot, you’ll mulch the bird. But it would be the same thing with 7-1/2s and Full choke at close range. Maybe even worse.

I’ve shot a lot of driven red legs in Spain, about the size of a Hun, and small shot was fine because the birds were coming towards us with their breasts exposed. The pellets didn’t have to go up the length of the bird the way they have to on going away shots.

When I go hunting in SoDak, it’s mostly pheasant, but we do get the occasional wild Hun and sharpie. The Huns and sharpies never let you get close, so I can’t really tell if I am just plain missing or I could blame it on my #6 shotshells. Well, gotta blame it on the shells. It couldn’t possibly be me………

The other approach is to alternate shells on a couple of hunting trips and see what works best for you. I wish I had a definitive answer for you, but it is one of those personal choice things. As I said above, for me it would be #6s, but your experience may differ.

And good on you making 40~45 yard shots. That’s great shooting.

Bruce Buck
Shotgun Report’s Technoid

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