I’ve just posted a video over on the American Airgun Hunter YouTube channel, that shows my recent hunt down in Texas for the first season in which javalina could be legally taken with an air rifle. I’ll embed the video below in case you haven’t seen it yet, but I wanted to give a little more information on the rifle I was using: the AirForce Texan .357, but my rifle has had a bit of work done to it. Nothing dramatic, but it does make a difference. Edwin over at Airguns of Texas in Abilene cut about 8″ off the barrel and recrowned it. Then he fabricated a suppressor that adds the length right back, but man it does a great job of quieting the gun down. The shop is now home of manufacturing for the AeroMagnum bullets, that are purpose designed for the Texan, and Edwin also dialed in the power to find the optimal balance of power and accuracy. The setup of the gun was generating about 900 fps with the 128 grain Devastator hollow points, generating 5 shots above 215 fpe, which is the legal limit for big game with an air rifle. At 50 yards the rifle will print 5 shot sub inch groups consistently, which gives me a lot of confidence in this gun. I’ve already taken a javalina, whitetail, turkey, and hog with it this season, it’s done a great job for me in terms of performance. Take a look a couple posts backRead More →

I’ve been using the AirForce Texan quite a bit lately to hunt everything from Turkey to Whitetail. I have rifle and/or carbine versions of the .257, .308, .357, and .457, and have found myself gravitating more to these as my go to guns for bigger game, finding that across the board they offer the right balance of accuracy, power, shot count, and tactile response of the trigger. I also have come to appreciate the ability to dial in the optimal power setting for a specific bullet, which I think of as the airgunners equivalent of powder burners hand-loading for their rifles. I’ve had several of my rifles barrels cut down, re-crowned, and set up with a suppressor to quiet them down for shooting in areas that might be noise sensitive. The addition of the suppressor not only quieted the gun down, but brought it back to about the same overall length. But with my .457 carbine, I didn’t care about noise, instead wanting to have the most compact and powerful brush gun I could come up with. As a disclaimer, I will do a video and a write up later to go into the range work and optimizing the performance, in this short post I’ll just tell you about a couple of simple things I did to optimize it for my use. The first thing I added was the Covert Clutch Universal Tactical grip sleeve, which is a rubber sheath with a raised pattern that provides a solid grip thatRead More →

Airgun Hunting: Pigs and Pigeons with a .22 Air Rifle I had the opportunity to take the Brocock Bantam PCP air rifle out on a break from big game hunting, to do some pest control work on pigeons, and turn what I’d originally intended as a predator hunt into a pig hunt. This rifle is the “bottle-in-the-front” flavor of the Compatto, which was the first joint development of the engineering groups at Daystate and Brocock. This semi-bullpup has the refinement of a Daystate along with the compact design that characterizes the Brocock rifles. First up is the hog hunt, I was set up over a water hole in a natural hide behind some fallen logs. I scattered some corn (always carry a bag in my pack when hunting out here) on the road about 35-50 yards in front of me. A sounder of pigs, mostly smaller ones, came trotting in and almost by me, until a few of them scented the corn and moved into noisily feed. You can hear them smacking away in the background. They were constantly moving, but when one broke away and settled in to eat, I had a clean shot. The pellet was dropped right down the hogs ear as he stood somewhere between a broadside and quartering position. On the pellet hitting, the pig simply rolled over with a twitch. Next up, I revisited the feedlot where I’d been just a few days before, knowing there was a never-ending supply of pest birds available.Read More →

In 2015, a group of writers was invited down to Puerto Rico on an interesting pest control shoot, to try to help reduce the iguana population on a farm that was being decimated by these feral lizards, and to try to gain visibility as a potential shooting destination…. much like prairie dogs in the plains regions of the mainland. Because of the gun laws in Puerto Rico, using a firearm outside of a controlled shooting range is not permitted, so airguns seemed like a reasonable approach. As a matter of fact, many of the locals had already started culling them with spring piston airguns and had formed local shooting clubs to dispatch iguanas. But on our trip we were being hosted by HatsanUSA and they had brought along several PCP rifles for us to use, in calibers ranging from the .22 on up to .35 caliber versions. We spent three days of pretty much nonstop shooting, and this was not only one of the most fun pest control shoots I’ve ever done, but it also provided both an economic and ecological service to the island. The people were great, the place was great, the sport was really outstanding, and I was planning my return trip almost as soon as the first day wrapped up. Come along and take a look, my guess is you’ll probably want to give it a try yourself.Read More →

We’re holding the 3rd annual prairie dog shoot in South Dakota, and if you’ve ever wanted to shoot in high density towns on private land, this is the trip you want to make! Host: Bad River Birds and Bucks Brett Waibel Outfitter (605) 669-3440 info@badriverhunts.com Dates: May 16-19 Agenda: Arrive on 16th, shoot 17th and 18th, Depart 19th Whats Included: 3 Nights Lodging ( nights of 16, 17, 18) All meals including field lunches Transport from ranch to prairie dog towns LOTS and LOTS of Shooting! Equipment: I’ll have a compressor and tanks on site A selection of Pellets Price: $1000 for 16-19th All Inclusive $500 to reserve spot Loaner Rifles (a few of my personal guns) I can honestly say that all the shooters that have joined us in the past have had a good time, with a high number of repeat guest. I get to shoot prairie dogs all over the west and this is my favorite destination. If you like hunting with an airgun and there is anyway you can join us in May….. you will want to make it!Read More →

I head back down to Puerto Rico to hunt iguana with Hatsan airguns. Part of my interest is field work with the Hatsan Bullboss .25, the FlashPup .25, and the AirMax .22….. But a bigger question was if steady airgun hunting pressure was reducing the number of the out of control pest. I really like Puerto Rico a lot, and it was a shock too me how much damage had been done by the hurricane Maria, which was the worst natural disaster on record. A year later and they are still struggling to recover and get back to normal. When we arrived at the farm, we found there were many iguanas, but far less than the truly pestilential numbers of three years ago. Over the course of two days shooting I shot 55 iguanas, and had to work for them. On the previous trip I shot more than that on one morning. The reduced numbers were a combination of shooting and the effects of the hurricane. I have been told by guys that hunt different areas, that many farms that were badly hit, but did not shoot iguanas, saw a less marked dip in the population. It sounds harsh, but the goal is to fully eliminate these lizards, however I don’t believe it is possible. If only a handful survive they will build up another unmanageable population in a decade or so. Continued hunting is the best method of keeping these animals in check. and as a side benefits thatRead More →

Hunting with the Ataman .30 caliber air rifle! Continuing with my hunts on African small game, we took some time off the plains game and did a bit of varmint hunting with the Ataman M2 .30 caliber rifle. Both the rifle and the caliber proved an excellent choice for the medium sized rock hyrax. For the most part Dassie are left alone, but as they expand into areas of the property reserved for livestock, they need to be culled. This is accomplished by light hunting, a few taken by visiting hunters is enough to keep the numbers in check. I shot about a half dozen during the two plus week trip, I find the fact that they are wary, they live up high, and have excellent eyesight makes them a challenge! The Ataman .30 shot accurately, cycled smoothly and the 8 shot magazine worked well, with the rifle putting out about 92 fpe . I had a great time shooting it for everything from crows to small antelope, it worked a charm! You can get more information on this rifle from: Air Venturi : https://www.pyramydair.com/s/m/Ataman_M2R_Carbine_Air_Rifle/3900/7865 Airgun Depot : https://www.airgundepot.com/ataman-m2r-tact-carbine-type-2-olive.htmlRead More →

Hunting in South Africa with a unique new hunting projectile, the Air Venturi AirBolt! – Jim Chapman Airgun hunting has been gaining popularity in recent years, and along with advances in rifle technology, there have been concurrent advances in ammunition development. The Air Bolt is one such example, an arrow that can be launched from a conventional air rifle with great accuracy and power. Earlier airguns that shot arrows utilized a hollow arrow slipped over a thin purpose designed barrel, with the volume of pressurized air released inside the arrow to drive it forward. Air Venturi took a different approach, the Air Bolt is a caliber specific arrow that is muzzle-loaded into a standard big bore air rifle. Currently, the Air Bolt is available in .50 caliber, but there are other calibers on the way. The carbon fiber shaft has a nock with an o-ring and a synthetic fletching at the proximal end, and is matched to the caliber dimensions. The distal end has a teardrop shaped head that is threaded to accept standard broad heads, and fits snugly into the muzzle of the rifle. This design permits any rifle of the corresponding caliber to be used to shoot the Air Bolt, as well as the ammunition the rifle was originally designed for. The result is a platform that transforms a marginally powered big bore hunting airgun into the most powerful arrow launching system in existence! In my Air Venturi .50 caliber air rifle, a 425 grain Air Bolt tippedRead More →

I woke up early and dressed quickly so that I could get out to the woods before sunrise. It really isn’t necassary to get to your hunting site before first light when hunting fox squirrels, but I love to be in place and set up to watch the woods coming alive as the morning breaks. This morning was cold with a light drizzel falling to earth as I parked my jeep and started the hike to a spot I’d found on an earlier outing. My shoot was nestled in a flat area containing several large mast producing trees, with acorns and hazel nuts strewn about in profusion. There was a small stream to my back, and about 150 yards ahead the woods were broken by a Powerline right of way before continuing for many acres on the other side. It was a great find, and contains a large number of squirrels; unfortunately it’s slated to be plowed under for a new housing development and shops, so this will be my last season here. Making my way down to a space nestled between a falling log and a still standing tree, I settled in as daylight started to filter through the trees. I placed a comouflaged backpacking seat on the ground with the back against the standing tree’s trunk, pulled down my face mask and waited. A few minutes later I heard a branch snap to my right, and slowly looking up saw a doe stepping out from behind a treeRead More →

I have always liked the look and feel of a Manlicher stock, probably a holdover from my days in Southern Europe where this configuration has been popular for many years. As a matter of fact, both my 30-06 and 250 Savage are fitted out with a Manlicher stock. It is no surprise then, from the first moment I saw a spring piston air rifle in this configuration I wanted one, however for one reason or another it never seemed to float up as a priority when buying another airgun. But recently the timing felt right and I decided to finally pick one up for my collection …. but which one? There are two or three on the market, but in the end I was attracted to the Gamo Stutzen for a couple of reasons; I’d been hearing good things about the Gamo line of fixed barrel rifles as hunting guns and wanted to give one a try. And most importantly, when I picked up this rifle I really liked the look and feel of it. In this review I will discuss the guns features and bench performance, and then discuss my impressions based on taking it to the field to hunt squirrels, rabbits, and other small game. The Gamo Stutzen is a fixed barrel rifle which is cocked by an underlever cocking mechanism. The Manlicher design is a full length one piece stock that extends to just below the muzzle. I like the aesthetics of the Manlicher stock because ofRead More →