The Countryman's Weekly

Rifle Calibres

Rifle Calibres
October 16
08:00 2019

Solving the conundrum of choosing which calibre rifle

By Marksman.

ANYONE who belongs to an internet shooting forum will be well aware of the controversy and the heated debate which rages whenever anyone asks for advice on which calibre rifle they should buy. This situation is never helped by the fact it’s not at all unusual for new calibres to appear on a fairly regular basis.

Each one promises to be the answer to a shooter’s prayer and be better than anything that’s gone before. Most of my long shooting life has been involved with rabbits and foxes rather than bigger game – true, I take a few roe and fallow each year, but by far and away my biggest involvement is, and always has been, with the fox.

I have shot foxes with a variety of rifle calibres from firearms certificate (FAC) rated air rifles up to .308 centrefires. Both of those calibres are at each end of the spectrum, and while both are capable (especially the .308!) of killing foxes I would describe neither as a true fox calibre.

It really doesn’t take a lot to kill a fox as they are small-bodied animals with a soft skin, but like any quarry every shooter should do his very best to ensure clean, humane kills every time. In practice this doesn’t always happen but every effort should be taken to minimise mistakes, including the rifle you are using.




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