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How to Pick the Best Shotgun for Goose Hunting

Posted by 
August 24, 2014
Published in News & Tips > Hunting > Goose
15451   Comment
expert

 
Geese, both Canadas and Snows, are big, tough birds built to take the harshest weather conditions Mother Nature can dish out. To hunt them successfully, you need a shotgun as tough as your quarry.GooseGun header

While smaller guns, with the correct loads, can take geese down at 20 yards, add a few yards with less than favorable shot angles and a strong wind and the little guns will not fly.

So what exactly is the right gun for goose hunting? There are several factors to consider.

What to Consider When Looking

1. Adjustability — Foul-weather goose hunting requires heavy clothing to handle the harsh elements. This means you will need to shorten your stock to handle the gun properly with extra layers of clothing. Adjustability varies by manufacturer, but The Beretta A400 Xtreme offers the best combination of recoil reduction and adjustability.

2. Rustproof Metal — Goose season dishes out the worst of weather. You will want your investment protected. Most manufacturers of goose guns apply coatings to their gun barrels and receivers. Remington uses AmorLokt coating, while Browning uses Dura-Touch Armor coating.

GooseGun 13. Internal Plating — Moisture is the enemy of every shotgun. Covering internal components with a corrosion-resistant barrier helps prevent rust and extends the life of the shotgun. Remington utilizes the nickel Teflon.

4. Slip-Proof Stock — Safety is paramount while goose hunting. Maintaining a good grip on your shotgun is essential. Choose one with a textured coating that offers superb gripping power. Remington and Beretta offer over-molded rubber inserts on the pistol grip and forend, which are perfect for wet, cold conditions.

5. Glove Friendly — Gloves are a given in the goose pits. An over-sized trigger guard and an easy to reach safety on a goose gun are necessary items for safe and functional operation while wearing gloves.

6. Cleaning Ease — Goose guns get wet and muddy and need cleaning after every hunt. Choose guns that break down into only a few pieces, without springs that are very easy to loose.

7. Dependable Action — Modern autoloaders are far ahead of the goose guns found in hunters' hands a generation ago. The inertia-operated Benelli Super Black Eagle is well known for its dependability. Unique gas port systems, which bleeds off more gas for lighter loads, are becoming more standard. Browning offers a 100,000 round guarantee with some models.

What are Good Goose Guns Options?

Settling on that perfect goose gun is like choosing a prom date. There are a lot of choices, but in the end, you have to select the one that suits you best. 

Following are some top models to consider. All are highly recommended by experienced goose hunters and guides. Each one can be found at Bass Pro Shops.

Remington Versa Max Sportsman Shotgun

GooseGun RemingtonVersaMax

Remington Versa Max Sportsman Camo Shotgun


 

Winchester SX3 Waterfowl Semi-Auto Shotgun

GooseGun WinchesterSX3Waterfowl

Winchester SX3 Waterfowl Semi-Auto Shotgun - RealTree Max-5


 

Beretta A400 Xtreme Unico Semi-Auto Shotgun

GooseGun BerettaA400Xtreme

Beretta A400 Xtreme Unico Semi-Auto Shotgun - Realtree MAX-5


 

Benelli Super Black Eagle II Semi-Auto Shotgun

GooseGun BenelliSuperBlackEagleII

Benelli Super Black Eagle II Semi-Auto Shotgun - Realtree APG


 

Browning Maxus

GooseGun BrowningMaxus

Browning Maxus Realtree Max-5 Semi-Automatic Waterfowl Shotgun


 

Shot Selection Tips

The old adage that bigger shot equals more killing power is not necessarily true anymore. Bigger shot is not always the best answer to killing more geese. Consider the following when choosing your shot size.

  1. Larger shot means less pellets. Less pellets equates less room for error.

  2. Small shot will penetrate deeper into geese, because it has less surface area.

  3. Small shot has less mass and transfers less kinetic energy.

  4. Selecting the proper shot size is a compromise between shot distance, choke being used and hunting conditions.

  5. Every shotgun will pattern various loads differently. Pattern your loads on a target with an 18-inch diameter circle in the middle, the approximate size of a goose.

  6. Reserve the right to change your mind about shot size should a proven size one day fail you in the field.

 

Tagged under Read 15451 times Last modified on September 11, 2017
Bill Cooper
expert

Bill Cooper is a 40-year veteran outdoor writer from Missouri. He is a Distinguished Military Graduate from the University of Missouri where he earned a Masters Degree in Outdoor Education. He is a member of the Southeastern Outdoor Press Association and a past president of the Missouri Outdoor Communicators. Bill received the Conservation Educator of the Year Award from the Conservation Federation of Missouri in 2000 and the Conservation Communicator Award in 2008.

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