I'll shortly be looking for a second-hand rifle, which will be used purely for stalking Sika deer.
I was thinking any deer-legal calibre would do (in Ireland that means .243 and up), with the exception of .243, which would be a bit too close to the .223 I already have. But now I'm thinking maybe it would be a mistake to exclude .243, as this is one of the most common calibres (important when looking for s/h), ammo is easily obtained, the recoil is negligible, etc., etc.
Does anyone have any experience of .243 with Sika? I know shot placement is paramount whatever you're shooting at, but sika have a reputation of being pretty hard to put down for their size, and I don't want to risk being undergunned. And I don't want to go through the hassle of buying a rifle and then feeling the need to change to a more powerful calibre.
Most, if not all, shots would be taken well within 200 yards, but I wouldn't like to find myself having to renounce potential opportunities for longer shots of up to maybe 250-300 yards purely because of the calibre I'm using.
Any thoughts appreciated.