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Thread: Sika calibre

  1. #1

    Sika calibre

    What calibre would you guys suggest as a minimum for Sika stags. I know .243 is legal but I also know many people see it as underpowered for these "hard to kill" deer. Thoughts please.....

  2. #2

  3. #3


    first worm ...270win 130gn partition.

  4. #4
    Distinguished Member tartinjock's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Nairn, Inverness-shire
    Second worm, shot placement.

    I have successfully taken Sika with 100gr .243's, I know some people have struggled with 150-180gr .308's with perfect shot placement, Sika are nails!!

    I would say that the greater the caliber, within reason is better. I took the Sika with a .243 purely as I had that rifle with me at the time, I don't throw less than 100gr down it just incase it's a Sika or Red that presents a shot and not a Roe.


  5. #5
    I have not shot huge numbers of Sika, about 20 over the past three or four years, plus I have witnessed about another 10-12 shot by a friend of mine.

    My observation is that if shot placement is less than perfect, expect a runner, big time. It has only happened to me once, but the hind made about 600 yards.

    Even with perfect placement, ie top of the heart and bottom of the lungs shredded, stag's in particular can make 80-100m into the thickest wettest hole they can find. Sika are noticeably harder to put down tha similar sized fallow.

    On the other hand, quite a few have dropped on the spot instantly to the shot.

    My view, reinforced by some much more experienced guys, is that you really want velocity on Sika: 120's in 6.5, 130's in 270. Some guys use the 110 V-max in the 270 pushed as hard as possible. Hit 'em hard and hope for the best.

  6. #6
    Third worm,
    l go with what as been said, shot placement will be important with all calibres,
    But the smaller .243 it will become more so.
    I shot a Sika hind for my last witness stalk and it was a top heart/lung with a .270 -150gr gameking. At 100 yards,
    It run 200 yards jumped two fences before dropping.
    The AW with me had not done much in regards to Sika and could not believe the ground it made.
    Apart from neck shots, all the Sika I have taken have run even with well placed shots, they are just different and much harder.
    But personally I am with Finnbear 270 the round I like is 130gr .270 partition.


  7. #7
    My two penneth worth. I've shot about 400 sika over the last 4 years mainly with a 25-06 using 100 grain barnes tsx. If you hit them through the heart and lungs they WILL go down. If they know you are there they WILL run, sometimes 200m. This isn't a problem on open ground but invaribly it is into thick cover. This is why I have 3 dogs all capable of tracking deer and pulling down hinds. I don't put them on stags unless I'm pretty sure they are dead (had a bad experiance with a wounded one) I also had a season using a .300 win mag using 200 grain trophy bonded bear claws. This round did not drop them any quicker than my 25-06.
    To sum up, hit them right and make sure you have a dog on hand just in case.

  8. #8
    I would echo what has been said already. I normally say minimum .270 for Sika stags, as .243 just doesnt seem to have the heavy penetration needed.
    The bigger the hole you can blow through one the better. Early in the season Sika carry so much fat, that it can re-seal the bullet hole, which means that you have very little blood to follow. Also sometimes a stag will take a round and run off so fast that you are left wondering just what happened. You go to the spot and there is very little to indicate a hit.

    Also if you have a big pre-rut stag in front of you, it is better to neck or shoulder shoot it rather than going for a heart shot. Better to drop it on the spot than risk a long hard search - especially at last light.

    On your hands and knee's in a Rododendron thicket 2 hours after dark, is not a great place to be

    Like people say ---- Hard as nails - sometimes


  9. #9
    I would rather use a rifle/scope/ancils conbination that I am confident with than one which I am not if that makes sense! Or, to put it another way, you might be better using your own .243 than an unfamiliar estate .30-'06 to give an example. JC

  10. #10
    Another worm is bullet choice. Some expensive extra tough bullets that shops love to sell, just piss through a deer and leave less damage behind. These tough bullets might guarantee the desired exit wound but also take a lot of energy with them.
    For bigger stags I found the 165gr sst's work well from a 308. For longer ranges I like the 155 a-max. I shot one stag with a 80gr 243 soft point this year , it dropped after 30yds, no exit.
    My rule, sika = soft bullet. Slow MV = even softer bullet
    What always works, is to place the shot that it goes just below the spine well above the heart. A soft 30cal upsets spine, takes the arteries off the heart and takes a big part of lungs along. The spinal shock drops them on the spot. With the softisch bullets I try to avoid the shoulder.

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