Foxing , Fireworks , unusual reaction to shot & strange encounter


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I went out Bonfire night for a bit of foxing to of my one of my permissions, this farm has two chicken sheds larger away from the farm house and the smaller closer by.

I have put highseats close by both the sheds for staying comfortable on extended evenings out. The highseat by the smaller shed is a standard one man steel lean to type , the other I made myself can comfortably seat two has a roof and netting to shelter you from the elements.

Well for Bonfire night I was sat in the single hightseat and to say the view of the numerous displays going was a spectacle in its self . My foxing setup is a Rem .204 shooting 32gr Zmax , NV & red light spotter .

From my vantage point 12' up a tree on the hill overlooking the village , this position didn't just give me a view of the village fireworks but that of displays up to 15 miles away . Some of the displays that were over 5 miles away from where I was sat would turn the fields to daylight on some of the larger explosions.

I had been sat in the seat for a good hour plus and had bagged two foxes so far , both tihese foxes were the typical bang flop reaction to the shot.

The 3rd fox was spotted 400+m away on the NV and it worked its way into the caller , at about 100m fox was the classic side profile I put the cross hairs on the H/L and squeezed off the shot .

Very quite muzzel report ( due to mod and barrel being freezing ) loud impact thump and watched fox collapse to shot as expected , as im cycling the bolt I watch the fox get up and start doing cartwheels all over the place . I'm thinking I've pulled the shot and caught it in the legs or low brisket , the fox then starts pushing itself over the field using only its back legs .

This reinforces my belief that its a leg or clipped brisket shot , I'm trying to put a 2nd shot into fox but its pushing itself all over the place at top speed. It then stands up and runs off awkwardly on all 4 legs it does 40m then keels over .

On inspection it was a good size vixen in A1 condition , the shot was perfect H/L placement the round exited
( unusual for the 32gr which normally stay in chest ) the exit wound was 1" × 2" the lungs were in tatters and heart peppered .

Of all the foxes I've shot with my .204 this is the 1st ( taking out poor shot placement ones ) that didnt just collapse to the shot, even marginally shot foxes just drop .So either bullet not fully expanding or a hard as nails fox .

Well called it a night as i was getting cold , 3 foxes for the evening all vixens ( farmer will be pleased) 2 from the previous evening at the larger chicken shed from the bigger highseat . So 5 foxes over 2 evenings .

On the Sunday morning just before 9am I was coming back from taking the dogs out , when walking down the track towads me was was a very brightly dressed man and his son (10 yrs) carrying a big rucksack and carrying a huge lensed camera someone who I've not seen around my end before.

I say my hello and good morning and he askes if im local and know the area , i tell him yes then ask him what is he hoping to photograph today.

He tells me foxes , he says how he's been told you can see foxes sometimes mouching about around where the chickens are , and he's seen a great seat or hide in tree that would make a great place to take pictures from . He asks me do I know who's seat it is and do you think he would be allowed to use it .

I told him in the nicest way I made the seat and he's not allowed to use it explain my reasons and tell him what thecseat is for , he was a nice chap and I felt a tad torn at stopping him and his son from using it, as I like to see kids getting involved in nature and the outdoors and this seat is great comfy place to sit.

I full understand the implications of allowing him up the seat if anything went wrong and it could potentially encourage others to try and use it if he told people.

I did explain to him of places where to see foxes , he did show me some of his photos of wild life , they were average to not very good considering he had a camera setup costing more than my truck.

I showed him some of my wildlife pics / still lifes off my phone he didn't seem to impressed with the composition we shook hands and left .

Good two evenings on the foxes , great firework displays seen , shot reaction ive not experienced with the ,204 before and unusual meeting .View attachment 76133View attachment 76134
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I showed him some of my wildlife pics / still lifes off my phone he didn't seem to impressed with the composition
HaHa - isn't that grand. All those nature lovers that are so judgmental and only appreciate wildlife pictures in their own little way!


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Were all your pics of dead game mate as thats what most shooting folks phones are stuffed with and the odd animal alive at range .


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Excellent write up however having used a .204 for some time now I have never experienced an exit wound with 39 grn Blitz Kings on chest shot foxs. Thats the beauty, 1,000+ ftlbs dumped on target and they don't get up. See similar when shot with 6mm solid/match bullet but not in a very long time ago.



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From a still shot in a high seat I have had a well shot fox run about after using 32 gr bullets. The range was only about 75 yards and it went into hyper mode with a turbo boost sprint followed by some circles. I wondered at the time if they were too light and discussed it with a keeper in a gun shop. He suggested I used 39gr, as he did, and I've not had an issue since. In actual fact the recipe once sorted means that the 39's group better than the 32's and only for about 200 fps lost.

I'd suggest you try them?

p.s. I was/am using sierra BK's


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Eldon / Cyres my little .204 doesn't like the 39gr as much as the 32gr . I did try them when I first had my little .204 a good few yrs back , they definitely hit hard and anchored foxes well but I got far better accuracy from 32gr .

I'm not overly concerned as I shoot a fair few foxes each year ( not as many as some of the arm chair warriors ) and put aside bad shooting , this is the 1st time I've experienced correct shot placement not putting down foxy with the .204 . I've had it with foxes hit with .243 & .308 but not the .204

I've always rated vixens tougher than dog foxes pound for pound , I think it was a bullet failure / bullet not expanding as violently as normal thus not transferring all the energy.

I think the vixen was on her feet for 6-8 seconds after being hit , seemed a lot longer when it's unfolding in front of you . which would not be uncommon for a deer .

There is only one way to check ...go shoot some more foxes and check .
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I have not as yet tried any 32s in my .204 but with reloader 10x mine effectively puts bullets through the same hole at 100yds so no real need to change. shooting partner uses factory 40 grn V max to great effect. Just loaded some 39's for him and them shot almost to same POA as the v max.

Paddy uses 32grn BK and shoots vast ammount of foxs I dont think he gets runners.

You might well have had a bullet that did not expand, pretty rare, I shot quite a few magpies this year and they litterly explode and head shooting rabbits just decapitates them.

its a fantastic round just requires high end optics to extract optimium accuracy ( mine is a Savage model 16 Weather Warrior)