What calibre pistol is best for humane dispatch

Apache

Well-Known Member
#41
I would prefer not to use a 32acp for any humane dispatch task.
Have to agree to disagree on that!

Must admit that I'm not a captive bolt fan, would rather use a 410
I agree, BUT I have a captive bolt under my car seat all the time. I grab a gun when needed, but the security concerns me (even though I have a safe bolted in the car) and it gets tedious moving from safe to car back to safe every night and morning!
 

srvet

Well-Known Member
#42
No.

FAR more likely to exit the animal and therefore ricochet. Many of these animals are recumbent on the highway and cannot be moved.

If you are going to do this sort of work find out where the brain is. Head-shooting the animal aiming down the spine gives you even a meter of muntjack for the bullet to pass.

In terms of calibre I am more than happy with my .32. Everything I have shot has died and never had a bullet exit. I do worry about the suggestions of higher calibre weapons, not due to the fallacy of overkill (not possible) but the risk of over-penetration and the danger to other people.
I think my disdain for the 32 results from the use of a single shot smooth bored cash from my first job. I suspect the bore diameter was so large that the slug rattled down there resulting in massive leakage of propellant gases. This resulted in low power and several interesting ricochets off cows heads. I must admit that the problem was reduced when using my next practices 32 Webley and Scott automatic. I do however think that wildlife casualties are slightly different to most farm stock where a close approach is normally straightforward. If you can get to contact distances a 38 is still better than a 32 in my book as greater tissue damage is to be expected from the larger bullet.
 

trouble

Well-Known Member
#43
Hi everyone , I have a question that I wondered if any one could answer??

What is the best pistol caliber for humain culling ?? The reason I ask is that I have spoken to my firearms officer about humaine culling and explained that I would like to get into this field , he was very concerned until I explained my reasoning . After some more chatting he agreed to it , so what in your opinions would be the best weapon .. Thanks MRlott
Your firearms officer wont have the final say on your application it will be delt with by his boss , you should ask your FO what caliber he recomends or research what your force recomend on their website . I use a standard 410 for RTAs , having said that i have put down large horses with a 22 pistol but this is more use for foxes that have been dug to in holes where you cant get a long barreled shotgun in . The short answer would be the police in this area (thames valley) like you to use 32 or 38/375
 

6pt-sika

Well-Known Member
#44
I've never used a handgun for "culling" as the original question was stated .

However I have carried revolvers when hunting for the finisher should it ever be needed .

The one I carried the most was a S&W 629 4" with handloaded Hornady 240 XTP's . This gun was great and I actually used it once or twice to put the finisher in a deers head that didn't seem to wanna die in a nice and quick fashion . I carried this gun in a Galco Hi Ride Pancake kinda holster on my belt , only problem was the weight of this thing tended to pull your pants down a bit that to me wasn't the most comfortable thing in the world .

When the 327 Federal cartridge came out I got one of the then new Ruger SP101's in 327 Federal . And at the time I ordered the revolver I ordered a Bianchi #5 Black Widow Hi Ride holster for this one as well . Shot enough Federal factory loads to get enough brass to work up a decent load and then tried both jacketed and cast bullets . After awhile I settled on the Lyman 311316 bullet which happens to be about a 113 grain gas check bullet . This one loaded with a bit of H110 was pretty decent . And I carried it for a couple years until I finally decided the need for a seperate gun for the finisher was really unwarrented .

So now I have neither revolver !

But if I were to get one I'd be pretty satisfied to get either of what I used to have and perhaps a set of suspenders (or whateva u guys call them) to hold my pants up !
 

Muir

Well-Known Member
#45
I have never carried a handgun as a "finisher" but I have hunted small and large game with them. Shoot the gun you can handle best, that has adequate killing power and accuracy for the distances in question. If the shooter is not an accomplished handgunner, and it's not point-blank range we're talking, it can get messy. I watched an man try to put down a wounded mule deer with his .357 one time from about 20 yards. He paunched it, missed it, ran after it while shooting at it, and finally his brother dropped it with his hunting rifle. It was a sad affair. One well placed shot would have put the animal down for good.~Muir
 

8x57

Distinguished Member
#46
6pt-sika the .327 magnum passed us by, it was probably introduced after the pistol ban so it's unlikely that any ever came into the country. From what I know of it it is an extended .32 H&R magnum which is another calibre that really never caught on in this country. What you call suspenders we call braces. Suspenders are what women (and men of a certain ilk) wear to hold up stockings.

Muir you are certainly right about needing a certain level of developed skill to shoot a pistol. It takes a fair bit of training and practise to shoot a pistol with any degree of accurasy and unfortunately most of the population of the U.K. have never had the oportunity to learn how. On top of that quite a few of the restricted pistols that are being sold or used for despatching in the U.K. are small frame revolvers with poor sights more suited as back up guns to be carried in ankle hosters. The equivalent of a J frame Smith & Weesson. For some reason quite a few of these seem to have been dumped on the market. Yes they may be suitable for card table range but not much further.
 
Last edited:

cervus

Well-Known Member
#47
Have a look atLiveLeak/ You Tube.."Owner shoots his horse after cliff fall accident.." easy when you don,t know how is it not..poor animal:(
 
Last edited:
#48
The FC does provide an in house training course, ' Dealing with road casualty deer' and I believe the same course may be provided through BASC/BDS although this would depend on uptake. I would recommend it to anyone involved in RTA'S as the legal aspects, H&S /Risk implications covered surprised me and challenged my thoughts and procedures. If any member would like more details, I still have my course notes to hand.
 

6pt-sika

Well-Known Member
#49
I have never carried a handgun as a "finisher" but I have hunted small and large game with them. Shoot the gun you can handle best, that has adequate killing power and accuracy for the distances in question. If the shooter is not an accomplished handgunner, and it's not point-blank range we're talking, it can get messy. I watched an man try to put down a wounded mule deer with his .357 one time from about 20 yards. He paunched it, missed it, ran after it while shooting at it, and finally his brother dropped it with his hunting rifle. It was a sad affair. One well placed shot would have put the animal down for good.~Muir

A few years back when Savage was making their bolt action Stryker "pistols" I got 3 of them in deer calibers . A 260 REM , a 7mm-08 and a 300 WSM . All three shot well with handloads when i had my shyte together . Only one I ever actually took hunting was the 7mm-08 and I killed a whitetail doe at about 60 yards . If memory serves I had a Burris 1.5-4x on top of it and was shooting my usual 7-08 load of the Nosler 140 BT and IMR4350 .

I had one of the S&W's in 460 S&W MAG for awhile but that beast was heavier then a good many of my rifles . Did the Contender thing a bit as well mostly 7-30 Waters and they were always pleasent to shoot . Last summer I had another Contender with a 444 Marlin , that SOB with what I consider less then full house loads was still a bit of a handfull .

Handguns are like rimfire rifles in that I loose intrest pretty quick .
 

Muir

Well-Known Member
#50
.....the .327 magnum passed us by, it was probably introduced after the pistol ban so it's unlikely that any ever came into the country. From what I know of it it is an extended .32 H&R magnum which is another calibre that really never caught on in this country.
Don't feel deprived. It never caught on in this country either! I like .32 revolvers but this one -as with others- never got a strong following.

Yes. As some of you older shooters remember, handgunning is a practice-intensive discipline and with a short barreled pistol with crude sights the shooting becomes all the more difficult -even if you are well practiced. ~Muir
 

Muir

Well-Known Member
#51
A few years back when Savage was making their bolt action Stryker "pistols" I got 3 of them in deer calibers . A 260 REM , a 7mm-08 and a 300 WSM . All three shot well with handloads when i had my shyte together . Only one I ever actually took hunting was the 7mm-08 and I killed a whitetail doe at about 60 yards . If memory serves I had a Burris 1.5-4x on top of it and was shooting my usual 7-08 load of the Nosler 140 BT and IMR4350 .

I had one of the S&W's in 460 S&W MAG for awhile but that beast was heavier then a good many of my rifles . Did the Contender thing a bit as well mostly 7-30 Waters and they were always pleasent to shoot . Last summer I had another Contender with a 444 Marlin , that SOB with what I consider less then full house loads was still a bit of a handfull .

Handguns are like rimfire rifles in that I loose intrest pretty quick .
I stayed away from the 460. 480, and 500's. They have no more effective range (accuracy wise) than a good .44 magnum and like you pointed out, are heavy as hell. I was at the SHOT Show when the 500 was unveiled. The Press Shoot featured a scoped 500 S&W and it weighed about 6 pounds! What a turkey. I have a Striker and have owned /built many custom XP-100's. I like bolt handguns for competition (Metallic Silhouette) and varmint but use a revolver or T/C for hunting. Funny. I never sell revolvers. The two I use the most are a Ruger Blackhawk 4 5/8" .357 that I got in September of 1980 as a gift from the wife (now ex) and a Ruger Redhawk .44 five incher that I've had since they first came out in blue so that would make it about 25 years. At one point I was shooting 200 rounds a week from these guns. Now, less, but they fit me like an old shoe. I've killed deer with both. (The Redhawk still has etching from blood that sat on the finish for eight hours.) This year I'm taking my Model 27 S&W into the field for mule deer. (.357 magnum 8 3/8") and hope to have some good tales to tell.~Muir
 

6pt-sika

Well-Known Member
#52
I stayed away from the 460. 480, and 500's. They have no more effective range (accuracy wise) than a good .44 magnum and like you pointed out, are heavy as hell. I was at the SHOT Show when the 500 was unveiled. The Press Shoot featured a scoped 500 S&W and it weighed about 6 pounds! What a turkey. I have a Striker and have owned /built many custom XP-100's. I like bolt handguns for competition (Metallic Silhouette) and varmint but use a revolver or T/C for hunting. Funny. I never sell revolvers. The two I use the most are a Ruger Blackhawk 4 5/8" .357 that I got in September of 1980 as a gift from the wife (now ex) and a Ruger Redhawk .44 five incher that I've had since they first came out in blue so that would make it about 25 years. At one point I was shooting 200 rounds a week from these guns. Now, less, but they fit me like an old shoe. I've killed deer with both. (The Redhawk still has etching from blood that sat on the finish for eight hours.) This year I'm taking my Model 27 S&W into the field for mule deer. (.357 magnum 8 3/8") and hope to have some good tales to tell.~Muir
Never did the 500 except in a Handi Rifle , did however have a couple of the RUGER SRH's in 480 Ruger . Only had one XP and that was a XP-100R in 260 REM . That thing with the rear grip was about as long as a Remington Model 7 .

Had a Ruger circa 1957 Blackhawk Flattop in 44 MAG kinda wish I had that one back . But with factory grips that thing kept busting the nuckle on my middle finger on the back of the trigger guard , may hands are a might big for single action grips .

I also had an older Dan Wesson that was a 357 Maximum 8 3/8" stainless that I liked a good bit . But it went down the road like many others .
 
Last edited:
#53
No.

FAR more likely to exit the animal and therefore ricochet. Many of these animals are recumbent on the highway and cannot be moved.

If you are going to do this sort of work find out where the brain is. Head-shooting the animal aiming down the spine gives you even a meter of muntjack for the bullet to pass.

In terms of calibre I am more than happy with my .32. Everything I have shot has died and never had a bullet exit. I do worry about the suggestions of higher calibre weapons, not due to the fallacy of overkill (not possible) but the risk of over-penetration and the danger to other people.
I know of people that have head shot fallow deer at close range with a 32 ACP, and didn't achieve first round kills, and it's highly unlikely you'd get a first round kill on cattle with this calibre, unless it was base of the ear.
 

Firefly

Well-Known Member
#54
It's not just a matter of using the right tool or calibre it's also about knowing how to do it properly and it's not something that I would really want to get involved with voluntarily.

Incidentally enfield, I have read reports of the chindits in Burma having to put mules out of their misery and .455 rounds failing to penetrate properly but at the same time my friend assures me that on a couple of occasions that he had to despatch a horse or cows his .455 was more than adequate. I suppose it all goes back again to knowing how to do it properly.
it’s surprising how many people think that shooting an animal between the eyes will kill it. Shot placement is everything. Personally I use a .38/357. The 357 is far too much for the roadside deer.
 
#55
I know of people that have head shot fallow deer at close range with a 32 ACP, and didn't achieve first round kills, and it's highly unlikely you'd get a first round kill on cattle with this calibre, unless it was base of the ear.
Anyone who can't achieve a quick, humane kill from a shot placed at the muzzle with a 32 is shooting them in the wrong place
Anatomy Anatomy Anatomy!

Anyone attempting to use a pistol for humane dispatch at distances that do not allow pin point accuracy of shot placement AND more importantly ANGLE
is using the wrong tool
 
#56
Forget pistols they are for cowboys, cranks and posers!
Use the smallest possible weapon you can. A 410 will dispatch most things outside a Zoo.
A captive bolt has killed most of the animals I have been called to dispatch. The only time I have not used a captive bolt had been where I could not get near enough to use it.
Its all about placement of the shot and if you do not know where to place it don't get involved and certainly don't compensate by upping the calibre.
 
#57
The FC does provide an in house training course, ' Dealing with road casualty deer' and I believe the same course may be provided through BASC/BDS although this would depend on uptake. I would recommend it to anyone involved in RTA'S as the legal aspects, H&S /Risk implications covered surprised me and challenged my thoughts and procedures. If any member would like more details, I still have my course notes to hand.
I did my Humane Despatch ( road collisions ) training withe the BDS ( Glyn Ingram ) it was a very informative , easy to understand course and gives you a recognised qualification via the LANTRA AWARDS .Defo recommend this.
 

Chasey

Well-Known Member
#59
I would want a dispatch pistol if I could have one with a suppressor but thats not easy

I have in the past had to "dispatch" a badly shot deer and found it quite hard using a rifle as we are simply not used (or often equipped) to take 5 or 10m shots

On my DSC2 I was told, just stick one in a for leg so it's a bigger point of aim and it cant run.

Understandable but it doesent sit well with my preference for a quick painless kill to an already destressed animal.

No I dont claim any great knowledge on the subject but getting close enough to use a .410 or a bolt gun assumes the animal is totally incapacitated which is great, but not always the case. I have managed to get within say 5m of an animal and hd it sit up. Any closer and id bet it would run. Then I have had to try and shoot it with a rifle set to shoot 100m and with a scope that doesent like things THAT close.

What I can say is I have shot pistols and 5m is about the max id guarantee hitting what I am aiming at.

Which brings me back to the suppressor point.

Having a suppressor allows for practice

Having a surpressor allows / encourages more than one shot.

Noise is a big thing in shooting as we are not all lucky enough to be in the middle of nowhere. One shot is often tolerated but multiple shots has caused complaints in the past.

For this reason id want a 357 sub sonic load. Big enough to kill, low recoil and quirt.

As I said, I have no experience of such a load so I am open to reasons why this is not a good choice.
 
#60
Very many years ago I worked in the local slaughterhouse, the slaughtermen there used a little folding fourten on the bulls as the captive bolt wasn't man enough for some of the really heavy bossed animals.
I've always used the fourten or all humane despatch from pigs to cattle, never had a problem. A lot more positive than a handgun I would think.
 

Top