Buckshot & Leopard- Fact Or Fiction?

Hoss Delgado

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Hello , brother Sportsmen :)
For many years , l have had a burning question on the back of my mind which l want you all to give your input on .
Is there any truth about the saying that the best weapon for Wounded Leopard in thick brush is A Double barrelled shotgun loaded with buckshot ? As most of you know , l am an avid reader of classic hunting books .
From What l read , most famous hunters are divided on the issue.
Proponents of the strategy of using Buckshot on wounded leopard include :
1) John Pondoro Taylor
2) Donald Anderson
3) Richard L Scott
4) Peter Hathaway Capstick
Outspoken Critics of this controversial method include :
1) Harry Selby
2) Finn Aagaard
3) Dr. Jagdish Kumar
Then we have the following people who actually DID use buckshot on Leopard but failed to kill them with it :
1) Kenneth Anderson
2) Brian Marsh
3) Henry R Caldwell
What is your input on the matter ?
I personally think trying to kill a leopard with Buckshot is Suicide ( and a painful one at that :p ) . My layman's understanding of ballistics is that Buckshot wouldn't penetrate deep at all , in the rock hard muscles of a 200 pound leopard.
I have shot a few mountain lion myself . All were with a .375 HH Magnum Swift A frame or a 10 gauge Federal Slug . I can't imagine using Buckshot on anything mean and dangerous .
Feel free to share your insight :)
Hoss Delgado

full
 
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Next time I'm back at my folks place, I shall see what I can dig up from the Hunting Blackbeard's of Botswana who had some opinions in the negative camp on shotguns and big cats.
 

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My leopard killing friend used his, .458 win mag, shotguns, and then after 10+ leopards settled on a lever action 45-70.

I do not remember the load, but the handy .458 carbine was his favorite. It seems he had a knack for getting close to the action, sometimes with chase dogs.
 

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In “Under Kilimanjaro,” Hemingway writes about going in after a wounded leopard with a Winchester 12-gauge pump shotgun and No. 8 birdshot: “At close range a charge of fine bird shot from a full-choked shotgun is as solid as a ball.” He writes further of firing about a dozen shells at the wounded leopard, which he couldn’t see well in all the brush, before being sure it was dead.
 

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I too like to read the old tales. Most of their experience with buckshot was akin to using an old cup-and-core .303 bullet..then generalizing about rifles..they had a sub-optimal, or frankly inadequate load. Buckshot today is evolving. Especially in the last 18 months. Shotshell loads for bird hunting have a much bigger market, and therefore buckshot development lags behind. But buckshot loads are being, and have been recently developed that may have us all changing our opinions soon. Balancing pattern, penetration, and tolerable recoil is a challenge......we will see whether or not there is a commercial apatite for these fierce new shells.............FWB
 

Hoss Delgado

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Next time I'm back at my folks place, I shall see what I can dig up from the Hunting Blackbeard's of Botswana who had some opinions in the negative camp on shotguns and big cats.
Thanks man :) I am certainly not a fan of goose guns for biters either
 

Hoss Delgado

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My leopard killing friend used his, .458 win mag, shotguns, and then after 10+ leopards settled on a lever action 45-70.

I do not remember the load, but the handy .458 carbine was his favorite. It seems he had a knack for getting close to the action, sometimes with chase dogs.
I know someone in India who used a .22 LR BRNO semi automatic rifle to harvest 63 leopard in the 1960s !
 

Hoss Delgado

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In “Under Kilimanjaro,” Hemingway writes about going in after a wounded leopard with a Winchester 12-gauge pump shotgun and No. 8 birdshot: “At close range a charge of fine bird shot from a full-choked shotgun is as solid as a ball.” He writes further of firing about a dozen shells at the wounded leopard, which he couldn’t see well in all the brush, before being sure it was dead.
I personally wouldn't use anything smaller than A foster slug . Although l hear a few hunters used AAA shot. Imagine that
 

Hoss Delgado

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I too like to read the old tales. Most of their experience with buckshot was akin to using an old cup-and-core .303 bullet..then generalizing about rifles..they had a sub-optimal, or frankly inadequate load. Buckshot today is evolving. Especially in the last 18 months. Shotshell loads for bird hunting have a much bigger market, and therefore buckshot development lags behind. But buckshot loads are being, and have been recently developed that may have us all changing our opinions soon. Balancing pattern, penetration, and tolerable recoil is a challenge......we will see whether or not there is a commercial apatite for these fierce new shells.............FWB
Very insightful :) The trend of using Buckshot on wounded leopard seems to have been standard practice in the 1930s to 1950s when it died out -_-
 

Kawshik Rahman

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received_551989612237068.jpeg
It is definitely not fiction . 32 leopards have fallen to the 12 bore twelve pellet SG cartridge at my hands . Even two of my four Royal Bengal tigers were killed with this type of ammunition. When we used to reload our cartridges due to low availability of fresh cartridges in Darjeeling , the ideal solution was to treat the cartridge with hot wax from bees. We would pour hot wax over the pellets which would hold the shot together , thereby reducing spreading and increasing range a little. However , it is an inconsistent performer at any distance greater than ten feet . I learnt to content myself with a 12 bore Ishapore side by side two trigger shot-gun loaded with SG in both the barrels , because that was what l had . If l had good central fire calibre rifle , l would have used that instead. Today , modern fire arms have made such risky practices antiquated.
The picture you see was taken in 1969 and it was the last of the four Royal Bengal tigers which l had shot. My proud late father lies on the freshly removed skin , still red at the edge . I killed it with two barrel's worth of SG shot ( 24 pellets ) at it's neck at a distance of 7 yards .
This is one of the few color pictures which l possess of that time.
 

Hoss Delgado

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View attachment 307874 It is definitely not fiction . 32 leopards have fallen to the 12 bore twelve pellet SG cartridge at my hands . Even two of my four Royal Bengal tigers were killed with this type of ammunition. When we used to reload our cartridges due to low availability of fresh cartridges in Darjeeling , the ideal solution was to treat the cartridge with hot wax from bees. We would pour hot wax over the pellets which would hold the shot together , thereby reducing spreading and increasing range a little. However , it is an inconsistent performer at any distance greater than ten feet . I learnt to content myself with a 12 bore Ishapore side by side two trigger shot-gun loaded with SG in both the barrels , because that was what l had . If l had good central fire calibre rifle , l would have used that instead. Today , modern fire arms have made such risky practices antiquated.
The picture you see was taken in 1969 and it was the last of the four Royal Bengal tigers which l had shot. My proud late father lies on the freshly removed skin , still red at the edge . I killed it with two barrel's worth of SG shot ( 24 pellets ) at it's neck at a distance of 7 yards .
This is one of the few color pictures which l possess of that time.
Mr . Rahman , wow ! :D
Is this the same tiger of which you sent me that pic of you and your lady friend standing over , while looking at the stock of your shotgun ?
Also , would you feel comfortable doing this with your Beretta 12 gauge O/U ?
 

Kawshik Rahman

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Mr . Rahman , wow ! :D
Is this the same tiger of which you sent me that pic of you and your lady friend standing over , while looking at the stock of your shotgun ?
Also , would you feel comfortable doing this with your Beretta 12 gauge O/U ?
Hoss Delgado,
Thank you for your interest.
To answer your first question , yes. That is the same tiger. The stock of the shot-gun had broken at the wrist and my late girl friend and l were trying to repair it. Eventually , we had it repaired back at the town with reinforcements made from sheet brass.
Even though l killed my final leopard in 1995 with the 12 bore Beretta over under and an SG cartridge , l would not recommend this practice . This is because the upper barrel is fully choked and the lower barrel is modified choked. Therefore , the upper barrel will get damaged if l fired SG cartridge from it. I put only one SG cartridge into the gun ( lower barrel's breech ) and it is obvious that hunting dangerous animals as fast as a leopard with only one cartridge in the gun is very risky . I only did this , because at the time l only had that shot-gun and the .22 Long Rifle Belgian auto loader rifle and the shot-gun was the better choice. Also , l shot this leopard while it was unaware of my presence , while , as a professional Shikari , l would have to be ready for any situation .
 

CoElkHunter

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Hello , brother Sportsmen :)
For many years , l have had a burning question on the back of my mind which l want you all to give your input on .
Is there any truth about the saying that the best weapon for Wounded Leopard in thick brush is A Double barrelled shotgun loaded with buckshot ? As most of you know , l am an avid reader of classic hunting books .
From What l read , most famous hunters are divided on the issue.
Proponents of the strategy of using Buckshot on wounded leopard include :
1) John Pondoro Taylor
2) Donald Anderson
3) Richard L Scott
4) Peter Hathaway Capstick
Outspoken Critics of this controversial method include :
1) Harry Selby
2) Finn Aagaard
3) Dr. Jagdish Kumar
Then we have the following people who actually DID use buckshot on Leopard but failed to kill them with it :
1) Kenneth Anderson
2) Brian Marsh
3) Henry R Caldwell
What is your input on the matter ?
I personally think trying to kill a leopard with Buckshot is Suicide ( and a painful one at that :p ) . My layman's understanding of ballistics is that Buckshot wouldn't penetrate deep at all , in the rock hard muscles of a 200 pound leopard.
I have shot a few mountain lion myself . All were with a .375 HH Magnum Swift A frame or a 10 gauge Federal Slug . I can't imagine using Buckshot on anything mean and dangerous .
Feel free to share your insight :)
Hoss Delgado
Hoss,
Why did I know it would be your thread when I opened this up! Mr. Buckshot! Ha! Ha! Anyway, I don’t know about buckshot and leopards, but in the early ‘90s when my father in law went hunting in Alaska for moose and caribou (drop camp scenario), the absentee outfitter gave him (his hunting party) a double barrel 12 gauge shotgun with 00 buck in the event they were attacked by a grizzly, which actually became almost a real scenario. Now, these were hunters with .300 and .338 WMs. REALLY? I, repeat I, would no more try to shoot a charging grizzly with buckshot than Pheroze actually finding a .465 H and H Magnum rifle or even a single .465 cartridge! The .338 WM or even better, a .375 of anything, would be exponentially better than ANY gauge shotgun with buckshot on a charging grizzly! On leopard, I wouldn’t know. Maybe a .410 with buckshot would work? Ha! Ha! Ha!
CEH
 
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Kawshik Rahman

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Hoss,
Why did I know it would be your thread when I opened this up! Mr. Buckshot! Ha! Ha! Anyway, I don’t know about buckshot and leopards, but in the early ‘90s when my father in law went hunting in Alaska for moose and caribou (drop camp scenario), the absentee outfitter gave him (his hunting party) a double barrel 12 gauge shotgun with 00 buck in the event they were attacked by a grizzly, which actually became almost a real scenario. Now, these were hunters with .300 and .338 WMs. REALLY? I, repeat I, would no more try to shoot a charging grizzly with buckshot than Pheroze trying to locate a .465 H and H Magnum rifle or even a single .465 cartridge! The .338 WM or even better, a .375 of anything, would be exponentially better than ANY gauge shotgun with buckshot on a charging grizzly! On leopard, I wouldn’t know. Maybe a .410 with buckshot would work? Ha! Ha! Ha!
CEH
Co Elk Hunter ,
You are correct that shot of any size is inappropriate for large animals. However , l have killed Indian Bears with SG cartridge from my Ishapore shot-gun fifty years ago. You see , the bear is an odd creature. It's head structure makes it close to impossible to secure a shot to the brain as their brain is very small. At distances of 5 or 6 yards , the aforementioned SG shot treated with bees wax can work excellently on a charging bear from the front position. The method is to keep your calmness until the animal is at close quarters . 7 yards or less is ideal. Then the shooter fires at the head of the bear. The concentrated charge of large shot at short distance is very effective for finding the brain of a bear.
I have a photograph of such an incident from 1966 , of a bear killed by myself which had attempted to charge at a client.
Perhaps it may interest you ?
However , just because something can be done , does not mean that it should be done and magnum .300 by Winchester would be a much better tool for this application.
 

Hoss Delgado

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Co Elk Hunter ,
You are correct that shot of any size is inappropriate for large animals. However , l have killed Indian Bears with SG cartridge from my Ishapore shot-gun fifty years ago. You see , the bear is an odd creature. It's head structure makes it close to impossible to secure a shot to the brain as their brain is very small. At distances of 5 or 6 yards , the aforementioned SG shot treated with bees wax can work excellently on a charging bear from the front position. The method is to keep your calmness until the animal is at close quarters . 7 yards or less is ideal. Then the shooter fires at the head of the bear. The concentrated charge of large shot at short distance is very effective for finding the brain of a bear.
I have a photograph of such an incident from 1966 , of a bear killed by myself which had attempted to charge at a client.
Perhaps it may interest you ?
However , just because something can be done , does not mean that it should be done and magnum .300 by Winchester would be a much better tool for this application.
But Mr. Rahman , what about my book ?! :( :( If you give all your photos now , my book'll have no value ! :(
 
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Hoss Delgado

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Hoss,
Why did I know it would be your thread when I opened this up! Mr. Buckshot! Ha! Ha! Anyway, I don’t know about buckshot and leopards, but in the early ‘90s when my father in law went hunting in Alaska for moose and caribou (drop camp scenario), the absentee outfitter gave him (his hunting party) a double barrel 12 gauge shotgun with 00 buck in the event they were attacked by a grizzly, which actually became almost a real scenario. Now, these were hunters with .300 and .338 WMs. REALLY? I, repeat I, would no more try to shoot a charging grizzly with buckshot than Pheroze actually finding a .465 H and H Magnum rifle or even a single .465 cartridge! The .338 WM or even better, a .375 of anything, would be exponentially better than ANY gauge shotgun with buckshot on a charging grizzly! On leopard, I wouldn’t know. Maybe a .410 with buckshot would work? Ha! Ha! Ha!
CEH
^ well , CEH , clearly these old timeys know more than we do . Jesus :p
 

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