- May 6, 2009
- Reaction score
- Member of
- Double Rifle Shooter's Society, Life NAHC, NRA,SCI
- Us, Canada,Zambia, Zimbabwe, South America
I agree that both species are thin skinned, and a leopard is not such a big animal (in size only). I have seen once a video of a lion shot with a bow from a hide and the arrow went right through. A smaller caliber than a .375 will do the job. The problem comes in when following a wounded animal when you need a lot of stopping power. Which is why many countries probably want hunters rather to be safe than sorry.
INTU SAFARIS, Arrows work on an entirely different physics pattern than a bullet. An arrow will slide right through an animal that will stop a large bullet. The bullet works on a trauma of impact, and wide tissue damage, while an arrow works by cutting, and causing hemorrhaging.
In most countries 9.3 cal is minimum for Lion, but Tanzania requires .375 minimum for Lion. I would not hesitate to shoot lion with a 9.3X74R double or a 9.3X62 bolt rifle from a blind over bait. If wounded and going into the weeds, for the follow-up I’d prefer a double rifle no smaller than one chambered for the 375 Flanged, and preferably something over .400 cal. A good side by side double rifle chambered for 450/400NE 3” or a 450NE 3 1/4" with 400 gr to 480 gr soft points respectively is just about perfect for follow-up on lion.
A shotgun, or bolt rifle are not the weapons I’d ever use on lion as long as I had a choice. Not many PHs follow-up Lion with a shotgun, and most not even Leopard. An African lion’s bunched up adrenlin soaked muscles will stop buck shot or soft slug before it can get into the vitals from any frontal shot, and that is the shot you are likely to get when going into the thorn with a wounded lion, or leopard.
At under 15 feet a shot charge is only about 3” wide, and a rifle bullet is as easy to hit the right spot as a shot charge, but does far more damage. A double rifle is used the same way a shotgun is at close range, INSTINCTIVELY!
Almost everybody that has been mauled by a leopard or lion in a follow-up was using a shot gun or a bolt rifle for the job. A hard cast slug in a shotgun is far better than a load of buckshot, and if a single bullet is to be used anyway, then a double rifle makes far more sense!