What gun do Professional Hunters like to use?

Wyatt Smith

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It could be a London’s best made for an important lady of the past. You know so it would fit her, and be historically cool.
 

IvW

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Speaking of shotguns for leopards, how effective is the use of buckshot on them? I've heard varying opinions.
Not the best option I use Brenneke slugs
 

John Telford

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Most Japanese girls in their 20’s weigh about the same as a double gun and a moderately packed day bag! Maybe a 450 Casull pistol would suit her better!
 

Tokoloshe Safaris

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I will list the DG rifles used by myself our other PHs

Myself .470 George Gibbs dbl. or .416R John Rigby
Wife .450-.400 Heym or .404J AHR CZ
PH .470 Evans dbl. with Trijicon mini RMR or .458 Lott CZ (one of Zims most experienced hunter, only uses the dbl. now)
PH .458 Lott CZ
PH .458 Lott CZ
PH .375 H&H push feed M-70 scoped (don't ask)
Of course all of the above PHs have other rifles in various calibers, but these are their "go to" working rifles.
As you can see there are a few rifles listed above that cost or are worth more than a Blaser, so it is not just a matter of what you can afford. No affront to the Blaser, just personal preference.
 

Professor Mawla

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Speaking of shotguns for leopards, how effective is the use of buckshot on them? I've heard varying opinions.
@tigris115

I have been using Eley Alphamax 2 3/4 inch LG shells ( with each shell holding eight antimony hardened lead slugs of .36 calibre ) in my Laurona 12 bore side-lock ejector to successfully take plenty of marauding Asiatic leopards , ever since 1972 . And I have never had an issue with their reliability . However , I must stress that only chest shots must be taken . Do to the thick and angled nature of an Asiatic leopard’s skull , the LG slugs often tend to either flatten or glance off ; upon striking skull bone .

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45414A9D-4AAC-4C7D-9364-D2E8F44AA091.jpeg
 

Kevin Peacocke

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Most Japanese girls in their 20’s weigh about the same as a double gun and a moderately packed day bag! Maybe a 450 Casull pistol would suit her better!
She knows martial arts and gived the thing a healthy kick back.
 

DG Gunsmith

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If the PH in your story:

1) Is the first in his family to hunt, he'll shoot a worn out BRNO 458 that he got second-hand from the game department;

2) Is of a line of PHs, he'll shoot a Rigby 416 for a bolt, or an Evans 470 for a double - these only when acting as a PH - otherwise he will shoot everything with a Rigby 350 or 9,3x62 - depending if he is from British or German lineage.

3) Is a man of taste and simplicity, a Rigby 416;

4) Does more elephant hunting than anything and finds himself all-too-often cleaning up his client's mess, a 458 Win Mag - one he had made by a lower-cost (read non-British) firm, but is otherwise 100% reliable;

5) Is over 6' and 220 lbs., he'll shoot a 577 Nitro;

6) Is a double rifle devotee and has a soft spot for the black powder guns his father used, a Rigby 450 Nitro (because it spanned black to smokeless powder);

7) Is an American who lived his dream of becoming a PH - a 375 H&H or 458 Win - either in a Model 70 - with a nod to the 375.



That should help ;-)
Novel approach... I agree with #5... I'm 6'3" and weighed 240lbs, pre-Covid-19... .577 Nitro Express would be my choice if I could afford one, and was a PH over there...
 

tigris115

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There's definitely gonna be a comical scene where she falls flat as a board after firing a DG rifle for the first time.
Most Japanese girls in their 20’s weigh about the same as a double gun and a moderately packed day bag! Maybe a 450 Casull pistol would suit her better!
 

Muskox

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In my experience they all carry what they can get their hands on.

Same as Alaska, the Yukon and NWT.

I have friend that guide up North and I know plenty of PH's in Africa. The variety of rifle I have seen is astounding.

Browing A-Bolt, M70, M77, M700, Weatherby, Blaser R8 (Mutts Decker, her dad carried 700's), Musgrave Mauser 98, Howa 375, availability is the biggest factor.

Every caliber imaginable, exotic stuff like 577 NE, 9.3x64, 465 NE, and common things like 375, 458, 416 and so on.

1. What can they get?
2. What can they afford?
3. What can they get ammo for?
 

Nhoro

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In my experience they all carry what they can get their hands on.

Same as Alaska, the Yukon and NWT.

I have friend that guide up North and I know plenty of PH's in Africa. The variety of rifle I have seen is astounding.

Browing A-Bolt, M70, M77, M700, Weatherby, Blaser R8 (Mutts Decker, her dad carried 700's), Musgrave Mauser 98, Howa 375, availability is the biggest factor.

Every caliber imaginable, exotic stuff like 577 NE, 9.3x64, 465 NE, and common things like 375, 458, 416 and so on.

1. What can they get?
2. What can they afford?
3. What can they get ammo for?
Yes, by and large you are correct. So in Zimbabwe, 458 Lott in a CZ 550 or Winchester M 70 or Mauser/Whitworth etc are probably the most common. Then doubles in 470 NE or 500 NE. Then a sprinkling of 416 Rigby/Rem, 460 Weatherby and 458 Win Mag.

Most will avoid Weatherby actions and cant afford Blaser. So among PH's and apprentices, I have seen 1 Weatherby in 375 H&H and no Blasers. I have never seen a PH with a 577 NE, Rem 700 and only one Ruger M77(I think. memory is a little hazy, it was definately a Ruger with a claw extractor)

I think if given a choice, most PH's would either have a CZ 550 or Winchester M70 in 458 Lott (bolt action guys) or a Heym double in 470 or 500 NE. That seems to be the most popular choices. (Or maybe just my choices !)
 

Tokoloshe Safaris

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PH rifles actually used in our concession.

1-.470 Evans double
1-.470 George Gibbs double
1-.450-.400 Heym double.
1-.458 Lott CZ 550
2-.458 Win M-70 push feed
2-.404J CZ550
1-.404J Jefferies
1-.416R Rigby
1. English double 12ga. maker ?

I do not pretend to know what they would use if they could get there hands on any rifle available, but I have never heard one of them say that there dream rifle is a Blazer R-8. Nothing against the rifle, just a statement.
 

TSALA HUNTING SAFARIS

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I use .458 Lott in CZ and my son .416 Rigby also in CZ.Both excellent working rifles both with open sights even on wounded PG.

I am dreaming of a .500 Jeff in Blaser or a .500 NE in Heym or VC.
 

Tally-Ho HUNTING SAFARIS

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for me i use
blaser R8 416rem mag with burrus fas fire red dot reflex sight, on dangerous game back up
inter arms 375 H+H custom built with 2-8x 36 leuplod for plains game back up if needed, i hunted with this rifle since i was about 16 and it just feels like an extension of me
other PH's
375 ruger with burris fast fire red dot reflex sight
cz 375 H+H
cz 375 H+H
 

redriverjake

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1.Custom .458 Lott built on a CZ 550 action for DG backup

2. 375 H&H for everything else including any personal hunting I get to do.

Note: I almost have enough saved for a Heym 89b .500 NE .

Previously I’ve carried a .416 Rem mag, 470 NE Merkel , and a custom .500 A-2. I much prefer a double but the cost variable is the major consideration for most people. It is usually something that is either inherited or slowly worked up to. The CZ 550 in 458 Lott/win will probably be your most commonly encountered PH rifle. Looking forward to reading your story.
 

Peter Dafner

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Speaking of shotguns for leopards, how effective is the use of buckshot on them? I've heard varying opinions.
... I always use 12gauge shotgun with buckshot on Leopard follow up. So far, so good. 3 Leopards charged and went down with no problems.Rg. Peter
 

Peter Dafner

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I was wondering if there's a specific rifle type or caliber that the average African PH prefers to have by their side in an area with free roaming, healthy populations of dangerous game. I've seen bolt rifles a lot but some swear by doubles for their 1-2 punch so idk.

I'd especially love to get input from any real PH's on this site.
As active PH, I have used .458 bolt action for a couple of years and was very happy with it. Later on a .470 double for several years and for the last 15 years a .500 double... from 10 meters to 0 ... the best...:)
Obviously a lot depends on personal preference and practise...
 

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