Deer hunting with a 223

Discussion in 'AR15' started by usmale9112001, Aug 14, 2011.

  1. usmale9112001

    usmale9112001 G&G Newbie

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    I've heard pros and cons about using a 223 for hunting deer, the round was designed for killing humans, why wouldn't it kill a deer?
  2. CopperniX

    CopperniX 34th Infantry Div.

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    On the whole you could use a .223 if its legal in your area in some states I think its actually illegal. Anyways the reason most people don't is there are more effective calibers out there.
  3. Tha Dave

    Tha Dave G&G Enthusiast

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    aww crap here we go again.....
  4. Henri

    Henri G&G Newbie

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    Deer have been killed with a great many things, but varmint rounds should not be considered by ethical hunters who expect a clean harvest.
    I myself took a deer with a 9mm handgun. Dumbest, stupidest thing I ever did in the woods. I was an idiot, and I feel the same way about the .223 "hunters" of medium game.
  5. deadzero

    deadzero G&G Enthusiast Forum Contributor

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    every deer season it seems....

    this topic is like building a campfire with a gas can.....
  6. Rambo

    Rambo Your worst nightmare Forum Contributor

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    It is legal in Texas on deer and I have taken a doe there with a .223. I was hog hunting when my sister called and asked me to take a doe for her. Normally, I use a .30 cal for bigger game but then Texas deer would be considered small game compared to our northern deer. Haha
    If all I had was a .223 and didn't worry about the law, I could kill any animal in North America with it. It is especially deadly with a head shot.
  7. Sprout47

    Sprout47 G&G Newbie

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    It is legal in NY to hunt deer with any centerfire rifle round, which means technically you could even use a .17 HMR if you so desired.
  8. hemingway89

    hemingway89 G&G Enthusiast

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    not a .17hmr it would the 17remington or remingtonfireball. but my father shot a decent buck last year with his 223 and he said it was nasty. he did a heart shot and it totally messed up the deer. makes me almost think twice about what im gona use for deer. i just bought a 223 and a mosin both cheap ammo and shoot great. but the 223 is so much lighter and im gona be hunting new locations this year.
  9. Sprout47

    Sprout47 G&G Newbie

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    ^ you got it - I know nothing about those things lol

    I take my AR deer hunting all the time, easier to get through the woods and fairly confident in its ability.

    I will be taking my Rem 700 out this year though, just to be all proper and all. That and I have a new spot to hunt this year and will be able to take some longer shots.
  10. Tha Dave

    Tha Dave G&G Enthusiast

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    It is all about shot placement I have heard of deer being killed with .22 LR to the head, but that doenst make it right. If you have something bigger use that if all you have, you have no other option (like selling the .223 and buying something more humane) and its legal where you are than just make sure you put that round where it counts and do not rush the shot.

    I wonder what the odd this is a troll are??
  11. Sprout47

    Sprout47 G&G Newbie

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    ^ probably a, "I am new to guns and really want an AR but I don't have enough money to get a proper hunting rifle too so hopefully the internet can justify my decision to hunt deer with this."

    It really is an over done question that shows up A LOT - it should be a sticky that simply says.

    Q: Can I hunt deer with a .223?
    A: Yes, provided local laws allow you to hunt with a centerfire .22 caliber rifle you can legally and ethically hunt deer with a .223 rifle.

    Q: Can I cleanly kill a deer with a .223?
    A: Yes, a .223 is more than powerful enough to humanely kill a deer and ultimately shot placement is what determines a clean kill regardless of caliber.

    Q: Are there better rounds more suited for hunting deer?
    A: Yes, there are better choices than the .223 for hunting deer but in the end there is no replacement for marksmanship and hitting the deer in the vitals. A .30 caliber to the hind-end of a deer is less effective that a .22 caliber to the heart/lung cavity.
  12. bobvonb

    bobvonb G&G Enthusiast

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    I think this says it all. It was designed for killing humans, and further it has been said that it roughly takes the same to kill a deer as a human.

    The problem is the .223 has been shown to NOT be effective in many cases for it's primary function. It's called a 'poodle shooter' for a reason. There is a reason those in the military that can use the .308 or other larger rounds.

    Further, the AR (and by this I mean the combination of the platform and the .223 round) was designed to be able to put a lot of lead downrange as part of it's primary function. If you (not personally) need that feature for deer hunting I don't want to be in the same county during hunting season. In other words, it wasn't designed for a single shot kill scenario.

    Yes, it sometimes works, but sometimes it doesn't. Why not use something that works a lot more of the time.

    I'm all for the AR platform. It's great for fun shooting, competition, SHTF, Zombie hunting, and so forth. I just don't think it's appropriate for deer hunting (in .223). Get a 6.8 SPC or AR 10 variant.
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2011
  13. nathangdad

    nathangdad G&G Newbie

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    Personally, and I know this will draw comments

    I consider the .223 inadequate for deer and I feel it was treason to put it into combat.
  14. Piper17

    Piper17 Suspended

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    You could hunt mule deer with a 9422 Winchester in .22 Magnum as I've known in the 1970s when that rifle came out.

    The .223 is a big step above a .22 Magnum so I couldn't argue against it. I know (knew) an Army officer who routinely used a .22-250 to bring home his buck in the states.

    I'd feel better with a .243 or 6mm Remington or .250 Savage or .257 Roberts or .25-06 for deer and probably rather have one of these than anything bigger. The .22 or .223 is a bit light and under the right circumstances it certainly can work just fine. But under less forgiving circumstances it could turn into a memorable nightmare.
  15. Alan Duke

    Alan Duke G&G Enthusiast

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    Actually the .17 HMR is a rimfire round. I love mine, but would never consider using it on even our small TX deer even though its dead acurate.
  16. srt 10 jimbo

    srt 10 jimbo G&G Enthusiast Forum Contributor

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    Hell, the Deer down here are so small you can take em with a slingshot.
  17. KeithT1967

    KeithT1967 G&G Newbie

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    It amazes me how easily people accept the idea of standard military small arms being designed to kill. They aren't, plain and simple. They're intended to suppress, demoralize, and cause casualties. Ever notice Military Sniper rifles aren't chambered in .223? Snipers Suppress, demoralize and Kill, Soldiers and Marines suppress, demoralize, and cause casualties.

    If your intent is to scare a deer spray the woods with a Ruger 10/22. Trust me, if you do it you'll make deer retreat at a speed that rivals the Allies in 1940 and your advance through the woods will be unimpeded. If you want to kill a deer use a round capable of doing it cleanly and quickly even if your shot placement isn't perfect. That criteria eliminates the .223. IMO the minimum deer round in most situations is a 30-30.
  18. Piper17

    Piper17 Suspended

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    And the .30-30 is a darn good one!
  19. DaTeacha

    DaTeacha Things are not what they seem. Forum Contributor

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    The 5.56 round was designed to incapacitate a human, taking him out of the fight but necessitating a couple of his buddies to help him, effectively taking them out of the fight, too. Killing the target is secondary to taking as many of the enemy out of the fight as possible as quickly as possible.

    Since deer don't seem to worry about each other too much, and definitely don't help out a wounded buddy, I suggest something a bit more serious, even for small whitetails. As hunters, it is our responsibility to kill the game as quickly and humanely as possible with minimal damage to the meat. The 5.56/223 does not do that as well as something like a 6mm.

    Legal? Yes, in some areas. Ethical? Only in the hands of a very good shot who has the self control to only shoot when an excellent opportunity for a one shot kill presents itself.
  20. cooker300

    cooker300 G&G Enthusiast

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    Will it work yes

    isit practial no

    some places say that you have to use a .243 cal
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2011
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