Are you an active small game hunter? Maybe you’re just looking to get rid of some vermin around your property. Whatever the case, here are the best airguns for small game hunting in 2018.
For some, the summer is the time for rest and relaxation. Long days by the lakes, hiking through the woods, and swimming in the ocean. While all of this is well and good, it’s also the time where small game and vermin are most active.
Whether you’re a small game hunter who enjoys the challenge of small, quick-footed targets, or you’re trying to get rid of the vermin who are digging through your gardens, terrorizing your farm animals, and making nests under your house, airguns are a great way to do it.
Today, we’re going to be looking at some the best airguns for small game hunting.
Why Use An Airgun For Small Game?
Using an airgun might not be the first thing that you consider when you think about hunting. Most people think of loud shotguns, pistols, or at least a .22 rifle. When it comes to small game, however, airguns have a few considerable advantages over traditional guns.
The first advantage is that they’re quiet. The loudest noise that you’ll hear will be like a snap of the fingers. This ensures that you don’t give away your position, scare the other small game in the forest, hurt your ears, or irritate you neighbors.
Even small .22 rifles and pistols still make a loud cracking noise that can be heard for hundreds of yards around. Airguns, on the other, hand are whisper-quiet.
The second advantage of airguns is that they don’t damage your prey. One of the biggest problems you’ll experience when hunting small game with big guns is that the bullets will completely tear the animal apart.
This can cause your meat to get contaminated and leave you with an unusable corpse. Airguns shoot small BB’s and pellets which have the kinetic energy to kill almost any small game, but they’re not big enough to damage the meat.
Finally, BB’s are a lot cheaper than traditional ammo. You can buy a whole bucket of pellets or BB’s for a quarter of the price that it would cost to buy bullets. This means more time hunting and less time worry about wasting ammo.
The Best Airguns For Small Game Hunting
If you’re looking to hunt some small game, these are some of the best options on the market for you.
Max Velocity: 1450 fps
Barrel Length: 24”
Shot Capacity: 1
Action: Bolt action
Weight: 6.51 lbs.
The AirForce Condor is the most powerful airgun in production today. If you are looking for a clean shot that will kill with deadly force, then this is the rifle for you. Sure, it may have an expensive price tag, but you won’t be disappointed.
It is made with a Lothar Walther barrel which are known for their extreme dependability. According to the manufacturer’s site, this 24” barrel can shoot 1” groups at distances up to 50 yards.
Another feature that really makes this rifle stand out is that you can adjust the power from as low as 600 fps up to 1450 fps depending on the game you’re hunting and your distance from it. There are also plenty of accessories so you can personalize this rifle as much as you want.
Max Velocity: 1050 fps
Barrel Length: 17.7”
Shot Capacity: 14
Weight: 8.6 lbs.
If you’re looking for a flair of style the next time that you’re out small game hunting then the Hatsan Galatian is a great choice for you. It’s beautiful walnut stock has a classic look and feel. The ambidextrous thumb-hold in the stock makes holding and aiming this rifle incredibly easy as well.
One of our favorite features of this gun is that fact that it can hold up to 14 rounds, which means that you’re not having to constantly reload after every shot. When you’re hunting a bunch of squirrels, you’ll often be in a position where you have several good shots to take at once. A traditional one-shot airgun will severely limit your ability to do this.
Max Velocity: 820 fps
Barrel Length: 18.5”
Shot Capacity: 10
Weight: 7.7 lbs.
We were really impressed with this small gun. Even though the maximum velocity is only 820 fps, we found that this was more than enough to kill most small game and shoot a close grouping at distances up to 45 yards.
Our favorite thing about the BSA Scorpion is how ergonomic it is. Once you put this gun in your hands, it feels like it was made to be there. The grip has a wide base that tapers into a tight finger grip with a perfect trigger position. The butt fits perfectly under your arm and really helps you keep the rifle steady even when you’re moving so that all of your shots are tight and steady.
Max Velocity: 755 fps
Barrel Length: 7”
Shot Capacity: 1
Action: Break barrel
Weight: 3.2 lbs.
Sometimes, you don’t need a full-sized rifle. You just need to take care of a few vermin running around the farm while you’re doing your daily rounds. If this is the case, then the Diana RWS LP8 Magnum is the perfect fit for you. Despite its humble size, it really packs a punch, and can shoot accurately even as far as 30 yards away.
If you use lightweight alloy pellets, you can reach a max velocity of up to 755 fps which is really good considering that this is a lightweight pistol. To reload, simply snap the barrel open and pop in another pellet.
Max Velocity: 425 fps
Barrel Length: 6”
Shot Capacity: 10
Weight: 2.8 lbs.
When most people think of Smith and Wesson revolvers, they think of Dirty Harry. Despite its classic Smith and Wesson appearance, though, this is an incredibly lightweight air pistol that’s perfect for dispatching small game.
When you purchase this gun, you’ll get two 10-shot revolver magazines that can be easily swapped in and out. Once you use them both up, they can be fully reloaded within a matter of seconds. What we love most about this gun is how durable it is. It’s built from solid stainless steel and has a beautiful nickel finish.
The long 6” barrel gives you straight, accurate shots providing your aim in on point, and with a max velocity of 425 fps, you’ll be able to cleanly kill almost anything within a 25 – 30 yard range.
Final Tips For Buying An Airgun For Small Game Hunting
There you have it! These are some of the best airguns for small game hunting that you’ll find this year. If you’re looking for raw power and perfect accuracy, then the AirForce Ultimate Condor is your best bet by far. If you’re looking for a lowkey pistol that you can carry around the woods then the Smith and Wesson 686 is the perfect option.
The other airguns in this list are great in-betweens if you’re looking for something with a little more power than an air pistol, but without the expensive price tag of the Condor. Take a few minutes to consider your needs, hunting habits, and price range before you make your final decision.
An airgun is one of the best ways to ensure that you make clean, silent kills each and every time. You won’t disturb the neighbors, scare your prey, or have to worry about recoil. So what are you waiting for? Get out there and bring home some game!