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  #1  
Old 02-24-2012, 05:07 PM
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Default Home Defense Round: Bird Shot?

I have .44SPLs around the house and have the first round up bird shot over 8.5 of unique, PLENTY of go-power. The next 5 are Cor-Bon 180s(?), I think they are no longer made.

I figured that at night in the dark the bird shot MIGHT be the way to go as a few 'shot' that hits the BG would give me time to adjust. What do ya'll think ? Thanks-Dan
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Old 02-24-2012, 05:32 PM
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Don't waste your time on something that's likely to not immediately incapacitate. At home defense distances, you're not going to benefit much if any from the alleged spread of the pattern.

You've got at most six shots before you have to reload. Why waste one of them?

For home defense in my 4" 29-2, I use Speer 200g. Gold Dot .44 Specials.
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Old 02-24-2012, 05:36 PM
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With respect, I think you are very wrong in your choice of the first shot.

Yes, birdshot may discourage a burglar or home invader, but it may not. Shot in the face or eye, perhaps, even probably, but you're talking about correcting for the second shot or even subsequent shots.

I think the first shot, if it needs to be fired at all, should be one that will probably stop if placed in the right spot. Remember, the burglar may be armed and firing, too.

Make the first one a round that will, if placed properly, end the affair.

Bob

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Old 02-24-2012, 05:46 PM
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Having been shot with birdshot myself, low base load out of a 12 gauge, like the others have said, I think it would be a waste of a round.

A friend of mine was also hit with birdshot and while I wasn't there at the time, I had the honor of digging it out of him with tweezers later that night. What are friends for eh?
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Old 02-24-2012, 06:33 PM
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Thanks for the advice. I hope others have input as well although I'm pretty well shot down so far...dan
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Old 02-24-2012, 06:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dewey View Post
Thanks for the advice. I hope others have input as well although I'm pretty well shot down so far...dan
Better to be shot down than shot, even with birdshot.

Take my word for it.........
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Old 02-24-2012, 07:13 PM
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Keep in mind that if you shoot an intruder with handloaded ammo, it may become an issue if/when the perp decides to sue you. This is especially true if you blind him/her with a blast of birdshot to the face, something that is very likely.

I wouldn't keep birdshot in my 12 gauge as a home defense round, much less in a handgun.
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Old 02-24-2012, 07:18 PM
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IMHO your first round should be a stopper. With muzzle flash in a dark house you may not get a second shot.
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Old 02-24-2012, 07:28 PM
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what your trying to afford with a rat shot load just isnt in the budget.
the time between contact and your second shot (because your first was useless) just gave your adversary time to show you how its done properly with two where your vital organs used to be.
warning shots, spoilers, and anything making an attempt to "soften" rather than flatten a target are just a waste of ammo capacity that you might need, particularly if he brought friends, which is often the case lately
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Old 02-24-2012, 07:46 PM
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Quote:
I figured that at night in the dark the bird shot MIGHT be the way to go as a few 'shot' that hits the BG would give me time to adjust.

Adjust?
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Old 02-24-2012, 08:18 PM
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It generally takes a very major trauma to stop an aggressive, determined, and very possibly drunk or high, human being. Think about the very nature of someone who has forcefully and unlawfully entered your home. This person has already made the decision to enter YOUR space, perhaps knowing full well that you and/or your loved ones are at home. And you'd better believe this person has at least made some cognizant evaluation of the potential consequences for the act he is perpetrating. It's very likely that this person does not fear you or your gun at all. This person is counting on his aggressive and very violent nature to force you and your family to submit to his invasion of your space.

With some basic understanding of the kind of threat we are dealing with here, we can now make a reasonable estimate of what it might take to neutralize a person in this psychological/physiological state. I don't think I would rely on a load of birdshot to get the job done.
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Old 02-24-2012, 08:45 PM
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Lightbulb YOU ARE ALL CORRECT

the bird shot comes out Now. Thanks To All.
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Old 02-28-2012, 08:46 PM
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When I was 12 years old I learned about the ineffectiveness of birdshot. My Mom and Dad owned a business property on the outskirts of a small town. Part of that business was a coin operated car wash. It was about one o'clock in the morning when I was awoken by loud noises coming from the direction of the carwash. Dad and I discovered two reprobates with a sledge hammer trying to bust the coin box out of the wall. Dad kept them cornered while mom called the Sheriff's Department. Rural county...small town...wee hours of the morning...after several calls no one showed up. The miscreants were building up their courage and threatening my dad who was holding a pump .22 rifle on them. Dad finally backed off and told them to leave. The rifle was loaded with .22 birdshot and he realized he was under gunned.

He used to sing the praises of how .22 birdshot was the perfect self defense round. You could stop people from doing bad things without killing them. After that incident the gun at the ready was a J.C. Higgins pump 12 gauge loaded with 00 buck. I guess he just moved up to shot for bigger birds.
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Old 05-11-2015, 10:24 PM
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Don't do it! Birdshot is for the air. Buckshot is for the ground.
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Old 05-11-2015, 10:51 PM
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This is over three Years old... I hope the OP has made his decision by now!!!
Gulfecho... How did you find this Zombie thread???
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Old 05-11-2015, 11:08 PM
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It's still relevant. I hate to hear of good folks making mistakes. By the way, how did you find this thread sir?
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Old 05-11-2015, 11:23 PM
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Quote:
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It's still relevant. I hate to hear of good folks making mistakes.
Be That As It May...That still doesn't say how you found it. Google search?
Quote:
By the way, how did you find this thread sir?
It was at the top of the 'unread' list, because someone dug through 3Y/O subject lines and decided it needed to be resurrected.

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Old 05-12-2015, 12:30 AM
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I am not that sophisticated but thanks for your comments sir!
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Old 05-12-2015, 12:34 AM
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I am not that sophisticated but thanks for your comments sir!
and you STILL haven't said what you went through to dig this out of the graveyard.
I'd truly like to know.
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Old 05-12-2015, 12:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cmort666 View Post
Don't waste your time on something that's likely to not immediately incapacitate. At home defense distances, you're not going to benefit much if any from the alleged spread of the pattern.

You've got at most six shots before you have to reload. Why waste one of them?

For home defense in my 4" 29-2, I use Speer 200g. Gold Dot .44 Specials.
NOW THAT RIGHT THERE IS A SENSIBLE PLAN ! ! !
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Old 05-12-2015, 05:54 AM
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First for HD a shotgun is probably the best weapon (wait for flak). Second if you want to use bird shot make wax slugs they are devastating at close range but there could be legal implications so stick with 00 buck and a good alarm system.
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Old 05-12-2015, 07:43 AM
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Yes, my home defense round is bird shot...if I'm attacked by birds!
Otherwise it's a Hornady Critical Defense round; fired from a Glock 23.
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Old 05-12-2015, 09:50 AM
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8 rounds of 00 buckshot from my Mossberg 500, followed by 8 rounds of Hornady .45 hollowpoints from my Sig 1911, followed by 5 rounds of +P .38 from my 642. If you get through that..we'll talk some more.
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Old 05-12-2015, 10:44 AM
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#4 shot OK, birdshot not so much.
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Old 05-12-2015, 11:27 AM
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8 rounds of 00 buckshot from my Mossberg 500, followed by 8 rounds of Hornady .45 hollowpoints from my Sig 1911, followed by 5 rounds of +P .38 from my 642. If you get through that..we'll talk some more.
If you get through all of that I'll let YOU do all the talking!
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Old 05-12-2015, 08:13 PM
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If you have to stand and fight - end it quickly before you get hurt or killed. Go for the center of mass with a round that give adequate penetration. Personally I would go with a 200 or 240 hp load.
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Old 05-12-2015, 08:29 PM
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If you fell the need for a scatter gun, get a scatter gun and put buckshot in it. I see your point of a hit being better than a miss, so I say get a hit that will count. Get a shotgun, load it with buckshot. If you're committed to a handgun, I've heard good things about 000 buckshot in the Judge, but can't speak from experience.
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Old 05-12-2015, 08:49 PM
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I think you would be very displeased with the pattern out of your revolver.
My Home defense is a .44 magnum S&W model 629 with Crimson Trace laser grips and a small but very bright flashlight jury rigged to the underside of the barrel. I have both good light to get a POSITIVE id of the target and the red dot to place my shot. I have been using this set up for many years and I practice with it often. Needless to say it is not loaded with bird shot!
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Old 05-12-2015, 09:43 PM
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ZOMBIE THREAD!!! ZOMBIE THREAD!!!
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Old 05-14-2015, 11:37 AM
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Unless you are being broken into by Tweetie Bird and his friends, I would NOT load Birdshot in a Home Defense gun. I like 2 3/4" #1 Buck for HD use.
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Old 05-14-2015, 11:44 AM
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Unless you are being broken into by Tweetie Bird and his friends, I would NOT load Birdshot in a Home Defense gun.
+1
Keep the bird shot for birds.
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Old 05-14-2015, 09:13 PM
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Couldn't agree more, bird shot is for the birds!
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Old 05-14-2015, 10:23 PM
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Default Home Defense Round: Bird Shot?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Protected One View Post
Yes, my home defense round is bird shot...if I'm attacked by birds!

Otherwise it's a Hornady Critical Defense round; fired from a Glock 23.

I've loaded .44 special shot rounds, and I wouldn't use it on birds. The patterns were so weak, you could miss a sitting duck at 5 yards..

On the other hand, a 12 gauge load of 7 1/2s is devastating at home defense ranges (unless you live in a really big house.). Even buckshot can penetrate drywall.

Last edited by jtcarm; 05-14-2015 at 10:25 PM.
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Old 05-15-2015, 09:58 PM
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Why do ammunition manufacturers produce buck shot for HD?
There are no 7 1/2 birdshot loads manufactured for HD to my knowledge. Can birdshot be effective for HD? Can a .22? Play devil's advocate. Its fun!
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Old 05-15-2015, 10:18 PM
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They can be effective. They are suboptimal at best. The .22 should only be used if you have no ability to shoot a more serious round (which likely includes my wife) or nothing else available. As for birdshot, hell no. Although the shot will be very close together and one must in fact aim, the penetration is inadequate. An offender wearing any kind of coat is far too likely to have ineffective wounds.

Over-penetration is generally not at all the problem that has been portrayed, at least if one is using duty ammo that meets the standard and has been tested and proven to do so. If you are really concerned about the risk in a residential setting, the best answer out there (other than "don't miss") is 5.56X45 duty ammo.
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Old 02-22-2017, 10:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RobzGuns View Post
This is over three Years old... I hope the OP has made his decision by now!!!
Gulfecho... How did you find this Zombie thread???
Topics that are on "old threads" are not old to everyone - there are new members joining us all the time.

It's not difficult to find a old thread. Just go to the "search" pull down and type your subject in the window.
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Old 03-02-2017, 01:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Protected One View Post
Topics that are on "old threads" are not old to everyone - there are new members joining us all the time.

It's not difficult to find a old thread. Just go to the "search" pull down and type your subject in the window.
It's a "no win" situation.

If you bring up a dead thread you get criticized for it. If you start a new one on the same subject you get told that has been discussed a million times so use the search or my favorite: "Google is your Friend"

I am 99.99% sure that there is not one topic or question that has not been asked and not on the interweb somewhere.

The internet is now closed!
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Old 03-02-2017, 02:06 PM
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It isn't uncommon while doing a Google search for the search to bring up a thread/post on a forum that is many years old. I have seen several searches that brought up articles from 2009. The prices and other things made me look at the time of the post.
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Old 03-02-2017, 02:24 PM
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I was an ER nurse for many years, and so quite a few gunshot wound victims during my tenure. I remember during the early 1980s several gun writers were advocating the use of bird shot in shotguns for home defense. The primary benefit was supposed to be causing a serious wound with a limited possibility of over penetration.

I also recall a young man who decided to kill himself, placed the muzzle of a loaded 12 gauge shotgun against his belly, and then reached down and pressed the trigger. Yep, he had loaded the piece with a round of 7.5 shot - though I don't know if he had ever read, or heard about the recommendations from the gun writers. His actions created a surgically irreparable wound, and he lingered for a while before finally expiring. This happened in a small, rural Texas town, and the police, with the quiet agreement of the district attorney, stated that the kid probably accidentally shot himself while cleaning the shotgun (this was done to spare his family any further pain from their loss).

My conclusion was that bird shot is fine for birds, but as far as for antipersonnel purposes, I'd stay with buckshot - preferably #4.

Regards,

Dave
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Old 03-02-2017, 03:34 PM
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Exclamation That's for the birds ...

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Originally Posted by Double-O-Dave View Post
... My conclusion was that bird shot is fine for birds, but as far as for antipersonnel purposes, I'd stay with buckshot...
Dave
Birdshot is for birds, rats, and snakes. And even for them buckshot is more humane.

digiroc
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Old 03-22-2017, 11:07 AM
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THIS video is why I say Birdshot is for the Birds!
Brave Student Stops Active Shooter on Campus - Bing video
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Old 03-26-2017, 03:14 PM
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My go to Home Defense semi's are a Para P14 stainless, a Springffield XD 9mm subcompact and an M4E1 14" Aero Precision.
I like the Hornady Critical Defense rounds in my 9mm and 45. My Aero mags gets soft points that I load..
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Old 03-26-2017, 03:19 PM
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I have .44SPLs around the house and have the first round up bird shot over 8.5 of unique, PLENTY of go-power. The next 5 are Cor-Bon 180s(?), I think they are no longer made.

I figured that at night in the dark the bird shot MIGHT be the way to go as a few 'shot' that hits the BG would give me time to adjust. What do ya'll think ? Thanks-Dan
No! If your life is in danger you should shoot to kill, don't waste a round that you may need.
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Old 03-26-2017, 03:24 PM
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"Ladies and Gentlemen of the jury. The defendant says he was trying to defend his life. The police found hundreds of bullets made for self defense in his house. But he did not use them. He chose to shoot my client in the face with a homemade cartridge that could not possibly kill, only blind. What do you think he was trying to accomplish?"
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Old 03-26-2017, 09:51 PM
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Originally Posted by digiroc View Post
Birdshot is for birds, rats, and snakes. And even for them buckshot is more humane.

digiroc
I can tell you're not a hunter. You'll get far more pellets in the vitals, thus far quicker kills with "birdshot" than you'll get with buckshot at just about any hunting range on birds, rats or snakes.
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Old 04-01-2017, 02:33 PM
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An example of why one should not use birdshot and the like for any serious purpose. I'll admit I have some for revolvers, if for some reason I were to go hiking in some of the areas around here that have a higher likelihood of buzztails, but other than that, no, NO NO. If you are tempted to do so, pay someone to administer slap therapy until you are un(screwed).

Police: Man shoots St. Bernard in self defense

"A man shot a St. Bernard with a revolver on Thursday, police say.

The man was walking his dogs at about 4 p.m. in the 2300 block of East 39th Street when he was confronted by two other threatening dogs, according to a police report.

The man told police he attempted to scare the dogs off, but a St. Bernard growled at him and lunged at his face.

Police say the man put his left arm in front of his face, as one of the dogs bit him.

He then pulled a gun from his pocket and shot at the lunging dog, which did not sustain any visible injuries.

The man told police the rounds from his revolver were "birdshot," or very small shotgun shells.

The man had broken skin and holes in his clothes from the bite.

The St. Bernard's owner claimed the dog, whose name is Sochi, was in the back yard at the time of the incident, but a witness said he heard the shot and saw a large, fluffy dog in the street.

The Animal Rescue League was called to the scene of the accident."

CLOWNSHOES. Utterly clownshoes.
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Old 04-01-2017, 07:25 PM
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The local PD wants to use our shooting range for qualifications. During the brief conversation I asked about what they would shoot. They want to use pistol, rifle and shotgun. I asked what rounds they used with the shotgun because we have specific location for slugs and buck shot. The Sargent pulled two rounds right out of his gun to show me. Sure enough, one was marked #7 1/2 right on the case. He was none too pleased when I pointed it out to him.

I suspect they did a thorough inventory of their rounds that evening.
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Old 04-01-2017, 07:30 PM
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"A man shot a St. Bernard with a revolver on Thursday, police say."
If it was a revolver, then it wasn't even bird shot; it was snake shot.



These things are worse than useless against anything larger than a mouse, and not very effective on them. They are designed to have a very wide pattern at only 5' away. This is because snakes are very small. I'm not convinced they would even slow a snake down unless you're right on top of the snake and who want's to be there?
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Old 04-01-2017, 08:12 PM
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RASTOFF:

I've had a pack of 10 of those CCI-SPEER .38/.357 shotshells for quite a while... 1/4 oz. #9 shot with 135 pellets. I've only used a couple of them over the years to shoo varmints out of my pole building shop so I don't put holes in the steel walls with a REAL load. They barely ruffle the fur of the unwanted critters and don't even chip the surface of the coated steel. Scares the hell out of them, though, and gives me a chance to put them down when they high-tail it across the yard. Follow-up with #4 Buck from an 870 does the job. It's also the formula for two-legged varmints.

Ain't the country life great?
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