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  #1  
Old 11-27-2019, 6:36 PM
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Default Which Co2 Air Rifle for Squirrels?

I'm in an urban area, neighbors on both sides but not in the back. Squirrels are disturbing wife's potted plants, and they are gnawing on my cedar shake siding. We both found them guilty and imposed the death penalty on them, but now I have to carry it out.

I tag them now and then with my Daisy Red Ryder BB gun, but that just trains them to scatter when they hear me coming. I score on them but it just stings them. I need a .177 pellet gun with these requirements: semi-auto (multiple shots), Co2, rifle.

They move fast once alerted so I need quick followup shots when feasible; no bolt action, no hand pumping, no hand loading of individual shots. It'll be short range shooting...probably 10-15 yards 95% of the time.

Please recommend a couple of makes and models for me....much appreciated. I prefer the 12 gram cartridge just 'cause it is cheaper and easier to find, but how long will it hold a charge in the rifle?
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Old 11-27-2019, 6:40 PM
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I love my Benjamin Regal Nitro Piston. One shot, but I’ve managed to learn all the urban wildlife in my area one shot at a time. Internally suppressed to keep the neighbors in the dark. Enough oomph to drop a fuzzy rat.
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Old 11-27-2019, 7:04 PM
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Doesn't fit the rapid fire requirements but my Walther 1000 is one shot one kill at 50 yards with squirrels at my place.
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Old 11-27-2019, 7:35 PM
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Consider some pellet guns are suppressed. Really quiet.

Pyramid air is one shop to take a look at for ideas
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  #5  
Old 11-28-2019, 3:44 PM
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Sorry, a CO2 gun won't do it. They don't hold air for long. So unless you're constantly changing out the cartridges, it'll be dead when you need it most. Good luck spending the time change out the dead cartridge for a new one when seconds count.

Your best bet is a PCP. But that costs serious money between the gun and the compressor.

So realistically, a piston break barrel is your best option. It can hold air a long time and is quick to charge and load. I recommend any brand based on the Nitro Piston 2 technology. Make sure it has a shrouded barrel and/or suppressor at the muzzle.

Get a .22 pellet gun. Much more hitting power and much more quiet than a .177. One shot will eliminate the squirrel. No need for semi-auto.

It you're shooting up against the house, you'll want a pump action to tailor the charge so you won't put holes all over your siding. Something along the lines of a Crosman 2100 Classic or a Crosman 1322 with buttstock.

All 3 have their place.

Lastly, if your longest shots are only 10 yards, and you're shooting at fast moving targets and/or don't want collateral damage, consider the Gamo Viper Express air shotgun.
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  #6  
Old 11-29-2019, 8:47 AM
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Squirrels are challenging targets to hit, they run at any sound or threat of danger. I was only able to get them if they happen to cross my sights when I was target practicing or from far 25 yards or more. My last kill was head shot 32 Yards away with a Springer. I use Beeman HW97K and Hatsan AT44 both in .22 and Hawke scopes. Like the last post wrote, you have to have your Air Rifle ready to go or the Squirrel will leave. Good luck and have fun
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Old 11-29-2019, 8:53 AM
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I have a Benjamin 22 caliber pump action. Works great!
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Old 11-29-2019, 9:44 AM
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I use CB Shorts. Accurate out to 50 yards and as quiet as any pellet or bb gun
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Old 11-29-2019, 10:02 AM
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Don't try a PCP rifle. Just don't. Because if you do, you'll get one and be kicking yourself for all the time you avoided trying one. Seriously.

Now if you do try one, try the Benjamin Marauder .22 caliber. Virtually silent. Great for squirrels within 60 yards. Easy to get ammo. And you can charge it up with a manual pump. The .22 gets about 32 shots per air fill. The magazine holds 10 pellets and the action is consistent with that of a bolt action rifle.

Yes, I know you said "semi-automatic" because the squirrels run like heck when they hear you coming. But a semi isn't going to get you any more kills. You're going to have a lot of misses, and you may end up wounding with non-fatal hits. That's just not humane. When you take the shot, make the kill. The Marauder will do exactly that with devastating results. One-hole groups within 15 yards is very possible if you do your job right. Scoping it is simple too. The PCP rifles are compatible with powder-burners so a scope you'd use on your .308 is fine with any PCP air rifle. (A break-action springer air rifle will tear that same scope apart though so you'd need a springer-compatible scope for that kind of rifle.)

Within 50 yards, accurate as heck! The pests, rats included, will not like you. That's a sure thing. And once your pesting is done, you can enjoy playing with your Marauder quietly while your neighborhood is ruined by all the new houses.
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Last edited by Rivers; 11-29-2019 at 10:40 AM..
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Old 11-29-2019, 11:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rivers View Post
Don't try a PCP rifle. Just don't. Because if you do, you'll get one and be kicking yourself for all the time you avoided trying one. Seriously.

Now if you do try one, try the Benjamin Marauder .22 caliber. Virtually silent. Great for squirrels within 60 yards. Easy to get ammo. And you can charge it up with a manual pump. The .22 gets about 32 shots per air fill. The magazine holds 10 pellets and the action is consistent with that of a bolt action rifle.

Yes, I know you said "semi-automatic" because the squirrels run like heck when they hear you coming. But a semi isn't going to get you any more kills. You're going to have a lot of misses, and you may end up wounding with non-fatal hits. That's just not humane. When you take the shot, make the kill. The Marauder will do exactly that with devastating results. One-hole groups within 15 yards is very possible if you do your job right. Scoping it is simple too. The PCP rifles are compatible with powder-burners so a scope you'd use on your .308 is fine with any PCP air rifle. (A break-action springer air rifle will tear that same scope apart though so you'd need a springer-compatible scope for that kind of rifle.)

Within 50 yards, accurate as heck! The pests, rats included, will not like you. That's a sure thing. And once your pesting is done, you can enjoy playing with your Marauder quietly while your neighborhood is ruined by all the new houses.
After I got my first PCP all my Springers and Nitro Pistons went for sale except the for the Beeman HW97K. PCPs are the way to go.
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Old 11-30-2019, 11:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roush2win View Post
After I got my first PCP all my Springers and Nitro Pistons went for sale except the for the Beeman HW97K. PCPs are the way to go.
Hey, newbie to air guns here but not to rimfire, smokepoles, and centerfire, so spare the acronyms, please. What does PCP stand for? "Probable Cause for Punishment"?
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Old 11-30-2019, 12:49 PM
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If tree squirrels get the airgun to go with your hunting license. Or get a depredation permit. (good luck with that)
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Old 11-30-2019, 1:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Go Navy View Post
Hey, newbie to air guns here but not to rimfire, smokepoles, and centerfire, so spare the acronyms, please. What does PCP stand for? "Probable Cause for Punishment"?
Google it. Pre-Charged-Pneumatic.
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Old 11-30-2019, 3:49 PM
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If tree squirrels get the airgun to go with your hunting license. Or get a depredation permit. (good luck with that)
You've got to be kidding!
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Old 12-01-2019, 10:35 AM
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Quote:
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You've got to be kidding!
Did you forget that this is California? Errr, used to be California. Now Kalifornia.
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Old 12-01-2019, 12:24 PM
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I've never seen anything that worked better than one of those 177 caliber Gamo whispers. They're on sale at big 5 all the time and they shoot very quickly. Just don't get caught. The popo would not approve.
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Old 12-01-2019, 4:03 PM
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If tree squirrels get the airgun to go with your hunting license. Or get a depredation permit. (good luck with that)
So, is a hunting license required to shoot any squirrel or just "tree squirrels"? I don't even know what a tree squirrel is. They all look the same to me and mine are all over the place: ground, fence tops, roofs, and trees.

Do I need a "Squirrel Tag", and what is the season for squirrels?

And, a squirrel is a type of rat in terms of DNA.
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Old 12-02-2019, 2:12 PM
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CO2 is a tough one to recommend, but you could try a Crosman 1077 which is one shot per trigger pull (DAO really, rotating cylinder disc). Not real powerful. The cheap PCP version is more powerful. They are both accurate with Crosman wadcutters.

Honestly, the Umarex Steel Force would probably destroy some squirrels with 6 round burst or semi and might just be accurate enough. BB's.
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Old 12-03-2019, 1:56 PM
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You need a better shot, not a better gun. 10-15 yards, you should be aiming for the head instead of the body. That will knock them out and then you can finish them off and throw them in the trash.
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Old 12-03-2019, 2:10 PM
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You need a better shot, not a better gun. 10-15 yards, you should be aiming for the head instead of the body. That will knock them out and then you can finish them off and throw them in the trash.
I'll try that next time with my Daisy BB gun, but it has a pretty loopy trajectory. I think the manufacturer has put weaker springs in them to comply with their own legal department risk warnings. When I was a kid, I had one then with which I could knock starlings off a power line across the road. Now, I'd have to hold high by some unknown amount, and the terminal energy would be much less.

I think even a lower powered pellet rifle would hit harder than my BB gun.
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Old 12-03-2019, 3:57 PM
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I'll try that next time with my Daisy BB gun, but it has a pretty loopy trajectory.
Yeah with averages 200-300 fps I wouldn't expect much. If you shoot a CO2 that propels a .177 wadcutter pellet or game point, et... at 600 fps it is a different level of killing power and flat trajectory at your ranges. Shot placement doesn't really matter that much if the BB bounces off a squirrel eyelid. PCP version, maybe 700 FPS more consistently if you keep it in the green pressure zone.

More serious pellet rifles would be single shot 900-1200 with .177.

IMHO, the 1077 or Steel Force are what you asked for.
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Old 12-03-2019, 4:17 PM
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If I decide, instead, to shy away from Co2 powered air rifles, and instead focus on nitro piston types, two questions:

1. Pros and cons of the underbarrel cocking lever types?

2. Which model/brand of nitro piston types offers the lowest cocking effort? I'm not interested in super high velocity; there won't be any competition target shooting, just "educating" squirrels (in some cases, their final lesson). I'm getting older and while I'm in decent shape, I don't want something with a lot of effort.
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Old 12-03-2019, 4:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Go Navy View Post
If I decide, instead, to shy away from Co2 powered air rifles, and instead focus on nitro piston types, two questions:

1. Pros and cons of the underbarrel cocking lever types?
They are single shot. You have to pull the gun way off the target area and off your cheek weld to cock it and load another pellet each time. I have a Benjamin Trail Nitro Piston .22. PRO would be killing a squirrel if you can hit it the first shot, good power.
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Old 12-03-2019, 4:26 PM
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try looking up game mammals in ca/dfw. There are restrictions on what you think you can do.
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Old 12-06-2019, 12:29 PM
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1. In CA, if you hunt anything, you need to have a hunting license
2. In San Jose for example, you cannot discharge ANY kind of weapon in incorporated areas as much as i know, but you better check your city ordinances.

Your best bet is poisoning or trapping them unless you want to take a chance with your vocal neighbors. Not all the squirrels are going to die on your property, some might be wounded and die on the neighbors with a bloody wound. They might call the police.
Think about it.

On another note, Gamo Big Cat is a nice educator for your purposes
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Old 12-06-2019, 2:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boarhuntor View Post
1. In CA, if you hunt anything, you need to have a hunting license
2. In San Jose for example, you cannot discharge ANY kind of weapon in incorporated areas as much as i know, but you better check your city ordinances.

Your best bet is poisoning or trapping them unless you want to take a chance with your vocal neighbors. Not all the squirrels are going to die on your property, some might be wounded and die on the neighbors with a bloody wound. They might call the police.
Think about it.

On another note, Gamo Big Cat is a nice educator for your purposes
Thanks, that helps. Does rat poison work on them? I bought a battery powered gizmo called Rat Zapper, and dealt with three of them, and then the gizmo died. It really isn't designed for 24/7 outdoor use. I couldn't even take it apart without busting it.
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