If you're a frequent reader of the EDgun Leshiy site, or follow along on YouTube or Instagram, you're well aware of the over population of squirrels within my yard. While not a pest species, when the population explodes, they can cause quite a bit of damage looking for food and shelter. It's a trickle down effect from there... holes in trash cans bring mice, rats... rats bring raccoons, opossums, etc.
I've learned quite a bit about squirrel hunting / pest control with an airgun, in this case the EDgun Leshiy. I decided to make a Top 5 squirrel hunting tips video, as what I thought was obvious in retrospect... might not be to everyone, as some of these were new to me, and learned through experience.Squirrel Hunting Tip #5: Use Bait
The use of bait, especially for backyard airgun hunting (ideally with the EDgun Leshiy ;)) slows these guys down. They are constantly moving around, and with a small kill-zone, the slightest movement can be the difference between a clean ethical kill and a runner.Squirrel Hunting Tip #4: Best Caliber
This one shouldn't come as a surprise, but just in case you're on the fence (get it? what the video...) about the right airgun caliber for shooting squirrels, this one is for you. The EDgun Leshiy in .25 is just a devastating pellet. The concussion alone is enough to kill a squirrel. It gives flexibility not for an intentionally poor shot, but one that might drift a bit for whatever reason. Squirrel Hunting Tip #3: Tune your Airgun Down
This tip was one I gathered through lots of trial and error. Early on, I grossly underestimated the power a modern day airgun. These ARE NOT toys! I did what everyone else did... watch youtube and tuned my EDgun Leshiy (and others) to 30-40 ft/lbs. While it's certainly effective, I was still getting some runners every once and awhile. Naturally I turned it up, but quickly came back down based on the added noise. Being ultra quiet is what first got me into the low power tune. I would read about all the UK folks and they would kill tons of stuff, squirrels included at sub 12ft/lbs. What was different for me was I wanted to use the EDgun Leshiy in the .25 caliber. What I ultimately found was that a larger percentage of the available power was being dumped into the squirrel vs a high power tune.
I go into a lot of detail here the process I took to tuning the .25 into a low power machine: https://www.edgunleshiy.com/blog/2018/9/11/revisiting-backyard-friendly-airgun-tuning/Squirrel Hunting Tip #2: Safe Backdrop
This tip kind of goes hand in hand with #3. I always assume the pellet is going to pass-through, even in a low power tune! It's super important we as airgunners by into this. Backyard airgun shooting is a privilege... don't be that guy that's resting on it being your right. Be safe, show patience when needed, and you'll be rewarded.Squirrel Hunting Tip #1: Shot Placement
Shot placement is my #1 Tip. This tip is within the context of the EDgun Leshiy in .25, and a low power tune. A shot into the vitals is certainly an ethical way of taking a squirrel, so I'm not saying that. I just find it requires a little more punch to get through the shoulder/ribs.
The first ideal shot is between the ear and eyes... where you want to miss closer to the ear then the eye. Even a shot right through the ears depending on the angle will be instant. A shot through the eyes will work, but often leads to a little jumping if it drifts towards the nose. This is exactly why the .25 though is perfect... if you get a little drift, the concussion alone is enough to drop it.
When a squirrel is looking right at you, another great option (with the .25) is between the eyes. This is a pretty wide target, as the pellet will travel through the full brain, and out the neck... shutting down the nervous system instantly. This shot, if just above the nose between the eyes, also usually has limited or no pass-through. Again, always assume it will, but in the context of dumping maximum energy into the squirrel... this shot placement will accomplish that.
That's my top 5! Did I miss one? Comment below, or within the video and let me know.