Every experiment needs a control. I’ve been shooting expanding hunting pellets for a while, and they’ve done their job as advertized. What would the opposite of an expanding pellet do?

The baracuda power is designed for penetration. I would bet that if I attempted a penetration test, this would be the 2nd best, next to the Eunjin pointed. Reason why it’s not number 1? The Eunjin 32gr has a sharper point and is heavier. One distinct advantage the baracuda power has over other pellets is it’s copper plating. Any lead pellet will deform when it contacts bone. Copper on the other hand is much harder, so it resists stopping better. 

The hunt

As I was walking my daily loop, I could hear something running through the leaves. I went to def con 2 and began scanning for any contact. Out of my peripheral vision, I saw the tell tell sign of a squirrel manifested in a curious, alerted tail flicking about eye level on a nearby tree. I did not have a good shot, so I waited for him to move. Once he was out of sight, I repositioned to a sitting position. He knew I was there, but didn’t know if I was a threat. 

25 yards. Top of the shoulder. Solid smack. Pellet cuts through several leaves behind the squirrel. He hung onto the tree for seconds before he detatched and ran about 5 yards. I hurriedly ran to the squirrel to find him in his final moments. 

Pellet entered in front of the shoulder (bottom), exited shoulder to armpit, exited opposing armpit, and passed through the front leg (top).

Nothing remarkable until I began skinning. Tremendous amount of blood underneath the skin. This is something I have yet to see. I believe the cause is this: the pellet causes a narrow wound channel (about 50% of the pellet’s diameter) versus a non pointed pellet/even though blood bearing organs were struck the wound channel was too thin to allow for rapid exterior blood loss. 

Entry wound

Entry through the armpit. Significant amount of congealed blood.

Sorry for the blurry photo, no black goop, significant amount of congealed blood, limited bloodshot tissue.
Part 2
I believe there is something to be learned from every shot. If I can pass something along that would make someone else a better hunter, I’ve done my job. 

Now that I’m off my soapbox, let’s get to it.

The hunt

I spent the last week cleaning up a thick patch of woods. Plenty of mast bearing trees and historically, keeps several squirrles. The problem is it’s too thick to hunt. Critters get spooked before you’re offered a shot. I decided to sit down and admire my hard work. After about 2 minutes of waiting, I heard a thundering rumble of leaves coming directly towards me. I raised my rifle. Due to the intense volume, I expected to see a deer or hopefully a coyote. Nope. Just a squirrel at full speed. He disappeared below a rise. I had no idea where he would reappear. After what seemed like an eternity, he revealed himself right on top of me. I hurriedly estimated the distance to be between about 10 yards. To cover a ranging error, I held for 15 yards on top of his head and bracketed the rest. All kill zones were covered. Then I shot. He went down and appeared to be dead, but he did appear have some bodily functions. I delivered a swift blow just to make sure.

Pellet entered the left ear and exited above and behind the right ear.

Closer examination revealed a grazing wound to the skull. The brain was contacted the pellet near the exit side.

Summary 

Based on these experiences with other hunting pellets, I would rather leave these at the house. If I have learned anything-these pellets aren’t as forgiving as something that expands or has a more blunt nose. Your hold must be absolutely precise to put down your quarry. However,  if I were hunting larger critters, like raccoons/opossums/foxes/coyotes/my neighbor Tony, these would be my go to.

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