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Looking to buy a new all-around predator gun. I'm thinking a 17 HMR, but if I get something like a .243, then i can shoot bear and cougar with it as well. Any suggestions on the two, or any I haven't brought up?
 

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I think you would be fine with one of the .22 cal. center fires for predators. even the 243 would be excellent.

as for bear and cougar. I would want something larger. they would probably get the job done but it would take perfect shot placement. probably in the head. I don't think they would penetrate the vital area very good if at all.

The 17 HMR will take yotes but with a 17 grain bullet too much can go wrong. like wind drift, hit a twig, or grass, don't get me wrong it is a good gun for yotes just not enough for serious hunting. more of a long range squirrel gun.
 

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duckmander said:
I think you would be fine with one of the .22 cal. center fires for predators. even the 243 would be excellent.

as for bear and cougar. I would want something larger. they would probably get the job done but it would take perfect shot placement. probably in the head. I don't think they would penetrate the vital area very good if at all.

The 17 HMR will take yotes but with a 17 grain bullet too much can go wrong. like wind drift, hit a twig, or grass, don't get me wrong it is a good gun for yotes just not enough for serious hunting. more of a long range squirrel gun.
I disagree on the comments about Lions. I think the 243 would be great. Bears on the other hand....... I'd go for more gun. But for the original question, 243 does make a great predator gun. I also would stay away from the rimfires, including the 17HMR. The rimfires make great varmint guns, but not so good on predators.
 

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For what it's worth I am in agreement with iwantabuggy and his recommendations.
 

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As with other cartridges match the right bullet design to the critter you'll be hunting and pelt damage will be minimal.You might also consider the 25-06.Like the 243 its also an excellent choice for varmints and smaller big game crits.It would be the better choice for bear but base your decision on what you'll be using it for the most.Good luck!
 

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I vote for the 260 Rem. IMO the best for all around with a wide range of bullet weights and great BC.

Who would have guessed? :wink:
 

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I shoot alot of coyotes with my 243, pelt damage isn't bad with the right bullet, fox with the wrong bullet, Oops what a mess. 243 works very well on Whitetail also, don't know about big cats, might be tough on a bob with the wrong bullet. Bear NO WAY!

My opinion, if you don't reload, stick to something you can buy anywhere. 223, 243, 22-250, 222, 308 etc.
 

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If you reload I've heard some good things about the Varmint Gernades, and they makee them in 6mm diameter.
 

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the 243 is a great caliber, plenty of bullets to choose from and plenty of power.

The 62g Varmint Grenade is pretty good, I've shot a few coyotes with them and they worked very well. They punch through and stop incredibly fast. They stop in ***** and porcupines with a broad side shot. I haven't had the chance to put one in a red fox though, i guess every one that i see, i don't have the heart to kill because, I'd like the population to build.

The 100g soft point works well on coyotes, and deer.
The smaller 55g ballistic tips work very well on prairie dogs.

There's a bullet for every job with the 243.

Deano
 

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a 243 will take care of any thing on your list but i would not shoot a bear with one unless i had to. as for mountain lions i know people that shoot them with 17's and 22's every year here in idaho. granted it is after the dogs tree them.
 

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I would have no problem hunting black bears with a 243. I know two guys that have shot more than one black with their 243. Mostly it is a match your bullet to the game you are after.

:D Al
 

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For varmints and coyotes, don't forget the .204 Ruger. Way too small for cougars, deer or bear, but a nice 7mm-08 would do well for the bigger stuff. Who really only wants one gun anyway? If one gun will suffice, 2 will do better.
 

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duckslyr said:
a 243 will take care of any thing on your list but i would not shoot a bear with one unless i had to. as for mountain lions i know people that shoot them with 17's and 22's every year here in idaho. granted it is after the dogs tree them.
i wasnt saying you couldnt i was just saying i would not prefer to shoot a bear with a 243.
 
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