The 16 gauge shotshell is just about right for all upland hunting. You can load it up to 1 ¼ ounces of shot, or down to 7/8, although with an ounce or 1 1/8 ounces of shot, the 16 can handle almost any upland bird hunting situation. Interestingly enough, a couple of years ago I had a chance to run a number of pattern tests at Federal’s underground tunnel, and in one test, we compared the 12, 16, 20, 28 and .410 for pattern efficiency with typical loads: 9/16 ounces with the .410; ¾ ounces with the 28; an ounce in 20; 1 1/8 ounces in 16 and 1 ¼ ounces in 12 gauge. In theory, the larger the bore, the more efficiently it patterns, and that theory held totally true – almost. We saw an improvement in efficiency as bore size increased and it plotted a neat line on a graph of bore diameter vs pattern efficiency. The only outlier was the 16 gauge, which outperformed the 12 gauge.