Outdoor Skills - Hunting Q&A

Would a revolver chambered for the .32 H&R; Magnum be sufficient for whitetails at close ranges, say out to 30 yards?--E.S.

"It depends on what you mean by ""sufficient."" Almost any game animal can be killed with a .22 rimfire if the bullet is placed right. There are several documented instances of big grizzly bears being killed with .22s, at one time including a Boone and Crockett record-book bear killed by a young Native American woman. I've also heard a story about an African woman who tried to drive an elephant out of her garden with a .22. She plinked at the elephant, which took fright and left. A few minutes later she heard a crash and found the elephant dead a few hundred yards away. Evidently the little bullet had gone between two ribs and put a hole in a big artery. Given all that, yeah, the .32 H&R; will kill a deer at short range--but probably not every time. If you absolutely have to shoot a deer with a revolver, the .357 magnum is a much better choice, and then only with heavy bullets. Personally, while I've taken deer with a revolver (a .45 ""Long"" Colt), it seems a rather odd undertaking, sort of like sprinkling Tabasco sauce over ice cream. Chocolate sauce works much better--just as any rifle works better for deer hunting, even a truly primitive muzzleloader. "