Considering the Versatile .243 as a Hot Coyote Caliber

When I started deer hunting 40 years ago the versatile .243 rifle caliber did the trick for my first whitetails. It should work just fine for coyotes, too.
Considering the Versatile .243 as a Hot Coyote Caliber

When I started deer hunting 40 years ago the versatile .243 rifle caliber did the trick for my first whitetails. It should work just fine for coyotes, too.

My father shot a .308 and for years I thought that was the ticket because it was bigger. He liked it for the versatility, of course, because along with a few other rounds like the .270 and .30-06, to name a couple, it got the job done. The .243 was within his orbit, too, along with many other whitetail hunters in the Southeast. I didn't realize at the time that the .243 was just fine for hunting deer and predators.

One reason these rounds were popular was you could pick up a box of ammo in just about any country gas station, pawn shop or local outdoors store. Big box retailers weren't on every corner then; Wal-Mart was starting to grow but we had smaller versions such as Western Auto and Otasco along with locally owned hardware stores. Smart owners stocked BB guns and BBs, a few rifles in popular calibers and the ammo for them.

Fort Scott Munitions' new .243 Win ammo comes with a solid copper bullet in three grain sizes. Photo: Fort Scott Munitions

If you were in rural Mississippi or Alabama or just about anywhere else in the Southeast and needed a box of .243 or .30-30 then you could find it. No hassles, either. Ammo, some Vienna sausages and soda, and you were good to go.

Although I now have a few more things to hunt with, I still love the .243 and my old Winchester bolt-action rifle. It shoots flat, is accurate and does the job well when I do my job of making a good shot. I think it would be great for hunting coyotes, too.

Unlike 40 years ago, today we have more options with ammunition. Better powder and primers, of course, but also more grain sizes for bullets. The latter, too, are more advanced for penetration and expansion. It's just one area in which technology has helped hunters.

One example is Fort Scott Munitions' new .243 TUI ammo, which will come in 58-grain, 70-grain and 80-grain rounds. The company's lead-free solid copper bullets are CNC machined to achieve a +/- .002 tolerance for each round for consistency and accuracy. They tumble upon impact in soft tissue, creating a wide internal wound channel.

Coyotes aren't thick like a deer. But to have a bullet rattling around their pump station, even a solid copper .243 round, would do a number on them. Can't wait to give them a try with my old rifle and see if I can find the magic from 40 years ago.

Featured image: Georgia DNR



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