Can You Hunt With A Pistol?

As hunting gains popularity year over year, hunters try out new and improved ways to catch their prey. One big question I get asked all the time is if people can or do hunt with pistols. Handguns are more popular than rifles, and people want to know whether they can use the gun they bought for home protection out on a hunt. We are going to go into whether this is a good idea or if you should have a gun strictly for hunting.

Can you hunt with a pistol? Yes, you can hunt with a pistol, as long as it is a high enough caliber to bring down your prey. Pistol hunting has gained popularity with the advancement of scopes, and large caliber handguns. Pistol hunting requires a higher degree of experience because you need to be closer to your target than you would with a normal hunting rifle. 50 yards is the maximum suggested distance of your prey when using a pistol to hunt, which also makes it more dangerous for the hunter.

Can You Hunt Deer With A Pistol?

Pistols are extremely popular for deer hunting, and gives the hunter a higher degree of difficulty for landing their prize. Since pistols have a lower velocity, you have to be up close to the deer to shoot it. This means that the hunter will have to be more stealth than normal and will have to make absolutely no noise whatsoever. Keep in mind that the closer you get to your prey, the closer they are to hurting you, so take care that you do not get kicked or punctured by their rack.

What Is The Best Caliber Pistol For Deer Hunting

The .44 magnum is the caliber of choice when it comes to pistol hunting, especially with deer. It has the power needed to bring down big game, while also having the accuracy to hit where you want on the target. Since it is a higher caliber, the .44 magnum is generally a better constructed gun, so it will not break on you out in the bush. It is best to by a higher performance ammunition when hunting with this weapon so you have no chance of it miss-firing.

Can You Put A Scope On Your Pistol?

Putting a scope on a pistol is extremely popular for both target shooting and hunting prey with. With the advancement of scopes over the years, you can now get a more compact scope at a higher power that will be extremely accurate. Some pistol scopes also come with a laser site as well that will put a red dot on whatever you are aiming at.


This gives a hunter much more advantage when they are 40-50 yards away from any big game that they want to shoot. Keep in mind that pistol scopes are still usually less powerful than rifle scopes, you cannot just take a rifle scope and mount it to a pistol. Each scope is designed for a rifle or a pistol.

Why Is Pistol Hunting Compared To Bow Hunting?

Pistol hunting has long been compared to bow hunting for several reasons. First you have to be a lot closer to the prey before you can shoot at it. Since the average distance is 50 yards, and the average distance for a rifle is 200 yards plus.

Bow hunters have to be closer to the prey as well because they are relying on human strength and not black powder for velocity. Pistol hunters also have to be more accurate with their shooting as people who hunt with pistols will have a smaller caliber bullet and will do less damage to the prey, unless of course they are using hollow point rounds.

Is A Revolver Or Semi Automatic Better

There has been debate over whether a revolver that holds six shots, is better or worse than a semi automatic pistol that has a clip. Since you are only going to get one or two shots out before the game takes off or drops, there really is no measurable difference between a revolver and a semi automatic.

It really is personal preference to the hunter and what they feel most comfortable using. If you have more experience with your semi automatic, take it out instead of buying a revolver just to use for hunting. Save your money and put more accessories on your gun, or buy better ammunition.

Is A Crossbow Like A Pistol

While a crossbow does am and act like a gun, it is nothing like a pistol or rifle. There will be no recoil or “kick” to it, and you are still using the force of the bow and not black powder. A crossbow would be more like a combination of a rifle and compound bow. There are however smaller crossbows that you hold like a pistol, but you would never want to use those for hunting game, they just are not powerful enough.


Final Thoughts

Pistol hunting is very popular, and can be very fun, but I warn you, this is not for a beginner hunter. Getting close to your prey is a lot harder than it looks, and animals are extremely good at seeing, hearing, and smelling humans, which will make them want to stay away. Having said that, I feel like pistol hunting is easier to carry your gun, since you can put it right into a holster, and won’t have to lug around a big rifle. Try it out a few times one season and see how good you are at getting your prey close up, but be careful not to get hurt!

Related Topics

What Distance Are Most Deer Shot From?

Most deer are shot from a distance of 200 yards using a rifle, and around 50 yards with a pistol. At 200 yards, the rifle is still extremely powerful and can bring down game in one shot, and the use of a scope will help you out a lot. Even at 200 yards, a nice rifle with good sights will bring down game with zero issues.

Can Deer See Blaze Orange On A Hunter?

Deer cannot see orange and red like humans can, so they typically cannot see the bright orange vest that we need to wear for safety. Orange will appear more brown or gray to them almost like a dog. Deer, however are more sensitive to blues, so stay away from that color. Deer also have very good hearing and smell, so make sure you do not step on branches, or wear cologne or perfume when you go deer hunting.