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Thread: Hunting with slingshots

  1. #1
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    Exclamation Hunting with slingshots

    We're working on a slingshot hunting piece in the magazine for August, and would love to hear your stories, tips, and advice on this oftentimes overlooked hunting tool.

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  3. #2
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    Hunted rabbits with them when I was in my teens..Alberta and Saskatchewan have no closed season, and not limits on them. Easier to carry a slingshot and steel ball bears around town then a 22..
    Take the warning labels off. Darwin will solve the problem.

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    Ah yes, many fond childhood memories center around a Wham-o Wrist Rocket. We pretty much killed everything that moved with them, and carried them for personal defense against teenage bullies and nasty dogs. My Mother wouldn't let me have one so I bought it and hid it out in a hollow basswood tree in the woods. By the time I was 14 the tree also hid a .22 Cooey Model 39, then a single shot Cooey 12 ga. You'd scab the ditches for pop bottles until to had the $1.15 needed to buy a new Wham-o sling assembly. They made the best ones with the white plastic inserts that went into the surgical tubing, We'd drive our bikes as 9 year old kids down to the railway tracks that lead to Oshawa. Here we'd load up on the spilled iron ore pellets that littered the track (I think they were coming from Stelco and were on their way to GM for casting engines). They were absolutely lethal ammo. Nice and round and dense as hell. We'd fill a purple Crown Royal bag on our hip, and carry five or six in our mouths so you could "speed load". This would have been back around 1975 when we had no coyotes and small game numbers were crazy. It was nothing to shoot 6 cottontail in less than two hours. Most shots were at 15 to 25 feet. We shot them so much it just became instinctive. Could usually hit a pop can about 6 out of 10 times at 25 feet. Railway line insulators, mailboxes, and road picket reflectors were all shot up by us little buggers. We'd shoot pigeons in the barns with them until the Dutchman farmer caught us putting dents in his tin barn roof. I remember he picked my one friend off the ground by his hair when he caught us, then he tanned each and every one of us. I remember going up his laneway when I was 13 to ask if I could work for him haying and the old prick remembered that I was one of little bastards that had dented his roof! One of us would "borrow" their Mom's cast iron fry pan and another kid would steal butter, flour, salt, or lard. We'd make a fire and fry up rabbit, brook trout, grouse, suckers, and the occasional Grackle or Mourning Dove. Barn Pigeons were always a good feed. I remember my one buddy got serious hell from his Mom when he returned her pan and he had scrubbed it with soap and sand to clean it, and had removed the no-stick patina that had taken 20 years to get to that point.

    I grew up in the country and everyone just let their dogs run loose. I remember two of us would be on a Rupp mini bike, wide open pegged at 20mph as we tried to get by the farm laneways before the vicious farm dogs came out. It was best if you were driving because the kid on the back of the seat would usually get bit in the buttocks if the dog heard you coming. If you knew you were not going to outrun the dog, we'd drop the mini bike, spit out our ammo, and speedload railway balls at the approaching dog. One good hit at close range was enough to break ribs, and the dog would run squawking bloody murder back down the laneway. I remember we killed 3 rabid red foxes with the slingshots once. They were all quilled in the muzzle and were wandering up the side of the road. There wasn't much bullying where I grew up. One trip to Biway for a bag of 100 marbles would educate whoever was doing the bullying. Something called "incidental punishment" had a really neat way of evening things out. Horse chestnuts would work as well if you couldn't find enough pop bottles for the bag of marbles. I remember being 12 and my one friend got jumped by two 15 year old highschool punks when we were sucker fishing. They kicked the crap out of him for no reason at all(black eye, cut lip, and bruises head to toe). He waited almost two weeks, and on the advice from his father, hid in the bushes on the dirt road where the one kid got dropped off by the high school bus. His first shot with a railway ball caught the kid in the nape of the neck and dropped him right on the road. He then proceeded to shoot the kid an additional 7 times at point blank range. The kid was still lying on the road when he gathered his hidden bike and left. Word got out that he was plumb crazy, so people left him alone and that was the last time he ever got a black eye! My God we've gotten soft! Could you imagine the repercussions today if some kid laced a punk with a slingshot! Thank God I was a kid in the 70's!
    Last edited by Fenelon; June 17th, 2020 at 08:32 AM.

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    Very nice, Sure brought back memories for this old guy. Our tracks were Mississippi Station, Ontario in the 60's.
    Last edited by TroutSlayer; July 6th, 2020 at 06:48 PM. Reason: Added the date

    TS

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    Thanks for that walk down memory lane Fenelon....sounds like you were on of the guys in our gang in most of those adventures. I guess it true 'Boys will be Boys'. God I miss the early 70's.

    I was on my Uncles farm..a big old Dutchman in Middlesex County (near Granton). There were 4 boys on the farm and we learned how to shoot our homemade slingshots like we were Snipers. He was a pig farmer so we had a huge barn full of rats that he was happy when we took killing them. We also had a swamp area that had huge Bull frogs. We'd kill them and Aunty would cook them up for us.

    I can't remember what we used in the earlier years, probably rocks, but once we started to get paid for picking Cucumbers we got 'store bought' slingshots and marbles in St Mary's.

    In the hands of a skilled shooter, slingshots were as deadly as any of the .22s we eventually used. I still have one and use .45 lead balls with it. Haven't used it in a while, used to take it bow hunting to quiet noisy squirrels. HaHa.
    Last edited by MikePal; July 6th, 2020 at 05:03 PM.
    Arte et marte (By Skill and by Fighting)...The RCEME motto

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    Missed that.
    Good read Fenelon. LOL
    I also enjoyed those years.
    A Bully didn’t prosper in our neighbourhood.

    I shot lots of Grouse with a sling shot, nothing compare to my dad who was a marksman.
    I think I might still have my old sling shot at the camp.
    "Only dead fish go with the flow."
    Proud Member: CCFR, CSSA, OFAH, NFA.

  8. #7
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    Awesome stories! I'm younger than you guys, so things were already different when I was growing up. That being said, I remember going with my buddies to a place in Ottawa called The Laurentian Trading Post and buying some pretty powerful slingshots. We would shoot our marble collections at squirrels in the trees from my mother's bedroom window. This was in a relatively densely populated suburban Ottawa neighbourhood, so probably not the best idea.
    All these stories make me want to go buy another slingshot and bring it along while hunting. So many times while hunting deer I see grouse just walking casually by, and I always wish I had a way to shoot them that wouldn't blast the thing to smithereens or cost me $20 in a lost arrow and broadhead. I think a slingshot is the answer.

  9. #8
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    Time in the outdoors is never wasted

  10. #9
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    That was a pretty cool read, Fenelon..... Thank you, we used to hide things in a North York (GTA) park too..... Fun times that would land you in jail today..... My how things have changed.... Thanks for bringing the memories back....
    "Everything is easy when you know how"
    "Meat is not grown in stores"

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    Quote Originally Posted by finsfurfeathers View Post
    The guys in the UK and Europe ( to a lesser extent) like to try just about anything the looks like good sport.

    I will be using a few of their techniques this year for squirrels and grouse. I would have done it before, but had to check if any of them would be illegal here.

    Better safe then sorry.

    Now I am itching to get a new slingshot. With no budget limits like when I was a kid, and no mom to limit the power. Well sounds like good sport.
    Take the warning labels off. Darwin will solve the problem.

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