Wisconsin State Wide Rifle
Effective Nov. 1, 2013, in time for this year’s 9-day firearm deer season, the use of rifles will be permitted statewide. The Oct. 5-6 youth gun deer hunt will still be restricted to shotgun-only in those portions of the state that were previously shotgun-only. While the DNR is no longer placing restrictions on the use of rifles in certain areas of the state, local municipalities will still be able to restrict the use of rifles within their boundaries. Hunters will need to check with the local municipality where they plan to hunt for any restrictions on the use of rifles.
Me:I talked to a gal on the DNR info line earlier this week and she said the Shotgun Only zones had been eliminated for this fall, starting Nov 1. I have not found anything corroborating this on line. Can you confirm this? Cheryl: Yes. that is true. Let me see if I have something on that. One moment please. Cheryl: Thank you for waiting. It does not look as though they have been able to update this in the on-line regulations as of yet. Here is the information shared with us: The use of rifles will be allowed statewide starting on Nov. 1, 2013 in time for this year’s 9-day firearm season. The Oct. 5-6 youth gun deer hunt will still be restricted to shotgun-only in those portions of the state that were previously shotgun-only (see the map on page 23 of the 2013 deer regulations booklet). Hunters will need to check with the local municipality where they are planning to hunt to determine if local ordinances are in place that would restrict the use of rifles.......................
But to speak to Bassman's concern about the safety of rifles versus shotguns, the Pennsylvania Fish & Game chartered a study to answer this question. The agency doing the study contracted the U.S. Army Ballistics Lab to do the technical research, and their conclusion was, in all ethical uses of rifles and shotguns, shooting slugs, for hunting purposes and methods, the SHOTGUN was more dangerous. The only case cited where a rifle was more dangerous, was if the target was silhouetted on a hill, where the shooter was below the target. This is considered an unethical shot, since it violates one of the four rules of firearm safety...Know your target and what is beyond. In most hunting situations, the shooter is shooting down(elevated stands), or at worst, parallel to the ground. In both cases, where the projectile reflects off of a hard surface, the more frangible rifle ammo will deform, destabilize, and lose energy quickly, where energy is below lethality levels within 175 yards. Whereas a shotgun slug, foster or sabot, is much heavier, and less likely to deform, destabilize, and will still have lethal energy out to 600 yards.
With the proper internet search, the full study, and summary is available on-line. Eye opening, and as is often the case, when the real results run counter to commonly held beliefs.
Many years ago the local farm boys where shooting at driven deer, on frozen plowed fields, with shotguns, and my father and our cabin, 500 yards beyond the deer, came under fire. There is still a scar on a hard maple tree at the front of our cabin. The farm boys refused to believe their slugs could have reached the cabin area, until my father forced them to check out the maple tree 15' from our cabin...Red faces and apologies were the result.
There may be other reasons to not allow rifles for hunting, but the errant belief that a shotgun is safer than a rifle, should not be one of them.