Sunday, June 14, 2009

"I Wish I was in Tijuana..."

"...eating barbecued iguana..."

We can't get you to Tijuana, but Gun Pundit is suggesting that hapless Floridians, beset by non-native species, consider a $10 "Airgun Iguana Tag," allowing state residents to whack the central ingredient to BBQ Iguana right there in their back yards: 
Seriously, a $10 “iguana tag” good for a month of air gun hunting would not only help keep these critters in check, it would probably get more young folks into the shooting sports. I mean, who wouldn’t want to shoot a lizard?

Oh, yeah. It would also raise money rather than costing it. Though the majority of these things are apparently in urban areas where shooting is restricted, Murdoc would guess that there are a lot more in the wild than suspected.
This follows the SPECTACULAR Outdoor Life article by Terry Gibson on stalking, killing and eventually cooking the feral iguana...tastes like chicken...not!

I've been contemplating the very first SHOOTING GALLERY hunting episode...a Tactical Solutions/Ruger .22 pistol expedition for feral python in the Everglades. Here's the news story from Reuters:
The population of Burmese pythons in Florida's Everglades may have grown to as many as 150,000 as the non-native snakes make a home and breed in the fragile wetlands, officials said on Thursday.

Wildlife biologists say the troublesome invaders -- dumped in the Everglades by pet owners who no longer want them -- have become a pest and pose a significant threat to endangered species like the wood stork and Key Largo woodrat.

"They eat things that we care about," said Skip Snow, an Everglades National Park biologist, as he showed a captured, 15-foot (4.6-meter) Burmese python to U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, who was on his first fact-finding mission to the Everglades since the Obama administration took office.
Florida is thinking of offering a bounty on pythons, and I think this is perfect for SG. Maybe we can bag one of those 7-foot Nile monitor lizards that are also making themselves at home in Florida. Hey, what about running a contest on DRTV with teh first prize a seat on the expedition into the 'Glades? The only stipulation would be the winner would have to dress like Sonny Crockett in Miami Vice...

In what may be a related item (Taurus Judges and Bond Derringers in .410 strike me as pretty cool snake-busters to me), the Firearms Blog is wading two coils deep into the current mini-controversy on whether Federal's new .410 birdshot designed specifically for the .410 Judge is really the man, as opposed to snake, stopper as Federal bills it: 
There has been a discussion on the blog about the controversial new Federal Personal Defense Handgun .410 shotshell ammunition designed exclusively for the Taurus Judge .410 revolver.

The round contains 60 pellets of #4 bird shot (each pellet is .13″ in diameter). The load of pellets weight 1/2 oz (218.75 grain). Velocity is listed as 1200 fps which makes the total energy delivered at the muzzle to be 700 ft/lbs.
The question is, I suppose, what one means by self-defense. I was an early supporter of the Taurus Judge and remain so. I also routinely carry a Bond Arms derringer in .45/.410 as my primary dog-walking gun and my secondary long trips in the car gun. In each case, it's loaded with 3-inch Winchester 5-pellet #000 buckshot.

While I personally would not want to be shot with a .410 full of #4 shot, I wouldn't necessarily call it a show-stopper — unless the shot was into the face. That's the strategy originally outlined by Taurus head Bob Morrison in the progressive loading he carries in his own Judge — a round of #4 shot, 2 buckshots, 2 .45 Colt personal protection cartridges.

If I had to carry a .410, long gun or short gun, for personal defense, I think I'd at least want buckshot, the exception being urban apartments with cardboard walls. I think I'd also stick to some variation of Bob's progressive loading strategy, with the first (or maybe first 2) round shot backed up with buckshot. I'm not sure the .410 slugs are worth the trouble of stocking another type of ammo. If the personal defense weapons is a long gun, say an Remington 870 or  Mossberg 500, I'd go with 3-inch buckshot #000 after the shot. If the gun's a Judge, my last 2 chambers would be stoked with CorBon DPX +P...and for heaven's sake don't shoot a lot of this through your gun!  You already know my Bond Arms load but I cary 2 Tuff Strips, one loaded with .45 Colt SilverTips; the other 4 more 3-inch buckshots.



Michael I have a dumb question with the igana tag and shooting lizards, wouldn't that just lead to 'accidently' shooting lawyers? I mean it's hard to tell the two apart.

Sorry couldn't help myself

Anonymous said...


Sir, I DEMAND you apologize for your comment...

Iguanas aren't nearly as loathsome as attorneys. :)

Jkwas said...

Forget the Airgun. I want to hunt them with .22's. I almost ran one over with my bicycle this morning and saw about 30 of them already today. The city of Boca Raton is actively trapping and getting rid of them on the taxpayers dime. I found a dead one in my backyard about two months ago. Someone had whacked off it's tail and had a nice meal. It crawled into my backyard to die. Lucky me. Do you know they can run on their back legs like Kimodo dragons? I found that out today. And big? How's 3-5 ft sound? Did you know they hunt in packs? I watched a group of 6 try to corner an Aningha once.
Here's a new one: We had a Monitor living in our subdivision for awhile. About 7ft long and about as big as a gator. Rough on the local cat and dog population.
Airgun? Not enough man, not enough.

alfsauve said...

I'm sorry Jkwas, what do you mean an airgun isn't enough?

Try these 9mm and .50cal "adult" airguns.

Anonymous said...

For a little contextual ambiance:

Steve said...

Thanks for your thoughts about the .410 for defense. I updated my blog post and added a link to this post.

PS. Michael, did you get the email I sent you?

Hazcat said...


Are you SURE you want to hunt pythons with a .22?

Let me bring some more manly caliber and I'm in on the hunt and as I live in FL your trans cost will be real cheap :) (I'm sure TW, M58 and the other FL DRTV 'boys' would be up for the python hunt as well!)

And if a pig gets in the way thats just more for the grill. ;)

Jkwas said...

"I'm sorry Jkwas, what do you mean an airgun isn't enough?
I'm sorry, I should have said "My airgun" :)

Anonymous said...

1200 fps out of a Judge?
By BS alarm sounded off on that one.
All this to push a shot size that doesn't have enough mass to penetrate to vitals....waste of time and money IMNSHO.

Load it with the 45s and call it good.

Murdoc said...

Geez, Bane. If you're going into the Everglades after pythons with a .22 pistol at least carry a back-up. And a big knife. And maybe an axe.

And thanks for the link!

Anonymous said...

I just bought and tested my Judge 2 days ago. For everyone: It is a short range weapon. Short Range. I place it at useful range of 3-4 yards (9-12 feet)max.But a few .45 Colt rounds will handle most 2 legged varmints. I bought mine specifically as a rattlesnake gun, which usually show up "RIGHT THERE!" as I'm mowing the lawn or not at all. #9 shot at 2 yards or less will definitely take out the snake. For Personal Defense, it's large and bulky, especially for a CCW. And I agree with everyone on the fps data. A 3 or even 6 inch is not going to magically get the umph of and 18" barrel. Try this at home: Get some popcorn or peas and 2 straws. Cut one straw to an inch. Leave the other full length (8"?).
Shoot your projectile of choice across the room. I hold rights to "The Straw of Truth".