7 Sept 16
The FSM4 and Prairie Dogs!
Last week I was with friends in WY, and was invited to go prairie-dog hunting at a local ranch. I was traveling, and the only rifle I had with me was my constant companion, my wonderful FSM4.
One of my friends brought a scoped Savage bolt-gun, with bi-pod, in 204 Ruger caliber. The 204 is a 222 Remington case, necked-down to twenty caliber. It fires a 32gr bullet at 4k f/s. Ideal prairie-dog rifle. Effective out to two-hundred meters.
By contrast, my FSM4 is a 5.56 AR with a genuine NATO chamber and a zero-magnification Aimpoint T1. It is designed for serious fighting, not recreation. But I was there with it in hand, and I had several magazines charged with 55gr hardball, so that is what I used.
We had a grand time that afternoon!
With my FSM4, I had no trouble dispatching skinny prairie dogs out to seventy-five meters, using a braced firing position. My sixteen-year-old granddaughter, with her teen-aged eyes and steady hand, was able to push that out to one-hundred meters!
I had to dial-down the brightness of the T1’s red dot, in order to attain the degree of precision needed with this kind of hunting.
With regard to terminal effect, the 204 Ruger was explosive, as expected. By comparison, most of the dead prairie dogs I shot with hardball displayed through-and-through wounds, with an asymmetric exit wound (after penetrating six centimeters of tissue) only slightly bigger than the entry. A few had entrails trailing out the exit wound.
When I first introduced the FSM4, I specifically stated that it was a uncompromising, serious rifle, designed for serious, purposes, not for any kind of recreation. That is all still true, of course, but that should not discourage any of its owners from audaciously pressing it into service for activities like the foregoing.
I discovered that prairie-dog hunting with the FSM4 is good training! You learn to deal with all kinds of circumstances, including discomfort and frustration, always seeking a way to win. You learn to deal emotionally with victory and disappointment and realize that both are an integral part of the wonderful hunting/training experience.
In any event, my rifle ran without a hiccup, as always.
It was a great day!