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How to Become a Master Squirrel Hunter
Whether you’re 8 or 60, you’ve probably had the urge to hunt squirrels.
Add to it that there’s been a massive drought on ammo lately, with some shells not being available at all, and there’s a never-ending supply of pellets and marbles, and you’ve got the perfect reason to hunt squirrels with a slingshot.
Who really wants to waste ammo when you can use a slingshot instead.
Ready to try it? There are a few things you need to know first.
Using a slingshot while hunting squirrels in the woods is challenging and fun.
Just like using a bow or gun, you have to have good hand-eye co-ordination if you’re going to be successful.
Some people are born to be good hunters and others have to really work at it.
Many parents like to start their young hunters with a slingshot because it helps develop other skills like getting close enough to your prey to kill it and stealth.
Below, we’ve gathered five tips to help you successfully squirrel hunt with a slingshot. (Here are a few more too)
Practice, practice, practice.
You’re probably thinking, no duh, right?
While it might seem obvious, it’s important to realize why you need to practice with a primitive weapon.
Well any weapon, really.
Squirrels are fast, small, and wary, which makes hunting them challenging.
Honestly, it’s part of the attraction.
Plus, they’re delicious when cooked properly, so you don't want to ruin the meat or risk losing your prey with a bad shot.
Whether you practice on tin cans in the backyard or set-up ground squirrel targets, it will help you be better prepared when the time comes to bag a squirrel in the wild.
It’s important not just to practice targeting a squirrel, but knowing where to hit them with the ammo, which leads us to our next tip.
Aim for the Head
Did you know squirrels have very tough skin?
They do, which means when you hunt bushy tails with a slingshot you need to know how to make the kill shot, which is the head.
A pellet or marble can break a squirrel’s skull and take them down for the count.
In fact, a pellet to the brain area is enough to kill most squirrels on impact.
However, it’s a tiny area to hit.
A shot to the body might mortally wound a squirrel, but they could run off before you have a chance to recover them.
Often a wounded squirrel will hide, which means you won’t be able to retrieve them.
It’s a waste of meat and is painful for the squirrel as well.
To eliminate putting the squirrel through this and missing out on a tasty stew later - always aim for the head.
You may be able to hit a whitetail in its kill zone from 50 yards away with a rifle, but that’s not the case with squirrels and slingshots.
Just the small size of their body makes them hard to hit.
When compared to the stealth and hiding abilities of deer and even coyotes, squirrels can get away much faster too.
To make sure you give yourself a fighting chance, don’t even think about picking up some ammo if you can’t hear squirrels you see with your eyes.
Find an Oak Tree and Be Patient
You might be lucky and be able to hunt squirrels from a lawn chair in your backyard, but if you’re not, you’ll have to find the perfect spot.
Hunters suggest a big, producing oak tree.
Find a comfy place near the tree, drop your hunting pack, and prepare to be patient.
You’ll want to make sure the spot you choose is not only comfy but offers you a decent view of the oak tree you predict will be a squirrel attractant and the other trees around you.
If you can hide, it’s a good idea.
Otherwise, just sit super still and it shouldn’t matter whether you can be seen or not.
Squirrels move all day long, as long as it’s not hot, but seem to be most active just after dawn.
So, if you can get to your spot pre-dawn, you’ll probably have better luck than later in the day.
But, the cute little buggers aren’t the smartest rodents in the forest, so if you’re still and quiet – eventually they’ll come out.
Try Advanced Techniques
Ready for some more tips?
How about baiting a particular spot, using a dog to tree squirrels, or hunting the tasty rodents from an existing tree stand?
Baiting isn’t legal in every state, and only allowed on private property in other states, so make sure you check it out first, so you don’t get busted for doing something you’re not supposed to do.
If you want to try bait, and you’re allowed to do it, you can try this bait but peanut butter works well too.
It’s like a magical lure for squirrels. Not into baiting squirrels?
Try using a dog.
It doesn’t have to be a Black and Tan or another coon dog either.
Your black lab or even a little Chihuahua will probably be more than happy to chase a squirrel up a tree and his non-stop barking and tree scratching will be enough to let you know exactly where the squirrels are hanging.
Lastly, try hunting squirrels from your tree stand with a slingshot.
You’ve probably got a dozen or so tree stands installed already, so why not take a climb and pop a squat in your comfy position while stalking squirrels.
From a tree stand, you can get a good look at where the squirrels are and can quickly shoot into trees or towards the ground.
There you have it, five tips to help you successfully hunt squirrels.
Whether you want to start developing a little hunter’s intuition, or you want to have a reason to hit the woods, it’s an excellent way to spend a morning.
About the Author
Brandon Cox is the founder of StayHunting, who is passionate about all things of hunting and fitness. Through his hunting website, he would like to share tips & tricks, finest tech that will excite all of the intricacies of hunting whether you be an amateur or a professional.