Camping & Survival

Snake Guns: Best Firearms and Loads for Serpents

Rattlesnake on sand ready to strike

Throughout recorded human history, man has feared snakes, and, for the most part, rightfully so.

Silent, deadly and occasionally prone to aggressive unprovoked attacks, vipers and various other venomous snakes have a more or less permanent place on many people’s list of varmints to kill on sight.

Traditionally, a short break-action shotgun chambered in 20-gauge or .410 bore is the standard for dispatching serpents.

Prior to that, a well-placed blow from a garden hoe or a shovel quickly ended a viper. Now there are many options to quickly and safely deal with snakes.

Choices range from traditional short-barreled shotguns to various Derringers along with new modern shotshell-firing revolvers.

The invention of the Derringer gave people the option of a small, easily-portable handgun capable of inflicting devastating damage at close range.

Normally found tucked away in a lady’s garter or hidden in a gambler’s boot, these small holdout guns were not used for killing snakes.

Early models were mostly rimfire affairs, with larger calibers coming initially in black powder .38 Special and .45 Colt loads.

Soon, smokeless powder was developed, allowing an even larger variety of Derringer offerings.

As designers introduced more and more calibers to various Derringer designs, specifically with the advent of pistol caliber shotshells — namely the .410 bore, developed around 1900 — it was discovered these little shooters made excellent snake guns.

Taurus Judge with black grip and silver frame on a white background, barrel pointed to the left.
When loaded with .45 Long Colt, a .410 shotshell or Winchester’s PDX1 Defender, the Judge makes for one of the best snake guns.

Option #1: Taurus Judge

While the origin of the .410 shotshell is not very well-known, a good indication of its heritage is the fact that it shares the same chamber size as the .45 Long Colt.

This interchangeability drove the popularity of the .410 shell, and soon every major revolver and Derringer manufacturer offered pistols advertised as firing .45 Colt along with the .410.

This still persists today and is seeing a resurgence in popularity with the Judge line of revolvers made by Taurus.

Chambered in both .45 Colt and .410, or as with the Raging Judge, .454 Casull, .45 Colt or .410, the Taurus Judge sets the standard as the snake gun of choice.

Advertised as the perfect trail gun, the Taurus Judge is indeed versatile enough to take small game, snakes and varmints when firing a .410 load, or take medium game with a .45 Colt or .454 Casull using the Raging Judge.

Available with a three-inch barrel, it is small enough to tuck into a backpack or fanny pack, or to carry comfortably in a holster.

While hunting early-season whitetail deer, summer feral hog or late-spring turkey in the woods and fields of North Texas, nothing causes me to freeze in my tracks faster than the telltale rattle of a western diamondback rattlesnake.

Most snakes hibernate in the wintertime, making them less threatening to deer hunters.

However, early archery and muzzleloader season hunters can still run afoul of not only the rattlesnake, but also cottonmouths, copperheads and a number of other North American pit vipers.

Cottonmouth snakes, also referred to as water moccasins, are particularly aggressive vipers that are known to chase after the individuals who are unlucky enough to cross their paths.

Option #2: Bond Arms Snake Slayer

I remember one time I had a too-close-for-comfort encounter with a cottonmouth. I was a young boy hunting frogs and turtles along the bayous of Southeast Texas.

Forging my way through the tall summer grass along the bank and, true to form, I was not really paying attention to where I was going.

I stepped on what I thought was a rock, except this rock was a little squishy and squirmed out from under my foot.

As you might have guessed, this rock turned out to be a six-foot-long cottonmouth sunning itself along the banks of its favorite bayou.

Luckily, this particular water moccasin was more concerned with escape than biting me and quickly slithered off with a mean hiss.

That large snake put the fear of God into me, and ever since I have been particularly careful to watch for snakes when out in the woods and fields.

Nowadays, I carry a small Bond Arms Snake Slayer IV chambered in .45 Colt and .410 tucked in my hip pocket whenever I head out in the warmer months.

It’s smaller than the Taurus Judge, carrying only two rounds, and for snake defense, that is usually enough.

Snakes are ambush predators adept at camouflage and hiding. When you encounter one, it will generally be at a very close range, what I call “Oh my, that’s a SNAKE!” distance.

This generally puts you anywhere from three to 10 feet away from the serpent, close enough to do serious damage with a .410 blast, and generally far enough away to keep you safe from a sudden strike.

More than 12 feet, the pattern from a .410 shotgun load in most handguns opens up too much to make it effective for eliminating venomous snakes.

Bond Arms Snake Slayer Snake Guns
The Bond Arms Snake Slayer IV is perfect for snake defense.

Best Loads for Snake Guns

Loads for snake guns run the spectrum from .22 LR CCI shotshells to full shotgun rounds such as three-inch .410 shells filled with #4 shot.

What load you choose to carry depends on your firearm and what types of serpents you anticipate encountering.

.22 LR shotshells are generally going to be inadequate for all but the smallest snakes.

Stepping up to the larger, yet still mild-recoiling, .38 Special shotshells, we find a much more effective cartridge for dealing with unwanted critters.

Firing #9 shot at over 1,000 FPS, the CCI .38 Special shotshell is perfectly capable of dispatching most snakes with a single, well-placed shot.

It patterns well, and while the #9 shot size is a bit on the small size, it still does the job nicely.

When it comes to snakes, however, my favorite load is the .410 shotshell. Three-inch Remington .410 shells loaded with #6 or #7.5 shot seem to have the best performance from my observations.

It is big enough to have adequate penetration, but small enough to give a good pattern at three to 12 feet. CCI shotshells loaded with #9 shot are also available in .45 Colt.

It provides better patterns than #6 or #7.5 shot, but at the expense of slightly less penetration.

So, what are the best snake guns? Some use a .22 LR to great effect on snakes, while my late great-grandmother insisted on a 12-gauge loaded with #6 lead.

Both do the job equally well in the right hands, however, in my opinion, neither are ideal. A .410/.45 Colt revolver or Derringer is small and portable while still packing a wallop.

Additionally, they are cheap, abundant and easy to find. Ammunition is inexpensive for these little snake killers, making them affordable to feed and practice with.

The Taurus and Snake Slayer IV are not the only choices for a snake gun. However, because they are some of the least expensive and most commonly available, it would be hard to go wrong with them.

What are your favorite snake guns? Why? Let us know in the comments section below.


Editor’s note: This post was originally published in March of 2011. It has been completely revamped and updated for accuracy and clarity.

The Mission of Cheaper Than Dirt!'s blog, The Shooter's Log, is to provide information—not opinions—to our customers and the shooting community. We want you, our readers, to be able to make informed decisions. The information provided here does not represent the views of Cheaper Than Dirt!

Comments (64)

  1. In May of 2019, as I opened the front door to allow my dog a quick “break”, was this approx. 5′ long black-greenish snake slithering across my front porch. After nearly stepping on it, it quick found a crack in the foundation to hide as I grabbed my dog and took him back inside. Grabbing my SIg Sauer 365 with .9mm rat (or snake) shot, three quick shots took care of the reptile. Later I found out that this particular snake was a water moccasin, or cottonmouth. That .9mm will do the job.

  2. A break open 20 gauge shotgun? This could include a single shot, double-barrel, or even an over and under. If a sportsman already owns say a Winchester Model 101, or Browning B-725 Citori over and under shotgun with 26″ barrels, bored preferably improved cylinder/modified choke, no venomous snake in the world, including Cobras, are going to be a match against such!

  3. One Summer, at lake Chelan, Washington I had to walk 30 yards to an outhouse-on the path I encountered at least 15 rattlesnakes each side of the path And at least 50 more buzzing at mice in the tall golden grass. But, when you gotta -go you gotta go.
    I go for the 2 Uberti 12 shot .22 pistols Double holster rig.

  4. Some of the above comments tell me you’ve never been around snakes at all. Cotton mouth moccasins and banded water snakes will definitely APPROACH you ! Their not coming to you to be petted. The same goes for a copperhead. He won’t back down either. Get off your couch and out where these are and find out real quick what they do when you approach.

  5. Sgt Friendly, what happened when the snakes bit you? That’s scary as hell !! I thought a bite was instant death? Did you get anti-venom?

  6. I have a “Snake Charmer” (brand name), and have sent several copperheads to their maker with it. It is a .410, single shot, break action, short barrel, plastic pistol grip loaded with birdshot (I shoot it one-handed). The “stock” holds 5 extra rounds, why, I don’t know, I’ve never needed more than one to dispatch a bad snake! It was a Texas company, now out of business, but you can still find these guns for sale used on line, cheap. It’s perfect for a bass boat and cottonmouths! BTW, I kinda like rattlers, I don’t bother them, and they don’t bother me!

  7. Thanks for finally talking about > Snake Guns: Best Firearms and Loads for Serpents – The Shooter's Log Order Winchester powder

  8. the judge now also supports a .45 long colt round?
    news to me.
    i thought the judge was only .45 acp & .410 capable, but
    the s&w governor supported all three.
    talk to me, goose.

  9. Years ago, I met an old cowboy at a gun show. He was in his 90’s, and looked it. The table he was sitting at had all sorts of cowboy period items and guns. He had one in a holster that he was wearing. I asked him about his gun and he told me this story. He said he had modified the action of the old Colt SA. He showed me how he could draw it and fire in a slick motion I could not imitate. He said he loaded his 45 Colt rounds so slow they were just crawling out the barrel. He went on to say that rattlesnakes were very fast, and they could actually see the slug coming, and they would strike at the bullet causing them to get their heads blown off. Now, if just about anybody else told me this story I would not believe it. If you have even met a gent like this, you would know they don’t lie or exaggerate! I have never put this story to the test as rattlers are not around these parts.

  10. My choice for a home revolver which also doubles as my early deer scouting snake gun is the Charter Arms 9 mm. It holds a good pattern with the 9mm rat shot. Many do not know about this gun but it does the job. At home it’s loaded with hollow points.

  11. it has much more to do with knowing how to use your gun and being a decent shot then what fancy gun or shot load you use.. i have killed many diamond back rattle snakes and timber rattlers as well as copper heads.. the majority of them with 22 long.. some with short and others with whatever cheap 12ga shot shell i was hunting birds with

  12. A Ruger 10/22 rifle with ,22 LR ammo does the trick. Having 10 rounds is secuuty in case the snake
    tries to excape into grass, or towards you. I never underestimate a .22LR at close range, There are two less rattlers because of my Ruger 10/22 rifle.

  13. I settled on Bond Arms Snake Slayer loaded with 45 #9 shot. Occasionally I also carry a 20 gauge Mossberg Shockwave. Foxes, coyotes, owls, hawks, and even the occasional raccoon do a great job of controlling rodents along with non-venomous snakes like corn snakes, chicken snakes and rat snakes which we have plenty. Live on a large farm and constantly see nature at work. I have kids and pets plus other animals that need me to keep venomous snakes in check. The very few venomous snakes killed isn’t going to cause a massive rodent explosion. Deer aren’t extinct and we kill tons of them.

  14. I’ve carried the Judge with #6’s for years. It is perfect for a 10″ pattern at 4 to 5 foot distance from the snake. It also works well when the snake is moving through the grass at night. The five shot Judge is better than the two shot derringer because one can miss when the snake is moving fast.

    Thanks for the article.

  15. We live in the woods in East Texas. We have cottonmouths and copperheads. There was a cottonmouth on the back patio and my 5 year old grandson didn’t see it and was walking up the steps toward it. We yelled at him to stop. I got my .45 XDM loaded with snake shot and after one shot the snake was eliminated.

  16. I carry a Bond Arms 410 derringer and a Taurus Judge polymer frame for the unexpected up close and personal encounters with snakes….the two legged kind especially. I actually hunt cottonmouths and rattlesnakes in the river swamp near my home in Georgia. The place is loaded with them to the point it is almost too dangerous to even walk in there unless you thin them out. They are beautiful creatures and it always bothered me to just waste them. I use a stainless Ruger single six 22 loaded with CB caps for head shots. Why? Because I skin them and tan their hides to make leather gun straps, guitar straps, and belts out of them. And before you ask, the answer is YES. I have been bitten twice by cottonmouths. Yet, I still hold no animosity towards them. They are snakes…thats what they do. Who else commenting on here can say that?

  17. When I was a teenager we use to go trout fishing on the Lost Creek River. On one occasion two of my friends joined me and I had hip waiters and they were fishing in shorts with converse tennis shoes. We were crossing over a small gravel pit to get to the river and found ourselves in a newly hatched rattlesnake pit with a couple of full sized Diamond Backs rattling away and probably 50 to 75 baby rattlesnakes all around us. Luckily we backed up slowly and we’re able to get out of the gravel pit without anyone being bitten.
    Now I am retired and plan on doing a ton of trout fishing, but having learned an important lesson, I will be fishing with Rattlesnake protection, a Smith & Wesson Governor Revolver. This oversized revolver can shoot .410 shotgun shells, .45 Colt an .45 acp using moon clips. You can mix your loads with a deadly combination of all three rounds. In a cross draw leather holster the Governor should be a great defense against a rare encounter with Rattlesnakes.

  18. Many snakes share life with me on my Tennessee farm. In 35 years here, I’ve seen snakes, but none worth killing. That said, I usually walk the place with a super redhawk revolver sparsely loaded with 45LC shot.

  19. I usually carry an old Harrington & Richardson revolver with the .22 Magnum cylinder in it
    (It had a .22 LR cylinder also)
    Snake shot first 2 chambers, hollowpoints in the other 4.
    My Hawes .44 Magnum loaded the same way.

  20. For the last 40+ years while hiking in the PA Mountains my gun of choice was a Dan Wesson 357 with the first two rounds being 38 Special snake shot followed with four rounds of 357 Magnum 158 grain HP. You never know what large hairy animals you mite run into especially in the late 70’s. The woods were loaded with hippies (just kidding).

  21. I’ve never had a problem using my .22 revolver with 6″ bbl and snake shot on some rather large (6′) western diamondbacks and mojaves around my place here in SE Ariz. Been using it for over 50 years and never missed.

  22. I actually use a .177 caliber ruger break barrel pellet gun
    And a colt defender co2 powered bb pistol

  23. The only rattler I took aim at was a Mojave Green on a friend’s property while here was gardening. It was upright and still, which gave me the advantage of a clean shot with a Kahr 9mm 115 grain Cor Bon, which dismembered its head but for a piece of skin. There was with nothing but desert as a back drop. Now I live on a ranch and the “Greens” are found in barns and horse pens, where a 9mm’s ricochet is far to risky for humans, dogs and horses alike. Today I picked up a modern version of a Snake Charmer by Rossi/Taurus, an 18″ single shot 410 with 4 spares in the stock’s heel compartment. I fashioned a sling, making it easy to carry to the barns, corrals and pens when feeding or cleaning, or if called to take care of business on the property by the ranchers or riders My first choice for ammo was Winchester Super Speed (1250 fps) of 25 #6 hardened shot. I figure if I do my part, the Snake Charmer should do its part without harm to others, including those neighbors down the road. It also tucks handley beneath the kitchen/living room bar divider, within easy reach from my recliner, should a miscreant invade through my door uninvited. The small single shot seems tight and well made, and cost about $200.

  24. Actually looking forward to acquiring a Judge Magnum to see how it compares to firing an existing mod of an over under Stevens Model 22/410 break open shotgun chambers 410shotgun shells under with 22LR over.. Like the versatility of 45LC round along with 410 and 22LR though.

  25. 65 years ago I liked a revolver with first 3 holes with 22 snake shot and 6 holes with 22 hollow points. The snake shot worked well with Water Snakes, and the hollow points worked well with snapping turtles, & squirrels.

    Now I like a 357 mag with the first 2 holes with snake shot and the rest with solids. I would do much the same with a 5 shooter to an 8 shooter.

    If expecting snakes a double barrel 410 or 28 gage with # 9 to a #6 shot size

  26. Pingback: Snakes
  27. Recently, I must to kill a small coral snake on my summer house. Despite coral bites are very rare, I’m worried about my 2-months pinscher dog. I used a .177 air pistol (eight shots to one hit!). The other guns available are a .410 muzzle-loader shotgun and a .32 auto Browning pistol.

    The shotgun was previously loaded with 4-buck, so I dont had time to change the load.

    I conserved the snake on a olive glass with ancohol and give it to my daughter. She will donate it to school science lab.

  28. You guys forgot to mention the Circuit judge that Rossi and Taurus put out which had three color/furniture options as well as quite a few different chamber set ups some even offering several cylinders with separate caliber ranging from .22 all the way into the .454. I own the tactical black composite version in .410 .45 LC and I love it we had the snake charmer and this blows it outta the water the 5 shells tuck in back with a cover as opposed to the flip out. But as a trail gun it has been awesome and even home defense put some PDX 4 and good to go.

  29. A few years back my younger brother and I went up North to South Carolina to visit my grandfather’s farm. Over supper one evening we mentioned our plans to go catfishing the following afternoon for our supper. Our grandfather warned us to be careful down at the pond as he had recently seen water moccasins (cotton mouths) in the area.
    Well my brother and I decided that after supper we would go down to the pond and see if we could spot any of the offending serpents. We took the golf cart down to the water, not really expecting to see much, and low and behold, we spotted a five or six foot long water moccasin hiding in the reeds just off the bank. We decided the viper couldn’t live, but we had left out only armed with our personal protection side arms. My brother was armed only with a kel-Tec pf9 and I was carrying my department issued Beretta 92g, so I was elected to take the shot.
    My shot was true and the evil critter’s head was cleanly removed from the rest of him. But to our horror, we realised there was a lot more than just the one we had seen. After the first snake was hit, five more rushed the bank where we were standing. We fired over and over again and managed to kill all the water moccasins with only one reaching land. In the space of seconds six snakes lay dead and our heart’s were racing at the close call we had just experienced. Yeah we were dumb, but the battle at the catfish pond still makes for an entertaining story.

    1. Cottonmouths are one of the more aggressive North American Vipers and they have been known to chase people. That being said, if you expect people to believe that when you shot one snake, all of his buddies rushed towards land to attack you…..that is pure fantasy. I’ve been duck hunting in flooded rice fields since I was a kid. When you fire a round snakes tend to either remain motionless hiding, or haul ass away from the direction of the blast. While they don’t have ears, they do have pressure sensitive tympanic membranes that serve a similar function.

  30. as an old dumb country boy from east Texas I find that you have to kill a snake to get close enough to determine if It is a good snake or bad snake. I favor the .410 in any shape or form.

  31. I am a snow bird. During summer I carry a 44 Magnum or better yet a Benelli 12 with slugs because the bears in Alaska are hungry until the salmon arrive. Spring and fall in New Mexico are rattlesnake seasons, but my Billy Mays picker upper is alI have ever needed for a rattlesnake. Too many people kill all snakes and coyotes simply because they are scared by anything wild and not under their control. New Mexico now has cases of plague and Hanta virus because the natural predators for rats and mice and their fleas are systematically being exterminated. I have had to rewire a Corvette and two generators thanks to the rat lovers because the insulation on the wires is made with vegetable and peanut oil, or so I am told. We relocate the the rattlers and keep the rest to eat the rats. Ranchers say coyotes kill and eat their stock, but none of them have any pictures so I am not convinced. Good luck to us all as every special interest tries to remake the environment to meet their own special needs.

  32. I hunt, fish, camp, and hike in all types of areas and though I carry a firearm of one type or the other I have never found reason to kill a snake unless I’m going to eat it.
    To kill a snake just to kill it, for it’s rattle, or because your scared of it shows just how ignorant people are! and ignorant people with guns is much more dangerous than any snake.

  33. Hank, my dad liked to tell the story about how when he was still a young man… he & his father were walking down to the river bank just about dark one evening… on their way to do some catfishing.

    As they walked along the trail, they met 2 men who were cussing up a storm… headed back to their truck… and they asked my granddad if he wanted a Jon boat w/ trailer free of charge. All they had to do was get it out of the water & load it up… and it was theirs. My grandfather asked what was wrong… did it have a leak?

    The guys had let out another long streak of cussing and explained how the boat was full of cotton mouths… and how they were done with the boat. The men had said the snakes had suddenly shown-up and started coming over the sides… and as Will wrote… dropping out of the trees which over-hung the bank.

    After looking the nice little boat over… my grandfather had passed on it. Dad said it was filled with snakes and certainly not worth risking getting bitten over. And because of that story, I never had any desire to get into a small boat or any waders.

  34. Thomas: have the cotton mouths managed to get into your boat? I have a little 14′ Jon boat with a relatively shallow draft and I’m thinking of exploring some of the southern areas before we decide to relocate.

    1. Hank, after 39+ yrs. at and around Ft. Benning, I’ve found that Cottonmouths, and Banded Water snakes in general, If long enough- have come into my 16′ Alumacraft over the transom, or whichever is the lowest section closest to the water. However; be very observant If you are in or near any creek banks with overhanging limbs– as they will “drop in on you unexpectedly”— Literally. This I learned first-hand on Upatoi Creek, on Ft. Benning. The mating season is the worst time. They just seem to go wild and are afraid of nothing.

  35. Here in Central Texas we have a lot of Cotton Mouth and a few Rattle snakes. I do a lot of fishing in the Brazos River which has a lot of Cotton Mouth snakes, which are aggressive and give off a musky odor at some distance. I always carry a Smith & Wesson 38 special Airweight loaded with two rounds of Speer shot shells and three rounds of hollow points for two legged snakes. However, I have killed most of these snakes with a boat paddle. They tend to get into or around the boat at night, attracted by the bait in the minnow can. The boat paddle will not damage an aluminum boat.

  36. It seems that there is always someone who says that killing snakes will cause the rat/rodent population to explode. How can this be when snakes eat one, maybe two, rat/mouse/rodent per week. The vermin reproduce at the rate of hundreds, then thousands every few months.

    If a venomous snake is in my presence, it is dead in short time – especially if other people frequent the area. Like a rapist, if it is dispatched immediately, it saves another person from becoming their victim(s) in the future.

  37. Why kill venomous snakes? When I was about 13 my family went fishing all the time.
    One day we beached the boat in a tributary, and was wading in about 4′ of water.
    we were have a blast catching white bass. When my Dad threw a lure close to some roots in the water, he pissed off a cotton mouth and it headed directly for my sister.
    She was in chest high water about 20′ from the bank. this snake was ten feet from her.
    There was now way she could make it to the bank before the snake got her.
    My Dad’s quick thinking saved my sister from getting bit that day by snagging the snake with a Rooster tail.(fishing lure)
    He then dragged the cotton mouth on the bank and I killed it with rocks.
    I have a Snake slayer and stoke it with 3″ 7.5 shot 410 shells.
    Imagine being in chest high water 20 feet from the bank with a pissed off cotton mouth coming for you.
    What would you want?
    Me I kill all venomous snakes on my property! Any King snake has my blessings and I will move them by hand out of harms way.
    (They eat venomous snakes)
    A 410 handgun works well when you can’t get away! But at least the fishing lure worked when we needed it to.

  38. One of my friends who is living in North Carolina with his family often have to face a cottonmouth snake. Luckily they haven’t had any serious incident with these venomous snakes. To provide him more options I will surely let him know about this snake gun that should help him to stay protected from these dangerous snakes. If someone is looking to get more information about cottonmouth snakes he/she should check out the following website. (

  39. Once I initially commented I clicked the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and now every time a remark is added I get 4 emails with the identical comment. Is there any means you may take away me from that service? Thanks!

  40. It seem that there are a lot of snake lovers reading this post. I am not exactly a snake lover, nor am I a snake hater, but I do wear snake proof gaiters to keep me protected as there are a lot of rattlesnakes where I do a lot of fly fishing. Snake gaiters give me peace of mind and make snakes feel like less of a threat when I am prepared.

  41. After reading all of the previously posted messages, much is explained about the reason our country is in the shape it is. Snakes are not welcomed house guests. Most of us, hunters as well, will not ever encounter a snake. But when we do, I see no reason to think about the poor snake and its individual impact on the “vermin balance.” At last check most North American venomous snakes give birth to at least 8 – 10 live baby snakes, which are just as poisonous as the big ones. I don’t think there is much chance of us wiping them out or impacting the total number of rats and mice. However, given the choice, let me deal with a rat any day over a six foot eastern diamondback. By my way of thinking we would be better served to worry about fixing our economy and the next presidential election than any number of snake fatalities.

  42. I would like to venture a question… If you are a lover of snakes – what are you doing on this web page? Our family has a lake house on very clean, deep, water, and fortunately I have only seen a couple in 3 years. However, over the weekend guests saw 3 within one day. For me that is 3 too many. These are not the friendly little garden snakes that peek out of the hose – these are vicious, aggressive, cotton mouths that seek to alter your alignment in the universe.

    Just to put it out there, I couldn’t care less about the venim balance. I have a marine biology background, and I love being around the water, fish, etc. but I don’t really enjoy a good “snake”. Personally if something is up against me, while I have no means of protection – the Judge is sounding like a pretty good idea. I can see where an inexperienced person, like myself, might not need this type of power, but it beats the heck out of my son’s air soft gun. And really what is it going to hurt by exhibiting a little practice? Well perhaps one less snake or two. I have a feeling the venim balance will sort itself out in the end.

  43. It put scratches in your gun!?! Oh, I’d have shot it, spit on it, stomped it into the ground, burned its entrails, skinned it and worn it like a condom. You can do many things, but devaluing a mans weapon is just going too far.

  44. I’m sorry, but I’ve shot lots of snakes. If they leave me alone, I leave them alone. But last time I was out hunting in SD, the days were 78 degrees and the nights were 32 degrees. The poor rattlers didn’t know if they should hibernate or not. They were ALL mad, and they didn’t rattle until you basically stepped on them. I had two almost bite me, one of them put scratches from it’s fangs on my brand new shotgun. I say, shoot them if they’re being aggressive. Better than letting one of you snake-huggers walk out there after me and get bit and trying to blame me.

    1. I have dispatched MANY snakes in my life. In my youth roaming the forests and swamps of South Carolina, I killed them with a sheath knife, rocks, sharp sticks and occasionally a firearm. Now I am a long-time Texan living in a large-lot neighborhood where kids, dogs and unarmed citizens run across snakes often. I recently stepped on a 30″ coral snake, which almost stopped my heart. Fortunately, these guys are timid and he was as afraid as I was. I went for a gun, but he was long-gone when I got back. These snakes are too dangerous to leave alone in a populated area.

  45. You may be able to avoid some snakes in the outdoors, but what about when they get in your gear that is the back of the truck or left on the ground or when they get in hunting cabin. I have had to shoot plenty of snakes in hunting camp and even in my garage. Once they get into the garage or the cabin they don’t leave on their own, you have to kill them, shooting them with the shot shell loads or 410 shells are the easiest way. The Aguila Super Colibri work very well when used in a single shot pistol or a revolver. Sorry but you can’t always let them be.

  46. Listen to all of these “outdoor” experts opposed to, killing a rattlesnake. I wonder how many actually get outdoors from their safe and secure urban home life. We live in southern New Mexico and my wife and I both carry Judges “just in case”. The first shot out in #4 for the viper. After that it is 225gr 45LC silvertips for the vermin that you way run into that likes sneaking accross our deserts and into our citys, schools and emergency rooms.

  47. Neil, you are right about the size of the projectile being different, but the .410 shot shell and brass are the same as a 45lc and are close enough in size where they are chambered.Remember they are talking about “CHAMBER” and not the barrel, key word being “Chamber”. The case of a 45 is larger than the projectile, and only the diameter of the bullet determines the caliber. Since the .410 projectile is smaller than a 45, you can shoot it out of a 45 with out damage, but not a 45 in a .410 shotgun(you are 100% correct about that).

  48. If you get to close to a snake it’s too late to shoot it anyway. It will most likely bite you before you get a shot off. So, if you can avoid a snake you should also avoid shooting it, too. Besides, there is not enough ammo in the world to shot all the rats and field mice that the snake would’nt get a chance to eat. Let nature take it’s course and save on your ammo.

  49. Hey you ^^^^ your crazy by the time it strikes it’s too late you have been bit. Happy trails getting out the woods bud!

  50. I don’t care for the way they word that the .410 and .45LC share the same size chamber, I have always been told that you can safely shoot .410 in a 45lc that was chambered for both .410 and 45LC (like the judge) but to take a 45lc and try to shoot it out of a 410 shotgun not chambered for both is bad thing. Considering that the .410 is .41 of a inch and the 45lc is .451 of a inch. This is only what I’ve been told so it could be wrong, if so disregard this comment.

  51. People should never kill a snake poisonous or not. It upsets the snake/vermin balance. You kill snakes then be happy with an over abundance of vermin. About the only time a snake will bite is if you get too close or actually step on it. For the most part snakes want less to do with you than you with them. In my whole life I have never known a snake to chase a person down and bite them. You avoid them I assure you they will avoid you if at all possible. Should you step on a snake and it takes a strike at you…..shoot it !

  52. I generally don’t kill venomous snakes (unless it’s a cottonmouth in my swimming pool or on my patio), and definitely don’t kill them if I’m out in the woods. What’s the point?

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