Three targets, one shot.

My new shooting setup afforded me several opportunities today.  The half-bath window is perfect.  The window has a clear view of the backyard.  I just raise the blinds a bit, raise the window, and sit on a stool (not the all popular throne).  I can rest my R7 on the windowsill, and the pests are not the wiser.

First up, there was a squirrel digging in the yard, right in front of the window.  Probably would have been a 15 yard shot, which should have been an easy kill, but I never felt like I had a good (read not shaky) shoot.  Lots of opportunity, but too much adrenaline.  Instead, I concentrated on my usual target area, probably about 22-25 yards out.  I figured that I could zero in the gun from my new vantage point, and get comfortable shooting from the window.  The ping of a Miller Lite can sent the squirrel running for cover.

Later in the morning, a squirrel came scurrying into view.  This time I decided to take a shot at about 25 yards because the little bastard was digging up some newly planted grass.  I am not sure if this is the squirrel that I spared earlier, but any squirrel digging at my hard work is in the wrong place (and if my shot is true, at the wrong time).  I took aim at the varmint’s eye and let fire.  It was a hit, but I guess not as perfect as I would have hoped to land.  The tree rat was clearly stunned, shook its head, and took off running.  I am not sure where my shot landed; must have been lower down the body instead of on the head.  Maybe.  I hate not getting clean kills, but I hate squirrels digging up my yard and nesting in my attic even more.

About thirty minutes after the squirrel mishap, a starling decided to fly in and peck away at some dug out area where I removed a bunch of weeds.  The starling was constantly on the move, and I never felt like I had a great shot.  In reality, I did, but after the mishap with the squirrel, I was reluctant to take anything except the perfect shot.

Lessons learned?  For starters, several starlings are in the area, and they are not welcome since they compete with the local song birds.  In the past I did not shoot at starlings, mainly because I did not want to make a mistake and take out a desirable bird.  I also need to shoot faster.  I had plenty of decent shots this morning, but I always waited for the perfect shot.  I need to get more accurate with the Beeman R7 so I do not have to worry about being trigger happy.  I also need to figure out if my R7 can take out squirrels.  Out of my last 10 attempts, probably only 3 have been clean kills.  Not good.

More practice, especially from the new shooting room is in order.  Of course the R1 Double Gold cannot get here soon enough.


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