JUSTIFIED December 21, 2015 Featured, Hunting, Prostaff Reports Twitter0Facebook0LinkedIn0Prostaffer Barry Stewart is the real deal. When it comes to ranching, wildlife management or predators, he’s a go-to resource that offers opinions and recommendations that you can count on being based on years of experience, Texas know-how and you’d be well served to heed. When we first met Barry five years ago, hunting with airguns among the mainstream was a bit of a novelty, and the question was “could it be done”. Barry said yes it could and by the end of the first day of receiving a Benjamin he had a coyote on the ground. Since then, he has incorporated Benjamin airguns into his wildlife management efforts. “In the past couple of years I have been developing a method to control hogs with my Benjamin air rifles. It is proving to be quite successful! The setup: I have a couple of areas where I do supplemental feeding for deer and game birds. The problem with that is that the free meal draws undesirable animals as well. Feral hogs often ravage the entire area, and consume feed and protein supplement that is expensive to replace, not to mention having to repair the damage to pasture from hog destruction. I hatched a plan to “condition” the hogs with a focused light with adjustable brightness and beam width. I focus the light on the feed area and just leave it. Then, monitoring the area with game cameras, I pattern the times certain animals are visiting the area. Being as the light is constantly on the area, animals get used to it, and pay no attention shortly thereafter, and continue about their routines, unheeding and unconcerned about the light. Raccoons and other smaller, destructive animals that need some control, I usually take with my Marauder .25 caliber rifle. I have even used the Marauder to take coyotes and a few feral hogs. As long as you are careful with the head shots, and stay within range for the rifle, (usually 50 yards or under), it works very well. But, sometimes you need more range and more power. These feral hogs are smart. And spooky. Sometimes staying at under 50 yards is the challenge. Not to mention the toughness of some animals such as a big boar hog. Animals just don’t get much tougher than a mature boar hog… Or more destructive. I was thrilled to get the new Benjamin Bulldog .357, and immediately applied the rifle to an area where the shots presented would be a minimum of 85 yards, to a max of 100 yards. That type of animal, at those distances requires two things: Power and Accuracy. I sighted the Bulldog at 100 yards, and was very pleased to discover that get consistent groups of 1-2″ at that range. Then I started testing the power and penetration of the Bulldog at those ranges. Being convinced that the Bulldog would perform well, I set about the monitoring and waiting game. It didn’t take long to have success with this plan. I cleanly took a sow feral hog at nearly 100 yards. I, as always aim for a spot close to the hog’s ear, and the Bulldog did it’s job well! But, what about a big, mature boar hog? Would the Bulldog stand up to that challenge as well? I’m happy to report that I was correct in my assumption that I needed power and accuracy with these huge, destructive, dangerous animals. I used the Bulldog to take a mature boar hog at 85 yards. One shot had the hog down. He never untracked from where that 145gr Ballistic Tip ended his reign of destruction. The power and accuracy of the Bulldog still has me smiling. If you are shooting large and dangerous animals at 85 yards, you need to be pretty confident that it will have the accuracy for shot placement, and the stopping power to get the job done, in less than ideal conditions of shooting at night, at an animal that is nearly constantly moving. I’m very confident in the Bulldog now. It passed the test with flying colors! I’m very much looking forward to using this rifle and technique to keep sensitive areas free of damage that unchecked feral hogs can inflict. And not only do I have the power and accuracy, but when I do target an animal, I have less muzzle report, and no white-out from shooting a rifle that uses conventional gun powder. (When shooting from behind a bright light, looking through a scope, gun smoke catches the light, and blurs your target to the point you have no choice but to wait until the smoke clears before you are afforded another shot.) I don’t have to wait for the smoke to clear for the Bulldog to take another shot, if one is afforded. I’d be interested to hear if anyone else incorporates this method of hunting (or wants to), and am always available to answer any questions about the setup, or the Bulldog, or Marauder that use on a daily basis.” You can find Barry on 24hrcampfire.com.