Journal article

Assessment of Lead-Free .22 LR Bullets for Shooting European Rabbits

Jordan O Hampton, Anthony J DeNicola, David M Forsyth

Wildlife Society Bulletin: perspectives on wildlife conservation and sustainable use | Wiley | Published : 2020

Abstract

In response to health threats posed by toxic lead to humans and scavenging wildlife, there is currently a focus on transitioning from lead-based to lead-free bullets for shooting (harvesting, culling, or recreational hunting) of wild animals. However, the efficacy of lead-free bullets for shooting small mammals has seldom been evaluated. We compared the animal welfare outcomes and costs of using lead-based and lead-free bullets in the world's most popular cartridge, the rimfire .22 LR, for shooting wild European rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus) in Australia, during August 2019. Ballistic testing revealed that lead-free bullets were less precise than one type of commonly used lead-based bullet..

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