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Caliber for a muzzleloader rifle for bird hunting

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32 Cal
Feb 20, 2024
Reaction score
Northern Finland
Hi! I have been considering getting a muzzleloader for hunting birds. I would be hunting for capercaillie, black grouse and ducks, but I don't know which caliber should i go with. I will get a rifle, as most of the hunting will be for birds that are either sitting in a tree or walking on the ground, and it is a wee tad difficult to get close enough for a shotgun. I would mostly hunt capercaillie and grouse, but i don't know which caliber should i go with. I would like to have a rifle that will be large enough to take down the big capercaillies or occasional goose, but i don't want it to explode grouses into pillow fillings. I have been considering the Kibler SMR rifle, as i love the looks and it is a kit that i can finish, if my local gunshop can get one imported to Finland. I will be open for other kit rifles too, as far as they are obtainable from europe or through my gun shop's suppliers. Thanks!
I think the Kibler smr would be a great choice. As regards caliber, I'm uncertain. I kill our big blue grouse while hunting deer and elk. Always with a 50 or 54. The blues aren't difficult to get close to so head/neck shots are easy.

Since your shots will be long, maybe a 36 or 40?
I'm assuming using a rifle to shoot birds os acceptable and legal there. Are there any caliber restrictions involved there?
Could/would you possibly use the rifle for hunting any other game?

My 1st two instincts are a .36 or a .45, but which would depend on some of those questions.

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