No Federal Prairie Storm- Clear skies in MN

PeteRevvv

Member
Just on my own I think I've cleared the available stock of 12 gauge PS in east metro Minneapolis/St. Paul. I went to all the Fleet Farms and the Cabelas east of the Mississippi and ended up with 3 boxes of 2 3/4 fours and a case of 3in sixes that I found tucked in the way back of a shelf at Cabelas. None of the clerks at the store had the time to talk or info about whether or not there would be restocking before any of the pheasant openers. The Federal plant is about 4 miles from where I sit right now so it's not about shipping. Based on the empty shelves of just about everything else, I'm guessing we won't see any more.

Has anyone heard from their local shops if they expect a late shipment?

If someone waits until a couple weeks before season I'm afraid they'll end up having to shoot turkey loads or winchester white box target shells.
 

gimruis

Member
I've been having issues finding prairie storm too. I am willing to use wing shok instead as the velocity is the same 1500 fps. Having a hard time finding that too. Ordering online is an option but the shipping is very expensive and there could be delays. I've got enough to start the season but I feel like I will need more by December when the bag limit goes to 3 so I intend to keep an eye out.
 

goldenboy

Well-known member
I heard from a friend who was playing golf with federal execs the other day. They will not be making prairie storm this year! something about not being able to keep up with demand for all the other stuff they produce. He siad that he finds that hard to believe because the shotshells are produced on a different line thatn the rifle cartridges.
 

PeteRevvv

Member
Would have to be staffing levels then. It's not always smart business to hire for a short boom in demand. You have to take time to train newbies which could be time better spent running full production lines. When things go back to normal, you are on the hook for unemployment when you eventually have to let them go.

In my mind, I shoot better with PS loads. Some years I run out and then use whatever freebies I have on hand. I know it's probably 50% mental, 40% situational and 10% better product. I suppose late in the hunt, the birds are getting smarter and flushing farther out. I am getting more confident about longer shots, maybe more desperate to limit out and end up taking tougher shots. If I'm down to some Kents or Fiochi I picked up at a banquet or raffle and I'm using them at this time then I will be missing more often with them. So it reinforces my gut feeling that I shoot better with PS. Certainly have all respect for hunters who can switch guns and use any old shot and still hit most of the time.

Must ... resist ... urge ... to ... post ... shells ... online ... and ... sell ... at ... markup,
 
I don't have as much experience pheasant hunting as most of you guys. I know when I did a lot of reading and research about shotguns/ammo/patterns, it seemed that for lead, most patterns tend to get blown out over 1400fps. For that reason I never bought any prairie storm. It seems the best patterns are from 1200-1300fps. I got my data from Tom Roster and Bob Brister. I got the impression 1500fps would leave a lot of holes in your pattern. I have not done testing myself.
 
To you 16 gauge hunters: If you buy the new Prairie Storm, be aware these are not 1 1/4 ounce loads as advertised. I bought them from 2 different suppliers and they came in at 1 1/8 Ounce. Had I known, I would have bought the regular copper plated Wing Shok and not spent the extra $.
 

A5 Sweet 16

Well-known member
Meh. PS is overrated anyway. ;) (I don't care what you shoot)

To you 16 gauge hunters: If you buy the new Prairie Storm, be aware these are not 1 1/4 ounce loads as advertised. I bought them from 2 different suppliers and they came in at 1 1/8 Ounce.

I contacted Federal through their online "contact us" link several months ago & questioned the accuracy of the 1-1/4 oz 16 gauge PS load. It showed up in their catalog way before it was online, or actually available for purchase. Just seemed unfathomable that they'd get that stout a load flying 1425 from a 16. I've received no response. Makes me wonder if the misrepresentation is intentional. I've seen similar stuff w/ other mfrs. I pretty firmly believe HeviShot's 1-1/8 oz 16 ga HeviBismuth loads are intentionally misrepresented. The case I bought actually weigh less than 1-1/16 oz on average. When Kent reintroduced bismuth in 16 ga (after discontinuing tungsten matrix), they advertised a 1 oz load at 1200 fps (a bit slower than I'd like). I'd heard people say that they bought them & the box said 1300. So I contacted Kent & they said they're actually 1300 & immediately got their website updated. THEN I bought a couple cases. People running websites don't necessarily know what they're dealing with. So typos might not get caught. But HeviShot is sketchy enough (in my opinion) that I don't trust them to be honest.
 
I tried PS a long time ago and it blew apart birds at normal ranges plus the recoil was a little much for me and the cost of it is kinda crazy IMO. Plenty of other good loads out there just gotta pattern your shotgun.
 

PeteRevvv

Member
Every forum should have a YMMV sticky post to start to keep in mind everyone has an individual context. I'm should add a tag line to my posts for some context to help in that regard. I am non-resident hunting SD for my 25th season; make one 5 day trip a year at opener; hunt public/ditches/road hunt; 50% of the time without a dog; that is a flushing lab that doesn't see many pheasants in between years; hunting with older guys that need me to fill their limits and meat eaters that want to go home will all 15 birds. So I need to take a lot of wild, tuned up birds from long distances in a short amount of time and anchor them to the ground so I can self-retrieve. Winds whistling at fresh gale?- don't have the option to take the day off. So many of my opportunities start with flushes at 30 yards and quickly go from there and I often have doubles to take.

I normally load a 3in for my 3rd/4th shell and run a Versamax to manage the recoil punishment. I shoot 3-4 boxes for the trip so $4 more a box vs. ruining a $500 trip which cheap shells is an easy decision. I've done this enough times with O/Us, pumps and autos with all kinds of shells from hot reloads to Dakota's Best to have a good sense of what works and doesn't for me. For my situation and the conditions I'm in, 12ga auto and Prairie Storms are the best combo for reliability and capability to reach out and pluck them out of the air that I've found so far.
 

PeteRevvv

Member
I've had more discussions on "who shot first" and "who actually finished the bird" before, during and after the hunt than shells I've ever fired. It would take the wisdom of Solomon for GFP to split ownership if they had to assign birds to shooters and not bag limits. Only time it ever got really serious was a piebald three of us fired on at the same time. Had the taxidermist save the pellets and counted up the 4s, 5s and 6s to see who got the most in. Winner got to keep the mount.
 

david0311

Member
Every forum should have a YMMV sticky post to start to keep in mind everyone has an individual context. I'm should add a tag line to my posts for some context to help in that regard. I am non-resident hunting SD for my 25th season; make one 5 day trip a year at opener; hunt public/ditches/road hunt; 50% of the time without a dog; that is a flushing lab that doesn't see many pheasants in between years; hunting with older guys that need me to fill their limits and meat eaters that want to go home will all 15 birds. So I need to take a lot of wild, tuned up birds from long distances in a short amount of time and anchor them to the ground so I can self-retrieve. Winds whistling at fresh gale?- don't have the option to take the day off. So many of my opportunities start with flushes at 30 yards and quickly go from there and I often have doubles to take.

I normally load a 3in for my 3rd/4th shell and run a Versamax to manage the recoil punishment. I shoot 3-4 boxes for the trip so $4 more a box vs. ruining a $500 trip which cheap shells is an easy decision. I've done this enough times with O/Us, pumps and autos with all kinds of shells from hot reloads to Dakota's Best to have a good sense of what works and doesn't for me. For my situation and the conditions I'm in, 12ga auto and Prairie Storms are the best combo for reliability and capability to reach out and pluck them out of the air that I've found so far.
????? Ditch -road hunting—very long shots-no dog-filling in other limits for those needing full limits—
NOT ILLEGAL. MAYBE -BUT-SPORTSMAN LIKE -ETHICAL-???
 

KS GSP

Member
????? Ditch -road hunting—very long shots-no dog-filling in other limits for those needing full limits—
NOT ILLEGAL. MAYBE -BUT-SPORTSMAN LIKE -ETHICAL-???
I don't necessarily see a problem with anything he said as long as he's able to retrieve the majority of the birds without a dog. A lot of people road hunt and take long shots and most everyone shares limits when hunting in groups.
 

remy3424

Member
"Had the taxidermist save the pellets and counted up the 4s, 5s and 6s to see who got the most in. Winner got to keep the mount."

Bet it was the shooter of the 6s that won...if he actually hit it. 5s mostly pass through and I have to assume 4s would even more so.

I keep track of my birds, the limits are for group...2 of us, 6 roosters between us, each leaving with a limit, is how I understand the regs in Iowa.

I wouldn't get too concerned on the shells you use, I would buy PS if I had no shells left and they were the last ones on the shelf....I have little need for loads that heavy, we are hunting wild pheasants. I would also have to be out and no access to one of the needed compontents to reload them....been maybe a decade since I bought shells to pheasant hunt.
 

A5 Sweet 16

Well-known member
Thank heaven for the armchair ethics police around here. (n)
 

PeteRevvv

Member
Ever walked the public side of a private fence in a walk-in area? How is that different than the public side of a private fence when hunting a right of way (other than an abundance of gravel nearby)? Our dog got out when being watched by friends this winter and killed on the highway. We'll be going back to the same local SD breeder we got that dog from to look over this year's pups. So this year I am back to picking my shots more carefully- I won't shoot where they will drop into cattails or corn no matter what- I'm not that good of a two-legged birdog any more. I could get private land all day long, every day to shoot birds in the face at 20 yards if I asked. But I know the farmers I stay with have paid hunters coming that depend on dumb birds and lots of them so I don't even ask and put them in that position. So I'm in the ditches and at the other end blocking this year will be my dad on his 40th hunt, leaning on a cane due to total knee replacement 6 weeks ago. He loves making pheasant for friends and church potlucks so he appreciates taking all his birds home, no matter the conditions. Will I take a double and hand one over to him as part of his count? You bet I will. I know my effective range with my gun with PS ammo so I don't have to double-guess about my shells and range this year.
 
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