Fox shooting: .223 or 17HMR? A pro shooter’s perspective

Hunting with thermals, callers and two different calibres


What’s best for medium vermin like foxes: a .223 centrefire or a 17HMR rimfire? It’s a question I got asked a lot working at Shorty’s Hunting and Outdoors and the answer was never straightforward. 

Pro shooter Rodney Morris of RJM Hunting shoots truckloads of foxes and has experience few of us could gather in 10 years of hunting. On this particular job, he needs both calibres.

“The foxes have been in all sorts of different areas on this property — in and around buildings, so the 17HMR’s going to be the safest option there,” Rod says. “The last thing I want to do is do any damage to the infrastructure. There’s less chance of a pass-through or a ricochet.

“I’ll use the .223 for out on the flats and down in the open paddocks behind the camera.”

Most of Rod’s work is in the open areas away from the buildings, but he’ll keep the rimfire handy to get the “sneaky ones” that might come in around the historic buildings.   

“The job was at a historical property used for wedding receptions and school excursions,” Rod said. Not the kind of place you want to leave bullet holes in walls!

In the video you’ll also get a few tips on placing remote callers and how to call cattle … whether you want them to come or not!

Rod uses thermal spotters and scopes, not only getting good results with them for his clients but capturing some great footage at the same time.


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