My grandfather told me that he still regretted shooting the deer with this cartridge. Although he probably killed hundreds of coyotes and other parasites with this Winchester Model 43, he never caught it on a deer hunt again. Survivalist Mel Tappan on the .22 Hornet: “It`s accurate, it has virtually no recoil and a slight ratio. The production of [I]l limits its use to small game and pests within a radius of 150 or 175 yards. This is by no means a reliable deer cartridge, not even with manual loads.  Is the .22 Hornet a viable caliber/load/cartridge for white-tailed deer hunting? The correct answer is “it depends”. However, the purpose of this article is simply to answer the question of whether the .22 Hornet is in the ideal range of calibers suitable for harvesting white-tailed deer. As with everything, the devil is in the details. To fully answer the question, we should evaluate the descending distance from the white-tailed deer, the type of projectile, the grain weight of the projectile, the physical condition of the firearm, the size of the white-tailed deer in question, the placement of the shot, the local wind conditions, the expected accuracy of the shooter, the ethics of the ideal maximum number of shots – the list is long.
What we can do is create a framework to understand what the average conditions might look like, and whether they are reasonably feasible for a shot from the average shooter to harvest a white-tailed deer in the smallest possible number of shots, that is, ethically. Let`s dive right away. To the question “Is the .22 Hornet in the ideal range of calibers suitable for white-tailed deer hunting?”, our answer is: In fact, my grandfather killed his first deer with a Winchester Model 43 in .22 Hornet many years ago. Unfortunately, his experience pretty well summarizes the two scenarios most likely to occur when shooting a large wild animal with the small cartridge. If you are looking for a beautiful .22 hornet rifle, then you have many options. The Ruger M77/22, Savage 25 Lightweight Varmmer and Thompson/Center Contender are all available in current production and .22 Hornet. It is by no means a reliable deer cartridge, even with manual charges, although it has been used for this purpose. One common thread you may encounter in online forums is one anecdote after another of large animals slaughtered by small caliber bullets, or small animals surviving large caliber bullets. Of course, there are these stories, and they are not disputed here. A 22 LR cartridge can drop a bull elephant in the right conditions, and a newborn squirrel can survive a 50 BMG cycle under other specific conditions.
Again, the purpose of this article is simply to answer the question of whether .22 Hornet is in the ideal range of calibers suitable for harvesting white-tailed deer – and to this question, the answer is again no, the .22 Hornet is UNDERKILL for white-tailed deer hunting. The Hornet`s practical lack of recoil has made it very popular in some areas, even among deer hunters, although it is generally considered very undernourished for deer, unless the placement of the ball is absolutely accurate.  American hunter Jack O`Connor denounced this practice in the 1950s, stating that the Hornet could “under no circumstances” be considered a deer cartridge.  Many jurisdictions such as the Netherlands, the United Kingdom (with the exception of England and Wales)  and some states in the United States currently prohibit the use of the Hornet (and other .22 caliber cartridges) in deer. He first shot in the shoulder and caused an evil injury, but probably not immediately fatal. The deer stopped, turned around and looked at him for a few seconds. Fortunately, my grandfather had time to recharge and shot the deer again. This time, he shot her in the head and the deer fell in his footsteps. I`ve been harvesting deer since I was first when I was 9 years old, I killed with a .243, 30-30, .270 and my H&R Single Action .22 Hornet. Killed more than a dozen deer with the hornet. I watch these videos on TV where these guys shoot powerful guns, and the deer run away, and they can`t find them for hours. Killing a deer is not the size of the weapon, but the placement of the shot.
The deer I killed with the hornet did not move more than 5`. My shot is either under the jaw or about 2″ to the left and 2″ south of the shoulder, work EVERY time! In fact, with a .45-grain ball, the exit hole is about the size of my fist.