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Bio birds argh!

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by omgb, Dec 11, 2009.

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  1. omgb

    omgb Well-Known Member

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    I was shooting skeet at Oaktree last night with some buddies. it's been a few weeks since i last shot there and they've made a mandatory conversion to biodegradable birds. Well, I don't care for them. I saw at least three and maybe more birds get smacked by a few pellets without breaking. You could see a puff of dust come off the top of the bird so you knew it was hit. it just didn't break. Often when birds did break, they broke in large jagged pieces that stung like heck when they hit you. Non-skeet shooters here deserve an explanation. On stations 1, 7 and 8 you have birds coming right at you. When you break them, the chunks come at you like little jagged spinning blades. Here's the worst of it. California shooters will most likely have slightly lower scores due to the lesser breakability of these birds compared to shooters from other states. This will play hob with rankings and qualifying scores. What do you guys think?
     
  2. 7 straight

    7 straight Member

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    they killed or grass,and were hard 2 see,small pieces of terget at night,they turn gray.
     
  3. short shucker

    short shucker TS Member

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    Shot at and still shoot bio targets at a couple of clubs. My scores are no different than at clubs with traditional targets.

    omgb,

    Did you go find those targets that were hit and not broke? If you compare them to regular targets that are hit and not broken you'll find them very similar. Hit 'em square and they break just like any other.

    ss
     
  4. phirel

    phirel TS Member

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    omgb- If you don't like the "biodegradable" targets you should try to convince the club to not throw them with some sound arguments. First, they are not biodegradable, they are simply water soluble. Also, the sulfate content will form an acid when it gets wet. This will kill most vegetation in the target fall area. There is a possibility that the target dust that gets on the trap machine could become damp and form an acid that might damage the machine. I load targets and do some work in the trap house at my club. The target dust gets on my hands and shirt. I could see a situation where some of the dust might form an acid that could get onto my gun.

    On the positive side, I have shot very few of the "biodegradable" targets but the ones I have shot seemed to break OK. Please understand that the following comments are not intended to be derogatory to you. We have difficulty accepting change. It may be that your dislike of the targets involves a dislike of change rather than a problem with the targets.

    Pat Ireland
     
  5. short shucker

    short shucker TS Member

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    Pat,

    Spreading around a little lime from time to time will keep the soil PH correct and the vegitation will do just fine.

    I agree about keeping the machines and traphouse clear of debris. I do this reguarless of the targets thrown. I hate spending 20 minutes to clean things up so I can work on a machine.

    ss
     
  6. DecalDude

    DecalDude Active Member

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    Unfortunately its the way of the future, useing Bio Birds and reclaiming shot may be about the only ways to keep enviromentalist and DEC out of our sports.
    Our clubs use them, and they are about all I have shot at except a trip to Eleysberg(where they did break lots easier)

    Jerry
     
  7. Border Bandit

    Border Bandit Well-Known Member

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    Once again we're hit by the good intentions of the environmentalists, who without supporting data, foist their feel good agenda upon us.

    It's the sulphuric acid snot when they dissolve, that's killing the grass; but worse yet, there's concern that a pH change in the soil could cause the unstable lead ions to migrate into the ground water. Not only that, when our trap machines were put to bed at the end of the season, condensation caused the carousel on our Pattraps to rust over the winter. The standard pitch formulation in the standard clay targets simply gets ground up and causes no problems whatsoever.
    Here's a great argument for the old saying, "If it ain't broke; don't fix it."

    I do agree with Short Shucker, though, that monitoring downrange soil pH, and adding lime is important, as are the impeccable records you keep, that monitoring/liming has been regularly done. One of these days, someone from an "agency" will visit and ask for them.
     
  8. shot410ga

    shot410ga Well-Known Member

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    We tried them. It was like hitting pieces granite. Shot would hit them and they would bounce all over the sky, and not break. This was the first of the year. We quit buying them.
     
  9. oleolliedawg

    oleolliedawg Banned User Banned TS Supporters

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    I personally shot plenty of 'em at our club. Color seemed a bit brighter that standards but target flight a bit more erratic. Put the load on 'em like you're supposed to and they break as good or better than other targets.

    Our grass shows no effect from Bios and it sure beats hauling away truckloads of target debris after years of shooting pitch targets!!
     
  10. Hoosier Daddy

    Hoosier Daddy TS Member

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    We shoot them at our club. I think they break as easily as the standard targets but I don't really care for them. I prefer to see black smoke and the bios put out greyish white smoke.
     
  11. omgb

    omgb Well-Known Member

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    No offense taken Pat, I am really ignorant on the matter and any experienced input is welcome. I am concerned that the new birds are going to bring new problems of their own. If all shooters across all states are not shooting birds of the same consistency there may be inequities in the record books. Or, maybe not. Anyway, one thing I do know, those damned chunks hurt lie the dickens when you get beaned on the sconce with one.


    Last point, I'd love to retrieve one of those "missed" birds but there simply was no way to get out there safely Thursday night. But you're right, these birds need to be examined before any conclusions are drawn.

    Thanks for the input.
     
  12. phirel

    phirel TS Member

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    omgb- From an environmental point, there is another problem with the so called biodegradable. Lead shot in the ground forms a carbonate that is water soluble in acid environments. If your club uses the biodegradable (so called), it can greatly increase the lead pollution at and around the club.

    Short Shucker was correct when he suggested spreading some lime if the biodegradable targets are used. In fact, spreading some lime over the shot fall area is a very good policy no matter what type of target is used. The EPA considers treating the shot fall area with lime an acceptable lead pollution mitigation procedure.

    Pat Ireland

    PS- Biodegradable is very different from water soluble. My friends at White Flyer know that the targets are really not biodegradable but it is a good selling point.
     
  13. oleolliedawg

    oleolliedawg Banned User Banned TS Supporters

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    Pat fails to point out the vast majority of target debris falls far less than 50 yds. from the traphouse. Lead shot generally falls considerably farther!!
     
  14. omgb

    omgb Well-Known Member

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    At Oaktree we shoot into the side of a hill so targets and shot are co-mingled eqadistant from the house. You all raise some interesting points though. My basic concern was that with different birds that may break with different ease, CA trap schores might not equate to the scores shot outside CA
     
  15. phirel

    phirel TS Member

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    oleolliedawg- Yes, the targets fall much closer to the house than the shot. And the water that dissolves the targets can flow for many miles not too far under the ground surface.

    Pat Ireland.
     
  16. BrowningPotato

    BrowningPotato TS Member

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    I have no experience with the bio birds but i think giving in to the enviro-agitators is a slippery slope. JMO
     
  17. oleolliedawg

    oleolliedawg Banned User Banned TS Supporters

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    So I guess what you're saying Pat is the same water that dissolves Bio targets is also responsible for lead pollution in areas many miles from a gun club. As a DEP inspector once told me "lead pollution is nearly impossible to track to a single source". He stated "lead is pervasive throughout the eco-system and comes from many sources-including rocks".

    Bio targets perform exactly as intended I'd say!!
     
  18. phirel

    phirel TS Member

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    oleolliedawg- What I did rather clearly say was that the acid produced by the bio targets can reach the lead fall area at many clubs. This would promote diffusion of the lead into other areas. Once lead gets into an ecosystem it can quickly become wide spread. Lead is absorbed into plants. Some animals eat plants and walk away.

    I made this comment in direct response to your note that stated the shot and targets fall into different areas.

    My personal feeling is that the whole topic of lead pollution is way over exaggerated.

    Pat Ireland
     
  19. oleolliedawg

    oleolliedawg Banned User Banned TS Supporters

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    Pat, I might add that lead shot decomposes naturally when exposed to elements like rain (which may contain acid). Since we've all likely heard the term (acid rain) the only thing Bios may do is add to the rapidity of decomposition in certain areas. You might want to ask the lead reclaimers to verify that information!!
     
  20. ivanhoe

    ivanhoe Well-Known Member

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    Well I would like to know at what rate the "Acid Rain" breaks down the lead? How many years does it take "Acid Rain" to break down a single pellet?

    Lead plates in an automobile battery last at least four years. Those batteries contain a much stronger Acid solution than "Acid Rain" don't ya think.

    Bob Lawless
     
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