Not sure what pellets for hunting to get?
Look no further.
I’ve exhaustively tested all the best 177 pellets for hunting on the market. In fact, I tested everything, including: accuracy, reliability, speed and so much more.
By the end of this guide, you’ll find the perfect pellets.
Are you ready?
The 4 Best 177 Pellets For Hunting
If you’re pressed on time, here’s a quick list of the best 177 pellets for hunting:
- Crosman DS177 Destroyer: Best Overall 177 Pellets
- H&N Terminator Hollow Points: Most Accurate 177 Pellets
- Crosman Premier Super Points: Best for the Budget
- GAMO Red Fire: Best for Hunting Rabbits
1. Crosman DS177 Destroyer: Best Overall 177 Pellets
With many options and styles of pellets on the market to choose from, I can easily say that the Crosman DS177 Destroyer pellets are the best on the market today.
A weekend of testing these pellets was a fun project.
You won’t believe some of the results that I had with an air rifle pellet.
So great. So surprising!
The accuracy of Crosman’s dish pellet was spot-on.
Most of the use that I get from my break barrel air rifle is with small game and pest removal.
Testing for that scenario was a hodge-podge course of 15-35+ yards of paper targets, water bottles, and jugs, as well as the trusty ole soda cans.
Man, I set up a treasure-trove of targets to shoot at all over the dang place for this. I was on target for all of them the entire time.
The dish style pointed-pellet/hollow-point combo was true in its travel without fail.
It was great.
The reliability of the Destroyers was pretty remarkable given the circumstances.
With all of those tempting targets dangling from trees and sitting atop every flat surface within 40 yards, there was A LOT of shooting done on day one.
Like a kid in a candy store, I was reloading over and over for hours. I went through almost two tins of pellets in one weekend.
Yes. That’s almost 500 pellets all by my lonesome.
There were less than a handful that I would call total duds. That’s crazy good for such an affordable little pellet.
Aside from the ridiculously difficult to open tins, my indulgently excessive shooting was almost entirely smooth and failure-free.
Just goes to show, the best tools for the job don’t always have to cost an arm and a leg.
Pretty sweet when that’s the case, right?
The impeccable 7.4-grain lead Destroyer .177 pellets are tailor-made for effective performance.
This hunting pellet is designed for complete expansion and energy transfer. Not just impact triggered expansion….impact followed by expansion.
On the paper targets fixed to my trees, the expansion after impact was easy to see.
With some digging in the tree bark, I uncovered pellets that were penetrating several inches with the full bloom of the expansion.
On the bigger water jugs, the same results were visible over and over.
This advantage for my pest removal is a pretty big deal. Other expanding pellets tend to expand at the impact.
For critters like raccoons, woodchucks, or opossum, if my shot is not spot-on the pellet may strike bone and flatten without penetrating and killing the pest.
The good penetration through my target will get me past the bone and then expand in the soft tissue for humane extermination.
Getting it done with one shot isn’t just about skill in shooting.
Is the Crosman Destroyer Worth it?
The Crosman DS177 Destroyer Pellet is perfect for a one-shot kill of rodents and small game that are causing trouble around my home.
It’s also such a great pellet for paper range target shooting, and plinking.
The reliable performance with even and effective expansion is ideal.
So go out and get yourself some of these little fellas. Meanwhile, I’ve got a lot of cleaning up on the test range to do! Enjoy!
- DESTROYER .177-CALIBER - Hollow point with dished rim
- UNIQUE DESIGN - Combines the best attributes of pointed and hollow-pointed pellets
2. H&N Terminator Hollow Points: Most Accurate 177 Pellets
H&N Terminator Hollow Points: with an imposing name and a vicious look, these pellets are out for blood, garden pest blood that is.
The Terminator Hollow Points are designed for pest management and “extreme accuracy.”
Will these pellets have your yard in tip-top shape or your garden in shambles?
Let’s take a look.
H&N’s claim to fame was the quality of their construction, so it’s a slam dunk here.
The material used is unpolished lead which is soft and malleable meaning it’s excellent for the “massive expansion” that is advertised for the Terminator Hollow Points.
The design is very similar to most other hollow point pellets on the market with one exception:
From the center of the head, a spike protrudes.
This assists in the initial penetration of the intended target. Additionally, there are notches around the rim of the hollow point that make it easier for the projectile to expand once it hits and enters something.
My only issue was that the pellets look a little bit rougher than what is shown in the advertisements online.
Mine came a little bit scratched up and the point was either dented or rounded enough to where I would not be able to poke myself enough to draw blood. This is extremely minor though because the performance is not affected by this slight discrepancy in looks.
I’m not sure if the point being rounded made much of a difference in effectiveness because I was still able to drop squirrels in one hit. It still gets the job done.
Now, remember this is still unpolished lead. Despite the high-quality construction, you’ll still need to clean your weapon of choice frequently to ensure good and consistent shooting
With that being said, the quality is exactly what you’d expect from H&N: Precise, solid, and dependable.
Accuracy and Practicality
High-quality construction is useless if you can’t hit where you’re aiming; luckily you’ll have no problems with the Terminator pellets.
I used these pellets for two things: garden protection and regular ol’ plinking. I had a good time with both.
H&N has the Terminator pellets being extremely accurate at 25 yards or medium range.
I can personally attest to this. For about two days, I just sat on my back patio and shot at a paper target (with a backstop of course) to see how accurate the pellets actually are.
During my testing, I found that I was able to hit roughly one-inch groups at 25 yards and half-inch groups at 12 and a half. I took this accuracy as a go-ahead to start going after pests in my garden.
I must have gotten at least 6 squirrels in three days. Five out of six squirrels were clean one hits.
There was one instance where the pellet failed to expand and went clean through. The force was sufficient to shock and knock it over long enough for a follow-up.
This brings me to another important personal point:
I do not like squirrels, they have killed many of my plants over the years, but I think an animal suffering is unnecessary. I was very satisfied that I was able to have humane kills due to the design of the pellet.
While large exit wounds are not pretty, you can rest assured that you’re no putting anything in an undue amount of pain. The exit holes are quite large. The Terminators live up to their name and have a massive expansion, like H&N claims.
Another thing I was worried about was over-penetration.
I have kind of close neighbors and initially, I was concerned about hitting windows or houses, even though I was mostly shooting into the ground when I was on the hunt.
It was a relief to find out that these pellets are superb for semi-suburban pest control. I had no over-penetration. The hollow point design and large expansion radius lend itself well to controlled velocity loss.
This means that the pellets lost speed very quickly, usually landing on top of the group behind the animal or bouncing off a tree after passing through my target. This is a great pellet if you’re worried about hitting something unintentionally.
In terms of accuracy, the Terminator Hollow Points are a very solid choice, more so if you’re space is limited.
A tin of 400 unpolished lead pellets isn’t gonna break the bank at $15.39 on Amazon, slightly more expensive elsewhere.
This is definitely worth the cost, especially among similarly priced pellets and brands.
Are the H&N Terminator Hollow Points worth it?
There’s no question about it. These pellets are a must buy if you plan on taking care of a pest problem via airguns and pellet guns.
The construction, accuracy, and practicality all come together beautifully in the H&N Terminator Hollow Point pellets.
3. Crosman Premier Super Points: Best for the Budget
The Crosman Premier Super Points are the best .177 pellets for hunters on a budget.
Crosman Premier is known for their dependable pellets, and the Super Points give you consistent, precise shots without breaking the bank.
But, how do they measure up against more expensive pellets?
Let’s find out!
The Crosman Super Points are made to precise specifications with a far-reaching tip to ensure good, dependable, shot-to-shot accuracy.
Hitting targets within a 50-yard range is no problem. From 40 yards, my average grouping was about 1.5” using the standard iron sights on my Remington Vantage 1200.
It’s not the best accuracy I’ve ever seen, but it’s good enough to get the job done, and a great value for the lower price point.
I’ve shot these through both the Vantage 1200 and a GAMO airgun, and these pellets gave me good, dependable accuracy in both.
Shape and Fit
The Super Points have a pointed, aerodynamic design to ensure the longest range possible.
Although these pellets worked great for me in my two airguns, the fit is very dependent on the bore.
The front drive band is wider than on most pellets, so trying to squeeze them into tighter-bore firearms may damage the pellet, or cause your gun to jam!
However, they fit looser-bore guns tightly, which can give you better velocity. From what I’ve seen and read, they seem to like rotary magazines the best.
Another thing to keep in mind is that the pellets are made from premium lead – which means they can be easily deformed. Make sure you use the flat part of your finger to load them into your airgun.
The Super Points feed very well into loosely-bore guns. Crosman Premier usually crafts high-quality lead pellets, and these are no exception.
They’re wear-resistant and give a consistently good performance.
A couple of things to note:
Lead pellets get the job done well, but as mentioned, can be very soft and easy to deform. Make sure you’re very careful, and never drop them onto any hard surfaces!
Manufacturing consistency is also not fantastic.
Although head diameter is usually very consistent, this isn’t the case here.
The weight, on the other hand, is very consistent. We’ll discuss this more in-depth later.
Despite these couple of factors that have the potential to cause issues, these pellets give you clean shots and work well in most loosely-bore airguns.
Super Points will give you close to the maximum distance you can get with airguns.
They hold their velocity well, which helps with accuracy. Based on my measurements, their average velocity is around 900 FPS!
Before I used them for hunting, I tested the pellets by shooting some through cotton targets. While most other pellets barely broke through 2 layers, these easily went through 4 layers of 100% cotton.
Each Super Point weighs 7.9 grains. They’re a bit heavy to amount to Crosman’s claims of “maximum power” in an air rifle, but they still have impressive velocity and get the job done well.
The average head diameter on the Super Points is 4.52mm, and the average length is 5.37mm.
Although head diameter is usually a very tightly controlled parameter, the Super Points vary slightly from bullet to bullet.
It’s not a huge difference between each pellet, but it’s still something to take note of.
The weight, on the other hand, seems to be at a consistent 7.9 grains throughout each individual pellet.
A box of 500 Super Points retails online for anywhere between $7-$15.
It’s a very good value for what you get, and these are among the cheapest .177 pellets currently on the market.
The Crosman Premier Super Points are great for close-range small game hunting and pest control.
They expand when they get in contact with the target, making them a great choice for hunting squirrels, groundhogs, or birds.
Serious airgunners can expect consistent, precise shots with these pellets.
If you’re a small game hunter on a budget, Super Points are a great choice.
- caliber: 0.177
- quantity: 500 pellets
4. GAMO Red Fire: Best for Hunting Rabbits
GAMO Red Fire pellets are the best for hunting rabbits!
Bunnies can raze my entire garden in a single night if not controlled. This means I needed to find the best option for taking care of these furry pests fast!
I’ve always done a decent job with round pellets, so why did I change things up?
What I found out after giving Red Fires a try will probably impress you as much as it did me.
Check this out.
The GAMO Red Fire pellets are very accurate.
Thanks in part to the cone-tipped shape of the pellet itself, GAMO’s design has maximized trajectory consistency.
I was initially testing on targets that I’d set up at 30 yards. From the first shot, I was very impressed with the performance.
No adjustments are needed. No learning curve to adapt to.
Immediately on target, I was ready to get down to business in a blink.
I value quality products, and accuracy is one of the most important features for these pellets. It’s not the only top-notch feature though.
The excellent performance of these pellets can also largely be attributed to speed.
The actual size of these pellets is a hair larger than the round pellets I’ve used in the past. I was a bit concerned by the appearance that they would be too big for my air rifle, but I was wrong.
The design of the pellet creates such a tight seal in the barrel, that the pellet comes screaming out at incredible speed.
The excellent trajectory also comes hand in hand with more effective stopping power.
Those little furballs are fast and twitchy, giving me only one shot when I catch them in my garden.
If I miss they’re long gone and I’m back to waiting. The high speed of the Red Fire pellet increases my odds of success every time.
The GAMO Red Fire pellets are clearly reliable and well made.
Consistency in the way these are made is plain as day. Every tip is centered and in place. The tumbled appearance, without seams or visible defects, is a clear indication of the quality.
I have no worries about failures with the Red Fires.
Many round or poorly made pellets tend to veer way off target on occasion, due to irregular shapes.
I never had any trouble with that problem using the Red Fires. Both on the initial target tests and in my use afterward on the devil-bunnies, I never had a single wayward pellet.
The Red Fire pellets are so much more effective for rabbits than the round pellets I used to use.
Designed to mushroom on impact, these lethal pellets make a big difference in quickly downing my targets.
When I started, with the paper-over-wood targets, the pellets at everything less than 20 yards would shape into flat discs on impact.
On impact, on the 30+ yard targets, and in my real targets, the expansion was more of the peeled-back shape that I’d expected.
Typical pellets require relatively good precision to get an effective kill-shot that will eliminate the vermin quickly. The Red Fire’s expanding design increased immediate stopping power.
I want to eliminate a pest as humanly as possible. Being able to put the rabbits down quickly is so much simpler thanks to GAMO’s smart design.
Are the GAMO Red Fire pellets worth it?
Yes! For taking care of the rabbits in my garden, I will never use anything other than these pellets again.
The higher speed, consistency in pellets, and effective stopping power are all perfect for Operation Defend-The-Veggies at my house.
I’m so incredibly impressed with these pellets. I’ll be bunny-free in no time thanks to the GAMO Red Fire Pellets. Yes!!
Now It’s Your Turn
I hope you enjoyed my best 177 pellets for hunting guide.
So as a recap:
If you’re looking for the best overall 177 pellets, I highly recommend the Crosman DS177 Destroyer.
- DESTROYER .177-CALIBER - Hollow point with dished rim
- UNIQUE DESIGN - Combines the best attributes of pointed and hollow-pointed pellets
Or if you are looking for accuracy, get the H&N Terminator Hollow Points.
If you’re on a budget, then the Crosman Premier Super Points is for you. It is affordable, consistent and precise.
- caliber: 0.177
- quantity: 500 pellets
Lastly, if you are into hunting rabbits, then the GAMO Red Fire is what you are looking for.
Now I want to turn it over to you:
Which hunting pellets will you pick?
Let me know by leaving a quick comment down below.
15 thoughts on “The 4 Best 177 Pellets for Hunting [All Budgets]”
Excellent information. I tried the Red fires myself and they are probably the best all around pellets I’ve found and I’ve been through a lot trying to tune my gun. Thanks again for the great info. I’m looking forward to more
I have tested the Crossman destroyer pellets and they worked pretty well, I only have encountered 1 pellet that was too big to fit the bore of my rifle so far and the price is very good. The pellets did not mushroom very well most of the time though I think that it might just be me gun rather than a design fault
I’m new to hunting with pellet guns and just got my first one bout a week ago for hunting rabbits and protecting my chicken coop. I do not have all that much money and have to get the best bang for the buck so I will take this into consideration when I go to buy pellets.
Gamo red.its the best pellet I ever shot in my air rifle.The stopping power is crazy and the mushroom effect.its a must have pellet
I have 2 gamo air guns and the red fire pellets work great for both of them. I also have a crossman F4 and the destroyer pellets work great for that gun!
I saw a lid that was for the Destroyer and one for the Destroyer EX, were you using both kinds in your testing?
What difference do you find in the performance of each kind?
I have about 900 of the Destroyer EX on hand. Thanks for the feed-back.
The article is very informative, thank you. However, I noted that GAMO has two Red Fire types. Nuisance control at 7.8g (which you linked) and hunter at 15.4g. The hunter heavier pellet might work best for rabbits and chucks. I am about to find out.
Just tried the Red Fire on chipmunks, droops them instantly. Great pellet more humane
I just got a Gamo, Black Vat .177for Is Father’s Day. Blue and Red flame ammo is super accurate. They also make a “Lethal” pellet the out shines/ Shoots all other Gamo pellets. A little pricey but well worth it for hunting. Great products!!
Thanks Chris, super helpful! Were there any noticeable differences in sound between the pellets? I sometimes need to shoot at night (raccoons), and don’t want to disturb my neighbors. I use a Gamo Silent Cat, and have noticed some pellets sound like a 22 rifle (which I’m assuming is due to the pellet reaching super sonic velocity). I use Crosman Destroyers most of the time and they’re fairly quiet with my Gamo, but I worry they lose energy very quickly at distances beyond 10-15 yd due to their hollow point design and would like to find something that is still effective at 20+ yd.
I have a nitro piston rifle and the only sound that I can hear is when the pellet hits the intended target. So it will not disturb the neighbors
Thanks for the detailed article!!
A rabbit fence is inexpensive and effective. Never have had a rabbit in my garden. Don’t have to spend time killing them. they are everywhere except my garden.
Don’t have to spend time building a rabbit fence when you can just kill them
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