Short barrels for pigeon shooting?

ask the experts

ask the experts - Credit: Archant

Are my 26” barrels too short for pigeon shooting? Andy Crow replies...

Q: My father has offered me an old pigeon gun of his to get me started. But it has very short barrels (26” I think). Is this going to be any use at all?

ANDY CROW replies: Many people shooting from the hide used to prefer a short-barrelled gun as it was easier to use in the small space available and easy to bring to bear for a snap shot. But just as short guns were the norm in Skeet, times change and most people now prefer a longer gun with barrels of either 30” or even 32”. Personally, I think that you would be better off with at least a 28” gun and, in truth, a 30” gun would be better still. It offers decent pointability and improved stability for longer birds and will serve double duty for clays or game, too.