While there is a significant difference in performance between a centerfire rifle and a muzzleloading rifle, the difference between shooting a conventional shotgun and a muzzleloading shotgun is negligible. A muzzleloading shotgun can perform in the field as effectively as a conventional shotgun. Shotgun marksmanship, however, differs from rifle marksmanship. A rifle hunter aims at a target; a shotgun hunter points at a moving target with the barrel.
Using Correct Shotgun-Firing Techniques
- Spread your feet about shoulder-width apart with your weight evenly balanced so that your arms and upper body can swing to the left or right.
- Shoulder the shotgun. Bring the stock to your cheek first and then back to your shoulder.
- Look at the target, not the muzzle. Swing your barrel to track the game.
- Practice moving smoothly as you swing.
- Shift your weight to the leg in front, and lean slightly into the shotgun.
- Slap the trigger quickly and with a firm motion. Do not jerk. Know exactly when to fire.
- Follow through with the swing of the barrel during and after the shot. If you stop as you pull the trigger, you will hit behind a moving target.