Looking for a varmint air rifle. TME

My reason:
I’m getting into bird watching on my property and want to attract more of the native birds. I’m going to set up bluebird and tree swallow houses later this year to attract those birds for next spring. I also want to put out bird feeders to attract more birds. Right now I only put out things that don’t attract starlings, like sugar water for hummingbirds, grape jelly for orioles and other birds with sweet tooth, thistle seeds for finches, and safflower seeds which very few birds like. Any other bird seeds get mobbed by starlings. There are a few trees on my property right now that I can see starlings have made homes in. So I want to start getting rid of these invasive non-native birds. So far I haven’t seen the equally invasive and ubiquitous English sparrows that are in every city and suburbs since I’m further out, but they’d be a danger to nesting bluebirds and swallows if they show up so I want to be prepared for them as well. I have a Ruger 10/22 but it’s more power and noise than I need for this (it also hasn’t been that accurate out the box and I don’t have the patience to trouble shoot and fine tune it right now).

What I want: A mid price, accurate air rifle. Probably will be shooting mostly from 35-50 yards, but if the rifle can be accurate out to 75 yards that’d be a plus. Budget is $300-400. I already have a 10x SWFA so have the scope covered. Hit me with your wisdom, varmint shooting OGers.

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Lots of single stroke.22 guns out there

I got the gamo with the 10 shot rotary magazine for pellets. It works


I just made a BB gun thread yesterday, check it out some cool ones in there

Im dumb and dont know how to link it here

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Get a 22. Cheaper than a good air rifle.

Bb guns aren’t consistently accurate enough out to the yardage that I’m looking at. These are hand sized birds so it’s a pretty small target at that distance.

Already have a 22 (Ruger). Don’t want to deal with the noise and distance the bullet travels if I have to aim at a bird on a branch and miss.

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Also look at the 357 pneumatics

Daisy Powerline 880 is the best on the market. Shoots BB’s and Pellets.

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That Daisy rifle couldn’t hit a condor from 25 feet.

I too live in the country and occasionally have to dispatch larger critters e.g. raccoons so I went with the .22 version. It doesn’t need to be said that krauts know how to build rifles. Google that model #, there’s a YT video I recall on it was well from some reviewer. It’s in your price range, and I think you’re going to have to spend that to get anything worth a damn.

Get a PCP rifle and get caught up in it and spend hundreds of dollars on it and then realize that you’ve gone overboard but decide that you don’t really care because they’re fun as shit and then upgrade your rifle and start all over.


I have a Gamo .22 pellet riflle rhat works well for these types of varmints. They have a few different models, I have the Swarm Whisper with the 10 shot mag.

If you get a scope for whatever you buy, make sure it is made for an air rifle, they can ruin scopes not designed for them.


Is there really a $400 air rifle that is both accurate and critter-lethal out to 50 yards?

starlings are awesome birds. they’re clever and seek fun. they really don’t affect native populations any more or less than any other bird. they get a bad rap because of the connotation of “invasive species”. they are absolutely beautiful and are the black-sheep of the song bird family. they can mimic any other bird, replicate anything they hear, and talk.

that said, they absolutely will route a bluebird nest so i get where you’re coming from.

you’re looking for a break barrel .22 pellet gun. i’d recommend gamo, crosman, or benjamin.

Edit: your choice of ammo is important too. you’re looking for a “hunting” round, as funny as it sounds. JSB seems to be the popular choice for accuracy, though I’ve never used them.

Can you go more into this? I thought it would be the other way where if you put a scope built for air rifles on a bullet firing rifle that the air gun scope would get destroyed due to the greater recoil of a “real” gun. How does an air rifle ruin a regular bullet shooting rifle scope?

Get an AK-47, and a low rider

ice cube bounce GIF

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Article on air rifle scopes vs regular scopes.

Air Rifle Scopes- An Overview | Airgun Depot.


That article doesn’t really explain how/why not to use a regular scope on an air rifle. It just says in bold print not to and doesn’t explain. It does explain the draw back of using a scope on a break barrel, which I already know about because of the same problems of using a scope on a Ruger 10/22 takedown where you can separate the barrel and forend from the rest of the gun for storage and transport. But that’s a different thing than a scope getting ruined.


Okay, I found some articles and posts from a google search about air rifles ruining regular scopes and they all refer to the using scope on a spring piston air gun and how those recoil in both directions and have a slight vibration afterwards. Simple enough for me to not select a spring piston air gun and use my existing cartridge firing scope instead of buying a dedicated air gun scope.