Scopes Best Scope for 22LR Squirrel Hunting: Killing Them Softly! Last Updated on September 29, 2020 by Kalman Squirrel hunting is one of the most enjoyable moments for any fun-loving hunters or shooters. It’s one of the easiest too. You don’t need to go through a lot of pain for the preparations and journey of hunting. But you certainly need the best scope for 22lr rifles for squirrel hunting. Having that by your side, you are ready to go. As you can find squirrels everywhere from Kentucky to California, Maine to Mississippi, such an abundance of this small game produces plenty of seasonal hunting opportunities. Besides, they are really good to eat. You will find no wild game cookbook that doesn’t have some good bushy tail recipe for this little critter. Squirrel hunting includes lots of action which is good for the kids too. So, gear up with the best scope and take a deep breath. You’re hunting! Top Choices Preview Best Pick Budget Choice Title Simmons Truplex .22 Mag Riflescope Nikon PROSTAFF RIMFIRE II 3-9X40 BDC150 BARSKA 3-9x32 Plinker-22 Riflescope Bushnell Trophy 1x25mm, Black, TRS-25 Sightmark Ultra Shot Sight with QD Digital Switch Objective Lense 32 mm 40 mm 32 mm 25 mm 24 mm Mounting Dove Tail Picatinny Dove Tail Low Picatinny Weaver Ballistic Match Technology Customer Rating Prime Benefits - - Reviews 2,444 Reviews 658 Reviews 1,113 Reviews 8,415 Reviews 897 Reviews More Information Read Now Read Now Read Now Read Now Read Now Best Pick Preview Title Simmons Truplex .22 Mag Riflescope Objective Lense 32 mm Mounting Dove Tail Ballistic Match Technology Customer Rating Prime Benefits Reviews 2,444 Reviews More Information Read Now Preview Title Nikon PROSTAFF RIMFIRE II 3-9X40 BDC150 Objective Lense 40 mm Mounting Picatinny Ballistic Match Technology Customer Rating Prime Benefits - Reviews 658 Reviews More Information Read Now Budget Choice Preview Title BARSKA 3-9x32 Plinker-22 Riflescope Objective Lense 32 mm Mounting Dove Tail Ballistic Match Technology Customer Rating Prime Benefits Reviews 1,113 Reviews More Information Read Now Preview Title Bushnell Trophy 1x25mm, Black, TRS-25 Objective Lense 25 mm Mounting Low Picatinny Ballistic Match Technology Customer Rating Prime Benefits Reviews 8,415 Reviews More Information Read Now Preview Title Sightmark Ultra Shot Sight with QD Digital Switch Objective Lense 24 mm Mounting Weaver Ballistic Match Technology Customer Rating Prime Benefits - Reviews 897 Reviews More Information Read Now Table of Content Simmons Truplex .22 Mag 3-9x Riflescope Nikon PROSTAFF RIMFIRE II 3-9X40 BDC Reticle 150 Bushnell Trophy 1x25mm, Black, TRS-25 Red Dot Sight Riflescope BARSKA Plinker-22 Riflescope 3-9×32 Sightmark Ultra Shot Sight with QD Digital Switch Buying Guide of Best Scopes for .22lr Squirrel Hunting How Much Magnification Do You Need for Squirrel Hunting? Things to Remember for Squirrel Hunting Safety Procedures Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) Conclusion Best Scope for 22lr Squirrel Hunting Competition Simmons Truplex .22 Mag 3-9x Riflescope Simmons Truplex is one of the most popular rimfire riflescopes in America. The addition of many innovative features has made it unique from the other. Its quick game acquisition eyepiece with plenty of eye relief acquires preys with a snap. Its sure-grip adjustment will allow you to have a nice grip in all situations. You will be able to handle it swiftly even wearing gloves. The fully coated optics is very handy and classy for taking bright, sharp images with high contrast. It’s constructed with one-piece molding. That is why it is so light, holds great strength, and offers you great durability. The scope is waterproof, shockproof, and fog proof. So, in every weather condition, it will give you great service without any doubt. It has the best magnification for .22lr which is 3-9x. The parallax correction present here can be preset from 50 yards to infinity. It has a 3/8” dovetail shape mounting rings included with it that help to get a good setting adjustment. For such a low price, it’s quite a bargain! Pros: One-piece tube construction offers great strength High-quality fully-coated optical glass Sharp, bright images with high contrast Water, fog and shockproof Best scope for .22lr competition Well adjustable mounting rings Best rimfire scope under $100 Excellent eye relief The sure-grip rubber surface is very handy Cons: Medium level elevation and windage Specifications: The Magnification and Objective (mm): 3–9 x 32 Field of View at 100 yards is: 31.4 / 10.5 Eye-Relief (in / mm): 3.75 / 95 The Exit Pupil is(mm): 10.7 / 3.6 Weight of the scope (oz / g): 10 / 284 Click Value of the scope in at 100Y is: .25 Adjustment Range of the scope in at 100Y is: 60 Buy Now From Amazon back to menu ↑ Nikon PROSTAFF RIMFIRE II 3-9X40 BDC Reticle 150 Nikon Prostaff is extremely popular among shooters because like all the other rimfire calibers, they are fun to shoot and extremely accurate as well. They provide a comprehensive line up of various riflescopes for that matter. It’s fully multicoated optical system is perfect for long-range guns with the rimfire-specific BDC reticle 150. You will get a compensated bullet drop at extended firing distances. The BDC reticle’s unique see-through ballistic circles will offer you an extra advantage over the long-range shooting. Besides, it will allow a normal sight picture when you will need shorter-range shots if the aiming point is the crosshair. You will get a bright and vivid picture with optimum light transmission from dawn to dusk because of the presence of multilayer anti-reflective compounds on every glass surface. It has an instant spring-loaded zero-reset turret which makes field adjustments as simple as dialing-in your ranges. This wonderful scope is optimized with the Nikon Spot On™ Ballistic Match Technology. As a result, you will be able to discover all of the aiming points on the scope’s reticle for your specific ammunition and load at various yardages. Its consistent and generous eye relief will keep your brow safe from the heaviest recoiling cartridges, severe shooting angles, and lightweight rifles. It has a nitrogen-purged O-ring sealed structure that is completely waterproof, fog proof, and shockproof. Pros: Instant spring-loaded zero-reset turrets Has Multi-layer anti-reflective optical system Bright and vivid pictures with optimum light transmission Water, fog and shockproof Nitrogen purged, O-ring sealed structure BDC 150 reticle Best rimfire scope under $200 Eye relief is generous and consistent Spot On™ Nikon Ballistic Match Technology Cons: Little bit pricey Specifications: Magnification: 3- 9x Objective Diameter: 40mm Exit Pupil: 13.33mm Field of View @100 Yds: 4.4 ft & 11.3- 33.8 ft Tube Diameter – Other: 1 in Eye Relief: 3.6- 3.6in Weight: 13.1 oz Overall Length: 12.3 in Adjustment Graduation – Other: 1/2 in Max Internal Adjustment: 80 MOA Parallax Setting – Other: 50 yds Waterproof/Fogproof: Yes Spot On Custom Turret: Yes Matte Finish: Yes Usable in: Rimfire squirrel hunting Reticle: BDC 150 Buy Now From Amazon back to menu ↑ Bushnell Trophy 1x25mm, Black, TRS-25 Red Dot Sight Riflescope If you want a fast game acquisition, then there is nothing like a red dot for squirrel hunting. This Bushnell Trophy will give you accuracy even in dim conditions. Its engineered amber-bright optics, the TRS-25 1×25 will quickly help you to distinguish between the brown tree and critter. Its multi-colored optics can see the prey even in low-light conditions. It is 100% waterproof, fog-proof, and shockproof like any other quality scope. The Bushnell rimfire scope has a CR2032 battery and the housing is filled with dry nitrogen. The eye relief is unlimited and can be used easily with both eyes. Thus increases the awareness of the shooter about the surrounding environments and provides faster game acquisition. Because of the parallax free design, you will need no centering. The dot will follow your eye movement remaining focused on the squirrel in the meantime. The TRS-25 will deliver a full-size performance of the sight in reduced size with low power consumption. The scope uses a crisp and sharp red dot reticle. You can adjust the red dot setting by using the control knob. To nullify the unintentional turn-on of the knob, a certain amount of resistance is cleverly designed into it. In ambient light conditions, you may find the red dot blurry if the dot intensity is set too high. This may occur in indoors with fluorescent, artificial lighting. Set this at the highest point should be the light conditions are bright ambient. Otherwise, the red dot will be non-centric and distorted. To get the best result, only increase the red dot setting when you are aiming a reference that isn’t glaring but perceptible. The matte finish gives it a cool look. The low priced beast can be the best scope for 22lr bench rest you’ll find for yourself. Pros: Blazing game acquisition ability Top-level accuracy 100% waterproof, fog-proof, shockproof Multi-coated optics Super active in low-light conditions Low power consumption Parallax free design Best budget rimfire scope Cons: Difficult to set illumination setting Partial obstruction of the field of view Specifications: Finish: Matte Power / Objective Lens: 1 x 25mm The Reticle of the scope: 3 MOA Red Dot Field of View of the scope (ft@100 yds. / m@100 m): Unlimited Weight (oz./g): 3.7 / 106 Length (in./mm): 2.4 / 61.8 Eye Relief (in. / mm): Unlimited Click Value in.@100 yds / mm@100m: .5 / 14 Adjacent Range in.@100yds / m@100m: 70 / 1.9 Mounting Length is (in. / mm): 1.1 / 28 Buy Now From Amazon back to menu ↑ BARSKA Plinker-22 Riflescope 3-9×32 BARSKA Plinker-22 is the most popular riflescope of this company which is specifically designed for .22 rifles and rimfires. You can easily use this scope for plinking and general hunting applications. It can bear all sorts of rugged outdoor conditions that you may face. The dovetail rings and scope caps are really handy and fully coated optics will give you maximum service. It has waterproof, fog proof, and shockproof construction. The 1-inch mono-tube construction will offer you real durability and performance. You will get a parallax-free view from 50 yards without any problem. Sharp optical clarity and performance are guaranteed with this awesome scope. You can react in any environment easily because of the adjustment knob that comes with it. For fine-tuning of windage and elevation, they offer you a 0.25-inch click adjustment. You also get a 3/8” mounting ring free with the riflescope. The black matte finish is always cool for any scope. This lightweight scope will provide you with a striking performance. With a limited lifetime manufacturer’s warranty, Plinker-22 can simply be the best value you may get anywhere. Pros: Mono-tube construction offers great strength Great for general hunting and plinking Can withstand the rugged outdoor environment Provides sharp optical clarity and performance Waterproof, fog proof and shockproof Best rimfire competition scope Fine-tunable for elevation and windage Comes with 3/8” mounting rings Best rifle scope under $50 Cons: Scope rings aren’t high level An adjustment can be an issue Specifications: Magnification: 3-to-9X Tube length: 12’’-inch Tube diameter: One-inch Exit pupil: 10.7-3.6 millimeter Objective lens: 32-millimeter Reticle: 30/30 Eye relief: 3.5”- inch Field of view: 36-foot at 100 yards at 3X magnification Field of view: 13-foot at 100 yards at 9X magnification Click value: 0.25”-inch Weight: 11.5-ounce Buy Now From Amazon back to menu ↑ Sightmark Ultra Shot Sight with QD Digital Switch For close range, fast-moving preys, this Sightmark Ultra Shot is the perfect fit. It is equipped with a digital switch button that is on the side of the scope. It comes handy for adjusting the settings for variable brightness in any lighting condition. You can easily remove the mounting as it can be quickly detached. This will help you when you are using iron sights or other accessories. The competition scope for 22lr is exceptionally durable as it has a strong body. The protective aluminum shield hood adds to the defense of the new version from the original ultra-shot model. It has a sleek, tactical look because of the matte finish which also eliminates reflection. This ultra-shot QD digital swift reflects sight can be the alternative to the overly priced mil-spec models. Also, it comes with a limited lifetime warranty. The 3x AG5 battery is very durable and comes with a rubber lens cap. The adjustment tools are pretty good also. Its field of view is 105 feet @100 yards. Not to forget, it is also waterproof, fog proof, and shockproof. It has an old-school look that gives it an antique touch. Also, check Vortex Venom red dot for a good result. Pros: Best for close range, fast-moving squirrel The adjustable variable brightness setting Quick detachable mounting Protective aluminum shield hood Anti-reflective matte finish Lifetime warranty Water-resistant, fog proof, shockproof Infinite eye relief Exceptionally durable Cons: Not the best image quality May seem over-priced Specifications: Magnification: 1x Objective Lens: 33x24mm Field of View: 35 m@100m Reticle: 4 Pattern Reticle Color: Red Battery: 3x AG5 Battery Life: 25-150 hrs Brightness Settings: 1-5 and “off” Max Recoil: Up to .50 Caliber Finish/Color: Matte Black Lens Coatings are: AR Red Mount Type is: Weaver Quick Detach Construction of the body: Aluminum Operating Temperature is: 0 to 120 degrees F Dimensions are: 94x56x56 mm The weight of the scope: 7.6 oz. Buy Now From Amazon back to menu ↑ Buying Guide of Best Scopes for .22lr Squirrel Hunting Hunting is a game of precision and accuracy. It’s an adrenaline-pumped exciting activity that often requires the patience and endurance of the hunter. Hunting can be the most basic level starting with the spear or any sharp object and ending with the delicate use of a scope to kill a game like a squirrel. Whichever one the prey is; the enjoyment is the same for any hunting lover. When you are selecting any good scope like the night vision types for your .22lr from the market, you need to consider certain criteria’s. Optics As .22 rifles are light in weight and have a small caliber, you need to match the scope with it that has the correct optics. For any squirrel hunting, you don’t need any large or heavy scope. A lightweight and simple scope would be the perfect fit for your hunting. Besides, for any close-range shooting, the rifle scopes with smaller optics are the best options. On the other hand, in the case of quality coyote hunting with scope, you will need to cover a longer range most of the time. You can use some top-level bow sights too for hunting squirrel through bow shooting. Size of the Objective Lens You need a very good objective lens. The bigger the better. As it will create clearer and brighter images to take a good shot at your game. So, like all the other devices, you will need a good lens. Parallax As parallax alignment is an important issue, and you are using rifle scopes of small caliber, I will suggest you have a good magnification range like the red dots for the scope. As a result, you will get very high-level support while you are out for any hunting. This will ease up the process for you. Having a rangefinder like a Vortex 1500 can also assist you to find the correct range of your game. Price The price goes up as you will select bigger scopes. The bigger the scope is the higher the price would be. Besides, additional features would also contribute to the price range like this awesome scope Vortex Razor. As a result, choosing a smaller one will lighten the burden on your pocket. So, you need to be very wise to pick the perfect one. Like, choosing the budget-friendly EOTech clone sights instead of the holographic ones to save some bucks. Quality Quality and clarity come first when I choose any product for me. When you are picking a good quality product, you are already a step ahead in your hunting journey. So you need to make sure to have excellent lenses that are precisely calibrated and also have accurate click adjustment. Most importantly you need to remember that it’s not a sniper shot rather a squirrel hunting. So, gadgetry isn’t that much of an issue here. back to menu ↑ How Much Magnification Do You Need for Squirrel Hunting? It is always better to have a scope with longer magnification. You can easily have scopes that have magnification levels up to 40 starting from 7 or 9. You may wonder, which magnification level serves best for squirrel hunting. Well, that depends on the lighting of your surroundings and the distance that you are trying to cover. Most of the famous brands offer scopes with long magnification levels. You can try any of those. But you must test the magnification before buying one. Just look through the eyepiece while rotating the focus ring. And examine how far you can look clearly. According to some expert shooters, it is better to have a scope that can cover 150 yards. That’s a good distance to cover for a scope, but with quality one, you can see things at that distance quite clear. back to menu ↑ Things to Remember for Squirrel Hunting There are certain things to remember before you start your squirrel hunting. Be very aware of these as it will help you to land good prey for you. Legal Papers Before you start your hunting, make sure that you have all the necessary papers needed for your hunting permit. The Best Time Squirrels normally go out in the morning for food and they get back to their shelter in the afternoon. So, these times are really good for going for a kill. And, you don’t need to hunt at night, which may be problematic for you. Spotting the Game When you reach the place, be very silent and standstill. Don’t make any noise as it will push them away from you. Try to locate the rustling of the small feet both on the grounds and on the trees. You also need to be very silent to hear the teeth cutting and nut hulling sounds. Try to locate the big tail of that tiny dude with a hunting grade monocular. As they make noise when climbing any trees, you may find some if you take note. Remember that they come with a number of colors i.e. red, black, blue, purple, grey and with brownish fur. Best Scope Distance There is no perfect number for me when it comes to scoping any squirrel. It varies from 25 to 40 yards for me. Although, an accurate .22lr along with a good shooting skill will you to have a headshot out to 50 yards or more. Perfect Locations In general, squirrels are tree-loving creatures. They love nuts. So, you will find them in the trees that have various types of nuts and similar kinds of fruits. Oak trees are very popular amongst squirrels. So, you need to go somewhere full of trees. Woodland areas are the perfect type of place for you. And find nut trees when you get there. .22 Caliber Rifles When I go for squirrel hunting, I always prefer a small-caliber rifle. As shotguns are not suitable for small game hunting. Besides, being a critter creature, the shotgun will destroy the body of the game. For that reason, .22lr is a suitable one for having a go in any competition. With that bad guy, you will be able to get a good head or heart shot. It will be just perfect for a small creature like that. Size of the Squirrel Different types of squirrels have different sizes. The eastern gray squirrel has a weight of 0.88 to 1.32 pounds, a Siberian chipmunk 0.11 to 0.33 pound, an alpine marmot 6.17 to 7.28 pounds, and an African pygmy squirrel 0.035 pounds! So they are really small creatures that are really fast and difficult to scope. Movement Detection As they are very skittish creatures, you need to make sure that you move very slowly and quietly as much as possible. It’s very important to have camouflage for you when you make a move. As soon as you detect any movement, you must position yourself to take a clean shot. Using Bait for Attraction You can use baits like nuts, seeds, and different fruits for seeking the attraction of the squirrels. Place the bait in a place where you can easily scope them out and no obstacles for having a clear view. Make sure that your position is not in an open place rather in a hidden one. The use of a perfect bait will attract the game thus reducing your wait time. Shooting Locations Shooting any squirrel on the ground is much easier than on a tree. Also, it may cause damage to the meat as it will drop from a height and they may get stuck within the branches of the trees. So try scoping them whilst they are on the ground. You can use quality hunting lights at night too like the one used for coyote hunting. Best Aimpoint A headshot is always best for any small creatures as heads are not normally eaten. So try to make a clean headshot. If you can, you are good to go. But it may be difficult for any new hunter as the head of a squirrel is a tiny aim. The second best aim point is the heart which lies just under the neck of the little fellow. Try to shoot from a side view as front or back view will narrow down the aimed area for you. Besides, a side shot will make the head a large aim point. Patience As you may find it hard for locating any prey for a long time and also may need to wait for a while, you need to be very patient when you go hunting. This often determines whether any hunter will be successful or not. It’s a waiting game. So mind that before you want to try your luck. back to menu ↑ Safety Procedures For any basic hunting operation, you need to follow some regulatory safety rules. As you are dealing with rifles and small game scopes, there are lots of safety techniques that you must adhere to. Those rules will keep you safe and allow you to have a wonderful shooting experience. Also, try to secure other fellow hunters’ safety like your own safety. Follow some vision-based forums for more info. Safety for Guns Before you start for a hunting journey, always check your weapon first. The muzzle must be cleaned and the parts of the weapon should be oiled properly. Any dirt or debris can’t be present. You should use binoculars for scoping the game. Try to stay at a distance from the aimed area. That will keep the area a secure place for the prey. Stay away from any damaged tree or timber or broken ones. Avoid the branches that are dead or have crashed down. It may hurt you or any fellow hunter. Keep your weapon in a way so that it will always face the floor. Don’t point it at anyone. Even when you are cleaning it, always keep the face down. The gun barrel must be down when you are carrying it out. Never put your finger on the trigger unless you are making a shot. When cleaning, keep your fingers away from the trigger. Even if the chamber is empty, the trigger must not be touched. Safety for Hunters When hunting, it is recommended to put a camouflage for easy mingling within the woods. But try one colored clothing for the easy recognition for other fellow hunters. Too much camo isn’t good as others may not detect you from the woods. Try to keep your prey within the range and within a clear viewpoint. It will ease out the process of hunting. Use monocular or binoculars to check them out. Generally, hunting monocular comes handy in this situation. A clear shot is a must. Don’t try to shot if any obstacle is present between you and the squirrel. Don’t take a shot if the squirrel is moving. It will create the success rate of a dropdown. As they are very little and super-fast, chances are you will miss your prey. Moving prey is very difficult, even for a shotgun. If there is a wind, don’t shoot. As the .22 caliber bullet is very light, the wind may affect the accuracy of the shot very seriously. back to menu ↑ Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) What is the best scope for squirrel hunting? Answer: You can go for any renowned brand. But we prefer the Simmons Truplex most for squirrel hunting. Is it better to have an illuminated scope for squirrel hunting? Answer: An illuminated scope will help you shoot in low light conditions. From experience, we know that squirrels are active in the dawn and dusk. In such a scenario, an illuminated scope will help you a lot. So illuminated scopes are not mandatory but they will definitely help. Are fixed power scopes good for squirrel hunting? Answer: You can prefer fixed power scopes to adjustable scopes. Fixed power scopes are easy to operate and they are very effective. You can find fixed six power or four power scopes in the market. Famous brands like Leupold offer fixed six power scope. What about red dot vs scope for squirrel hunting? Answer: Red dot sights offer 1x magnification while scopes offer several levels of magnification. Since squirrels are moving targets and you have to shoot them by covering a certain distance, scopes are preferable to red dot sights. back to menu ↑ Conclusion Squirrel hunting will include full of action, so brace yourself up with the perfect gear for you. That is where the best scope for 22lr squirrel hunting comes as a solution. Also, don’t forget to enjoy the rustling sound of the outdoor and fresh environment. Enjoy your hunting to the fullest with our 22 scope recommendation! KalmanKalman is a hunting expert who has a vast experience with wild game hunting. Though night time hunting is his favorite, he masters the art of daytime hunting and shooting. Being a nature lover and outdoor enthusiast, he wants to pass the knowledge acquired over time to the next generation.