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Squirrel hunting is one of the most enjoyable moment 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 of 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!
Table of Content
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. It’s 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!
- 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
- Sure-grip rubber surface is very handy
- Medium level elevation and windage
- 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
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Nikon PROSTAFF RIMFIRE II 3-9X40 BDC Reticle150
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 150 reticle. 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 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 turrets 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 nitrogen purged O-ring sealed structure that is completely waterproof, fog proof and shockproof.
- 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
- Little bit pricey
- 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
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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 condition, 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 which isn’t glaring but perceptible. The matte finish gives it a cool look. The low priced beast can be the best scope for 22lr benchrest you’ll find for yourself.
- 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
- Difficult to set illumination setting
- Partial obstruction of the field of view
- 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
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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 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.
- 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
- Scope rings aren’t high level
- Adjustment can be an issue
- 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
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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 foot @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.
- Best for close range, fast moving squirrel
- 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
- Not the best image quality
- May seem over-priced
- 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.
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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 using of 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 scope for your .22lr, you need to consider certain criteria’s.
As .22 rifles are light in weight and have a small caliber, you need to match the scope with it that have 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 a rifle with smaller optics is the best option.
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.
As parallax alignment is an important issue, and you are using a rifle of small caliber, I will suggest you have a good magnification range 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.
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 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 clone sights instead of the holographic ones.
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 which are precisely calibrated and also has 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 ↑
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.
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 stand still. Don’t make any noise as it will push them away from you. Try to locate the rustling of the small feet both in the grounds and on the trees. You may use some handy goggles for that. 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 hiking 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 head shot out to 50 yards or more.
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 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 pound, a Siberian chipmunk 0.11 to 0.33 pound, an alpine marmot 6.17 to 7.28 pound and an African pygmy squirrel 0.035 pounds! So they are really small creatures that are really fast and difficult to scope.
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 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.
A head shot 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.
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 ↑
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 by. Those rules will keep you safe and allow to have wonderful shooting experience. Also, try to secure other fellow hunters’ safety like your own safety. Follow some 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 secured place for the preys.
- 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 make a shot if the squirrel is moving. It will create the success rate to drop down. 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 wind, don’t shoot. As the .22 caliber bullet is very light, the wind may affect the accuracy of the shot very seriously.
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!
Kalman 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.