Hello I am Keith McDonald, nick name Killer Keith and hunting my whole life, 45-50 years, deer hunting, bear hunting, moose hunting, turkey hunting, you name it, I have hunted it. I am a licensed Maine guide. I've hunted in Alaska. I've hunted in Canada. I've hunted in Newfoundland. I've been everywhere, everywhere I've hunted
Now I have people come and take private shooting lessons, maybe 100 a year, and a lot of them have been hunting for 20 years, and they've been avid bird hunters, hunting northern Maine, grouse hunting. And so they go up every year hunting and just before they go up to hunt, they go up and they practice with two whole boxes of shells, they shoot 50 rounds with their guns, and now they go bird hunting. They been doing this for 20 years. They're no better shot now than they were 20 years ago. Good practice is important and that's where the big kicker comes. People tend to practice shooting the way they were taught by their father, their uncle, their buddy who was a hunter, and a lot of those people haven't a clue what they're doing. I teach people a system of shooting a shotgun, where when you miss, you break it down into its parts and you say "Ok this is what broke down, I did this wrong" and then you fix it.
The biggest reasons we miss, I do seminars on shotgun shooting, and so I say "What do you think is the number one reason you miss a bird or a clay target, either one with a shotgun" and I'll look at the people in the gallery there and I ask "What do you think?" and they come up with all these different reasons. Well I've done enough of this to know what the number one reason is. The number one reason people miss with a shotgun is the bead at the end of the barrel. And they don't point the gun, they aim it. They aim it like a rifle, they focus on that bead and try to aim at a target that's flying through the sky. You can't do that, it doesn't work. They don't know that, but they get away with it once in a while. Another big thing that I see people doing is they don't worry too much about muzzle speed, how fast you're swinging the gun. And so the bird might fly up and get ahead of you and you come up behind with a gun traveling three times the speed the bird's flying, because you gotta catch it, and they quick sweep through it and pull the trigger when they get to it, or somewhere near it. So the bird's flying, the gun is just a flash to the bird. Your trigger timing needs to be so perfect when you do that. You may do that, and it looks impressive: "Did you see how fast he followed that?" But have him shoot at ten birds, he won't get ten of them, he won't get half of them, because that'll bite you. The idea of that is, let the bird drive the gun, your speed of swing is regulated by the bird's speed, they're both the same. The closer they are to being the same, the easier it is to shoot a shotgun.