Popular rifle caliber's include the fast 22's starting with the 222, anything smaller, like the hornet or rimfire and you risk wounding the animal or severely limiting your effective range. Many hunters hunt coyote with their deer rifle, if you are only hunting coyote to get some off season practice this will work fine. However, if you are hunting coyote to sell the pelts, a 30/06 will pretty much ruin the hide. I personally use a Savage Model 110 in 223.
A shotgun with #4 or smaller buckshot is a very effective close range coyote gun. If the area being hunted is relatively thick and shots are going to be under 40 yards, a shotgun with the right load may well be the perfect firearm. In more open areas the use of a shotgun will really test the hunters skill, as coyotes will need to be called in close.
I have used the Thompson Center Contender pistol with good success while coyote hunting. I personally have used a 14 inch barrel in 7mm-TCU, the round is based on the 223 cartridge necked up to accept a 7mm bullet. Any of the other contender cartridges above and including the 223 would work well, including the 30/30 with 110 grain spire points. Other handguns to consider are 357 magnum revolvers with longer barrel lengths. Remember, it is much harder to hunt with a handgun than a shotgun or rifle, practice and know your load and firearm.
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