Handguns in Defense Against Bears by Caliber - 9mm, 11 incidents

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"Many readers are interested in how various handgun calibers have performed in defense against bears. This is a complicated subject. Sometimes, any caliber will do. Sometimes a level of power may be required. Sometimes, a level of accuracy or speed may be required. Many permutations exist.

"The most important aspect, if a confrontation occurs, is to have a firearm available, easily and quickly accessible. The specific caliber is less important..."


"...We found 11 cases where 9 mm pistols were used to defend against bears (6 black bear, 5 brown). All were successful..."
 
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Having a gun(any gun) is paramount to using a gun for defense. A 9mm immediately accessible is 100% more effective than the 497 super whammy left behind due to weight/recoil/noise.
A 9mm certainly would NOT be my first choice as bear defense but I'd use it if that's what I had immediately available.
I heard a first hand account of a 9mm used in defense during a black bear attack. When the bear approached, the bowhunter climbed a tree but the bear followed. When the bear was almost within reach of the bowhunter's feet, he fired 2-3 shots into the bear's head killing it instantly. In this case, the bear was seriously disadvantaged by the circumstances.
Another first person account of a grizzly attack told of using 5 shots(4 hits) from a 44 magnum to stop the bear. In this case, the bear seemed totally undeterred by a miss, a peripheral hit, 2 solid body/shoulder hits, and only stopped when hit in the head.
The pattern I'm seeing is a handgun isn't very effective unless the bullets penetrate the brain(especially on a griz).
 
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I know zero about Brown Bear, Griz. I have come across many black bears over the years where I hunt, especially in the Dismal Swamp. I carry a 9mm, but not for the bears, but for the Human Predators that I might come across. However, I love to hear caliber wars on Big Bears and the video below makes more sense than any I have read over the years.
My personal belief is that I will never carry any weapon that I cannot shoot a minimum of 250 rounds per session and a minimum of three training sessions per week. I have done this with a 9mm frequently over the years. Although I have cut way back since Bidenomics.

 
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DGW1949

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From the video: 9MM, 147 Grn LSWC, 1300 FPS.....

Adding those numbers up and thinking them over, it seems to me that we are talking about a 9MM pistol round that is performing about like a 357 Mag fired from a similar length barrel, meaning that it must be running some awfully high chamber pressures...at least in the +P+ range, and maybe even more. Seems a bit fool hardy to me.....just sayin'.

DGW
 
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I found it interesting that in the one instance where the bear swatted the dog then came toward the wife that the guy shot at the ground in front of the bear rather that at it. I realize the ground is a lot larger target but it also wasn't coming toward his wife and the bear was.
 
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I found it interesting that in the one instance where the bear swatted the dog then came toward the wife that the guy shot at the ground in front of the bear rather that at it. I realize the ground is a lot larger target but it also wasn't coming toward his wife and the bear was.
Maybe he wanted to hurt the bear less than he wanted the bear to hurt his wife?
 
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