Skip to content

What is Handgun Metallic Silhouette Shooting?

History: The Mexican army engaged in training shoots with live animals (early 1900s).

Modern Competition:
are animal shaped silhouettes, are made of steel and stand on rails.
A score is registered for every target which is knocked off the rail.

A match consists of firing one shot at each of 40 steel silhouette targets, arranged in banks of:
5×2 chickens, then 5×2 pigs, 5×2 turkeys and finally 5×2 rams.

The shooter has two minutes in which to engage each bank of 5 targets, shooting from left to right.

The discipline is shot internationally and in most Australian States. The international headquarters of IHMSA is in the USA. The Australian headquarters of IHMSA is in Queensland.


(a) Big Bore Range. (Two ranges)

Targets are full animal size:  Banks are set at 50, 100, 150 and 200 metres.
Powerful handgun loads (such as the .44magnum) are required to knock the rams over at 200 metres.

(b) Field Pistol Range. (Two ranges)

Targets are half size:  Banks set at 25, 50, 75 and 100 metres.
Centre-fire handguns are used but the loads and recoil can be reduced.

(c) Rim fire Range. (Four ranges)

Targets are three-eight size:  Banks are set at 25, 50, 75 and 100 metres.
This is a fun and easy introduction to the sport and the ammunition is cheap to buy.