Remington HD Ultimate Home Defense Shotshell … birdshot for home defense?

Steve Johnson
by Steve Johnson

A few days ago Remington announced their line of 12 Gauge HD Ultimate Home Defense Shotshells. What intrigues me is that these shells are not loaded with buckshot, but with bird shot.

The HD Ultimate Home Defense comes in two loads. The one load contains BB bird shot and the other has a mixture of #2 and #4 sized birdshot. The shot is made from the Remington HD (High density) tungsten alloy.

Both contain 1.25 ounces of shot (547 grain) which is launched at a velocity of 1250 fps. That works out to be 1898 ft/lbs of energy.

Just a few months ago Federal launched a line of self-defense .410 Shotshell, also loaded with bird shot. There was a long discussion on The Firearm Blog about the suitability of these shells for self defense. The consensus was, to borrow an old maxim, that birdshot is for the birds!

The fact that a two major ammunition manufacturers are selling bird shot for self defense makes me wonder if they know something we do not?

The HD ammo is loaded with very hard, but dense, tungsten alloy shot which would give it greater penetration than lead. On the other hand, 00 (“double-ought”) buck shot is .33″ in diameter, much larger than BB birdshot (0.18″) and more than twice the diameter of #2 (0.15″) and #4 shot (.13″). It is almost universally accepted than bigger == better for self defense.

For the sake of those who purchase it, I hope it performs well. Remington and Federal could certainly ease our fears by releasing their test data for public scrutiny.

If any of your want to test the ammo and do a write up for The Firearm Blog, get in touch with me.

UPDATE: I forgot to list the price. Both loads cost $34.99 for a box of 10 rounds.

Steve Johnson
Steve Johnson

I founded TFB in 2007 and over 10 years worked tirelessly, with the help of my team, to build it up into the largest gun blog online. I retired as Editor in Chief in 2017. During my decade at TFB I was fortunate to work with the most amazing talented writers and genuinely good people!

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  • Charles Martel Charles Martel on Aug 30, 2014

    Birdshot at short range is pretty devastating.

  • Tom Charters Tom Charters on Nov 08, 2014

    I cringe when I read about people buying expensive guns for home and concealed protection. If for some reason you have to shoot someone, no matter who is at fault, the police will take your gun and you will not get it back. My free advice is to buy inexpensive or used equipment in good shape cheaply. You do not want to give up your 2200.00 engraved weapon never to see it again. You can find quality home and self protection in the $200 range. Example CZ612.