Shooting target

Target from Savage 10FP rifle in .223 Remington - 25 shots at 100 yards - 69 grain Sierra MatchKing bullet - all inside bullseye at 1 inch

Shooting targets are objects in various forms and shapes that are used for pistol, rifle, shotgun and other shooting sports, as well as in darts, target archery, crossbow shooting and other non-firearm related sports. The center is often called the bullseye. Targets can for instance be made of paper, "self healing" rubber or steel. There are also electronic targets that electronically can provide the shooter with precise feedback of the shot placement.


Most targets used in shooting sports today are abstract figures of which origins often are not given much thought, but given the military and hunting origins that started most shooting disciplines it is not hard to understand that many of the targets at some point originally resembled either human opponents in a battle or animals in a hunting situation. For instance, the well known circular bullseye target might originally have resembled a human torso or an animal being hunted. Notable instances of shooting targets with martial origins which are considered abstract today, are the field targets used in Det frivillige Skyttervesen where the original intent was to resemble amongst other wheels of vehicles (S25 target), barrels (tønne), bunker openings (stripe 30/10 and 13/40) or enemy personell (1/3, 1/4, 1/6 and 1/10 figure, minismåen, etc.). The origin of these targets are not usually given much attention (or is even known by most shooters), and have been kept around for variation and tradition.

Types of targets

Some types of targets are:


Reactive targets are designed to move and/or bounce along the ground when hit.


Targets are designed to explode when stuck with a bullet traveling at a suitable velocity to induce detonation.

Air rifle field targets

In the outdoor air gun discipline field target metal targets of various shape and forms are used. The metal plates are often shaped to resemble small game animals, although there is currently a move towards simple geometric shapes.


FITA targets

FITA targets are used in archery shooting competitions within the World Archery Federation. The targets have 10 evenly spaced concentric rings, generally with score values from 1 through 10. In addition there is an inner 10 ring, sometimes called the X ring. This becomes the 10 ring at indoor compound competitions, while outdoors, it serves as a tiebreaker with the archer scoring the most X's winning. The number of hits may also be taken into account as another tiebreaker. In FITA archery, targets are coloured as follows:

3D archery targets

3D targets are life-size models of game used in field archery.

Clay pigeons

Clay pigeon targets are usually used as flying targets for clay pigeon shooting, formally known as Inanimate Bird Shooting.


The Popinjay (from the French papegai, or parrot) is an ancient form of target for crossbow shooting. Originally a bird tethered in a tree, it developed into a complex painted wood target atop a tall wooden pole. The popinjay would form the centrepiece of a major shooting contest and many shooters would try their skill repeatedly against the same target. Scoring was awarded for shooting off various parts of the target.


Dart targets are a special form of bullseye targets.

Human silhouette

Human silhouette targets are use for military, police and civilian firearms training.

International Shooting Sport Federation

Within the International Shooting Sport Federation various bullseye targets are used, with variances depending on disciplines.

International Practical Shooting Confederation

In matches organized by the International Practical Shooting Confederation, both steel and paper targets are used. Currently the only paper targets used for handgun is the IPSC Target (formerly Classic Target) and the 2/3 scaled down IPSC Mini Target (formerly IPSC Mini Classic Target). Additionally, for rifle and shotgun "A3" and "A4" paper targets and the "Universal Target" is used. For steel targets, standardized knock down targets called "poppers" are used. The two approved designs are the full size "IPSC Popper" (formerly IPSC Classic Popper) and the 2/3 scaled down version "IPSC Mini Popper" (formerly "IPSC Classic Mini Popper"), while the Pepper Popper and Mini Pepper Popper is now obsolete.

Metallic silhouette

In metallic silhouette shooting only knock down steel targets featuring animals are used.


Plinking refers to informal shooting targeting tin cans, glass bottles, or anything else that draws the shooter attention.

Round (Bullseye)

See also


    External links

    This article is issued from Wikipedia - version of the 12/1/2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.