Best Air Rifles For Squirrels – 2022 Complete Round-up

| Last Updated:
August 6, 2023

Finding the best air rifle for squirrels can be a challenge, but once you have an understanding of how they work, you’ll probably find the search process to be a little easier. Squirrels are harmless to humans. However, they can wreak havoc on your property. The only way to get rid of the problem in the safest and humane way is to use an air rifle.

Granted, these kinds of rifles do not harm the squirrels themselves, but the right kind of rifle will get them to think twice before they ever set foot on your property again. In order to help you find the best one for your own use, we’ve handpicked five of the best air rifles that will be your best defense against squirrels and other small critters that tend to invade your property and cause all kind of damage in the process.

Before we get to the list itself, we’re going to discuss what size rifle is ideal for you for the purpose of deterring squirrels. We’ll also list the characteristics that make an air rifle stand out among the rest of the pack

Comparison of the Best Air Rifles For Squirrels

  • Two-stage trigger.
  • Includes a recoil-reducing rail.
  • Best air rifles for squirrels for the money.
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  • Synthetic buttstock.
  • Includes a 4x32 scopes.
  • The velocity of 1000 fps.
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  • Shoots at 750 fps.
  • Multi-pump action.
  • 50-shot magazine capacity.
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What Size of Air Rifle Do I Need to Hunt Squirrels?

The answer: it depends. It will depend on some of the other things that you may need in a rifle. If you tend to get a good deal of accuracy out of an airsoft rifle, you’d be more apt to find a rifle that will have a longer barrel than those with shorter barrels. If you want something for the purpose of close-range shooting, you can get away with using a shorter size.

How to Choose an Air Rifle For Squirrel Hunting

You’ll need to keep your eyes peeled for a few characteristics and features that will make an air rifle stand out among the pack. Yes, there are many that flood the market. However, they lack certain characteristics that can only be found in the best on the market. Here’s what you need to look for in a great airsoft rifle:


If you’re a budget shopper, then you’re going to take a look at the price tag first. There’s no question about that. If you’re on a budget, you think that getting it because of the price is good enough for you, right? To an extent. However, it’s the quality and overall performance that should be prioritized over price. Invest in the best that you can afford within your budget range. Even if it means paying a little more than expected.


Performance is when accuracy and reliability are your two main factors. Accurate enough to hit the target exactly where you want it, and reliable enough so it does the job when you want it to. You don’t want the shot to be a little off, nor do you want the airsoft rifle to jam or misfire (which are the two most common reliability issues among airsoft guns today). A high-performing rifle will set you above and beyond those who have airsoft rifles that are ineffective.

Review of the Best Air Rifles for Squirrels

Below is a list of the five best air rifles that are best used for squirrels and other small critters that might damage your property. As you look through each one, you should carefully take notes on which characteristics and features will match their ideal air rifle.

Once you find something that’s close enough, you know that you’ll have a winner on your hands. Now, let’s take a look at the first air rifle for squirrels on our list--our “best overall” choice:

Best Overall:
Gamo 6110017154 Varmint Air Rifle .177 Cal

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  • Very accurate shooting
  • Super durable and sturdy construction
  • Very fast shooting, rounds can travel up to 1250 fps
  • Can ward off squirrels and small varmints effectively
  • The scope included is shock-proof, it also provides clear optics and reliable accuracy


  • No barrel sight on the front
  • Cocking the rifle will be a little challenging
  • Some have had issues with the scope’s adjustments

What Recent Buyers Report

This rifle was a hit with the new buyers. They were impressed with the overall velocity and accuracy of the rifle. Most of the users didn’t have a problem with the scope. They were able to shoot at squirrels accurately, especially from close range distances.

Why it Stands Out To Us

The rifle’s velocity is unmistakable, and it’s pretty dang fast for an airsoft rifle. An astounding 1250 fps. That’s about half the speed of a regular rifle or pistol, but still, it’s effective enough to get the squirrels and small critters off your property without even harming them. Since you also have a scope handy, you already have a complete package right out of the box.

Who Will Use This Most

This rifle will be used by those who will waste little to no time. All they need to do is zero in the scope attached to the rifle and they’re ready for action. It will be used either during the day or possibly at night if you have just enough extra light to work with.

What Could Be Improved and Why

The scope is satisfactory in our opinion. However, we think that it can use some improvement. Especially when the eye relief is a little bit on the shallow side. The image picture will blur considerably if it’s on one of the more powerful magnification settings.

Bottom Line

If you want an airsoft rifle that’s considered the best and most effective against squirrels and small varmint, then you’re going to love the Gamo Varmint Air Rifle. With accurate, precise, and fast shooting this rifle will be hard to match against all other air rifles built for warding off the small property invaders.

Crosman Fire Nitro Piston Air Rifle

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  • Accurate shooting
  • Excellent for pest control
  • Trigger pull is decent, no grittiness
  • Stock is durable and weather resistant
  • The steel barrel is really durable, it can handle all kinds of impact


  • Velocity is suspect for some users
  • Might be a little too loud if you’re in a neighborhood
  • The scope may not be as reliable as some people think

What Recent Buyers Report

Most recent buyers were happy with the rifle overall. They were able to use it against many squirrels and small critters. They successfully warded off many of them during the low-light hours of the night. One user said that he’s able to see better because he has a floodlight in his backyard, and it’s good enough for him to see a critter through the scope to take a shot.

Why it Stands Out To Us

The rifle is made from very durable materials. It can take on some banging and bumping. So you have a rifle that is tough all over, but the toughness isn’t just the only thing that impressed us. The firepower is pretty good as well. You’re dealing with a velocity of nearly 1000 fps. So it’s one of the fastest shooting rifles on the market right now, and for an airsoft rifle, that’s quite impressive.

Who Will Use This Most

This will be used around the clock for anyone looking to teach some small critters a lesson in not invading the property of someone with a high-powered airsoft rifle. It will be one of the best rifles that you can use if you’re looking for something that will deliver accurate shots much faster than many airsoft rifles in existence.

What Could Be Improved and Why 

One improvement worth considering is making it a little less noisy while you’re firing off each shot. This way, if you’re in a more suburban area, you can make little noise and not alarm any neighbors in the process. Varmint and small critter invasions happen all over the place, no matter how dense the population is.

Bottom Line

The Crosman Fire Nitro Piston Air Rifle will be something that you’ll want to have on hand if the small critters are getting to be a little too destructive on your property. It’s your yard, defend it when you have to with a rifle like this.

Best for the Money:
Gamo Swarm Maxxim Air Rifle

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  • Very durable construction
  • Super fast velocity at 1300 fps
  • Excellent for pest control and target shooting
  • The scope is pretty reliable at various distances
  • Excellent knockdown power against many small creatures


  • Scope adjustments might be a little stiff
  • Scope image quality issues have been reported
  • May be a little too powerful for close-range shooting

What Recent Buyers Report

This scope will do a lot of good for users. They were able to knock down their pesky targets from some considerably long ranges (approximately 50 to 75 yards). One user said that it was a lot better than the airsoft pistol that he uses for close-range pest control. The accuracy was effective at some of the farther distances.

Why it Stands Out To Us

This rifle is affordable but is durable and accurate enough for most users. In fact, we would even go so far as to say that this rifle will give you more than you pay for. This has a lot of power to it, so ideally you’ll be able to make your shots more effective if the small critters you’re targeting are farther away in the distance. It’s the rifle that will make you a sniper in the “war” against varmints.

Who Will Use This Most

Expect this rifle to be used by a lot of beginner-level users. It might pack a punch in terms of shooting power for them, but it will definitely give them a good idea of how these airsoft rifles work. Especially when they’re designed to knock down some small creatures that are digging through your yard and making the overall property value go down.

What Could Be Improved and Why

Make the scope adjustments easy enough to where you can adjust them quickly while you’re using it. If the shot is too high or too far to the right, you’ll know when to make quick precise adjustments so you’re able to get the scope perfectly aligned for more accurate shooting.

Bottom Line

If you want a rifle that will be perfect for knocking down small critters without breaking the bank, look no further than the Gamo Swarm Maxxim Air Rifle to be the kind of rifle that will deliver effective, powerful shots from a distance. You’ll be hard-pressed to find an excellent rifle that can deal a good amount of punishment to those creatures who can be really pesky.

4. Ruger Blackhawk Combo Air Rifle

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  • Super durable construction
  • The rifle is decent and reliable
  • Very powerful for an airsoft rifle
  • Accurate shooting from various distances
  • The front sight is quite effective for shorter distances


  • Shooting might be a little erratic sometimes
  • Some rely on the sight more than the scope
  • Cocking pin can fall out after firing off some rounds

What Recent Buyers Report

New users were able to use this rifle for the purpose of mid-range and even long-range squirrel and small varmint control. They were able to quickly shoot their shots and hit their targets accurately. One user said that it’s durable and lightweight, making it a really good airsoft rifle that can last him a long time.

Why it Stands Out To Us

This rifle is simple to use. All it takes is some cocking and you’re ready to go. It’s not complex at all. Aside from the easy cocking ability, the rifle stands out as one of the best in its class when it comes to hitting targets from a fairly decent range. It will reach out and touch squirrels and small critters from mid-distance ranges. On a good day, it can go a little farther.

Who Will Use This Most

This rifle will be used for day time use by a lot of shooters. It will be used by homeowners who want to keep their property free from damage that might be the work with small critters and squirrels. Especially if you’re planning on selling the place in the not so distant future. The damaged property could lead to devaluation.

What Could Be Improved and Why

The cocking pin should be a little sturdier or maybe a little larger in size. This way, it can stay in place even after you’ve fired off hundreds or even thousands of rounds. Without it, cocking it will either be harder to do or even impossible.

Bottom Line

The Ruger Blackhawk Combo Air Rifle will be a trusty rifle to have in your arsenal if you’re dealing with squirrels and small creatures. The good news is that it doesn’t make a lot of loud noise, which is a plus if you’re living in a suburban neighborhood.

5. Daisy 990901-433 .177 Cal Pellet Rifle 901

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  • Accurate from various ranges
  • The pump action is easy and smooth
  • Super durable and sturdy construction
  • It provides some pretty good knockdown power
  • Excellent for beginners who are older children through adults


  • May not shoot straight at times
  • Pumping might take a little longer over time
  • May be a little too powerful for small critters if fired at close range

What Recent Buyers Report

A lot of recent buyers were impressed with the rifle. The shooting was accurate, had just enough firepower to reach a pretty good distance and displayed some consistent knockdown power for most users. One user said while the squirrels have been less of a problem since using it, it’s the raccoons that will take a few shots before they get the message.

Why it Stands Out To Us

The Daisy brand has long been one of the more reliable brands for years, perhaps decades. So there is no surprise that their rifles have made our list. Yet, we didn’t choose this based on the name alone. It delivered a pretty solid performance in providing a good deal of pest control. For an airsoft rifle, the velocity is pretty good, and it’s also one of the more reliable air rifles we’ve found to date.

Who Will Use This Most

This will probably be an air rifle that will be used by beginner-level users. In fact, it would actually make a great starter rifle for those who have never used airsoft rifles before. It will give them a decent amount of firepower to work with and it won’t feel like they’re using too much of it.

What Could Be Improved and Why

The pump-action should remain consistently easy no matter how long you’ve used it. After a while, the pumping can get a little difficult, and it can get to the point where it may not be enough to get a really good shot off. So it should be smooth, consistent, and more of the same even through hundreds or even thousands of rounds.

Bottom Line

If you’re looking for a rifle that is made by one of the more reliable manufacturers in the business, the Daisy Pellet Rifle could be exactly what you’re looking for. Once you have this rifle in your hand, it would be wise for squirrels or any small critters to not mess with you.

Benefits of Investing in a Quality Air Rifle for Squirrels

There are some benefits that you’ll get to enjoy should you invest in a really good air rifle that will be best for warding off squirrels and small critters. Quality should matter the most since the market is flooded with many rifles that tend to be as ineffective and unreliable. Here are those benefits:

Harmless Against Small Critters

Using a regular rifle against these creatures might be overkill at times. Not to mention, it would be kind of dangerous if you’re trying to ward them off and live in a crowded area like a suburb. These rifles are powerful enough to harmlessly get them off your property. However, they can be killed depending on the power of the rifle itself (if fired at close range). So ideally, they should be used if the animals are situated from quite a distance away.

Easy to Cock And Load

The rounds that are used are mostly steel BB pellets. You can easily pour multiple amounts in at a time depending on the capacity of the magazine. Once you’re good to go, you can easily cock back the hammer or move the pump action so you can properly load a shot and fire away.

Best Used for Most Ages

Even kids who practice responsible gun safety can use these airsoft rifles. However, they need to understand that these are not toys and should not be used for playing around. There are some that are so powerful that they can cause serious injury if improperly used.


The best air rifle for squirrels is out there. It might take a bit to find one that will work to your advantage in the war against small critters that damage your property. Using an airsoft rifle will be the one solution that will make sure they never dig through your lawn, garbage, or garden anymore. 

People Also Ask

The following are a few frequently asked questions that will give you a better understanding of how air rifles for pest control work. This will give you a good idea of what you can do while you’re using one. Here are the following questions:

Do You Really Need a Scope?

Scopes are optional, but if you plan on reaching out and touching a target at a farther distance, you may need to use a scope to ensure that you can hit the targets accurately and effectively from that distance.

Which Pellet Type Should You Choose?

The most popular type of pellets that you can use is steel BB pellets. They are usually non-toxic and harmless to the environment. Plus, they are safe to shoot with and do not use any kinds of gun powder or explosive materials. 

Should I Sit or Stalk Squirrels?

You may do so if you’re looking to get rid of squirrels. They can show up at any given time depending on the day. If you have enough time on your hands, feel free to sit around and wait for one. 

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