There are those who will disagree and that is OK because I see very few who do but it is worth commenting to keep new hunters on track.
In general for Whitetale and Mule Deer the standard minimum cartrige is the .243 Winchester or the 30-30 Winchester. I think the 6.5x55 SE or the new .260 Remington is much better suited to humanely dispatch deer with a rifle.
Using a 243 or below such as a 223 only adds to a legthy recovery process more akin to bow hunting than gun hunting. Those who say shot placement is everything are either bragging about their own marksmanship or havent killed enough deer to have a bad experience.
Anyone can handle a .260 even a 10 year old. Even in this case bigger is better. If you can handle something bigger use it. The Ideal cartriges for deer start at 7mm/08 and end at the 30-06 any thing larger is for extra range or the need to put an animal down before it makes it to the brair patch.
Magnum class cartriges are popular even with me. I use a 30-06 most of the time but carry a 325 WSM on occasion and find it useful. The 444 Marlin and 45-70 are considered primitive weapons in sigle shot rifles in my state, however with them you only need one shot.
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