Some of the bird hunting (blue grouse) I do coincides with areas with a lot of black bears and even mountain lions. Understandably I'd like to carry something "just in case" with a little more "umph" than #6 bird shot. Although I have a couple of 44 mag revolvers, I'd really like to avoid the weight and bulk of a hog leg.
My thought was why not carry a couple of 12 gauge 1 oz slug shells in my left pocket and should I hear or see one of these critters nearby just load them into my shotgun until I think I'm clear. If need be, I'm more likely to be able to make a meaningful hit with a shoulder fired weapon and slugs will get even a bear's attention. I realize that if one were to get caught by surprise, you probably wouldn't have time to put the slug shell in the gun, but life is full of compromises. I've carried 00 buck in the past but thought slugs would be a better choice.
My real question is, is it OK to fire slugs through shotguns usually used for bird hunting and choked accordingly. Typically I carry a Winchester SX3 or an 870 with a modified choke. I've only shot slugs through an 18 inch Mossberg 500 so I'm a relative noob when it comes to slugs.
Thanks in advance for your advice.
ETA: After a bit of interweb research it appears that the answer to my question is YES you can shoot Foster or Brenneke type "rifled" slugs through a smooth bore shotgun barrel with screw-in chokes. Accuracy may not be stellar, but it will certainly be within "minute of bear" at 50 yards. Whether or not the bear will allow you to change loads before eating you is another question entirely.
#6 bird shot at 50 yards probably wouldn't do too good. But at 2 yards would be devestating, i wouldn't worry about the slugs personally......
I'd rather it didn't get to two yards, but you use what you've got when you need to. A slug at 10 or 20 yards, #6 at two, and then you're bear poop if he's really determined.