What Are The Different Types Of AR-15 Scopes For Coyote Hunting?
AR-15 scopes for coyote hunting have either fixed or variable magnification.
Variable magnification scopes allow you to adjust the scope’s magnification strength within a particular range. Variable magnification scopes are versatile, but the additional moving parts make them more expensive and easier to break.
In contrast, fixed magnification scopes have just one magnification strength. This makes them less versatile than variable magnification scopes, but more durable and more affordable.
How Does An AR-15 Scope For Coyote Hunting Work?
At the most basic level, AR-15 scopes for coyote hunting work the same way as other scopes.
First, light travels through the objective lens within the objective bell to enter the scope.
Next, the light travels through the main tube. Within the main tube are the scope’s reticle and magnification lenses. In a fixed magnification scope, the lenses are stationary. In a variable magnification scope, a magnification lens moves back and forth to adjust the magnification strength.
The reticle can be positioned either in front of or behind the magnification lenses.
If it’s the former, it’s a first focal plane reticle (FFP). This causes the reticle to be magnified by the lenses, so it appears to change size when magnification is adjusted, just like everything in the sight picture.
If it’s the latter, it’s a second focal plane (SFP) reticle. This position means that the reticle is not magnified, so it always appears as the same size regardless of the magnification setting.
From the main tube, the light enters the optical bell, which houses the eyepiece and optical lens. The shooter looks through the optical lens to get their sight picture.
What Do You Look For In The Best AR-15 Coyote Hunting Scope?
There are a few things to look for when selecting an AR-15 coyote hunting scope to ensure that you’re getting a good scope:
Image quality is easily the most important feature of a scope. Without a high-quality picture, nothing else matters.
A good scope should have lenses made from very clear glass without any distortion. The lenses should be fully multi-coated to improve light transmission and low light performance.
A scope’s sight picture should be bright and high contrast with strong color fidelity.
Fast, Easy Target Acquisition
Coyotes can be quick, stealthy, and clever, so it’s important to be able to take advantage of every opportunity to take your shot. If it takes too long to acquire your target, you just might miss an opportunity.
Reticle choice is ultimately a matter of personal preference and what’s most important is that you’re comfortable with your reticle.
Ballistic reticles, like bullet drop compensation (BDC reticles) and mil-dot reticles, are helpful for lining up longer range shots. However, some shooters prefer the clean, streamlined look of a crosshair or duplex reticle.
Best AR-15 Scopes for Coyote Hunting Reviewed
Now that all the background info is out of the way, let’s dive into the best scopes for coyote hunting with an AR-15.
Leupold VX-5HD 3-15x44mm CDS-ZL2 Riflescope (Our Top Pick)
Our first pick is the Leupold VX-5HD CDS-ZL2 riflescope and it’s chock full of features that make it great for coyote hunting.
The Fire Dot Illuminated duplex reticle has a thin crosshair center for fast target acquisition. The illumination helps with target acquisition and helps make the reticle more visible in low light.
Similarly, the Twilight Max HD Light Management System also improves low light performance. It minimizes glare, enhances lens clarity, and adds up to 30 minutes of shooting light.
The scope also has a fast focus eyepiece, long eye relief, and a forgiving eye box.
Custom Dial System makes holdover corrections easy
For a limited budget, you can’t go wrong with the Bushnell Banner Riflescope.
This scope features a fast-focus eyepiece, multi-coated HD optics, capped fingertip-adjustable turrets. It’s dry-nitrogen filled and has a one-piece tube.
The Multi-X duplex reticle is a great option for hunting. The thicker lines improve visibility against a busy background. At the same time, the thin center helps with precise aiming and doesn’t obscure the target. The simple overall design isn’t distracting and allows for faster target acquisition.
Waterproof, fog proof, and shockproof
Dusk and Dawn lens coatings for low light performance
Our favorite high end AR-15 coyote hunting scope is the Trijicon ACOG.
This scope is available with a bunch of different illuminated reticle options optimized for the ballistics of several of the most common AR-15 rounds, including six different patterns and three different colors. Several of those patterns are variations of the bullet drop compensation (BDC) reticle.
Trijicon’s unique tritium and fiber optic illumination automatically adjusts to the surrounding light conditions and doesn’t require a battery.
Vortex Optics Crossfire II Hog Hunter 3-12X56 AO Riflescope
Last up is the Vortex Crossfire II Hog Hunter, a scope designed with low light varmint hunting in mind.
It has a large objective lens for better light transmission in low light conditions and an adjustable objective for focusing and parallax adjustment. The V-Brite reticle has an illuminated red dot in the center for low light visibility, while the lenses are fully multicoated.
This scope also has a fast-focus eyepiece for quick, easy target acquisition.
Final Thoughts the Best Scopes for AR-15 Coyote Hunting
If you’re looking for a coyote hunting scope for your AR-15, you can’t go wrong with any of these choices. Only you know your individual needs and budget, so just choose the scope that seems the best for you.