Ammo Shortage Still Effecting Some Hunting Rounds, Commercial Ammo Buyer Describes Trends
High-volume ammunition has been difficult to come by in recent years, but during the hunting season, many Montanans were faced with low supplies of traditional hunting rounds as well. Even though general hunting season is over, certain types of ammunition are still tough to come by.
"Right now, 30-30 and .243, which aren't what you'd think of as traditional high-volume rounds, are in really short supply," said Selway Armory Owner and ammunition buyer Travis Linneman while on a buying trip to the annual Shot Show in Las Vegas.
The shortages have multiple causes.
"That's partially a component supply problem and, well, just the fact that a lot more people own guns now," Linneman said. "NICS checks, which they use as a barometer for gun sales, have increased for the last 20 months in a row, and not by small amounts, but by like 10 to 20 percent."
Another cause is the sense of scarcity that buyers themselves perceive.
"We had an order the other day that involved almost 2,000 boxes of ammo from someone in Oregon," Linneman said. "They're usually from other dealers that are just trying to get ammo in or from people that are stockpiling it."
Still, Linneman expects that the shortages won't be long-lived.
"Barring another shock to the system, like what happened at the end of 2012 and pretty much throughout 2013, with the legislation and everything else that happened, my prediction is that, this year, all of the center fire, especially hunting cartridges, will become readily available again," Linneman said, "I think prices will at least stabilize or even fall on some things, though some things will be over capacity."
Linneman said that .22 rounds, a very popular, high-volume ammunition, are unlikely to make a rebound in 2014. The once low cost ammo is expected to be hard to find for at least another year.