The 243 Winchester is a popular sporting rifle cartridge. Developed as a versatile short action cartridge to hunt both medium game and small game alike, it “took whitetail hunting by storm” when introduced in 1955, and remains one of the most popular whitetail deer cartridges. It is also commonly used for harvesting blacktail deer, pronghorns and mule deer with heavier rounds, and is equally suited to varmint hunting with lighter rounds. The.243 is based on a necked down.308 Winchester, introduced only three years earlier. Expanding monolithic copper bullets of approximately 80 to 85 grains or traditional lead rounds of 90 to 105 grains with controlled expansion designs are best suited for hunting medium game, while lighter rounds are intended for varmints.