Generally speaking, hunters do not need to invest in magnum shells for upland bird hunting. During the earlier part of the season, however, more power can penetrate heavier cover and still drop the bird. From left to right are Winchester's 7 1/2 shot, Remington's Light 8 shot and Federal's Hi-Power 6 shot. To begin the season, when leaves are still distorting views hunters should use size 6 or 7 shot, but nothing bigger. If forest cover is especially dense consider Federal's Hi-Power line or Winchester's Super X shell, which contains more powder to deliver a higher velocity payload. Once the leaves have fallen you can reduce the shot size and powder load, which will reduce the wear on your shoulder. Sizes 7 1/2 and 8 have plenty of stopping power when you have an unobstructed shot.