The Great Ammo Shortage of 2021: How a Regional Problem? The great amm0 shortage of 2021 could be coming to an end. While the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) has warned that hunters and sport shooters could still face supply issues throughout next year, in some parts of the country gun shops are once again able to stock shelves.
Ammo Shortage: The State of Play in One State
Robert Baer, owner of Eastern Shore Firearms in Salisbury, Maryland, told his local ABC news affiliate WMDT.com, inventory has remained steady. By working with distributors across the country he’s able to have orders filled within two or three days. Although many higher-end or “exotic” ammunition remains harder to find, more common calibers are available with some hunting around.
Still, he added, quantities are limited to retailers.
“They tell me I’m only allowed two or three items. So they can make sure that everyone gets a few rather than one person buy up everything,” Baer said. “I feel like it’s been fair to the big guys and little guys. We’re all able to get our orders fulfilled.”
Ammo Shortage: The State of Play Down South
The story is different however for retailers in the Deep South, where Paul Scali, owner of Paulie’s Pistols in Slidell, Louisiana, outside of New Orleans, said that shooters have been stockpiling ammunition throughout the pandemic and that has resulted in bare shelves.
Scali told KPLCtv.com that there are shortages of all ammunition types, but steel shots remain especially hard to come by. The shop owner said that had impacted the fall hunting season, as federal and statewide mandates on the use of non-toxic ammunition for waterfowl dictate what type of ammunition hunters can use. Such ammunition has been in such short supply that some hunters have tried to skirt the law – something not recommended by any means.
“If you’re caught hunting with lead ammunition, if you are waterfowl hunting and caught not only hunting with lead ammunition but if you have it in your possession there are consequences to that,” warned Mitch Samaha, southern regional biologist manager for the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries.
For retailers in the Garden State, it won’t just be the supplies of ammunition that could cause headaches. This week the New Jersey State Assembly committee approved a package of bills that called for tightening the state’s gun storage law, which would ban future sales of .50 caliber firearms, and would require gun dealers in the state to keep logs of ammunition sales and make them available to law enforcement.
The bills passed on party lines, with Democrats voting to pass all the measures. Among those was Assembly Bill 1292, which requires ammunition manufacturers and dealers to keep a detailed electronic record of sales and report them to the State Police. Other possible restrictions coming to gun owners in New Jersey could include a requirement for gun owners in the state to store firearms in a lockbox or safe, and a requirement for gun owners who move to New Jersey to obtain a firearm purchaser ID card and register their guns within 60 days.
Peter Suciu is a Michigan-based writer who has contributed to more than four dozen magazines, newspapers and websites. He regularly writes about military small arms, and is the author of several books on military headgear including A Gallery of Military Headdress, which is available on Amazon.com. Peter is also a Forbes Magazine Contributing Writer.