When I took Louis Awerbuck's shotgun course, we shot mostly birdshot. We shot some buck to see how it patterned out of our individual guns -- and the variation was remarkable. It'd be a worthwhile investment to buy 4 or 5 different buck loads to see which one patterns best in your gun. I used Winchester Ranger low recoil 00 buck, and they shot pretty softly and patterned nicely. We shot slugs at a steel gong at 50 yards, and at a few other point targets. I used Wolf slugs, and those suckers will loosen your fillings. So, birdshot for most things, buck to see how it patterns, and slugs for distance work.