I've given this a lot of thought. I've read the penetration tests of various types of shot and the number of hits inside a 10 inch circle different people have gotten at different yardages. I think #5s are the way to go. I think #6s (or 7.5s and smaller) don't offer enough down-range energy if you miss-guestimate the distance, and that bird is really at 55 and not 40 yards. You can't get enough #4s in the shell to give a dense pattern past 45 ~ 50 yards; split the difference and go with #5s.
Of course, my argument is based on using heavier-than-lead shot.
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