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For the mount in Undead Nightmare, see Pestilence (Horse).

Goddamn crows! John, you have got to go deal with them. They've broken into the silo again, and are eating all the corn out from it.
Abigail Marston

Pestilence is the fifty-second mission in Red Dead Redemption.

To view the mission tree, see:

Main article: Missions in Redemption/Tree


Abigail asks John to stop the crows from eating all the corn from the ranch silo by scaring them away.


Mission Objectives

To complete this mission, the player must:

  • Shoot crows until they stop eating the corn from the silo. The best way to do this is with Dead Eye and preferably using an Evans Repeater.

Mission Details

This mission requires the killing of many crows where the majority sit on the silo. To complete this mission, John Marston must scare the crows before most of the corn is eaten. The most useful weapon to complete this mission is the Evans Repeater because of its large capacity of 22 shots or the Explosive Rifle as one shot can take out a lot of crows. Using Dead-Eye Targeting to shoot them, you must carefully pick the birds sitting on the silo before advancing to the already flying birds and the lucky few who escaped. It is advised that you bring items that restore your Dead Eye as you can easily lose it unless you have the max sharpshooting and hunting skill.

Mission Dialogues

Main article: Pestilence/dialogues

Mission Failure

The mission will fail if the player:

  • Assaults or kills Abigail, Jack, or Uncle.
  • Allows the crows to take all of the corn.
  • Destroys the corn (by breaking a lantern, shooting the silo with an Explosive Rifle, or with a stick of dynamite).
  • Abandons the area.
  • Assaults the livestock.
  • Breaks the law.
  • Kills Rufus.
  • Commits vandalism.
  • Assaults or kills townsfolk.
  • Dies.

Gold Medal Objectives

  • Fastest Time: 1:29
  • Shot Accuracy: 60%

Tips & Tricks

  • This is an easy mission to earn the Sharpshooter Challenges Rank 9 achievement which requires the player to kill six wild animals without reloading their gun. While in Dead Eye targeting Mode, target at least 6 crows before shooting.
  • The player can drink Moonshine right before aiming at all the birds, as this will increase the amount of time in which the Dead Eye targeting mode can be used.
  • Watch for the birds trying to fly straight into the silo opening, because this is when the meter will fall the fastest.
  • A trick to completing this mission quickly is to use a Mauser Pistol and hold the trigger to release quick bursts of fire that can eliminate the birds when they gather in a group.
  • A well-aimed and cooked dynamite stick will complete the mission quickly, though it is very difficult to pull off without failing the mission.
  • Shoot some of the crows to make the ones that are sitting on the silo take off. There should be dozens of crows flying around the silo. Then equip the dynamite and go into Dead Eye and mark one of the crows. This would make the dynamite follow the crow and explode on impact and should kill most of them. NOTE: be sure to go into Dead Eye or the dynamite could break a lantern, destroying the silo.
  • Using a Henry Repeater or Evans Repeater and normal targeting mode, continue pulling the Left Trigger (LT) or L2 and firing; then letting go to allow the auto-target to work for you, the mission can be completed in less than 50 seconds if done correctly.


  • On the table in the kitchen where Abigail is cooking stew are two plates, one containing a large T-bone steak, and the other containing three large pork loin steaks. John Marston would later give these to Abigail and Jack after they are zombified in Undead Nightmare.
  • If it is nearly time for supper, it is possible for Jack to walk into the kitchen in the middle of the opening cutscene. He will appear to be very much bugged and will walk and use his face like a regular NPC, albeit with a low-resolution appearance.
  • Sometimes a cougar can spawn in the ranch, attacking the player. However, they will be invincible during the mission.
  • Pestilence is also a name shared by one of the Four Horses of the Apocalypse in the Undead Nightmare DLC pack.
  • After the mission, humorously, two Abigails' can spawn, one will be seen cooking, and one can be seen walking out of the kitchen, acting as she's normal. she will despawn if the player takes the camera off her, and won't cause any corruption what so ever.
  • This is the only mission where John isn't accompanied or aided by another NPC at any point.

Video Walkthroughs


Completing this mission contributes toward the following Trophy/Achievement:

100 gamerscoregamerscore
Gold goldgold
Attain 100% List in the singleplayer game completion list.
Red Dead Redemption mission walkthroughs
Marston Ranch Chapter
"The Outlaw's Return""Pestilence""Old Friends, New Problems"
"By Sweat and Toil""A Continual Feast"
"John Marston and Son""Wolves, Dogs and Sons""Spare the Love, Spoil the Child""The Last Enemy That Shall Be Destroyed"
New AustinNuevo ParaisoWest ElizabethMarston RanchRemember My Family