Do you agree with Petzal?
A gunsmith friend of mine, building a .375 H&H, asked if backup iron sights are necessary, and if so, what’s best. My answer is that I’ve never owned a dangerous game rifle without iron sights, and would not own one, and have never seen an African professional hunter who used a scope. D’Arcy Echols, who builds as fine a heavy rifle as you can get, flatly refuses to mount a scope on anything that kicks as hard as a .458 Lott.
I think that the fastest type of sight—the one that allows you to shoot both with precision and maximum speed—is a red dot in a scope that cranks down to 1X, or else a straight red-dot scope. However, I think that if you’re talking about shooting very close, and not aiming precisely (in other words, getting a slug into a critter in the split second before it begins gnawing on your skull) that good iron sights have a slight edge. What happens, I believe, is that your eye picks up the front sight, and that’s enough.
Most of the iron sights I’ve seen are junk, or close to it. They’re either not visible enough, or too fragile, or too complicated. You want something that you can pick up instantly, even in poor light, and which will not shift zero even when subjected to extreme abuse. No scope exists that can stand up to the beating a PH hands out, which is why they opt for iron sights, but what they use is not what comes on a lot of rifles.