4th FG 7
20th FG 5.5
31st FG 7
52nd FG 14
78th FG 11
325th FG 1
332nd FG 3
339th FG 14
352nd FG 5.5
353rd FG 6
354th FG 4
355th FG 4
356th FG 2
357th FG 18
359th FG 5
361st FG 6
364th FG 1.5
479th FG 5
So, there were 119.5 Me 262's shot down (plus 12 Ar- 234 Blitz's and 5
Sorry, forgot second part of my OP.
This number seems inflated to me considering the number of actual
Me-262s to make it into combat on a regular basis. So do the numbers
count ground kills or just plain over-counting by multiple pilots or
I hate it when I can't remember where I read it.
I read that the ME262 kill record was like 123 kills, and the losses
for the war were like 12 total most shot while on runway. It was a
European book, not German that I read that but can't remember the
These are kill claims, not actual shoot downs, gun cameras should make
the claims reasonably accurate if it was air to air.
The question is whether any of the above were the result of strafing
It should not be surprising if the USAAF fighters did destroy about 100
If you want to track the fates of Me262s the best single reference so far
would be Messerschmitt Me262 The Production Log 1941 - 1945 by Dan
He pulls together all the paperwork he can to provide an individual history
of as many of the Me262s as he can. So you have 175 pages, including
photographs, of individual Me262 histories. Plus a list of losses or
losses where the author has been unable to identify which Me262 was
If you leaf through the book you discover a number of groups where
Me262s are destroyed on the ground by USAAF bombs, mainly 8th
air force missions. It is also clear the USAAF aircraft shot down many
more Me262s than the RAF.
If you want to check out the RAF operations against the jets then the
Fighter Command War Diaries by John Foreman, gives a day to day
account of RAF fighter operations. Encounters with jets were rare
enough to usually rate a full mention.
Also note while the Germans could and did divert jets to hopefully clear
airbases the result was the Me262's effective range was well below the
actual test figures, thanks to the need to have enough reserves to divert
or simply fly around until the allied aircraft left.
Finally the jets did not run at full speed throughout their flight, if they
were cruising the allied fighters could catch them, especially if they
were carrying bombs, all it took was for the Luftwaffe pilot to miss
seeing the approaching aircraft.
The RAF used radar to track the jets, since they moved faster than
other plots, sections of Tempests were maintained at cockpit readiness
and scrambled to patrol jet airbases when a radar contact was made.
The RAF called it Rat Catching.
I will present the RAF claims as the reference includes the context of
most combats. And also since I have not done the cross check on
According to Foreman, RAF claims look something like this,
in the air, not around jet airfields unless noted.
27 September, Me262 damaged in air, it pulled away from the Spitfire
(A mark IX)
30 September, Me262 damaged by a Spitfire, again a mark IX
2 October, Me262 damaged by a Spitfire, again a mark IX
5 October Me262 destroyed by a patrol of Spitfires, the combat started
at 13,000 feet, the jet dived, with some of the Spitfires following it, then
it climbed back into the others. Wreck fell into allied territory.
13 October, Me262 destroyed by a Tempest, even though the Tempest
was doing 480 mph the jet pulled away but them slowed down and was
caught. Again the wreck fell in allied territory. Also on this day another
Tempest damaged an Me262 that finally outran the attacker.
21 October Tempests claimed 2 damaged Me262s
28 October Tempest claim for a damaged Me262.
2 November Tempests claimed 3 damaged Me262s.
3 November a Tempest on a test flight spotted 2 Me262s, closed at
full power and was spotted too late by the jets, the Tempest was
doing 500 mph when it opened fire as the jets began to accelerate,
the claim was for one probable kill, later post war research showed
the jet was shot down.
4 November, Tempest claimed one damaged Me262 on the ground
while Rat Catching, the Tempest returned home.
19 November, Tempests claimed 1 damaged and 1 probable Me262
on the ground while Rat Catching, the Tempests all returned home.
21 November 2 Tempests chased an Me262 from Volkel to the
Rheine jet airfield area, claimed it as damaged.
26 November, Tempest Rat Catching, 1st combat 1 Me262 claimed
damaged and 1 destroyed on the ground for 1 Tempest shot down
by flak and another damaged, 2nd combat 1 Me262 damaged for
no Tempest casualties.
3 December, Me262 shot down at zero feet by Tempests, near its
airbase. Pilot killed.
4 December, Tempest claim of an Me262 damaged north of its airbase.
10 December, Tempest claim of an Me262 damaged, after diving from
14,000 feet on a pair of the jets at 8,000 feet. It looks like the damaged
jet actually crashed, killing the pilot.
17 December, Tempest pursued an Me262 from Helmond to Wesel,
finally shooting it down, killing the pilot. The RAF pilot involved was
John Wray, who had made the claim for a probable jet on 3 November,
making him the only RAF pilot to shoot down 2 Me262s.
23 December a Spitfire IX chased an Me262 from Antwerp to Eindhoven
claiming it damaged.
25 December, a Spitfire IXs sent back to escort a fellow aircraft with a
failing engine, listened to his squadron mates shooting down Bf109s, decided
to work off frustration by doing a power dive near Heesch, and pulled
out behind an Me262, which was shot down, later a Spitfire IX shot
down another Me262, southwest of Aachen and in the same area some
Tempests engaged 2 more Me262s shooting down 1. Also some Tempests
spotted 5 Ar234s and claimed 1 damaged. Looks like all 3 kill claims
26 December Spitfire IXs claimed an Me262 damaged near Julich and
another near Stavelot.
27 December Spitfire IX claimed an Me262 damaged near Aachen.
1 January, Spitfires claimed 1 damaged Me262 near the Rheine
14 January, Spitfire IXs caught an Me262 in the landing pattern at
Rheine and shot it down, the pilot parachuting. Also a pair of Spitfire
XIs (Unarmed reconnaissance version) encountered 2 Me163s, with one
Spitfire being shot down and 1 Me163 claimed to have crashed, the
claim being "by evasion"
23 January Spitfire IXs spotted a group of Ar324s (initially identified
as Me262s) in the Bramsche landing circuit and made claims of 3
destroyed and 4 damaged for no losses. At Rheine a Spitfire IX
claimed 1 Me262 destroyed on the ground and 1 in the airfield circuit.
(As an example of the Luftwaffe cover of the jet airfields 2 groups of
Tempests hit the top (11,000 feet) and lower cover (8,000 feet) at Rheine
claiming 5 Bf109s and Fw190s destroyed and 1 damaged for no losses,
3 Luftwaffe pilots were killed in this combat)
24 January Spitfires claimed an Me262 damaged near Munster but lost
a pilot to flak.
1 February, to reverse things, a Typhoon was shot down, probably by
11 February A Tempest chased an Me262 or Ar234 20 miles to Rheine
airfield and shot it down near the base.
14 February Spitfire XIVs attacked the Rheine airfield cover claiming
1 Fw190 destroyed, 1 probable and 2 damaged and actually shooting
down all 4, covering for 2 of their number who claimed 2 Me262s
damaged in the airfield circuit. Meantime 2 Typhoons just reforming
after completing a bomb run found 2 Me262s appearing out of the
clouds just below them on a parallel course, they shot down both,
killing the pilots.
Later another Typhoon claimed an Me262 damaged near Emmerich.
Also a Spitfire IX stalked 3 Me262s, keeping all but the canopy and
the tail in cloud, finally shooting down one and killing the pilot. A
Tempest claimed 1 damaged Me262 as it was taking off at Rheine.
21 February an Me262 claimed damaged by a Spitfire near Emmerich.
and an Allison engined Mustang (Tactical reconnaissance unit) pilot
seems to have claimed an Me262 damaged. One of these might be
23 February Mustang pilot claimed 1 Me262 damaged.
25 February Spitfires operating around Rheine airfield claimed 2 Me262s
damaged in the air, along with 9 piston engined fighters shot down, for
1 Spitfire shot down by flak and another lost to engine failure. The German
fighter units in the combat lost 10 aircraft and 7 pilots.
2 March a Spitfire XIV spotted an Ar234 and dived to attack and shot
it down, but over stressed the Spitfire and it was written off on return
to base. Tempests found Bf109s and Ar234s at Lingen, claiming 4
Bf109s and 1 Ar234 destroyed plus 1 Ar234 damaged and, after that
fight, another Ar234 was claimed damaged near Rheine. The Ar234
unit, 9./KG76 reported 2 losses.
12 March, a lone Spitfire IX sent to "chase away" an Me262 harassing
British troops near Wesel saw the jet appear out of cloud just ahead
and above, and shot it down in full view of the ground troops.
14 March Tempests claimed an Ar234 destroyed near Quackenbruck.
15 March A Tempest claimed an Ar234 damaged near Rheine.
23 March Mustang pilots claimed 1 Me262 destroyed and 5 damaged
mainly while protecting RAF bombers.
24 March, Tempest airfield strikes lost 1 to flak and another possibly
to an Me262.
31 March Mustangs claimed 1 Me262 damaged.
9 April Mustangs claimed 5 Me262s destroyed and 2 damaged when
protecting RAF bombers.
10 April a Mustang claimed an Me163 over Halle.
11 April Tempests destroyed an unidentified jet aircraft, possibly
12 April Spitfire XIVs claimed an Ar234 shot down west of Bremen.
14 April a Spitfire saw an Me110 towing an Me163, the Me163 was
released but the Spitfire claimed both as shot down.
15 April Tempests shot down an Ar234 taking off from Kaltenkirchen.
16 April 2 Ar234s strafed and claimed damaged at Ludwigshurst
20 April An Me262 destroyed, along with 20 Fw190s and 14 Bf109s
in air combat over Germany. An Ar234 claimed destroyed in an airfield
22 April Night time Airfield strafes claimed 1 Me262 destroyed and
24 April the first Meteor claim, a Ju88 damaged on the ground.
25 April Tempests claimed an Me262 destroyed over Blankensee airfield,
a Spitfire XIV chased 2 Me262s at low level, gaining while doing 400 mph,
the pilot assumed the jets were trying to lure him over a flak area, he
broke off and waited until the jets were in the airfield circuit, hitting
it was landing, and watching the other, when trying to land in the opposite
direction, lose its starboard undercarriage "Final results of the fire in
the first Me262 were not observed owing to intense light flak from the
26 April Typhoons claimed 1 of 2 Me262s that attacked them.
2 May Tempests claimed an Me262 damaged at 50 feet. A Spitfire XIV
claimed an Ar234 shot down in the Hohn airfield landing circuit, and
another Spitfire an Me262 damaged in the air.
All this assuming I have not missed any in my quick run through.
Note there are RAF fighters reported as lost to flak without specifying
what mission they were on, so the flak losses could be understated.
Note the RAF mainly met the jets in the air, usually away from the
airfields and did not lose large numbers of aircraft to flak when
strafing when claiming jets. There are lots of other strafing missions
I have not covered and they certainly lost aircraft to the airfield flak.
If I have the RAF Fighter Command losses correct from Norman Franks'
book, then in 1945 Fighter Command and the 2nd Tactical Air Force
lost some 808 aircraft on operations, the causes were,
Destroyed on the ground 137 (Bodenplatte)
Unknown/Failed to return 96
Enemy fighters 64
Mechanical failure 63
Friendly fire 18
Enemy bomber 2
Enemy aircraft 2
This is for day and night operations.
Remove the nb for email.
I'm sure it's both air and ground. Some Groups even counted ground
kills as regular kills. I'm sure there was also some over-counting
even if jusy from overly optimistic pilots. This goes for both air and
ground. I wonder how many wrecks were "killed" multiple times.....
I wish it said which airfield, dammit!
"25 April Tempests claimed an Me262 destroyed over Blankensee
a Spitfire XIV chased 2 Me262s at low level, gaining while doing 400
the pilot assumed the jets were trying to lure him over a flak area,
broke off and waited until the jets were in the airfield circuit,
one as it was landing, and watching the other, when trying to land in
direction, lose its starboard undercarriage "Final results of the
the first Me262 were not observed owing to intense light flak from
I can only report that the second part of this claim is 100% accurate
in its details - the boob flight commander announced to his horrified
wingman precisely which airbase they were approaching and every
Spitfire within aux tank range immediately flocked to intercept them.
The Spit that scored the hits (including one shell passing through the
pilot's seat over his thighs but miraculously not injuring him)
overran the target and ended up flying down the runway alongside the
startled German pilot in tight formation. Their proximity to each
other saved the Spitfire as the flak gunners had to stop their fire as
the wounded jet passed by, but the reprieve was short lived and as
soon as he broke off, the flak engaged him from all sides. It's a
miracle that he survived his close encounter with "Red 6". Due to
impacts and apparent damage to the wing in the area of "Red 6's"
landing gear, the pilot chose to land on the grass next to the runway,
gliding along at high speed and providing a rather bracing ride for
the highly-skilled pilot. I've heard this event from both German
pilots and their memories provided a remarkable view into a single
moment in a very long war.
Why does it matter? Destroyed is destroyed.
According to John Foreman, it was at Neuberg. It also would appear
to be a 29 squadron Mosquito.
Other airfields strafed that night included Wels where 4 aircraft were
claimed damaged and Gablington where 1 was claimed damaged.
Foreman is publishing a series on RAF fighter claims of Fighter Command
and 2nd TAF at least, volume 2 was published in 2005 and had the
claims to the end of June 1943. Each entry usually includes the area of
combat. No idea if the final volume has been published.
Then there are the Frank Olynyk lists.
Thanks for the other side of the story for 25 April 1945.