I hit the Air Rifle target on the edge and it did not ignite.

For the Air Rifle Target to function, the pellet must penetrate through the green disc and pinch the pyrotechnic composition inside against the back wall of the metal container.  If the pellet has come into contact with the edge first, or the back first, this will prevent the pellet from pinching the pyrotechnic composition with the required amount of velocity.

To achieve maximum detonation, use the included “Striker Plate” (following the directions on the package) in between the Firebird and your target surface.