Big Game Hunting

Big Game – Hunting them they sporting way

When we hear hunters talking about their Big Game hunting safaris they have taken to Africa, the names and images of large calibre rifles with heavy recoil come to mind, and it should not be different, for that is what the doctor ordered to treat Africa’s Dangerous Game when hunting them.

It would be easy to ambush any of the Big 5 and if we were to include the Hippopotamus making it the Dangerous 6, but then it would not be hunting them in a sporting fashion and in the spirit of the “fair chase”.

Each of Africa’s big game hunting requires very special mental, physical and logistical preparations.  From seeking and finding the tracks where the Elephant herd passed recently, the fresh dung of a Buffalo herd on the move, Hippo paths in the tall reeds alongside the river beds, Rhinoceros activities in the sand, Lion mane hair in the bush to locating a half eaten Impala high up in a tree signalling the presence of the African Leopard.

Hunting each of these animals has their own special requirements, such as good solids for all the thick-skinned animals, and premium expanding soft point bullets for the Lion and Leopard.

When hunting the Dangerous Game (Big Game Hunting) the area in Southern Africa spans more than 49 million acres of hunting terrain. The vegetation is also very different throughout this vast area and not all of the dangerous six will be found in the exact same location all the time. It is therefore very important to be clear in your safari requirement to your Hunting Outfitter as far as the species you wish to hunt. He needs to have a clear understanding of the species, checking availability of permits for the CITES species and number of days required to complete the hunt, if there is more than one species on the list.

Typical hunting days for big game hunting are, 21 days for an Elephant Hunt, 10 Days for a Lion or Leopard hunt, while the remainder of the species can be hunted during a 7 day hunt for each species. Hunting big game is a major event in the life of any hunter and it is our experience that the Big Game Hunters all have completed most of the other species available, building to a climax by hunting the Big 5 starting from the smallest to the largest being the African Elephant. It is also recommended to first hunt the plains game and then to move on to the Big Game. This will allow the hunter enough time to get used to the African bush prior to hunting life threatening game, which if not taken care of with the first shot, could turn out for the hunter being the hunted.

The Hunting Outfitter is responsible for the entering into a binding contract with the hunter, and secures the lodging and all logistical requirements for the hunt. The Professional Hunter in turn is responsible for the safety of the client when hunting with him, and all Professional Hunters having open Licence to hunt Dangerous Game must have hunted at least three of the six dangerous animals with clients not less than 60 days. So when a Hunting Outfitter offers Dangerous Game to prospect hunters, it is an indication that he either as a Professional Hunter holds the qualification to hunt dangerous game or that he has a Professional Hunter in his service having this qualification.

The Professional hunter will always seek a way of hunting the dangerous big game in an acceptable, sporting way, giving the animal the chance of escaping when pursued by the hunting party. This is of utmost importance to have a fair chase and ethical hunt on any of the mighty Big Game of Africa.