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Plains game species that can be hunted in South Africa – Part 3

Here follows the next couple of plains game species that can be hunted in South Africa:

NYALA

Nyala are among the most graceful of the spiral-horned antelope that can be hunted in South Africa. Their preferred habitat is the higher rainfall eastern parts of South Africa where they favour densely wooded savanna. The .270 should be the smallest caliber with which to pursue the Nyala. A .30 caliber rifle would, however, be a better choice.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

RED HARTEBEEST

The awkward-looking red hartebeest is one of the fastest of the plains game animals found in South Africa. They favour open-country areas where they rely on their speed to elude predators. Hartebeest have good hearing and an acute sense of smell and should always be approached slowly from downwind. Their eyesight is not particularly good.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ROAN

The number of roan antelope in South Africa has increased substantially over the last decade.  They are the second largest of the plains game animals that can be hunted on a South African hunting safari.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

OSTRICH

The world’s largest living bird species also counts among the other species that can be hunted whilst on safari in South Africa. The ostrich is popular for the high quality of its hide, its magnificent feathers, and its lean, high-protein meat. Ostriches are also often hunted while in pursuit of other game.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SABLE

Sable antelope are most active during the early mornings and late afternoons. Their distinctive colouring makes them easy to spot, even in the densest vegetation. The scimitar-shaped horns of the sable are probably the most prized of all the plains game trophies found in South Africa.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SPRINGBOK – BLACK

The black springbok is not a sub-species, but rather a colour variation on the common springbok. They occur in all areas where the common springbok is found. Black springbok trophies make a great display when mounted alongside the common, white and copper springbok.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SPRINGBOK – COMMON

The common springbok is the national animal of South Africa. These graceful animals are hunted on open terrain where their exceptional eyesight make it very difficult to get within shooting range. They are best hunted with a caliber with a high velocity and a very flat trajectory.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SPRINGBOK – WHITE

The white springbok is another colour variation on the common springbok which can be hunted in South Africa.

 

 

 

 

 

 

STEENBOK

Steenbok are a fairly common small antelope that have a wide distribution in South Africa. Steenbok are territorial antelope and only the male of the species carries horns. They would normally be taken on a chance encounter while hunting for another animal.

Hunting Trophy Bushbuck in Africa

Hunting trophy Cape bushbuck in Africa takes place all over South Africa except in areas near the Transvaal and northeastern Zululand. Cape bushbuck trophies are as much about their coloration and striping as horn size. For instance; if a large dark ram is wanted, then the Drakensburg Mountains in the eastern portion of the Great escarpment would be the place to look. Should you be on quest for large horns, then hunt the KwaZulu-Natal Province in the southeast region of the country.

KwaZulu Province terrain is mostly steep mountain slopes covered in thick bush and thorns. Shots can be 200-300 yards, and taken from the absolute top of a hill. Bushbuck can be seen in the early morning, or late afternoon, but they usually are visible for only a few seconds. When moving through the bush, you must be as quiet as humanly possible. Bushbuck will flee at the slightest sound. They are jumpers, and can cover as much as 15 feet in one bound.

The Cape bushbuck adapts easily to human habitation. They can survive completely unnoticed near farms and villages, and can become almost tame. However, if they are threatened, they can turn secretive and nocturnal. Bushbuck are different from other similar-sized plains game. They can be quite aggressive and will use their sharp horns to fight off predators, or even humans. There have been any number of incidents where someone, or someone’s dog got a very nasty surprise from what they thought was a very dead bushbuck. The old adage is true in this case. It’s the dead ones that can kill you.

They are masters of camouflage and are hard to see during daylight hours. Even when you approach them closely, they can be hard to spot. One method of hunting trophy bushbuck in Africa is the spot and stalk approach. Locate a high vantage point near their areas. Use a good binocular to search the surroundings. This can take hours, but it will let you evaluate horn size and coloration. When glassing, the hunter may not see the entire bushbuck standing in the open. Look for the white spots or back stripe on the animal. Look for movement.

Another good method is the bush stalk. The hunter can track the bushbuck through its natural brush and bush habitat while looking for the flash of a horn, or the flick of a tail. It will hold until the hunter gets close, and then dart off to the next clump of thick brush, sometimes giving off a sharp bark as it runs. If you continue to track it, it will stay ahead of you, just out of sight. Bushbuck do tend to stay in the same general area, so another hunt on another day is possible. Usually their habitat runs between one to 15 acres. Bushbuck drink at midday and evening. They can be hunted by setting up an ambush next to one of their frequently-used tracks and waiting for them to make an appearance. The best times to hunt are during the hottest part of the day, or late in the afternoon, just before sunset. Sometimes on early winter mornings the bushbuck will stand in an open area letting the sun drive out the night’s cold.

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