Thursday, 27 September 2012

A bull in the salt

Floris nodded in agreement as Kobus spoke, "…he's a great bull Dan, we won't find better." I looked back at the boss and she was clearly in agreement.

  "Let's go get him guys."  We moved back down the slope, out of the bush and onto a game trail.  The soft sand masked our approach and unlike our previous attempts, the wind held for this hunt. Without looking, I checked the power selector on the 1.5-5x was turned to it's lowest setting and I pushed one of the fat .450's into the chamber, bolt up.  We rounded a small spur and came out into the open with the bull ahead of us, slightly up the slope in a small wash-away.

  "The wind is good Dagga,'" whispered Floris, "we just walk straight at him slowly, he should watch us, you remember the heart is a lot higher?"

I closed the bolt and raised the old Brno for a frontal shot just as the bull turned his back on us and moved farther up the hill; he stopped and turned back, quartering towards us. A few steps to my right had me in the clear and I raised the rifle and quickly squeezed of a shot at the bull.


Saturday, 22 September 2012

Guns & Game Magazine, no.76

I've been a big fan of Guns & Game Magazine since their very first issue in 1994 with the crow on the cover... it might have been a raven? Don't recall. Anyway, there has been 19 years of quarterly mags and I've managed to pen a few stories for this great publication. Somewhere along the line I got a cover photo of a big old sow coming into a waterhole during the drought.

Issue 76 has an article I put together - "Rattle & Roar" - following a few days stalking with VPC Hunting during the 2012 rut

If you're not already reading it, you really should subscribe!  Hope you enjoy it.  Dagga.

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Hunting the hyena: Part I

Over the past few years we've had a few encounters with hyena while traveling through the southern African countries and after our very first visit, I decided to put together a plan and fit in some hyena hunting the very next time we made plans to visit the Dark Continent. We've encountered Spotted Hyena (Crocuta crocuta) in South Africa on a number of occasions, always in the Limpopo Province, both on private property and in a few areas within Kruger Park. In Botswana we came into contact with Spotted hyena along the Chobe River and in Moremi and Savuti Game Reserves. 

Brown Hyena (Parahyaena brunnea) on the other hand have proved to be much more elusive.  At Cape Cross on Namibia's Skeleton Coast we found spoor along the beach, weaving in and out of the Cape Fur Seal colony that litter the beach.  While the Black-Backed Jackal is content to traverse the beach front in broad day light looking for the sick and dead seals that make up the bulk of their diet in these parts, the ever cautious Brown Hyena maintains its mostly nocturnal and shy disposition and evaded our waiting Canon DSLR on our visit. 

Most hunters that visit Africa shoot hyena opportunistically; we put aside time specifically for the purpose of hunting them and our professional hunters are generally not impressed! On this trip, the hyena were our priority species and everyone involved knew that we had quite a task ahead of us...

Read more... 

Saturday, 8 September 2012

No elephant!

Having just enjoyed two weeks on safari in South Africa, I thought I might assemble a few posts detailing our adventures and how it all panned out. Best to start with the elephant as that was very much the impetus for the safari...

Our elephant hunting plans changed at the last minute, 48 hours before our flight out of Sydney when Nature Conservation decided it was suspicious that a foreigner would want to hunt elephant and not take the trophy home. They couldn't or wouldn't understand that Australians cannot import elephant and refused to issue the non-export permit I had applied for.

My PH came good and organised CITES permits on two separate game reserves on very short notice - southeast of Musina and north of Hoedspruit.  

 Read more... 

Wednesday, 5 September 2012

We're back!

Hello hunters. Just back home from our South African safari on Monday night. Our plan was to primarily hunt three species on this safari - elephant, spotted hyena and brown hyena - and chase a few others time permitting. 
Africa has to be the most awesome hunting destination on the planet.  Thanks to Dalerwa Ventures for Wildlife , owners Siegfried and Elize Osmers and our PH Floris de Meyer for looking after us and putting in the yards to make it happen.

Lots of photos to come and some tall tales to go with them. Hope you enjoy reading about our latest adventure; very much looking forward to sharing with you another adventure from a very ordinary bloke!