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Two Cape Buffalo Die Fighting

This is a discussion on Two Cape Buffalo Die Fighting within the Before & After the Hunt forums, part of the HUNT AFRICA category; These two Cape Buffalo were found dead in Mountain Zebra National Park (South Africa) after apparently battling and their horns ...

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    AfricaHunting.com's Avatar
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    Default Two Cape Buffalo Die Fighting

    These two Cape Buffalo were found dead in Mountain Zebra National Park
    (South Africa) after apparently battling and their horns became interlocked... I actually once came upon two Kudu that had become interlocked like this, one was already dead and the other one was almost dead so I put him out of his misery... too bad I did not have a camera.








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    BryceM is offline AH Veteran
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    Wow. That's would have been something to watch.

    Too bad. There are two less buffs in the world to chase......

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    Shame, both look like immature bulls, but that is nature. 2 less potential dagga boys.

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    ...What a shame!! 2 less future Dagga boys!! Surprising the lions & hyenas weren't feasting on them already! There must have been a lot of noise & commotion going on to attract them!!

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    Very sad...At times mother nature can be cruel.Nevertheless,she always has a way of replacing what she has taken.R.I.P DUGGAS!

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    Quote Originally Posted by AfricaHunting.com View Post
    That's too bad! However though these are not record bookers,by any stretch of the imagination, they are certainly not immature bulls! They both have very well developed bosses, that have grown together completely. Both would have about 40" or a little better spread, and would score well above minimum for SCI. They are very simetricly shaped, but neither have the drop that I like, but on day ten either would get a pair of 500gr pops in the chops!
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    DUGABOY. . . I agree. While neither is a barn burner both are clearly mature.
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    There is only one degree of dead . . . there are many degrees of wounded

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    I don't know about these two but they had to have broken their necks or something. There is nothing to suggest they were in a massive battle due to lack of scars and their horn lock is nothing that a buff cannot get out of. They are both immature small trophies, but would have made awesome specimens in a year or two.
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    Shallom, I have no doubt as to your expertise in this area. However, we may be arguing semantics here. Besides the bosses there is a lot we cannot clearly see in these photos such as; stature, hanging testicles and penis sheathing which, as you know and have previously posted, are excellent indicators of an ‘old’ bull, or a bull that has ‘peaked’ in its growth cycle. Yet as we all know even when peaked not all bulls will have become ‘big’ bulls.

    Therefore, judging by what can be seen in the photos how then can we definitively state that the two bulls have not yet ‘peaked’ and achieved a completion in their natural growth and development cycle? Better yet, at what point may one ever step in with a defined certainty and state; “okay, they are at their absolute peak, from this day forth their natural decline will now begin”.

    I agree that these are not ‘old’ buffs. I also agree that they are not as yet first day ‘trophy’ bulls. But, juvenile or immature bulls? They certainly don’t seem to fit that category either. As Dugaboy pointed out (based on the horns/bosses alone) they do appear to have hardened bosses and the seam does appear to have come nearly together. That would seem to satisfy the old generalization and rule of thumb that they are something other than juvenile or immature.

    However, you are the obvious expert in this field and as such I will defer to your opinion on the matter. Besides, I long ago learned not to argue with an expert in any field. The sole purpose for my response is to put aside the possibility that we are all perhaps commenting on different points, or peaks in the life cycle.
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    Good questions raised Big5... I have made the mistake of branding the bulls according to my experience and have not given my reasons for doing so. Indeed they are not 'young' bulls, but the reason i judged them as immature is due to the fact that they would most likely not be shooters on a buffalo safari. On the close-up photo (thanks to Dugaboy1), it may appear that they have hard bosses, but they are actually just beginning to form a rough layer at the top. If you were to press your thumb on these bosses (where they meet together), you will find that the top crust will move down upon pressure, meaning that the bottom of the bosses is yet to fully form.

    Further evidence is from the facial features. There is no typical wear and tear on the ridge of the nose and the 'tear-path' from the eyes. The facial hair is very intact which is not a rule, but very common among old bulls. Furthermore, you will note that the horns are still angling backwards (also not a rule but common of younger bulls) plus they have 'flick-back' tips which suggest little wearing down. On the close-up, the bull facing left is the older of the two and may in some places qualify as a last day bull, but it is not an appropriate bull to take down. Even though they are alone, it does not mean that they are old bachelor bulls. Buffaloes also enjoy young bachelorhood and then rejoin a herd when they are ready to fight for breeding rights.

    Indeed, it is impossible to judge when a wild buffalo has 'peaked' or is in 'decline', but we all depend on the tell-tale signs. I have seen some really old bulls still hand around the herds and even sniff a cow or two and have seen very young bulls hand around with old dugga boys - there is no fixed rule to these habits. But in the case of the two candidates on the photo above, they would deserve a second and third glance maybe, but if the area has buffalo, then they are to be left alone for a future date .

    In reference to the 'seam of the bosses coming together', that is another misconception that many hunters have. The distance between one boss and the other is very much a genetic quality and cannot be used entirely as an age indicator. It is the HARDENING of the bosses and COMPLETE formation of the bosses according to the genes of that particular bull that safely establish whether a bull is mature or not. They could be close together or up to six inches apart. A few photos here to illustrate various boss genetics - one meets at the seam, another is 2" apart and the other 3" apart - but they are all as old a bull as you could hope for.
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    Shallom. . . thanks, you justified your position very well. As I had previously acknowledged, you are the expert here.

    However, with regard to the photos you posted to show various widths between the bosses of mature bulls. . . well, come on now, I would consider those bulls 'ringers' for the purpose for which you displayed them. Clearly each of them is a very old bull, a true dugga boy. One can easily see that the seamed area between the bosses, irrespective of the width, is smooth and actually has the appearance that it is now receding, as opposed to the hide and stubble being present on juveniles with green bosses.

    I would hope everyone here who has previously hunted buffalo would recognize each of these three bulls for what they are, old dugga boys, without having to look about the body further to justify their initial determination as to age.

    When are we going out after a solid 42+ ?
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    Big5... am ready when you are bwana! We can go out for that solid 42+ bull every season until we get him, but for sure there is an old solid bull for you tomorrow if you wish, but he just might be between 32" & 40". But if we are going for something special, then i am itching to better my best which falls just short of 50". It took me 15 buffalo hunting years to get him, but i am in it for another 15 even if nothing better shows up You may have what it takes to get one - that would make you my lucky charm until a bigger one shows.

    Here are 49"/44"/43"/42"/41"/40" in order of appearance. They are out there - but they are for a select few and there is no telling what the factors are - you just gotta be out there in pursuit Cheers Bwana!
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    Shallom . . . all beautiful bulls to be sure! Your photo spread also goes a long way in showing that it is not width alone that makes a great bull. Each of those bulls has an individual character which makes him trophy quality.

    For me, if I could find a solid 42 incher with a really great drop and nice bosses somewhere other than in my dreams, I'd be as happy as a guy who is lucky enough to take a beautiful 49.

    But, hey, if you could just walk out and whack one each trip out you'd miss all the addictive fun associated with looking for one . . . trip . . . after trip . . . after trip . . . .
    There is only one degree of dead . . . there are many degrees of wounded

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    You are on the right track bwana... it is addictive stuff indeed. Here is a 42" and another that will go 44" and have a little bit of everything. They are out there somewhere



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    Ryan Shallom (CEO)
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    Oh I think I could be happy with one of those.

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    Big5 is offline AH Enthusiast
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    . . . Are you psychic? You just posted pics of bulls I see in my dreams, haha. Deep with a nice sweeping curl and tips below the boss. Anything more would just be icing.
    There is only one degree of dead . . . there are many degrees of wounded

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    Default bulls died of breathing difficulties

    my experience with bovine animals here in Texas tells me these animals tired, then lay down and then died from difficulties breathing as their stomachs impede their ability to breathe when laying in this position. Might be wrong, but that is my best guess. I am suprised something didnt snack on them.

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