Hunting Benin Information
Benin, was formerly known as the "Dahomey" under the French Colonial Empire. Benin, with a long tradition of hunting, is located on the west coast of Africa. Benin borders Togo, Burkina Faso, Niger and Nigeria. Like its neighboring Burkina Faso, Benin is one of the safest countries on the African continent where hunting and tourism thrive thanks to continued peace and a secure economy. This stability has enabled Benin to become a major destination for big game hunting in West Africa.
Hunting and wildlife of Benin do not differ from those of Burkina Faso. Benin is home to a dense animal population including many rare and highly regarded species such as the Western Roan Antelope (Hippotragus Equinus), one of the most beautiful antelope in West Africa. West African Savannah Buffalo, (Syncerus Caffer Aequinoctialis) one of the major hunting attractions in the country, are found in large numbers, and stalking these "Little Buffalo" is often very exciting. Lion hunting in Benin is also an exciting endeavor as Lion are hunted only by tracking, not with bait as in Eastern and Southern Africa.
Benin is home to many species of antelope including Western Hartebeest (Alcelaphus Buselaphus), Defassa Waterbuck (Kobus Ellipsiprymnus Defassa), Buffon's or Western Kob (Kobus Kob), Bohor or Nagor Reedbuck (Redunca Redunca), Harnessed Busbuck (Tragelaphus Scriptus Knutsoni), Oribi (Ourebia Ourebi) and Common Duiker (Cephalophus Grimmia) and Warthog (Phacochoerus aethiopicus). Although there is a sizable population of Elephant in Benin, they are not legal to hunt, nor is the Leopard. All the aforementioned species are found in most of the recognized hunting areas.
Hunting in Benin is done by tracking on foot, sometimes directly from the camp, but more often by driving 4x4 from the camps, then tracking on foot once in the bush. The terrain is quite flat therefore the hunting is not very physically demanding.
The principal hunting areas for big game are found in the northern part of the country, some close to the Burkina Faso border, another country in West Africa famous for its hunting. Hunting areas are accessible by road from the country's capital, Cotonou (pronounced co-toe-nu). The roads are good and the drive to most hunting areas is about 3 hours. Some hunting areas closer to the border with Burkina Faso are more easily accessible by flying into the capital of Burkina Faso, Ougadougou (pronounced oo-ga-doo-goo). In Benin it's possible to hunt small game on most of the big game hunting concessions, however there are also areas specially dedicated to hunting small game.
As in all of West and Central Africa, these sizable hunting areas in Benin are open territories, not fenced. The average area is approximately 130,000 acres. These hunting concessions are rented and managed by the hunting outfitters who usually are French professional hunters and members of the A.C.P. (Association des Chasseurs Professionnels - Association of Professional Hunters).
The actual terrain is mostly savannah with dry bush, broken up by smaller woodland areas that can be quite dense. Water is plentiful thanks to many different water points and rivers. The neighboring parks and wildlife preserves guarantee a dense animal population. The hunting season runs from mid-December through mid-May.
In Benin the hunting camps are permanent. The bungalows are comfortable and have air conditioning, many of the camps even have swimming pools. The French type cuisine is plentiful and excellent.
Finding a Hunting Outfitter in Benin
The single most important thing you need to do to ensure that you are booking with a good hunting outfitter is check their references. The outfitter should provide you with more than a few references, especially clients who have hunted with them within the last year and you should call many of them.
To cut through the indecision and risk of booking on your own you may wish to consider using a hunting agent that specializes in hunting in Benin as they should be familiar with the best areas for certain species, work with the most reliable hunting outfitters and may be able to get you a better deal. I recommend HuntingAgent.com as a company you can trust plus they will make it easier for you by taking care of all of the details. You can contact James Jeffrey at his Houston based office +1 (832) 306.1786 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Click here to visit HuntingAgent.com website for more information.
Click here to check out any hunting outfitter in Africa in the Africa Hunting Directory for ratings and reviews. To support our hunter to hunter resource, be sure to leave your own ratings and reviews for hunting outfitters, professional hunters or hunting agents who you have hunted with as well as other products or services you have used.
Click here to check out our Benin Hunting Reports, a section where you can find or post more detailed Hunting Reports. Or visit our forums where you can interact with other hunters and industry professionals, post questions or read what others are discussing about hunting in Benin by clicking here.
We are all empowered by learning from each other and we encourage you to make educated decisions based upon honest information and real experience.
Benin Hunting Areas Map and Satellite Imagery
Click here for Benin hunting areas map, country and satellite imagery maps.
Climate in Benin
South of Savalou, especially in the west, the climate is typically equatorial, hot and humid, with a long dry season from December to March, in which the dry harmattan blows in the northeasterly to southwesterly direction. The great rains fall from March to July; there is a short dry season from July to September and a short wet season from September to November. In the southwest, average rainfall is considerably lower and the dry season longer; at Grand Pope, for example, average rainfall is about 32.4 inches as compared with 40 inches further east and north, Northern Benin has a typical tropical climate, with only one wet season (May to September, with most rain in August) and a hot dry season in which the harmattan blows for three or four months. The highest midday temperatures are in January and the lowest in August, but throughout the year the range between midday and night temperatures is great, as much as 15.5C (28F) in the hot season. Although rainfall, which is highest in central Benin (53 inches), decreases as one moves northward, it remains high (40 inches) in most of northern Benin.
The best time to visit the Southern area is from December to March and July/August while visiting period for the Northern part of the country is best between December and April.
Weather Underground provides a very detailed look at current weather conditions, weather forecasts, a history and almanac for predicting average weather conditions during the time while you will be traveling in that part of the world. Click here for Benin's climate and temperature forecast.
Benin Hunting Season & When Hunting is Allowed
- Hunting Season - December 15th to May 15th
- Trophy hunting may take place within the hours of daylight during the hunting season, no hunting is allowed at night and no hunting is allowed with artificial light.
- The government of Benin controls the minimum number of days for a hunting safari based upon certain species being hunted. Above and beyond the government regulations, the hunting outfitter may also impose their own guidelines as to the minimum number of days required to hunt certain species or combination of species.
- Shooting an animal from a vehicle is not permitted.
- Hunting from a vehicle is not permitted, though the vehicle can be used to reach the area from where hunting on foot can begin.
- Hunting is not permitted within 547 yards (500 meters) of any water place or salt lick.
- Baiting is not permitted, professional hunters will sometimes make use of calls for certain species such as Lion.
Species to Hunt in Benin
Benin offers a good selection of species for trophy hunting, including Lion, West African Savannah Buffalo, Western Roan Antelope, Sing-Sing Waterbuck and Hippopotamus in addition to other species.
Click here to visit AfricaHunting.com complete list of species available to hunt in Benin.
Shot Placement Guide for the Perfect Shot
Click here to visit our shot placement guide, the most comprehensive shot placement guide of African game online.
Bowhunting in Benin
Bowhunting in Benin is legal during the hunting season. This country offers tremendous opportunities for bow hunters however few operators have the experience to conduct bowhunting safaris so careful selection of the hunting outfitter is important.
Benin does not have an additional bow qualification for professional hunters.
Importation of Bows & Arrows into Benin
It is legal for hunters to import bows for bowhunting purposes into Benin and no import permit is required.
Minimum Equipment Requirements for Bowhunting in Benin
Benin does not have any minimum equipment requirements for bowhunting so common sense will apply or here below find the requirements for South Africa.
- Big Game
Bow Kinetic Energy 80 ft/lbs
Arrow Weight 700 grain
(Elephant, Rhino, Hippo, Buffalo)
- Medium Game
Bow Kinetic Energy 70 ft/lbs
Arrow Weight 550 grain
(Kudu, Eland, Oryx / Gemsbok, Hartebeest, Wildebeest, Zebra, Giraffe, Sable Antelope, Roan Antelope, Waterbuck, Tsessebe, etc.)
- Small Game
Bow Kinetic Energy 40 ft/lbs
Arrow Weight 400 grain
(Warthog, Nyala, Springbok, Impala, Blesbok, Duiker, Steenbok, Ostrich, Caracal, Black-Backed Jackal, Game Birds, etc.)
Minimum Equipment Requirements for Rifle Hunting in Benin
- There is no minimum equipment requirement for rifle hunting in Benin.
- Benin does not require a minimum energy (Eo - muzzle velocity) for calibers used.
Traveling with Firearms & Ammunition
Traveling to Africa usually requires taking at least a couple of different airlines as well as departing from several countries whose laws and regulations are constantly changing. And they all have their own rules, regulations and laws for which it is your responsibility to be aware and in compliance with all of them. For this reason you should read the Africa Hunting article on Laws & Regulations for Hunters Traveling with Weapons by clicking here.
Permits & Importation of Firearms & Ammunition into Benin
The following section contains the basic information you will need to know, for more detailed information you should read Africa Hunting article on Importation or Transiting Procedures Through Countries with Weapons by clicking here, especially if you are transiting through or traveling to another country.
- Temporary importation of firearms and ammunition into Benin is NOT free of charge, please check with your outfitter as to the current charges, as they are based upon number of rifles, days of hunt and type of hunting safari. The process is usually quick and easy.
- Your hunting outfitter will send you a form to fill out and return to them so they can arrange for your firearms and ammunition temporary import/export permits months prior to your arrival as required by the government of Benin. This form must be accompanied by four ID photos (passport type) along with a copy of your passport. This permit will be based upon the firearm information you provide to your outfitter so it is very important that you carefully consider which firearms you will be bringing with you, as once you have submitted the form you will not be able to change your mind. It is very important that all weapons serial numbers be exactly the same when you arrive as what was issued on your import/export permit. Last minute changes of mind cause more problems regarding gun permits than any other reason. Exact number of ammunition is also important.
- Clearing of firearm(s) upon entry into Benin requires that someone who works for the hunting outfitter be present.
- There is a limit of two firearms per hunter that may be imported into Benin for trophy hunting purposes.
- A maximum of fifty (50) rounds of ammunition may be imported per hunting rifle, however you may encounter greater restrictions from the airline(s) you are traveling on or country you are departing from or other countries you may be visiting or transiting through. For more information on this topic, read the Africa Hunting article, Laws & Regulations for Hunters Traveling with Weapons by clicking here.
- Only ammunition for the specific caliber(s) you are bringing may be imported.
- Importation of shotgun ammunition is not allowed.
- No automatic, semi-automatic firearms are allowed.
- No handguns are allowed.
Benin Professional Hunters Association
There is no Professional Hunters Association in Benin.
Association of Bid Game Professional Hunters (AGGC - Association des Guides de Grande Chasse)
Many professional hunters in the former French colonies in Africa are French nationals and members of the Association des Guides de Grande Chasse. Click here to visit ACP web site for more information.
Association of Professional Hunters in France (ACP - Association des Chasseurs Professionnels)
Click here to visit ACP web site for more information.
Visit our Africa Hunting Directory for our Professional Hunters in Benin listing with ratings and reviews.
Centre National de Gestion des Reserves de Faune (CENAGREF)
To visit the Centre National de Gestion des Reserves de Faune (CENAGREF) web site click here. It is the wildlife authorities under the Ministry of Water and Forests in Benin that manages the National Parks / Game Reserve and hunting blocks / hunting territories.
Benin Hunting Permits & Licenses
The wildlife authorities and the government of Benin allocates quotas by species to each hunting block or hunting territory on an individual basis.
Your hunting license and permit will be applied for and obtained by your hunting outfitter well prior to your arrival, please check with your outfitter as to the current charges or if the cost of this paperwork is already included in the price of your hunt.
The following is required regarding permits for trophy hunting in Benin:
- A maximum of two trophies per species may be harvested, per hunting client per hunting permit, excluding Western Roan Antelope.
- Clients are only permitted to hunt animals for which a permit is issued.
- All animals are subject to quota availability.
- Permits must be issued prior to the hunt commencing.
- A separate permit must be issued for each individual hunting client.
- Trophy fee for wounded game that is not recovered is double the standard trophy fee for that species.
- Clients are expected to abide by all Wildlife Hunting Regulations in Benin.
CITIES Permits & U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
The importation of some individual sport hunted trophies requires a CITES permit (i.e. African Elephant, White Rhinoceros and Leopard to name a few), you will need to submit an application to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service if you are planning to import any of the species on their list. You can download the CITIES permit application forms by clicking here. CITES stands for Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, visit their web site at www.cites.org.
The Ultimate Safari Planning Guide
Click here to visit the Africa Hunting Ultimate Safari Planning Guide, or click the direct links below to visit the individual articles in this section with many useful resources to help you plan and prepare for your African hunting safari:
- Hunting Safari Preparation Timeline
- Safari Planning Resource Guide
- Travel, Medical & Evacuation Insurance
- What You Need to Know About Packing
- Clothing & Footwear List
- Personal Items & Toiletries List
- Hunting Gear List for Rifle Hunters
- Hunting Gear List for Bow Hunters
- Travel Documents & Money
- Tipping Guide
Camouflage clothing is allowed in Benin during the actual hunt. I would advise that it only be worn during the hunt and not in town or for travel.
How to Get There
A majority of international hunting clients will fly from their country of origin into Benin on a major international airline via Paris which offers direct flights to Cadjehoun Airport in Cotonou.
Travel Agent Specializing in Hunting Clientele
You may wish to consider using a travel agent that specializes in hunting worldwide or in Africa as they may be familiar with these routes and used to working with these airlines. Specialty travel agents can often get better deals than you can find on major websites or through regular travel agents. I highly recommend Travel Express, hunting travel specialists, they are the company that I personally use. Lori Ginn can help you, she is very knowledgeable and a hunter herself. She can assist you with all aspects of your hunting travel planning from airfare, lodging and car rentals to entry visa's, firearm permits, etc... Click here to visit Travel Express website www.travelexpressagency.com.
International Airport in Benin
- City: Cotonou - city on the coast, located 30 km South West of Porto Novo capital of Benin
Airport Code COO
Located in the city of Cotonou
Major Airlines Flying into Benin
Benin Golf Air
South African Airways
Click here to view the Africa Hunting travel information section, or the direct links below, with many useful articles and resources to help you plan your travel for your African hunting safari, including:
- Importation or Transiting Procedures Through Countries with Weapons
- Laws & Regulations for Hunters Traveling with Weapons
- Airports & Airlines
- Value Added Tax (VAT) Refunds
- Embassies & Consulates
Visa & Travel Documents
All foreigners must be in possession of a passport that will remain valid for at least six months after the intended date of departure from Benin as well as a round trip airline ticket.
Temporary entry visas for Benin are required by visitors from almost all countries. As the list changes from time to time, it is important to verify if you need to obtain a visa based upon your country of citizenship. Entry visas must be obtain prior to arrival in the country. This should be done well in advance as it can take some time to complete the process which may require sending your passport to their Embassy or Consulate. Entry visa rules can change from time to time, it is important to verify the current regulations before obtaining a visa.
To find out if you need to apply for a Visa in advance, a great resource with free information is Travel Document System (TDS) at www.traveldocs.com. If you are in need of a visa, Travel Document System is nationally recognized as a leading authority in the field of international Travel Documents. Travelers are quite often not sure of the specific requirements or documentation required to enter into a foreign country. TDS helps international travelers easily understand what is specifically required of them in order to gain passage into another country and provides visa services for U.S. citizens to most countries for which an entry visa is required www.traveldocs.com.
Traveler's Health & ImmunizationsA valid yellow fever inoculation certificate or International Health Certificate including yellow fever proof of vaccination is required upon arrival from all countries to enter Benin.
CDC recommends that you see a health-care provider who specializes in Travel Medicine. Find a travel medicine clinic near you by clicking here. If you have a medical condition, you should also share your travel plans with any doctors you are currently seeing for other medical reasons.
Recommended Vaccinations Include:
- Hepatitis A
- Hepatitis B
- Meningococcal Meningitis
- Routine vaccination if you are not up-to-date including Influenza, Polio, MMR (measles/mumps/rubella) and DPT (diphtheria/pertussis/tetanus)
Malaria prophylactics medication is recommended for visitors to some parts of the country, ask your hunting outfitter and we suggest that you visit the Center for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) for their recommendations for travel in Namibia as mosquitoes in this country are resistant to some antimalarial drugs.
The CDC is most credible online resource for up to date health information. Click here to visit the section dedicated to Traveler's Health specific to Namibia. Information about vaccinations, diseases, prevention, tips and much more can be found here.
Malaria Map of Benin
Click here to enlarge Benin malaria map.
Malaria Maps of Africa
Click here for Africa malaria maps, distribution model, endemic / epidemic risk areas, duration of malaria transmission season and duration of malaria transmission season.
Emergency Evacuation and Field Rescue Membership
No matter if it's your first or fifth time hunting in Africa, unavoidable accidents do happen. Whether a medical or security emergency, an evacuation from a remote part of Benin could cost well over $100,000. I strongly recommend that anyone traveling to Benin purchase a membership with Global Rescue, the only crisis response company that provides hunters with medical and security evacuation and consultation services anywhere in the world, even the most remote areas. Their deployable teams of paramedics and special operations veterans, backed by on-staff physicians and the specialists at Johns Hopkins Medicine, will get to you wherever you are, by any means necessary, and evacuate you all the way to your home country hospital of choice.
Member benefits include:
- 24hr medical advisory services from critical care paramedics and in-house physicians
- Specialists at Johns Hopkins Medicine available in real-time
- Field Rescue from the point of illness or injury
- Evacuation back to the member's home hospital of choice
- Global network of medical Centers Of Excellence
- Deployable medical and security teams
- Evacuation services provided up to $500,000
Memberships start at $119
If you would like to purchase a membership or have additional questions, Global Rescue can be reached anytime at +1 (617) 459-4200, or via www.globalrescue.com, click here.
Travel Advisory from The U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Consular Affairs
What you should know before you go. You may obtain international travel information by country, warnings for travelers about crime and public announcements about travel abroad in addition to so much other valuable information http://travel.state.gov.
Embassies & Consulates
Benin Embassy in the USA www.beninembassy.us
Click here for a complete searchable database of all embassies and consulates from every country in the world including Benin.
Services for Hunting in Benin
- Hunting Outfitters in Benin
- Bowhunting Outfitters in Benin
- Hunting Consultants for Benin
- Taxidermists in Benin, Dip & Pack
- Trophy Shipping Agents in Benin
- Air Charters in Benin
- Excursion & Tour Operators in Benin
- Lodges, Hotels, Bed & Breakfasts in Benin
- Shopping & Restaurants in Benin
Bird Hunting Season in Benin
No information at this time.
Tourism in Benin The Benin Official Government Tourism web site (Site Officiel Du Tourisme Au Benin) is a good place to explore what options are available for travel outside of your hunting safari, www.benintourisme.com. Your hunting safari outfitter may also offer short excursions up to extensive touring through their company as well. You can find Excursion & Tour Operators for Benin in our Africa Hunting Directory by clicking here.
General Information about Benin
- Republic of Benin (Republique du Benin)
- Population 8,500,000
- Capital City Poto Novo (250,000)
- Languages French (official), Fon, Yoruba and numerous tribal dialects.
- Official Currency West African CFA Franc (XOF). Denominations in 10,000, 5,000, 1,000, 500 CFA Francs bank notes. To view images of these banknotes, click here.
- Electricity, the Benin standard is 220/240 volts, three-pin 15 amp outlets. Most lodges/camps have generator(s) to power the electricity through rechargeable batteries therefore it is recommended to bring a small power inverter that plugs into a cigarette lighter to invert 12V DC Power to 110V AC for recharging in the hunting vehicle. Generator(s) in most camps are only run during the morning and evening hours and sometimes can be run at other times by special request. Be sure to check with your hunting outfitter in Benin what they are using. Click here for more info.
- Country Dialing Code 229
Click here for more information about Benin from the CIA World Factbook which supplies a multitude of facts about Benin.
Official Government Web Site Of Benin - Gouvernement De La Republique Du Benin