Zim auctions elephants, leopards
Mike, Not heard anything yet, though curious as well...
Here is some info.
Zim auctions elephants, leopards
by Tobias Manyuchi
HARARE – Zimbabwean wildlife authorities will today (March 04, 2011) auction hunting packages for big game including elephants, lions and leopards with dozens of local and foreign hunters expected to take part in the auction.
The packages known as hunting camps consist of animal species packaged into bags to be hunted over a 10 to 14-day period in the Nyakasanga area of Hurungwe Safari and Sapi Safari in north-western Zimbabwe.
"The animals on offer include elephants, lions, leopards, buffalo, hippopotamus and plains game such as kudu, impala, waterbuck and birds," the National Parks and Wildlife Authority said in a statement.
"A cash participation deposit of 10,000 USD for hunting camps and 500 for fishing camps will be required in order to obtain a buyer's licence number which is refundable if all sale conditions are met," it said.
The last auction in 2009 saw bidders coming from Austria, Germany, Russia, Spain and the United States. The country earned $1.5 million from the auction.
The wildlife department has sanctioned several hunts over the past decade especially as way to cull excess animals.
But illegal hunting has also been rife in Zimbabwe over the same period and mostly blamed on black villagers who have since 2000 invaded – and with tacit approval from President Robert Mugabe and his ZANU PF party -- white-owned farms and game conservancies where they have been accused of poaching animals for food.
The situation has not been helped by reports of illegal and uncontrolled trophy hunting on former white-owned conservancies now controlled by powerful government officials and members of ZANU PF, although the government denies politicians are illegally hunting game and insists it still has poaching under control.
Zimbabwe national parks auction results
So the national parks auction for hunting camps in the zambezi auction was just held in Harare and it was a very unusual event. At first someone was collaborating to run up the camp prices and the first too camps went for crazy amounts. Then all of the buyers caught on and threatened a walk out. The silliness stopped and bidding returned to normal rates.
The odd result of this, or maybe just a result of the economy, is that a great deal of camps and extra animals were not purchased and are still available. The following camps have not been sold: N32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37. Extra animals on Nyakasanga not sold are: Lion, Lioness, Buff x 5, Hippo x 2, Bushbuck x 2, Warthog and Hyaena. Sapi area: S8, 9, 10, 16. Extra animals on Sapi: Trophy Elephant x 5, Buff (m) x 3, Crocodile x 1, Zebra x 3, Hyaena. These camps will be sold during the year by parks at a negotiated rate.
It is a rare year that the trophy elephant (5 no less!!) and the one lion is not sold, ecspecially since this is the same area that Boddington said would produce the best lion in the next few years! If any of you have the funds, this may be a great opportunity. I have said I am not going this year but that lion is calling my name!! I can only assume the rest of the industry is feeling this same level of retraction.