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Safari for the little guys

This is a discussion on Safari for the little guys within the Hunting Africa forums, part of the HUNT AFRICA category; Anyone ever take a safari for just the little guys? I know in Namibia you could go for duiker, steenbok, ...

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    lwaters's Avatar
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    Default Safari for the little guys

    Anyone ever take a safari for just the little guys? I know in Namibia you could go for duiker, steenbok, klipspringer, and dik-dik. I never toke any on my first hunt as the grass was tall and you only saw then for a few fleeting seconds. I may plan a hunt sometime for just these and does everyone agree that a 223 would be about the right rifle to use?

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    I have also thought it would be a good Safari to just focus on the little stuff. If you wanted to have a rifle built, I think the 6x45 (223 necked up to 6mm) would be perfect. The 223 or 22-250 would probably also be good but I would want a 1:8 twist barrel so I could shoot 70 gr or heavier bullets.

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    Are you going for Euro mounts?
    My concern is that exit hole and your relationship with your taxidermist.

    Will the 223 penetrate cover (grass), or deflect?
    Long range open shots I think it will work fine. But refer to second point.
    Practice whispering before you leave for Africa!
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    Quote Originally Posted by lwaters View Post
    Anyone ever take a safari for just the little guys? I know in Namibia you could go for duiker, steenbok, klipspringer, and dik-dik. I never toke any on my first hunt as the grass was tall and you only saw then for a few fleeting seconds. I may plan a hunt sometime for just these and does everyone agree that a 223 would be about the right rifle to use?
    See my post here:All around rifle for 1rst trip to South Africa..

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    I agree with Docman's post on using a 375 H&H. Most of the smaller antelope you'll find in the thick stuff and you dont want to worry about your bullet not going true when go for your trophy, i also agree on the nice thru & thru it will leave on your quarry.

    In regard with hunting the small stuff, I've heard & read a lot of nice about Hilton Gary Sanders who is the owner of "THE BOX H" safaris which conducts mini 10 safaris with great success. I recommend you look them up. Happy Hunting.
    Edward Els
    els.edward@yahoo.co.uk
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    Quote Originally Posted by DOCMAN View Post
    agree with docman solids from a bigger calibre work very well and no damage, or the .22rimfire win mag works well on the small stuff with no damage.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BRICKBURN View Post
    Are you going for Euro mounts?
    My concern is that exit hole and your relationship with your taxidermist.

    Will the 223 penetrate cover (grass), or deflect?
    Long range open shots I think it will work fine. But refer to second point.
    Solids in the big calibers work great. I've used the .416 solids for a lot of the small stuff. If your going for the small ones only, and don't need the big gun, the .223 will work great as long as you use FMJ (full metal jacket) bullets. If you want life-sized mounts stay away from the varmint type fast expanding bullets!

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    I think a safari for the small antelope would really be rewarding.

    I think you can go big with a 375 H&H and I also like the 223 in a non expanding bullet. Shot placement will be "super" important.

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    Do not take anything over a 223. Its a perfect rifle for every animal up to impala sized animals. Good luck and have a great time.

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    Heavy Caliber, is the way to go, like you said, it is normally in long grass, fleeting glimpses. Definitely want something that will be a little forgiving if your shot deflects etc.
    Patrick Fletcher
    Hotfire Hunting & Fishing Safaris
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    One of the guns I use when I hunt Roe deer is my 223 with Barnes Vor-tx ammo with the 55 grain TSX bullet.
    I have also used it on many Red foxes.
    It has great effect on the animals with small damage to the cape.

    A Roe deer yearling is about the size or a bit bigger than a Steenbuck, so I guess it will work great.
    A round nose non-expanding bullet in a larger caliber will work great too.

    I don't like to use pointed fmj bullets as they often tilt inside the animal body and can tear huge holes on the exit. Specially on angled shots.

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    A .223 would be fine.

    MY 14yo son took his .243 and took steenbok, spring hares, dassies, blesbok and Impala with no problems. We hunted the grassveldt where the wind was quite strong and with 100 grain partitions loaded had no problems. I would probably load a conventional SP next time.

    A fast twist .223 and 65-77 grain sp would be perfect as would the 6x45 mentioned above or a 6*47.
    Time spent in Reconnaisance is never wasted.

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    So I guess I could use my 375 ruger with solids or my 223 with barnes tsx or solids. my 300 rcm will shoot the 150 grain hornady steel jackets in the same group at 100yards as the 180 grain noslers but it is a spire point so maybe it could do alot of damage if the 223 solids do. This hunt would be a ways down the road and I may get a few of the small antelope on other hunts.

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    I have used my 375 H&h with solids on steenbok and duiker. A nice neat hole in one side out the other. there will be many more safari's that the only rifle I take is the 375. In fact the 375, my 300 win mag and the 22 is almost the only things I take on any hunt.

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    What a great idea.
    I think the Namibian winter would be ideal, July, end august and September.
    The grass has been grazed down and they are easier to find.
    Baobab Game Ranch
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    On my 2007 hunt to the Eastern and Southern Cape regions of South Africa, the only rifle that I took was my .375 RUM with 270 gr Barnes TSX handloads. This combo worked great for the bigger stuff, like Eland and Kudu, and didn't do too much damage on my Vaal Rhebok and Black Springbok, but it just about cut in half a Jackal and a couple of Steenboks. When we went to specifically hunt Cape Grysbok, I borrowed a rifle from the landowner chambered in .308 Win with 150 gr FMJ bullets. That FMJ bullet only made .30 caliber entrance and exit holes, and he made a beautiful full mount.

    This past July I hunted the Limpopo Province of South Africa with my .300 Weatherby and 168 gr TTSX bullets. Since I knew that I would be hunting some small animals on this trip, I worked up a load for my .300 Wby with 150 gr Hornady FMJ bullets which shot sub-moa in my rifle. One of these FMJ bullets worked great on a African Civet, but when I squeezed the trigger on a Caracal, all that we heard was a loud CLICK. In almost 50 years of reloading (a dozen rifle and pistol calibers and over 200,000 shotshells) that was the first time that I ever had a primer go off and push the bullet into the barrel, but not ignite the powder. And that was the only cartridge in that box of 20 that did that.

    Anyway, that misfire rendered my .300 Wby useless, but luckily, for the first time in his guiding career, my PH had a .22 LR in his truck and I was able to borrow it and make two 165 yd hits on that Caracal.

    The other small antelope that I wanted to hunt on that trip was a Kilpspringer. All of the Klipies that we found were extremely skiddish so I chose to use the 168 gr TTSX bullets because I had more confidence in them. I shot my Klipspringer at 314 yds and I shot him "in the middle" to reduce cape damage for a shoulder mount. I also used a 168 gr TTSX bullet to make a 290 yd shot on an old male Baboon sitting in the top of a tree . The TTSX bullet went through the top of both of his shoulders and only left a 1 1/2" exit hole.

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