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Judging Kudu

This is a discussion on Judging Kudu within the Judging Trophies forums, part of the HUNT AFRICA category; Lets do the same thing as with the Gemsbok / buff - thread. Can anyone post pictures of mature Kudu ...

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    Thunder head's Avatar
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    Default Judging Kudu

    Lets do the same thing as with the Gemsbok / buff - thread. Can anyone post pictures of mature Kudu or tips for judging them.
    Please
    I have walked in the tracks of the elephant, heard the lion roar and met the buffalo on his terms. I shall never be the same.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Thunder head View Post
    Lets do the same thing as with the Gemsbok / buff - thread. Can anyone post pictures of mature Kudu or tips for judging them.
    Please
    Ok,

    What do you think this guy will be?



    Remember he is still walking...

    Maybe we will get to meet each other in May.

    Oh,

    The red dots are the points for the vital triangle.
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    or

    what about these guys


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    Skyline is offline AH Fanatic
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    And please................lets also be sure to include how to tell an older bull from a fully developed prime breeding bull. I know when I shot my kudu in Namibia we were very careful to select a bull past his prime......passed on lots of younger bulls that would have scored better.

    Hope to do it again in the not too distant future.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Skyline View Post
    And please................lets also be sure to include how to tell an older bull from a fully developed prime breeding bull. I know when I shot my kudu in Namibia we were very careful to select a bull past his prime......passed on lots of younger bulls that would have scored better.

    Hope to do it again in the not too distant future.
    What is your opinion about the 2nd photo.

    Tell me what kudu bulls you think is still young and what bull will you take and why?
    Gerhard

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    I am far from an expert on it, LOL, hence wanting the pointers (that is what you PH's are for) but most of those bulls are youngsters and there are only two that I would even take a second look at and if left to my own devices I wouldn't shoot any of them.

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    Have a look at the 2nd one from the right
    Gerhard

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    What about this guy

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    Well the photo is pretty small on my screen........................the second one from the right has the last turn but appears to be fairly light and I was guessing still a young animal.

    The last photo, yes I like that bull, good mass, looks like he is heavy out to the tips and brooming....ivory tips. I'd take him.

    Now you can feel free to beat up my assessment.

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    Nope,

    What I want to try and do is help you class what is a shooter and what is not a shooter for you.

    Remember a trophy bull does not have to be 57 inches but if he fits exactly what you want and measure 52 is that a problem?

    Also remember that a 55 inch + Kudu bull van be compared to a 380 class Elk.

    You dont find them behind every hill or under every bush. If you are lucky enough to take such a trophy class animal consider yourself very fortunate.
    Gerhard

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    What about this bull

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    Thanks for the picks Gerhard,
    I would take the first bull based on 2 full curls and tips pointing forward

    In the second pic the 3rd bull left to right immediadtly got my attenion with his tight curls. His tips dont realy turn forward yet.

    I think the 2nd one right to left is a shooter

    third pic is a no brainer i think. His horns look huge compared to his body.

    Fourth pic looks like the intact horn is well in to the 3rd curl. Makes me think this is an old bull. It a strange angle so i am unsure.

    Feel free to correct me if im wrong. The whole point is to learn the difference between mature and immature animals.
    I have walked in the tracks of the elephant, heard the lion roar and met the buffalo on his terms. I shall never be the same.

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    What about this one....

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    No brainer on that one.

    Shoot! Shoot! shoot!
    I have walked in the tracks of the elephant, heard the lion roar and met the buffalo on his terms. I shall never be the same.

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    Ok,

    Now tell me what would make you shoot?

    I have a good idea what I want in a White tail or Elk if I ever have the privilege to hunt one...

    Now you have to create the same type of idea on what you want on a kudu.

    Then when you talk to you PH you can describe to him what you want in a trophy.

    He can recommend you to shoot a specific kudu but its still your call to shoot or not if he is not what you want
    Gerhard

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    No on the broken horn bull, don't want it regardless of age, but the tip of the unbroken horn looks sharp and not broomed indicating it is not an old bull to me. I have let bighorn, stone and dall rams with a badly broken horn walk.

    What I was hoping to see here is some pointers like on the gemsbuck topic on assessing horn length and actual things to look for when assessing age. My taking a best guess and picking out what I consider to be a shooter is one thing, but I would like to see some pointers from the PH's on field judging kudu for length, curl, mass and age.

    I know a 55 inch bull is a great trophy and 60 is the holly grail. I'd still rather take an old bull with mass and thick broomed ivory tips (my first kudu) instead of a young bull that has a few more inches, but that is just me.

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    Judging Kudu or any of the spiral horn plains game is not easy.

    There is a few guide lines that you can look at on trying to determine the length of the horn but they are just guide lines as you have seen on the couple of photos the different type of horn that you can see in the veld.

    Things like how deep the curl is, how long the horn tips are the length of the ear and on the animal it self like how thick the neck is can help to estimate the age.

    This all will give you and idea of what to look for in a trophy. Interestingly thick bases is not really something you look for as you will get old bulls with not to thick bases.

    Also remember that you will not have a lot of time to decide to shoot or not before he melts away.

    Hope this helps.
    Last edited by Gerhard; 04-09-2009 at 08:39 AM.
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    Gerhard...........yes, field judging is always an interesting topic isn't it? With animals that are unlikely to hang around and give you a long time to pick the horns apart, like kudu or free range whitetail, you need to have the knowledge base so that you can form an almost instantaneous 'overall impression' of the horns/antlers.

    I think there is a desire on the part of most hunters to have some knowledge on field judging the trophy quality and age class of the animals they are traveling a long ways to hunt. It ads to the hunt, as long as it is not all consuming................I get really irritated when I walk up to a recently expired big game animal with a hunter I am guiding and the first thing out of his mouth is, "What will it score?" or "Do you think it will make gold medal?"

    Ah, but that is just me and some of my quirky ideas..........

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    Quote Originally Posted by Skyline View Post
    No on the broken horn bull, don't want it regardless of age, but the tip of the unbroken horn looks sharp and not broomed indicating it is not an old bull to me. I have let bighorn, stone and dall rams with a badly broken horn walk.
    I very much like trophies with broken horns, as it is unique. Maybe those are just my European genes. I have noticed that Europeans very much like trophies with broken horns, because of it being a one of a kind trophy, and Americans tend not to want to shoot animals with broken horns.

    Maybe its just me as a European, but I would probably shoot that Kudu bull with the broken horn.
    Last edited by Oliver.Wettstein; 04-09-2009 at 12:19 PM.
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    Oli...............when I last hunted in Namibia, several of the land owners asked if while we were hunting on their land, we shoot animals we saw with broken horns and bring them in for the landowner to use for biltong and feeding farm staff.

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