herd management?

Discussion in 'Hunting Africa' started by moosemike, Apr 23, 2013.

  1. moosemike

    moosemike AH Member

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    As anybody who studies wildlife understands it's very important to not only kill the males of a species but also important to harvest the females for a balanced herd. When outfitters advertise African hunts they only seem to advertise packages for bulls and bucks. Who harvests the Does and Cows in order to achieve a balanced herd?
     
  2. moosemike

    moosemike AH Member

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    I remember what it was like here in PA when I started hunting deer. Things were that badly out of whack you'd see 30 doe to every one buck. We've since had an aggressive doe management plan and the numbers are more in balance today making for a healthier herd.
     
  3. Uintaelkhunter

    Uintaelkhunter AH Veteran

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    If you search you will find a few guys offering cull animals on here. As for the majority I think the outfitters do most of there own as the time it just before the rut and when the young are weaned from there mothers. As most hunters are looking for a trophy they can take home they are not interested in females. But if you there during the right time of year some guys may offer you a few to shoot.
     
  4. firehuntfish

    firehuntfish AH Veteran

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    MooseMike,

    I sent you a PM earlier, but I would like to expand on this a bit for you... Many outfitters do not own or manage most of the land they hunt. It's for that main reason they do not specifically offer culling/management opportunities. Additionally, there is not a great amount of profit to be made by offering cull hunts.

    That being said, there are many reputabable outfitters who do own/manage their concessions that would be happy to offer you culling opportunities during your hunt. We are going on our 5th RSA hunt this August, and we have honestly run out of room for any addtional large trophy animals. Most of our hunting these days consists of cull hunting broken horn males, females, small unusual African species, and all the varmints we have arrows for... Cull animals still make wonderful backskins for rugs and throws. We are proof that you can still enjoy all of the experiences that Africa offers, get to shoot lots of game, and not have to spend a great deal of money in the process.

    Inquire with your potential outfitter as to how much if any culling opportunity that will be able to offer you...
     
  5. spike.t

    spike.t GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    moosemike click on HUNT NAMIBIA at the top of the page , it is jeromes family place and they offer management hunts in their hunting packages and specials.
     
  6. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR GOLD BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    Biltong Hunters!!!
    The great equalizer on the properties are the local citizenry.


    All the management you want with that or call in cull experts to process the animals in large volume.
     
  7. moosemike

    moosemike AH Member

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    Thanks guys but I wasn't looking for cull hunt opportunities. I was merely curious how/if PH's manage the herds on their properties or if they generally just hunt the males of the species and let the chips fall where they may?
     
  8. firehuntfish

    firehuntfish AH Veteran

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    Land owners who are serious about consistently producing the healthiest, trophy animals practice extensive herd management through culling females and wounded/unhealthy individual animals. As stated, wholesale culling is done before or after season. Culling opportunities for clients are usually offered as a courtesy for the most part. Extra females, and males with broken horns, etc.. are offered at discounted prices or often for free if an animal is in severe shape.

    Remember that male antelopes keep their head gear for life. Broken horns usually ruin the trophy potential for any males of the species. They have no negative effect on the breeding, and may be protected from culling if they have exceptional genetics... There is one particular impala ram that I know of that has one horn that must be close to 28"... The other is broken an broomed off at about 10". the story is that he broke it at about 5 years old ramming the back of a pick up that was working at one of the blinds...He keeps his life for his genetics...
     
  9. PaulT

    PaulT AH Fanatic

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    Moosemike,
    you raise an issue that is very close to my heart.

    I operate Trophy Asiatic buffalo hunts in a remote portion of Northern Australia.
    Our area of operation is immense, and for the large part inaccessable.
    I have witnessed other operations having to move on to new areas after over-harvesting Trophy bulls and leaving behind hunting concessions that have a very unhealthy out of balance female to male ratio.

    As a result, a few years ago I sat down in a series of meetings with my Traditional land-owners and successfully proposed a management system whereby we provide an oportunity for sport hunters to experience what we have termed Herd Reduction hunts.

    The way we apply these Herd Reduction hunts is to target numbers of animals we beleive must go dependant on;
    * seasonal conditions
    * estimated overall populations
    * numbers of mature bulls taken
    * localised pressure in sensitive (environmental) areas
    * conflict with people

    Animals taken as Herd Reduction targets are comprised of;
    * animals displaying poor gentic characteristics
    * animals displaying poor/problem health.

    In some areas entire (small) herds are removed to relieive pressure on areas of poor pasture, limited water supply or where they provide conflict with our Traditional landowners activities.

    The numbers of Herd Reduction animals removed each season are mainly comprised of females and any dependant young.

    These Herd Redcution hunts have;
    * provided an additional source of revenue for our Traditional
    landowners
    * provided oportunities for recreational hunters to experience volume hunting of large, thick-skinned game on a small scale
    * provided oportunities for projectile, firearms and equipment designers to test designs and developments without the level of costs associated with Trophy bull hunting
    * created a useful management tool for us to maintain a viable Bull/cow ratio in our hunting area.

    I generally quota a total of between 6 and 10 (dependant on season conditions, the wetter the season the higher the ratio) of cows to be taken per Trophy bull taken.

    The results of the application of this Herd Reduction hunting has been;
    * visibly less numbers of poor conditioned animals throughout the area
    * higher ratios of bulls to cows
    * improvement in quality of native pasture in many areas
    * improvement in quality of water in a lot of areas
    * improvement of quality of Trophy bulls taken each season
    * higher percentage of calves dropped per cow each season

    I accept that management/Herd Reduction hunting is not for everyone but I also beleive it is important for hunters to understand the neccessity.

    There is a LOT invloved here that for limitations on time and space I have ommitted.

    I would be quite happy to correspond with you via e-mail if you have any further questions or queries on the matter.

    Best regards,

    Paul.
     
  10. bluey

    bluey GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    well explained paul
    answers a lot of un asked questions
     
  11. moosemike

    moosemike AH Member

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    PaulT, that is the kind of herd management I was asking about. I was wondering if it was practiced outside the USA to any degree. I've always been told if you're going to take a buck out of a herd you need to take at least two doe to keep things balanced. A balanced herd leads to greater trophy potential because a lesser herd isn't eating itself out of preferred foods as quickly as a herd that's outpacing the carrying capacity of the land. Also dominant females (at least in the whitetail world) tend to run bucks off the best food sources and if your management program is geared towards mature females you will grow better bucks/bulls. This is the way it is in the US and I don't pretend to know how this applies to Africa. I'm just trying to learn.
     

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