Female Leopard Misstakenly taken

Roughneck80

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I have been searching the forums and have not found much information on this subject.

I was wondering the protocol as to what happens when the second worst thing happens on a leopard hunt (obviously everyone returning home safe is top priority) But what happens when a female leopard is mistaken and shot? I know it is not a very common occurance but this does happen. What are some other peoples experiences when this happened? What normally occurs when this happens? This is hunting and its unfortunate that it happens and i just was wondering about this… it happened to me in a past safari and how everything happened seemed a little suspect.

Sitting in a leopard blind… where there was bait and trail cam evidence and tracks of a shootable tom… Cat comes in … PH says to take the shot… walk up and find a female leopard dead 20-30 meters away from the bait tree.

What happens next? I know this is hunting and misstake happens… but i was told everything was going to be ok and not to stress or worry. All trophy prep is done… paperwork filled out… i made a statement… go back home. Time comes to send the remainder of the money i owe for my safari… I pay for everything… big 5 safari… and then once the cheque clears i am told that the leopard trophy should not be sent to me as it may jeoprodize the rest of my trophy shipment. This is kind of suspect way to do business but it was a mistake and i ultimately pulled the trigger on this leopard. Could i have just said i was not going to pay for this leopard? I wasnt really too concerned about this but two years later my nyala showed up and the cape was mouldy and the skull was crushed and its unusable… it took months to find out what happens next and i asked for a refund and was basically rudely told tough… they would send me a new nyala…. So basically i am spending a lot of money for an animal i did not collect and spent even more money for a trophy i can not have. Is this all normal on safari? Is there ever refunds? To refund my Nyala would be 2% of what i spent on this safari… i am just wondering if anyone had any insight to all of this… and because of the leopard issue i assumed the operator would have been more open to working with me… Just wondering about this whole situation and have been curious about it for years… i have been on this website for years always looking at the deals and old photos of safari's… i finally decided to post and ask these questions out of curiosity.

Thank you
 

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To start: Which country was this hunt conducted in?
 

Roughneck80

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The leopard was Zimbabwe
 

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I'll just keep asking questions.
They all matter, honest.
Private land/ Reserve?
Communal Area?
 

Roughneck80

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Private land
 

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This is starting to smell.

Operators must hold a lease or agreement on a suitable concession with an approved quota of animals. They are responsible for the official paperwork and permits connected to the hunt.
 

Roughneck80

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Yes they did have quota and all my other trophies were exported and are home now… except the leopard
 

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In some QUOTA packages:
The agreement will set out sex of the species to be hunted.

For example:
Chirisa Hunting Camps
SPECIES AND SEX OF ANIMALS
The ONUS is on the hunter to determine the species or sex of any animal he intends to shoot. Shooting of the wrong sex of animal attracts a fine and the payment of the compensation value of the said animal. The trophy thus becomes state property.
 

Roughneck80

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so it probably was not on quota… and they would have had to pay the fee… so knowing that it was not exportable they didn't mention anything until they got paid…. knowing my trophy would be surrendered. Thank you… i figured that but glad to know for sure… thank you
 

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Hi Roughneck,

Some countries do not allow the taking of a female leopard. And if this was one of those countries your PH would have been in trouble.

Did you have a game scout or government scout? They would have had to sign off on your taking a female leopard.

What country did you hunt in... i read you indicated Zimbabwe...

Did your PH have a permit for you to take a leopard on the property you hunted, and was this permit for either a male or female leopard.

You always had the option to split your trophy dip and pack shipment. The Leopard being shipped in a separate container.

Your PH is responsible for you taking the female leopard, even though you pulled the trigger. The PH should have verified the leopard you were taking had the family jewels before letting you shoot.
 

Roughneck80

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Hey James,

This hunt was in Zimbabwe. Yes i had a game scout hunt with us every day…. in the blind it was myself…my PH and local PH… the scout and trakers stayed with the vehicle a few km's away as the blind was quite small…. Yes the splitting of the shipment would have been a nice option… but the safari operators never mentioned that option unfortunately.
 

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Hey James,

This hunt was in Zimbabwe. Yes i had a game scout hunt with us every day…. in the blind it was myself…my PH and local PH… the scout and trakers stayed with the vehicle a few km's away as the blind was quite small…. Yes the splitting of the shipment would have been a nice option… but the safari operators never mentioned that option unfortunately.

If you had a game scout, you should have known before you loaded the leopard in the vehicle if their was a permit for the leopard. The paper work needed to be filed by the game scout as soon as you found your dead leopard or when it was place in the vehicle.
 

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Yes they did have quota and all my other trophies were exported and are home now… except the leopard

It seems strange to me.
Preference to shoot males is one thing, it being illegal to shoot females is another.

Zimbabwe CITES QUOTA for Leopard. You will note that CITES does not care about sex.
Panthera pardus* 500 trophies and skins

This leaves me with a QUOTA issue within the contract for the concession or that property.

Why the misleading BS from the Outfitter. That smells.
 

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so it probably was not on quota… and they would have had to pay the fee… so knowing that it was not exportable they didn't mention anything until they got paid…. knowing my trophy would be surrendered. Thank you… i figured that but glad to know for sure… thank you

This kind of misleading BS is unacceptable and unprofessional.
 

Roughneck80

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yes i had to do some paperwork… it was from the local PH… nothing as soon as we got in the truck. But the next morning in camp. So it could have been exportable… they just didn't send it? I dont know? maybe they didnt know what would happen and wanted to make sure they got their money… but all i know is i am out money and a trophy…i wouldn't mind being out money if i physically had the trophy.
 

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So what has the outfitter actually told you with respect to getting your leopard back? Has it now disappeared?
 

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Ya they said it was not possible to get the leopard after i paid…. it would have jeopardized my other trophies… this was from Sept 2013… i am just brining it up now because it has never sat right with me, i guess i feel like i was billed for nothing? or maybe i could have split the trophy fee with the operators or they could have tried to work with me on the leopard… i also recently found out they refused to refund the nyala so i wanted to see what the protocol was in these situations…
 

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In my limited experience, in Zimbabwe your PH is going to have to take photos of the sex organs on a leopard. Those photos have to be submitted with the paperwork.

It sounds like the outfitter took advantage of the situation. Not sure if there is any recourse for you other than shaming them. Not sure if that is something you want to do. It might help protect your fellow hunters out here.
 

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Ya they said it was not possible to get the leopard after i paid…. it would have jeopardized my other trophies… this was from Sept 2013… i am just brining it up now because it has never sat right with me, i guess i feel like i was billed for nothing? or maybe i could have split the trophy fee with the operators or they could have tried to work with me on the leopard… i also recently found out they refused to refund the nyala so i wanted to see what the protocol was in these situations…

Okay, I'm not an expert on Zim by any means or leopard hunting so take this with the appropriate weight or lack thereof.

First, I've never ever heard of a female leopard on quota no matter what country. It may happen, but I have to believe it is extremely rare. Presuming there wasn't a female leopard on quota, I can't see in any way shape or form that the Zim gov't would allow it to be exported. What would be the point of setting quotas for male or female species if you're going to allow the animal to be exported after perhaps paying some fine? I can't imagine any fish and game dept in the USA allowing you to keep an animal that wasn't taken legally whether you pay a fine or not.

This situation just smells and smells bad. I do not like to make accusations without having the information to make them, but it seems like one of two things happened here:

1. The outfitter paid a bribe to the game scout to make the problem go away. As such the leopard ended up being buried, burned or fed to the crocs. The money you paid, paid for the bribe and the outfitter likely pocketed a big part of it themselves.

or

2. The outfitter was not successful in bribing the scout and it actually made it to the gov't. The outfitter would have been fined for the incident. Once again your money paid for this at least in part. The gov't then confiscated the leopard and had a coat made for Uncle Bob.

As has been mentioned, I think you're only recourse is to name and shame the outfitter.
 

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A Zimbabwe government game scout accompanying the hunters on a private land hunt?

Was this a requirement in 2013?
 

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