Hunting Buffalo in South Africa vs everywhere else

Kevin Peacocke

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Since these few unscrupulous lot feeders and place and takers seem to be tainting the whole South African hunting scene could they not be identified and categorised? They are way in the minority, but their effect seems to be disproportionately high. I doubt they can be outlawed, but if that is who you are, advertise as such and let those who want that come. Those who want more will find it in other categories.
 

DWB

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Buffalo get fed in SA in different areas. We are just recovering from one of the worst droughts experienced in a long time. Not all rainy seasons leave enough natural foliage to sustain them. The difference here is that that buffalo actually belongs to a farmer. If a buffalo dies from hunger the farmer is out of pocket anything between R30k and R100k+ ZAR. So they look after the animals. Does that make them tame? No, makes them fed.

Wood I should a buffalo over feed looking at me as if I am delivering a hay bale? No

Yes, as a passionate hunter in SA, I also look down on certain practices. And a lot of those bad practices came in because there was a market created for it. I.e. hides at watering points and salt licks etc especially for bow hunters.

Most SA hunters believe it is unethical to hunt anywhere near a watering hole.

I can understand that it is difficult to distinguish this all in the market. But I believe the reputable outfitters on here will gladly assist.
 

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From the bottom of my heart I believe that most people should definitely hunt sincerus in the RSA, and the rest of us can enjoy the hard trophy hunting elsewhere. Book now don't delay!!!

Personally, I prefer Buffalo that know they are being hunted and actually run away when they sense danger, so send those hunters here. I will happily give them a real hunt in RSA.
 

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Fully agree with you Marius.

We used to hunt buffalo in Hoedspruit where some people swore no buffalo existed.

If they are hunted often, they are very very clever.

And if there is a river system with reeds, good luck!

I still hunt them in that area. I am often amazed at 5 day Buffalo hunts being offered. I couldn't comfortably offer a Buff hunt in that area, knowing I only had 5 days.
 

IvW

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Fully agree with you Marius.

We used to hunt buffalo in Hoedspruit where some people swore no buffalo existed.

If they are hunted often, they are very very clever.

And if there is a river system with reeds, good luck!
Yip....I remember same.....we opted to hunt a different property a owner had there....trackers said the biggest buffs where on the other ranch but it was rough lots of bush and a river with lots of reeds.....man was a hard hunt some ranch trackers refused to hunt buff there..sometimes bumping in to buff at what felt like touching range could not see a thing...we eventually walked away with a super old 42 incher but that hunt is not for the faint hearted or the nervous types.....close and personal....
 

Kevin Peacocke

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Yip....I remember same.....we opted to hunt a different property a owner had there....trackers said the biggest buffs where on the other ranch but it was rough lots of bush and a river with lots of reeds.....man was a hard hunt some ranch trackers refused to hunt buff there..sometimes bumping in to buff at what felt like touching range could not see a thing...we eventually walked away with a super old 42 incher but that hunt is not for the faint hearted or the nervous types.....close and personal....
Gosh, right up my alley. My isurrance is paid, I am ready for one on one. Anything I need magnification for is too far.
 

IvW

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Your 375 Flanged Magnum may be a tad light for this hunt best get that 450/400......
 

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I also don't know of any outfit that baits a dozen sites for weeks and I did a lot of research for my upcoming leopard hunt. It also is not a given that the client will get his leopard.

And, in regard to pre-baiting multiple sites for days or weeks prior to the hunters arrival, you are probably right that very few outfitter actually do that. I would assume that only the most successful ones do..

As much as I try to avoid contributing to derailing a thread from the OP's original inquiry, I think the horse has left the gate on that already, so I would add this:

I am certainly no expert on leopard hunting over bait, but I had also done considerable research into planning my own leopard hunt before it was closed down in RSA a couple of years back. I have also been fortunate enough to have been in camp on a few different occasions over the years with successful leopard hunters. Based on my conversations and observations with the PH's, the more pre-baiting that occurs at multiple sites before the hunter's arrival exponentially increases the odds of success. It has been explained to me that as many as a half a dozen bait sites may be utilized and pre-baited days or even weeks before the hunter's arrival in camp nearly ensures that at least 1 tom is actively and consistently hitting one of the baits. Once a mature tom is consistently hitting a bait, the rest are removed to concentrate the cat's attention to a single bait. I cannot say if this technique is common practice among outfitters who offer baited leopard hunts, but is is certainly effective in creating near 100% shot opportunity.

It was also explained to me that this planning and pre-work usually accounts for the difference between an unsuccessful leopard hunt offered at $15K versus a successful leopard hunt offered for $25K+...
 

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Let's play spot the buff....

Klaserie river reeds....

IMG_0223-1512x2016.JPG
 

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I’ve never seen videos of wild leopards excited to chase the truck bringing in new bait. There is a line between farming and wild you are choosing to ignore. Have you hunted unfenced areas outside of South Africa?
Just because you haven't seen it doesn't mean it's not completely plausible to condition a leopard, or any wild animal for that matter, to lose their fear of human presence through baiting or supplemental feeding. I've seen plenty of videos where the cat is already in the tree at 3pm before the hunters arrive. Bait that same tree for a month and the cat will be waiting on the truck's arrival. Bait that same tree for 3 months and that cat will be pulling the bait from the truck bed before it comes to a stop.. Bait it for a year and you will be hand feeding that leopard.

I'm ignoring nothing... My entire argument is that the concept of baiting conditions the behavior and even domesticates wild animals if done long enough. That's precisely why it is such a highly effective, widely used hunting practice world-wide! If that's your idea of farming, so be it. I could care less what you call it, and the choice to participate in the practice baiting or not is solely up to each individual hunter. If you find it unethical, don't participate in baited hunts. But, then you must also spare us the sanctimony and hypocrisy in asserting there is such a thing as noble, ethical baiting versus unethical, unfair baiting.

I have hunted extensively internationally outside of South Africa... I enjoy enjoy many forms of hunting including high fence, low, fence, no fence, baited, and spot & stalk among others. I do not participate in drives or dog hunts, but I can certainly appreciate and support those that do... All of these disciplines offer their own unique challenges. And, although some hunts are significantly more or less challenging than others, they all offer their own unique rewards. Not every hunt I do has to be the hardest, most physically or mentally challenging hunt to be enjoyable.. It's all perspective.. What's your point?
Is the 30-40% discount in cost from a wild buffalo hunt worth it for someone? That is a personal decision. After all people back home looking at your trophy are not going to know that you shot Bruce, the buffalo instead of a wild buffalo.
I'm confused by your self-contradiction? If it is a personal choice as you seem to acknowledge, why do you back-handedly demean the experience for others? If the hunt is legal, and ultimately contributes to the overall goals that I think we all favor such as the promotion of conservation through sustainable use hunting and habitat preservation, what do you care how somebody chooses to hunt?
 

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Just because you haven't seen it doesn't mean it's not completely plausible to condition a leopard, or any wild animal for that matter, to lose their fear of human presence through baiting or supplemental feeding. I've seen plenty of videos where the cat is already in the tree at 3pm before the hunters arrive. Bait that same tree for a month and the cat will be waiting on the truck's arrival. Bait that same tree for 3 months and that cat will be pulling the bait from the truck bed before it comes to a stop.. Bait it for a year and you will be hand feeding that leopard.

I'm ignoring nothing... My entire argument is that the concept of baiting conditions the behavior and even domesticates wild animals if done long enough. That's precisely why it is such a highly effective, widely used hunting practice world-wide! If that's your idea of farming, so be it. I could care less what you call it, and the choice to participate in the practice baiting or not is solely up to each individual hunter. If you find it unethical, don't participate in baited hunts. But, then you must also spare us the sanctimony and hypocrisy in asserting there is such a thing as noble, ethical baiting versus unethical, unfair baiting.

I have hunted extensively internationally outside of South Africa... I enjoy enjoy many forms of hunting including high fence, low, fence, no fence, baited, and spot & stalk among others. I do not participate in drives or dog hunts, but I can certainly appreciate and support those that do... All of these disciplines offer their own unique challenges. And, although some hunts are significantly more or less challenging than others, they all offer their own unique rewards. Not every hunt I do has to be the hardest, most physically or mentally challenging hunt to be enjoyable.. It's all perspective.. What's your point?

I'm confused by your self-contradiction? If it is a personal choice as you seem to acknowledge, why do you back-handedly demean the experience for others? If the hunt is legal, and ultimately contributes to the overall goals that I think we all favor such as the promotion of conservation through sustainable use hunting and habitat preservation, what do you care how somebody chooses to hunt?
You are still ignoring a line between farming and wild with your very long answers (or maybe you don’t know what a farm is?). If legal is your only definition of ethical or not ethical, hunting is going to lose. We are being judged by non-hunters not hunters. Releasing an animal raised elsewhere into a hunting area, tracking it down, and shooting it is very difficult to explain as conservation or sustainable use. It is simply a different method of harvesting a farm animal. I’m sure you’ve seen the movie Trophy? The scene where he buys crocodiles and hunter kills it in a small pond. It’s ethical because it’s legal? It supports conservation and sustainable use hunting because it’s legal? We shouldn’t criticize it because it’s legal? Hunting a leopard in a wild area, using that money to keep people out and pay for anti-poaching and protect the rest of the wild population is a much easier argument to make. Read my other posts again before you cycle this back to fences, you’ve gone from fences, to put and take, to baiting so far.
 

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You are still ignoring a line between farming and wild with your very long answers (or maybe you don’t know what a farm is?). If legal is your only definition of ethical or not ethical, hunting is going to lose.
I have aggressively disputed many of your assertions, but I have yet to reply in a condescending or disrespectful manner. However, if you want to go down that road I am happy to oblige. Perhaps my "very long" answers exceed your intellectual capability to comprehend my arguments? I never said legal and ethical were synonymous. I was making two completely different points that I assume you failed to recognize? Legality is relevant to the extent that the law attempts to neutralize the subjectiveness from the many different perspectives of what is deemed as "ethical" in any given region. What is "ethical" is completely subjective and hardly universal by country or even by county for that matter. So, when I use the term "legal" in regard to hunting methods, it generally does reflect the "ethics" of that specific region where the law applies.

If you don't agree with the laws where you are hunting, you are free to affect change through the appropriate legal and political systems. Or you can move, but you don't get to judge me or anyone else who does not share your perspective of the laws.

Releasing an animal raised elsewhere into a hunting area, tracking it down, and shooting it is very difficult to explain as conservation or sustainable use.

Really? Actually, I think it's a fairly easy argument to make.. High fence hunting doesn't promote the propagation of species that might otherwise be poached out of existence if it where not managed within those boundaries regardless of the size of the property? Are all animals that are hunted inside high fence property put & take? So, none of these animals have generationally naturally propagated over time? High fence game ranches and farms don't account for the preservation natural habitat that might otherwise be turned into condos and parking lots? The hundreds of other non-managed species that also co-exist on these game ranches don't benefit? The money generated in taxes and permits from hunting high fenced ranches does not go in part to law enforcement, anti-poaching efforts, or biological research that benefits all game? Myself, along with just about every outfitter on here would probably disagree with you on this one.

Read my other posts again before you cycle this back to fences, you’ve gone from fences, to put and take, to baiting so far.

No need to reread anything you've posted. Your bias keeps you from acknowledging your own hypocrisy on these various issues. I'm very content with my replies and ability to refute any other nonsense posted here.
 
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I'm very content with my replies and ability to refute any other nonsense posted here.
Certainly sums up my perspective on this subject exactly. :cool:
 

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but you don't get to judge me or anyone else who does not share your perspective of the laws.
This is where you are completely wrong, you can choose not to care, but I do get to judge. We have no common ground to agree on anything if you refuse to recognize a difference between wild unfenced, wild managed high fence, put and take high fence, and the grey area in between. Hopefully others do and can choose the correct hunt for them.
 

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This is where you are completely wrong, you can choose not to care, but I do get to judge. We have no common ground to agree on anything if you refuse to recognize a difference between wild unfenced, wild managed high fence, put and take high fence, and the grey area in between. Hopefully others do and can choose the correct hunt for them.

Using legal as a standard is why we lost the fight to import lions into the USA from a multitude of countries. The antis used the canned lion hunts in RSA, which was legal, to bolster their arguments for banning imports for lions from all other countries.
 

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