HUNTING Giraffe

Discussion in 'Shot Placement' started by AfricaHunting.com, Dec 17, 2008.

  1. Norma-USA

    Norma-USA SPONSOR Since 2014 AH Enthusiast

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    Giraffe hunt in Tanzania
    by Salahuddin Ahmad

    Greetings from Arusha, Tanzania.

    I feel great to share story of another successful hunt by using Norma Oryx 300 grain expanding bullet.

    During the last week before closing of hunting season here in Tanzania, I shot a mature giraffe bull using my trusted and versatile 375 H&H magnum rifle and Norma 300 grain oryx expanding bullet.

    It was late evening when we spotted a large lone giraffe at a distance of about 200 meters. We quietly tried to get closer and stopped when it became suspicious and started walking away. I waited until it stopped and looked curiously at us for a few seconds. At that moment, it was standing broadside with the head facing at us. The distance was about 100 meters. It was perfect moment for me to take my first chance on a giraffe.I aimed at the joint of shoulder and neck so that it may not run after the hit as giraffe are one among the very tough animals and can run long distance with improperly placed shot with even heavier caliber. I could hear echo of the impact sound when bullet hit its massive and tough upper body and it fell down like a tree log. We ran towards the bush and found it had fallen down but attempting to lift its neck. The bullet had shattered its shoulder and neck joint.I put finishing shot in the head to relieve it.

    I was keen to know the performance of Norma Oryx 300g expanding bullet on this massive animal. So we started skinning the giraffe body. Norma bullet was found just below the skin of other side shoulder with 100% weight retention and proper mushrooming. It had created huge wound channel, shattered neck and shoulder area bones and got stuck under the skin on the other side shoulder. The bullet traveled well through a meter of tough skin, flesh and, bones before resting under other side of the skin.

    Again, your Norma Oryx 300 grain expanding bullet lived up-to its expectation on very tough animal and it has further endorsed my decision not to use any other brand for my hunting expeditions.

    Proper shot placement and right choice of premium bullets for the type of animal are only two important matters for a perfect hunting.
     

  2. Fr8liner

    Fr8liner AH Veteran

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    Hear hear, my PH had no experience at all with this magnificent animal and I did no research at all.

    Was told give it a solid behind the shoulder. When the giraffe did not even run off, "we " decided that it was over and should wait it out rather than get the adrenalin up. Soon we missed the window and ended up on a two hour hike with no blood spoor, which I can now see why.
    When we came across them again I allowed the PH to shoot because I was not certain that it was the correct animal since there was no visible wound. After his second shot and the possibility of a further trek, I decided to back him up with one more shot as the animal quartered away. This entered behind the shoulder and exited the front of the chest almost exactly on the indicated spot for a frontal shot. The PH missed completely by the way!

    Crashing trees and a ground shaking thud end the story.

    Know your animal!
     

  3. TokkieM

    TokkieM AH Fanatic

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    This poor species is also known to be hit by lightning more often than any other ( no not the lightning from a rifle;)) I have seen and picked up a few after heavy lightning storms in the Eastern Cape, bulls being taller are more prone to being hit. Very little sign to indicate a strike,sometimes only a small mark on one of the hooves and a the smell of burnt flesh and hair, but only on the exit of the strike.
     

  4. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR GOLD BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    Glad you got it done.
    Goes to show that studying those shot placement pictures is so important.
    I can not believe the PH did not know where to shoot the Giraffe properly! o_O

    If I had not studied those pictures I would have done the same thing you did.
    That heart shot is in such a bizarre place for a guy that hunts deer.
     
    Royal27 likes this.

  5. Jack s Brown

    Jack s Brown New Member

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    I just shot a nice bull with my .300WSM. A high neck shot and he went down like an imploded building. A more difficult hunt than you'd think in the desert scrub of Namibia. My shot was off sticks at about 175 yards - about as close as we were able to get after getting busted
     

  6. CAustin

    CAustin BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Ambassador

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    Shot my giraffe with a 416 Ruger through both lungs. They are tough animals to take down except for that neck shot!
     

  7. AHS

    AHS AH Enthusiast

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    Giraffe heart.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 1, 2016

  8. AHS

    AHS AH Enthusiast

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    Giraffe skull.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 1, 2016

  9. CAustin

    CAustin BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Ambassador

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    Yep massive heart that just keeps on working!

    image.jpg
     

  10. redassnavajo

    redassnavajo AH Veteran

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    .308 to the ear drops in its tracks . Almost bit tongue in half when he landed.
     

  11. rookhawk

    rookhawk AH Elite

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    There is one plate high, just below the juncture of behind the shoulder meets the neck. In Doctari's book it shows this is the location of the heart/lung shot. I used a 200gr Nosler Accubond at 70 yards shot from sticks using a 300H&H single shot. The shot was perfect and the animal went about 30 yards before dropping. The meat fed us that night and another 42 people for roughly 6 months a small daily ration.

    Giraffe have relatively small kill zones and they will not usually permit you to get close in for a clean shot. I would be uncomfortable shooting at >100 yards for fear of losing energy and not getting the bullet into the boiler room. A .375HH would be a perfect choice.

    Giraffe stalking is a challenge. Getting within 150 yards was easy by using jess and mopani shrewdly. Getting under 100 yards was very, very difficult.

    Not sure I'd personally feel comfortable trying to brain a giraffe with a small bore at around 200 yards. The slightest miscalculation and that wounded giraffe will be two countries away before you catch up to him again. I firmly believe you need a dead right there plan. Not unlike moose, if you put one in the boiler room they simply cannot go far due to their blood pressure, weight, and organ load.
     

  12. Randy Hanson

    Randy Hanson New Member

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    I intended to use a 225 grain .338 Win Mag but my gun didn't get to SA with me. I ended up using the PH's 210 grain .338/06 which doesn't have the powder behind it that the Win Mag does. My shot to the neck of a large bull hit and fractured the vertebra but did not penetrate it (I still have the bullet). Fortunately, it still did enough damage that the bull stopped after running about 200 yards and I was able to put another shot through the shoulder which dropped him in place. I prefer the flatter shooting .338 Win Mag over the .375 H&H, but folks can argue ballistics all day long. If you have a .338WM that you're confident with, I'd bring that.
     

  13. sonnyn913

    sonnyn913 AH Senior Member

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    My recent hunt with Paw Print Safaris put me on a mature bull. I took a shot from the sticks from about 80 yds with a 308. I made a straight on frontal neck shot just 12 inches from the bottom of his chin. The bullet found the vertebrae and the bull fell with a loud thud right where he stood. No chase necessary. However I did put a 416 Rigby into the chest to finish him off.
     

  14. gizmo

    gizmo SPONSOR Since 2015 AH Legend

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    I really need to study these charts. Giraffe is on the hit list next summer. My wife really wants one for the house soooooo, twist my arm I say. Giraffe and kudu it is.
     

  15. gordon kings langley

    gordon kings langley AH Senior Member

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    Mine was shot with my .30-06 with a 200 gn noisler partition.
     

  16. Daga Boy

    Daga Boy New Member

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    Giraffes actually go down surprisingly easily. I know of quite a few taken with heart/lung shots using a .308win , and the guys who cull them in the area I hunt in use only a 243 for that purpose.
    Obviously you have to shoot in the right place as there's a whole lot of body and a shot in the gut or butt isn't going to do it, but basically it goes down very easily. I think the reason is the high blood pressure combined with the distance the blood has to go uphill in order to reach the brain.
    Bottom line is that a 338WM is more than enough gun - 250g bonded or 225g monometal.
    (Bear in mind that a monometal bullet fired from a 338WM can go right through a buffalo and accidentally take out a second one!)
     

  17. spoonieduck

    spoonieduck AH Senior Member

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    I have had a Weatherby 416 magnum since 1987 and have witnessed only one animal [elephant] shot with it, so, we decided to shoot a giraffe with it a couple of years ago. Obviously, it's more than enough gun for elephant so a giraffe should be no problem. Well, the animal was hit at 150 yds much too far back. It trotted 200 yds stood for a minute and collapsed, dead. The bullet was, I think, a 400 grain Barnes TSX. It penetrated skin; a couple of ribs; the entire stomach completely stuffed with sticks, leaves and water; annihilated the spleen and liver [unrecognizable purple mush]; more ribs and mushroomed under the far side skin just in front of the pelvic [iliac] bone. The distance through tissue, including the hay/water bale of a stomach, was about 5 feet.

    The bull elephant was shot in Ethiopia in 1987. The shooter [name to go unmentioned] used a 400 grain monolithic solid and fired from a tree he'd climbed. The elephant was about 60 yds out. The shooter made a shot that nobody should attempt. The elephant was in tall cane and the shooter could only see the top of his back. He ESTIMATED where the chest was and fired into the bamboo. The elephant squealed and ran off. To make a long story short, the bull ran about 2 miles before falling dead. He had been hit far back and low in the belly, just in front of the hip. The guide said he'd never seen a gut shot elephant recovered before. I didn't have the opportunity to do the autopsy.

    Moral: If you hit an animal well you can get away with a relatively small gun but, if you mess up, you'd better have a howitzer.
     

  18. Daga Boy

    Daga Boy New Member

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    Couldn't agree more.
    Karomojo bell shot over 1000 elephants with a 7 x 57 mauser and i routinely take down large antelope with my 6.5 x 55.
    A 338WM is absolutely more than enough gun for anything, provided (with all these calibres) you use a decent bullet, and shoot to the right point.
    If the caliber needs to be bigger for legal purposes then any of the 375's and 416's is seriously more than enough gun with the 416's having a pretty distinct edge. (The Rigby is the best known but both the 416 Taylor and the 416 Remington do great jobs).
    If you bugger the first shot up with any normal calibre then best take an RPG as back up, as a wounded animal doesnt feel pain in the way that we do and can get very nasty.
    When all is said and done its about a "sufficiently powerful" cartridge loaded with an appropriate bullet which must be put in the right place. A good 7m ,338 or 416bullet in the brain (or anything in between) will do the trick on anything; but another 250 or 300 g or an additional 1000 ft lbs of energy will not help if you shoot the animal in the gut or the butt. In fact, that will just cause suffering and possibly a lot of trouble. Indeed, It may be the cause of your death.
    Daga Boy
     

  19. spoonieduck

    spoonieduck AH Senior Member

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    I load the 416 Weatherby with an intermediate load going about 2,600 at the muzzle which is almost 200 fps faster than the 416 Remington. It is accurate but the recoil will loosen teeth so I should modify the above. The 416 Weatherby is highly accurate IF you can stand it. I've had a couple of retinal problems and I wouldn't be surprised if that Weatherby was a factor. It also has another negative. At the time I bought it, Weatherby wouldn't sell it without a muzzle break which may cut the recoil slightly….but…you need to be extremely cautious that there's nobody standing where they might receive the sideways muzzle blast.

    I love to experiment, so I asked myself how the recoil of a 10 gauge magnum shotgun compared with the 416 weatherby if you take it to a RIFLE range. That is to say, what is the recoil of a 10 gauge magnum shotgun like if you sit at the bench, aim it carefully and s q u e e z e it off. Well, old 10 gauge is a whopper but still doesn't compared to Mr. Weatherby's 416.

    The 416 Weatherby wound [solid] on that gut shot bull elephant I mentioned was an EXIT wound. The bullet shot through a clump of thick bamboo and completely thru the elephant. The entrance would have been higher and further forward on the opposite side. My guess is that it caught the liver or spleen and the animal bled out.

    I certainly believe in 'using enough gun' and, in case an animal does run off and needs tracking, I much prefer a weapon that will shoot clean thru the beast leaving a bleeding exit wound. I have used the 300 Winchester, loaded with 180 Nosler partitions a lot and have been well-satisfied although the bullet is usually mushroomed up under the far side skin in an intermediate size animal [no exit wound]. So I've experimented with the Barnes TSX in several calibers. I get more exit wounds but you get 'nuthin' for nuthin'. It only mushrooms up [cloverleafs] to about 60% of the comparable Nosler partition.

    Another weapon and bullet I've experimented extensively with are the 220 Swift loaded with a 45 grain Barnes solid. This is no giraffe rifle, obviously, but what a zinger! I mostly shoot feral hogs with it. I don't shoot them in the head but in the chest from various angles. I've shot maybe 25 hogs with it now and all have gone down as if poleaxed. The largest I've shot was a 300 pounder, as big as they get out here. If shot broadside, the tiny bullet shoots clean thru even if it hits major bone. The bullet doesn't seem to tumble. I've shot a few deer with it including one major buck. No deer have escaped. I also shot a mountain lion that happened to sneak some deer I was watching. He was going almost straight away. I shot him in the rear abdomen and the bullet came out under his chin.
     

  20. gordon kings langley

    gordon kings langley AH Senior Member

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    I got mine with. Tikka t3 30-06 with a nosler partition 200 gn
     

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