Read this Elephant Charge

BRICKBURN

Super moderator
Contributor
Lifetime titanium benefactor
AH ambassador
Joined
Aug 5, 2010
Messages
22,814
Reaction score
16,564
Location
Canada
Media
412
Articles
23
Hunting reports
Africa
8
USA/Canada
2
Europe
1
Hunted
Namibia, South Africa, Botswana, Mozambique, Canada, USA, Mexico, England
I saw this image in the 500 J thread. @colorado posted it.

Skipping the running option. Not a good idea with any DG.

(I'll thank Buzz C and Ivan C for the education on Elephant behaviour.)

I thought I'd toss a question out for discussion.

Given the behaviour of the Elephant in the photo: Do you need to shoot?




a2jCqRV.jpg
 

PHOENIX PHIL

AH ambassador
Joined
Apr 15, 2009
Messages
9,125
Reaction score
7,342
Media
53
Articles
2
Hunting reports
Africa
8
USA/Canada
2
Member of
SCI
Hunted
USA, S. Africa
I'll take a swag and say no. Seems I've read that with the ears out like that the ele is trying to look fierce and scare off his agitator, that he's not in a full on charge, but a bluff charge. It also looks like adding to this is he's kicking up sand with his left front foot, not something he'd do if he was intending on completely closing the distance.

So I don't think I'd need to shoot, but I'm quite certain if I survived this I'd need to change my shorts. In the end there's a reason why I don't have a PH license
 

Red Leg

Lifetime bronze benefactor
AH ambassador
Joined
May 19, 2009
Messages
5,666
Reaction score
14,612
Location
Texas Hill Country
Media
261
Articles
5
Hunting reports
Africa
2
USA/Canada
3
Mex/S.Amer
1
Europe
3
Member of
SCI DSC life memberships / NRA Patron Life
Hunted
Mexico, Namibia, RSA, Germany, Austria, Argentina, Canada, Mozambique, Spain, US (15 states)
Hard to tell from a still, but I agree that he seems to be still kicking dust - though the trunk is tucked. He hasn't started a charge - yet.

But I haven't been around nearly enough agitated bulls (thank God) to have an informed opinion.
 

IvW

AH legend
Joined
Dec 20, 2016
Messages
2,813
Reaction score
5,179
Location
South Africa
Media
61
Articles
3
Hunting reports
Africa
1
Member of
BASA, CHASA
Hunted
South Africa, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Botswana, Namibia,Zambia



If the distance is ten yards or less yes.

In this case it does not appear to be close enough yet...
Although the trunk is curled up the bull is in process of of stopping or so it appears and kicking up dust, the other pointer to take note of is that he has not cocked or tucked his head in yet it is still held up.

You will know it is a mock charge when he stops if not shoot..

Many elephant do not in fact tuck their ears flat to the head when charging for real....many keep them out all the way through the charge even if it is for real.
 

Foxi

AH elite
Joined
Jul 31, 2012
Messages
1,584
Reaction score
2,629
Location
Germany
Media
176
Articles
7
Hunting reports
Africa
4
Europe
1
Hunted
Canada, USA,Austria,Turkey,Tschech Rep.,Poland,Hungary,Serbia,Denmark,Khomas HL and Omaheke/Namibia and England(England is wonderful) Romania,Luangwa/Zambia-,Gwayi/Zimbabwe/- + Save/Zimbabwe/- River. Horseback-tours in South Africa and Botswana.
Brick,
a famous picture of the South African Tourist Board from ancient times,this mockcharge.
I know two hunters - I am vouching for them - who have shot about 700 elephants.
All with the .375 H+H and cheap South African PMP ammunition (because in Zimb. nothing else was available).
They have never heard of a Schüler in their lives,but all done with PMP
 
Last edited:

Hank2211

Gold supporter
AH legend
Joined
Jan 12, 2010
Messages
2,863
Reaction score
6,324
Media
141
Articles
3
Hunting reports
Africa
10
Member of
SCI, DU, Pheasants Forever
Hunted
Canada, United States, Zimbabwe, South Africa (Eastern Cape; Northern Cape; North West Province, Natal, Mpumalanga, Limpopo), Namibia, Cameroon, Benin, Ethiopia, Argentina
I'd have said no - when an elephant means business, I think his ears are generally pinned back (although that's not infallible) and he's not kicking up dust. He's just coming. I've been mocked charged (thank God my PH said "don't move"!) and it looked sort of like this. Certainly the kicking of dust is consistent with an attempt to intimidate rather than a charge.

Having said that, the only way to stay alive is to set a "line in the sand" which if he crosses, you will shoot, regardless of what his intention are. How far that line is depends on how confident you are in your ability to brain a charging elephant.

So how far is this elephant from me?!
 
Last edited:

K-man

AH elite
Joined
Apr 14, 2013
Messages
1,709
Reaction score
2,858
Media
51
Articles
1
Hunting reports
Africa
2
USA/Canada
3
Hunted
Spain, Alaska, RSA, Zimbabwe, New Zealand, British Columbia, Oklahoma, Texas, Kansas, Utah, Colorado, New Mexico, Wyoming
Well!
My experience is with 3 charges, 2 mock and one determined....
So I don't have nearly enough experience as some here. One of the "mock" charges the P.H. shouted him down but had me off to the side protecting the rest of the group (trackers, his son and the panicked Zim Parks scout. (we disarmed the scout for the duration of the hunt)
The other "mock" charge was just more curiosity than a charge, easy to spot even for me.
The full on charge was easy to spot as well, because the cow chased the cruiser over a mile with 2 stops and was full speed the whole time. Did not end well for the cow.
With only a still, it's really hard to tell, but I am leaning toward not shooting but be ready and stand your ground.
I think it's a bit like the saying about pornography, I can't define it but I know it when I see it....
 

BeeMaa

AH legend
Joined
Jun 11, 2017
Messages
2,351
Reaction score
3,403
Location
Eastern US
Media
82
Hunting reports
Africa
1
Member of
NRA Life Member, SCI
Hunted
Eastern US & RSA
This is where a PH earns the big bucks.
Making life and death decisions for both the hunting party and the Elephant.
My hat is off to you and the experience you have earned.
Cheers and stay safe.
 

Tokoloshe Safaris

Sponsor
Since 2017
AH fanatic
Joined
Apr 8, 2016
Messages
681
Reaction score
1,018
Location
Milibizi, Zimbabwe
Website
www.tokoloshesafaris.com
Media
74
Articles
1
Member of
Life Member Safari International
Hunted
Zimbabwe, South Africa, Tanzania
From the picture I would say not yet, but my finger would sure as hell be on the trigger and god only knows where my tracker would be! Seriously if he outside of 5 paces and you have no permit you are going to have to wait a little longer. Hence the .500 Jefferies!
 
Last edited by a moderator:

BRICKBURN

Super moderator
Contributor
Lifetime titanium benefactor
AH ambassador
Joined
Aug 5, 2010
Messages
22,814
Reaction score
16,564
Location
Canada
Media
412
Articles
23
Hunting reports
Africa
8
USA/Canada
2
Europe
1
Hunted
Namibia, South Africa, Botswana, Mozambique, Canada, USA, Mexico, England
It was that front right leg being locked and the left kicking up the dust that had me “categorizing” this as a bluff. No idea of the distance of course.

Like the guys who have been there, I’d sure be getting ready.

You learn just how puny you are when these guys are close and you’re on your own two feet. The few I have seen up close had a very specific safety line. Pass it and they started to come.

Keep the replies coming.
 

Foxi

AH elite
Joined
Jul 31, 2012
Messages
1,584
Reaction score
2,629
Location
Germany
Media
176
Articles
7
Hunting reports
Africa
4
Europe
1
Hunted
Canada, USA,Austria,Turkey,Tschech Rep.,Poland,Hungary,Serbia,Denmark,Khomas HL and Omaheke/Namibia and England(England is wonderful) Romania,Luangwa/Zambia-,Gwayi/Zimbabwe/- + Save/Zimbabwe/- River. Horseback-tours in South Africa and Botswana.

At about 0:55 with Ivan is some cool footage. He’s way calmer than his clients haha. (Makes sense)


I like Ivan Carter , but in the circles of colleagues, he is often criticized for daring too much .
"We have to secure our clients, not to test wildlife" so a PH to me.
When I see his spectacular scenes, I often think to myself - he is not getting old.

@ K-man
"I think it's a bit like the saying about pornography, I can't define it but I know it when I see it...."
Remarkable comparison ;)
 
Last edited:

John Telford

AH veteran
Joined
Apr 25, 2020
Messages
178
Reaction score
254
Location
Pretoria/Maun/Sacramento
Media
9
Member of
Phasa ,SA Wingshooters, Botswana Tourism (HATAB), Pretoria Arms and Ammunition Association PAAA.
Hunted
South Africa , Botswana,
Looks like this jumbo is busy putting the brakes on! Head is dipping before coming to a halt where after they lift the head and trunk to eye ball you! Very intimidating Indeed! So I would say mock charge as the ears are still out and the trunk not curled up for impact...
 

Mort Hill

Gold supporter
AH elite
Joined
Jun 4, 2017
Messages
1,037
Reaction score
1,617
Location
Brentwood, TN
Media
76
Hunting reports
Africa
1
Member of
Life Member SCI, Director-Music City SCI Chapter, NWTF, NRA
Hunted
SA, Zambia, Tanzania
Well, my 2 cents. I would hope the PH and I had been watching the bull, and he given me the go or no go based on ivory, age, can do better, all the stuff you discuss before moving in close. At this point, if he was determined a shooter, I am cutting lose. If we had determined to pass, I am ready as said before but probably praying at this point and trusting the PH. Having not been in this particular situation, but having hunted elephant on three occasions, with success on my second trip, I am certain the pucker hole would be pin tight regardless. Great question.
 
 

 

 

Latest posts

Latest profile posts

Just came from a hunt and already longing for the bush
JPmbogo wrote on yhc's profile.
I have factory loaded Hornady 450 NE 3 1/4 DGS that I am selling for not much more than the brass itself at $75/box - see my listing for same.
Justbryan wrote on Rafter JK's profile.
Get Crazy Larry yet? Wishing I had shot Alpine Ibex too!
laurence burkin wrote on UKHunter's profile.
Hi the dude in the picture. It would be cool to know the area (genetics) of the stag you have in your profile picture. I am from New Zealand and shot a stag here that is almost identical, especially the throw backs. I can send you a photo to prove I'm genuine with my enquiry.
 
Top