What is it like owning a game ranch in South Africa?

Discussion in 'Hunting Africa' started by Bsums, Nov 15, 2014.

  1. Bsums

    Bsums AH Enthusiast

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    Myself and I'm surely many others have wondered the same thing, what is it like owning a game ranch in SA? This is a question to anyone on here that does. Expenses, regulations, requirements to own, benefits, profits, etc of owning a hunting property? I've looked at some of the online listings and it genuinely interests me.
     

  2. gizmo

    gizmo AH ENABLER SPONSOR Since 2015 AH Ambassador

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    Thats a good question, after the post the other day about property for sale in SA it peaked my interest. The more I began to look the more I realized with the exchange rate, property in SA is very reasonable. I would be interested in knowing the same information.
     

  3. ScottG

    ScottG AH Fanatic

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    I'd say it's like being an independent farmer here in the states. Lots more work than pay making just enough to get by but do it because you love it and wouldn't change it for anything.
     

  4. gizmo

    gizmo AH ENABLER SPONSOR Since 2015 AH Ambassador

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    I will agree with that at least from the stand point here in the US lol, just about the time you start making headway a early or late freeze, drought, flood, or significant drop in crops or cows knocks ya back down to square one. Lord, I cant remember the last time I had a decent wheat crop!
     
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  5. Bsums

    Bsums AH Enthusiast

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    Don't forget the little things like when you tell someone to turn on the ditch water and they don't turn on the ditch water. when the cattle break down a fence, or get into winter wheat before its cold, broken pumps, broken pivots, etc haha.
     
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  6. gizmo

    gizmo AH ENABLER SPONSOR Since 2015 AH Ambassador

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    Right, or when you finally got the rain you've been waiting for that will make the concrete in the fields somewhat plowable. Then the tractor breaks down and is down for two weeks. Happened to me twice in the last two years. It takes a good sense of humor to not loose your mind!
     
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  7. Bsums

    Bsums AH Enthusiast

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    Nothings worse then broken machinery. Besides trespassers, thieves, and poachers. Unfortunately we've encountered all three of those. Just gotta think about the upcoming Africa hunts!
     

  8. TokkieM

    TokkieM AH Fanatic

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    I speak from experiance and I can tell you if you think cattle or crop farming is expensive and hard, game farming is double so. It all depends on the location,area and infrastructure that is in place. This will again determine what size property you will need to make it work. 2000HA in one area is the same as 6000HA in another as far as carrying capacity goes. No matter what anyone tells you, you will need a specialist to deteemine the optimal amount and split between browsers and grasers. Up keep on fences vechiles and other equipment can cost a pretty penny monthly, so does fuel to run hunting rigs and work rigs. Labour in Africa is cheap, but you get what you pay for and dont expect a lot of common sense or loyalty, we had several staff locked up for theft and poaching. If you are buying a running operation with a good reputation and a list of clients then you kind of have a good start, but nothing stops the seller from poaching back his clients. There are many investors who have found out the hard way that a game farm can swallow money hand over fist, unfortunately most of them did run the operation themselves and that hurt them badly. There are others who made it good, but in general it takes years and years to turn a profit. You will find many hunting operators run a second business to make a living. I eventualy realised its way,way cheaper to hunt on someone elses property,pay and start planning another hunt without much worry
     

  9. Bsums

    Bsums AH Enthusiast

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    I think I will be passing on purchasing property haha. Unless of course these powerball tickets I've got are winners.
     
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  10. RickP

    RickP AH Veteran

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    There was/is a beautiful property that was/is available for sale in the Eastern Cape that I would have jumped on in a second if I had the cash. It has a large expanse of diverse terrain, many housing units, a lake and lots of game. Absolutely gorgeous. I would have allowed a PH buddy to add some browsing animals such as wildebeest to the unit plus some buffalo to add a bit of "spice". Plus there was a limited number of "locals" on the property so that they could not stake claim to the location.
     

  11. bassasdaindia

    bassasdaindia AH Elite

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    living here I can tell you that I have friends who own farms that I hunt on here regularly and in my opinion you would need the following :

    • minimum of 3000ha
    • good farm manager that can be trusted and who can take care of the maintenance on a daily basis
    • preferably a South African partner who has similar objectives as you
    • you would need to market the farm to both local hunters as well as the US market, the local hunters contribute a lot to the daily running expenses of the farm
    • I would never look at a farm on a main road or one without water.
     
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  12. JasonB

    JasonB AH Member

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    As some of you might have read on this forum already, we are in the process of selling Kanana. The farm for sale is 28000Ha (67 200 Acres), property is located in the Ghanzi region of Botswana, has great infrastructure, excellent game numbers and superb trophy quality.

    If there are any serious interested parties out there then please email me and I will give you all the particulars. It would be a great investment for a single owner or a consortium of investors.

    Kind regards
    Jason
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 24, 2014

  13. CAustin

    CAustin AH ENABLER BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Ambassador

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    Wel owning a game ranch in SA would be a dream come true for me. However, as I have mentioned on other threads my last name isn't Gates or Buffet, so unless the wife wins the lottery it's not going to happen for me!
     
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  14. JustinC

    JustinC AH Fanatic

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    Hi Guys,

    For anybody who might be interested...

    A friend of mine deals in fractional ownership of properties, mainly golf estates, Private game lodges within major national parks and Island properties.

    He has a whole host of properties and has recently developed a farming product that would be perfect for foreign owners.

    Please feel free to contact me for more information.

    Regards
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 25, 2014

  15. Patrick R

    Patrick R AH Fanatic

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    Depending the area where you buy will determin the farm size. 3000ha in the Limpopo /NW bush is big. The majority of farms is in the region of 600ha-1500ha. Kalahari / Karoo and EC is a different story...

    Water is always a factor to look for, no farms and animals can survive without it.

    Marketing shouldn't be ONLY for the US, but for all foreigners...Local hunters will bring you a cashflow for 'day to day' expenses and harvesting of excess amount of animals for the biltong markets. Don't think if you have a farm that you going to be the biggest Outfitter in RSA - it take years to build up clientele
     

  16. spike.t

    spike.t AH ENABLER SPONSOR Since 2013 AH Ambassador

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    jeez sounds just like africa ........well maybe when multiplied a few times :(
     

  17. Sable123

    Sable123 AH Veteran

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    I should be able to answer this question in exactly 12 months!(y)
     
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  18. Petrus Geldenhuys

    Petrus Geldenhuys AH Enthusiast

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    there are allot of opportunities for foreign investors to invest in breeding of exclusive game and then on the other side to invest in hunting farms. One of my very good friend do both of these and they are very successful here in South Africa. If it is truly your dream to have a farm in SA i suggest you spend a bit of time here firs to see how things operate here and how to work with our labourers with very limited skills.

    I think if you are really a hands on kind of guy that doesn't mind getting your hands dirty and has a passion for nature and hunting you will surely make a success of it here in SA

    We have allot of associations that share information so you would have enough local knowledge around to help you with any of your needs

    I am on the other side of this story......As a South African who has spent most his life outdoors and hunting, i would like to get into the exotic game breeding (Sable) but my current cashflow does not allow this so a investor would help me tremendously and i will surely make it work for him.
     

  19. spike.t

    spike.t AH ENABLER SPONSOR Since 2013 AH Ambassador

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    petrus you figure how to get 30 of my sable into sa and we can buy what we want!! ;) but the only thing to do not to go loopy when i see the prices of sable at auctions in sa is to :ROFLMAO::D
     

  20. Petrus Geldenhuys

    Petrus Geldenhuys AH Enthusiast

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    look if i could get 30 pure Zambian Sable in SA i would smile all the way. Let me find out what the legal way is of bringing them in and what the other ways are....(n)
    There are many farms in SA with Zambian blood on their farms so they had to get them in some way or another.

    So if i can get it done where would i load them? and what would you expect out of the deal?
     

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