Long distance shooting has become the new way of hunting to many hunters who want to test out their new rifle and scope and see how far their firearm can shoot, this new age of hunting has lost what it means to be outdoors and to be a true ethical hunter. We do not condone this way of hunting but Stalking game close can be the biggest thrill of the hunt, so why deny yourself?
Here are a few tips from us here at Umdende Hunting Safaris
Dress the part: Camouflage isn’t a necessity in Africa and it definitely isn’t an invisibility cloak, but blending in with the habitat beats standing out like a highway billboard.
Plan your approach: Your PH will discuss the approach once you’ve located the species and Trophy you are hunting. You might find that you had to backtrack a mile to get behind a ridge, or you might have leopard-crawled behind a series of rocks and shrubs. This takes time and a fair amount of walking may be involved.
Use your binoculars: Game has a way of disappearing as you reach new ground. They may be hidden behind a rise or a bush, possibly moved or lain down especially if the weather is hot. Look for additional animals in the same area, many rams get alerted by a doe that has been spooked by you.
Work the wind: The first thing we do when leaving the vehicle is check the wind. Scent will always give you away first, especially if you are close to the animal and pay attention to moving grasses, leaves, and branches. You don’t necessarily have to hunt directly into the wind, you can also work with crosswinds. Remember cold breezes hug the ground and hot air rises, so if you are hunting early morning remember your scent will be blown along the ground and if you are hunting in the heat, your scent will move quicker over hills, spooking the animals more frequently. Our motto – “Don’t start a stalk if the wind isn’t in your favor.”
Don’t try too hard to disappear: Take advantage of every dip in the African landscape, but remember that showing a piece of yourself won’t ruin the hunt. Animals are used to seeing glimpses of other animals such as Rabbits, Warthogs, Jackal and other antelope. To a small degree you can usually expose yourself in the open without blowing a stalk, as long as you take additional measures like going slowly and watching the herd.
Go slow: Watch your target and the herd, watch their head and eyes. Make sure you are watching their body movements, this can sometimes be your first clue that they know something is happening, and then pause when they look up or give their alert signals. Your PH and tracker will guide you in this.
Go quickly: This doesn’t contradict the previous tip if you move quickly when it’s safe to do so. The longer your stalk, the better the odds that you will get the Trophy of your dreams. When you’re out of the animal’s sight, jog, run, or crawl rapidly. The quicker you cover the easy ground, the more time you’ll have to go slowly when you must.
In position: Once you are in position and your PH has set up the shooting sticks, remember to move with quick calm actions. Once on the sticks, steady yourself, breathe, often animals are wounded due to the hunter wanting to shoot as quickly as possible before the animal moves. If the animal has not seen you, stay calm and collected and listen to your PH.
Remember True Hunting is about the journey and the memories you make, not necessarily the outcome!
We Make your Wildest dreams come true