There are many reasons to go bushbuck hunting – some hunt them for the trophy value offered by their spiraling horns, others for their beautiful and widely-varied coats, and others for the thrill of hunting a dangerous quarry. If you’re interested in pursuing medium-sized antelope, the bushbuck should be on the top of your list.
Author with his first Bushbuck harvested in Kwa-Zulu Natal
Bushbucks are some of the most common antelope in Africa and can be found in virtually every country south of the Sahara. They consist of two distinct species (the widely-distributed imbabala and the lesser-known kéwel) and more than half a dozen subspecies. Global Sporting Safaris is proud to represent outfitters who offer bushbuck hunting for a variety of subspecies in several countries.
Most subspecies are distinguished by their unique coloration, and they can be yellow, red, brown, greyish, black, and anything in between. Many have white bands across the throat and chest, and they are frequently decorated with white markings, stripes, and spots. Some also have distinctive dark markings as well.
The bushbuck is the smallest spiral-horned antelope species. Its weight and size varies from one subspecies to the next, but it’s not unreasonable to expect a mature bull to weigh 110 pounds or more. Most stand between 28 and 36 inches at the shoulder.
Only males carry horns, which can grow anywhere from 10 to 20 inches and usually form a single complete twist. 12 inches is considered a respectable trophy size; 13½ inches is good, and more than 14 inches is excellent.
Bushbuck hunting is much like hunting whitetail deer, and is usually done with careful stalking or still hunting techniques. It’s quite likely that you’ll need to take your shot in thick cover, so it’s best to use rounds with good penetration—and to be prepared for a close-range encounter. A .270 magnum or a .30 are the most highly recommended calibers for the job.
Though most bushbucks look about as threatening as Bambi at first glimpse, those spiral horns are extremely dangerous and should never be underestimated. A wounded bushbuck can react like a wounded lion, retreating into thick cover where he can hide and outmaneuver you, then charging in ambush when you get close. Our outfitters will do everything they can to keep you safe in this situation. There is a real element of danger, but it’s that very sense of risk that makes it a true African safari experience.
Call Global Sporting Safaris today at 888-850-4868, Extension 701 and let us know what type of bushbuck hunting experience you are looking for. We’ll send you information on opportunities that match your goals. Our experienced outfitters are second to none and we’re happy to share personal experiences with you.