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» Trad » Main Forums » The Dark Continent » African Lion with BW recurve (Page 4)

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Author Topic: African Lion with BW recurve
Contributor 2013
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First, I am very impressed with your bowhunting achievements. Congratulations on the lion. I have spent a lot of time in Africa and know that the difficulty and danger are very real.

Second, while I have hunted in African hunting concessions that were millions of acres, sometimes surrounded by millions more acres, none of which was fenced even between concessions, there is nothing small about a 5000 acre enclosure. That is about 8 square miles. A lot of hunters could not walk the perimeter of that area in a full day. It is a big area for a lion to roam around in and is as big as most whitetails' home territories.

Third, although anti-hunters may use the high fenced hunting as an argument to ban hunting, much of the hunting in parts of the U.S. is under those conditions, especially in such places as Texas. It is a reality of life, and the fact that such a place gave you the only opportunity to take a lion is certainly not your fault. There are many places, like islands, that present practical barriers to wildlife too, but we hunt those places regularly. I do not personally choose to hunt high fenced areas, but if that were my only choice to hunt a species that was important to me, and if the area was big enough and managed well enough to present a fair chase, I would definitely hunt there. Your hunt seems to have presented all those factors. In fact, hunting in areas where the game has been exposed to humans is often far more difficult than wide open hunting where the animals rarely see a human and can be approached fairly easily for a shot.

In summary, I am fine with your hunting ethic and applaud your determination to collect the "Big 5" with traditional equipment. In saying this, I do not have a problem with others expressing their concerns about the conditions under which we hunt or their concerns about anti-hunting people who would use our hunting methods against us. The concerns expressed here are a little ironic on this website, however, because anti-hunting groups often point to bowhunters (and especially trad bow hunters) as being the least ethical of any hunters since we use the most primitive equipment and have a relatively high non-lethal wound rate. Even though we don't like to admit it, trad bowhunters wound or miss animals at a significant rate. This can be confirmed just by reading the hunting stories here on TradGang. Certainly there were quite a few wounding shots and many misses at the Solana Ranch hunt that a number of TradGangers went on a few weeks ago. Such an outcome is not unusual in my experience over the years. I expect Ray sees a lot of that too. I know that a miss doesn't hurt anything, and animals often heal up fine after a non-lethal hit, but such things provide as much ammunition for anti-hunting groups as hunting in 5000 acre tracts. I wish we all had access to millions of acres of open hunting for all the species we hunt, but we don't. Life is full of compromises. I do understand completely the concerns by Ray and others of the slippery slope that we are on.

Buff, I hope I could get you to let me see the video of the hunt. I know it was exciting and very wild. African lions are no pussy cats!!!! Congratulations again.


TGMM Family of the Bow

Posts: 3231 | From: Oklahoma | Registered: Mar 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Contributor 2013
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I forgot to mention that I was on the Solana Ranch hunt and made one of the non-lethal wounding shots, so I am not holding myself out as being immune from the same limitations of our equipment as any of the other fine bowhunters that came to Solana or who post here on TradGang. Missing and wounding game is an unpleasant fact of life when hunting with any weapon. (I see it happen with firearms too.) We just make things more challenging by using very primitive equipment.


TGMM Family of the Bow

Posts: 3231 | From: Oklahoma | Registered: Mar 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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The most of those SA lions in farms are raised in a small fenced area (and basically hand fed) and then released for a client to shoot it. The new law proposes that lions need to be released at least two years before being hunted. In two years lions will kill a lot of expensive animals.
Posts: 27 | From: finland | Registered: Feb 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Ray Hammond
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Hunt It,

I'm going to have to apologize because I've heard that argument about "we all have to stick together" before, and I don't agree with it.

If someone is doing something that I KNOW is going to at some point infringe on or eliminate what I love to do, I'm going to speak out against it now, rather than later.

I see people who wax eloquently about how they do things the right way, but then there's that so and so neighbor of mine who jacklights deer, kills over the limit, keeps 20 bass every time he goes fishing.....

and they never say or do anything about it. They don't say anythign to him, and they don't call the law. And they see the guy bringing his kids up to do it the same way...and we typically don't do anythign about it.

This isn't so much a question of ethics as it is more a question of right or wrong.

It's WRONG to call killing animals inside an enclosure hunting, because its not. But the media will do it every time..and paint YOU AND ME with the same brush they paint the perps. Its the same thing that happens when some kid takes a bow and shoots a horse in the butt with an arrow- they call him a "hunter". Is he? Not in my book.

I'm not sitting idly by and waiting for "them" to ask me to explain the subtle difference- because that's what it will appear to be when they come for my bow- a subtle distinction that won't mean a hill of beans to the lawmakers.

It's a lot like trying to explain the difference between a crossbow and a longbow- people who don't use them don't SEE IT. They both shoot an arrow, don't they??? That's how they got crossbows in archery season in GA.

And if we keep allowing fenced enclosure hunting it's an explanation we'll have to try to make- and it will be too late then.

I certainly respect your right to feel as you do- but I also need to tell you I think you're wrong.

“Courageous, untroubled, mocking and violent-that is what Wisdom wants us to be. Wisdom is a woman, and loves only a warrior.” - Friedrich Nietzsche

Posts: 8812 | From: Buford GA | Registered: Apr 2003  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Contributor 2015
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Buff, maybe you should've swum to SA instead of flying in a plane or maybe eaten grub worms for breakfast instead of cereal.

Man, some of you guys are brutal. I think hunting is about having fun. Buff, I applaud you for "being a big kid playing in the woods." I enjoyed your story and your pictures. I'd love to see the video, too.

Thanks for being big enough to post this, even though it was evident you'd catch some heat.

P.S. 5000 acres is big enough that there's no guarantee of even seeing a lion....especially in rough terrain.

Posts: 3642 | From: Dallas, Texas | Registered: Sep 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Ray Hammond
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What does how he arrived in SA or what he eats have to do with whether he hunted inside an enclosure or not?

Hunting, with a bow, is SUPPOSED to be about doing it with self-imposed limitations- fun, yes, but when we pick up a bow, then alter the rules like whether the game can escape or not, isn't that somewhat the same as trying to change your bow into a firearm?

I didn't start posting about this as a way to insult Buff...he and I are communicating privately.

There's a lot of people on this site reading this material who don't have a clue about Africa, or hunting in enclosures.

If one side, the "FUN" side is presented, and no one provides a foil to that, explaining the opposing view, are we doing anyone a real service? I don't like hijacking threads, but this is some serious stuff.

It isn't just affecting the hunter- this sort of thing plays into the future of our sport.

You don't think it does? Just keep your eye on the ball....wait and see.

“Courageous, untroubled, mocking and violent-that is what Wisdom wants us to be. Wisdom is a woman, and loves only a warrior.” - Friedrich Nietzsche

Posts: 8812 | From: Buford GA | Registered: Apr 2003  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Contributor 2015
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Ray, it's difficult to communicate effectively over the internet so let's just agree to disagree. I don't think you're totally off base, and my post wasn't meant to call you out specifically.

Anyway, no harm done...I wasn't trying to be rude, and I don't think you were either. I certainly don't want to hijack the thread. Carry on.

Posts: 3642 | From: Dallas, Texas | Registered: Sep 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Mark U
Trad Bowhunter
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TxAg, the "fun" is about to leave SA, as far as lions go. As DG2 mentioned, hunts for SA lions are for released cats that have been raised to be killed by paying shooters. When I was over there last August, there was a bemoaning of the fact that all these lions were being raised for no future purpose, and the "final solution" was to kill them and go do something else.

The guys in Namibia were starting to worry about the SA PH's invading Namibia to continue the process. I think they are a little ahead of the curve, though, because they banned leopard hunting with hounds, and because of empirical evidence, they may ban bowhunting for leopards in the near future.

Here in Idaho we have "Elk Farms". That would be "Estate Elk" for the SCI crowd. Get the money, then let the elk out of the horse trailer into the big pen if the shooter has a gun, into the long narrow pen if he/she has a bow. Might take an hour, but the bar is open back at the lodge. Video and pictures will be added to the tab.

Buff, sure wished you could have worked out a hunt for a lion in the wild. So be the political realm we live in.

So don't wait until you retire to go hunting and fishing. Don't even wait for your annual vacation. Go at every opportunity. Things that appear urgent at the moment may, in the long run, turn out to be far less so.

Ted Trueblood

Posts: 436 | From: Idaho Falls, Idaho | Registered: Nov 2003  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Trad Bowhunter
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Hi Everyone,

Buff, weldone on your lion hunt. I hope everyone realises what an accomplishment this really was!

I found this a very interesting thread. I live in England now; but am from South Africa. I used to be a ranger and have also researched game farming intensively, as it is my dream to own a ranch big enough to hold the Big5. I have never bow hunted before, not for the lack of wanting to do so, but it's illegal to do so in the UK.

I would like to add my 2cents worth into this topic, as I feel people need to look at this from both sides of the fence, and hopefully my OPINION will reflect this.

First off, I think lion hunting should be allowed. If there was no lion hunting, then lions would be shot out in africa, except in National reserves, as private owners want something that brings in money. Lions would just eat the plains game, and reduce income, thus they would be deemed pests and shot. Lions are already in serious danger of dying out very quickly in Africa, as populations are so spread out with fences between them, that inbreeding is a serious problem, with imune systems being less able to fight off diseases. (HluHluwe Umfolozi +-100,000a, is an example, the lions are being born with allsorts of deformaties and dying of diseases that normally wouldn't effect lions). How you get around this, is swopping lions between reserves, and culling the sick/old ones, bringing in revenue. Which brings me back to just above with farmers killing lions as pests. Now if they had an incentive to keep lions, then they could swop them out and keep the populations healthy and the genes more diverse.

However, 5000a is about 2500hec (we work in hectares out there) and stocking a ranch with animals is all about LSU's (Large Stocking Units). Each species (HERBIVORE) is given a LSU (Zebra 0.5LSU dont quote me) and you can stock your farm according to its LSU capacity. So 100LSU stocking capacity means you can have say 200 zebras. From there they (Nature Conservation) see how many LSU's a carnivore would eat in a year, with a few more calculations and tell you if you can stock lions or cheetahs (I left leopards out, as they don't respect boundry fences). Now a farm in the Kalahari of say a certain size will have a lower LSU than a farm in Mpumulanga of the same size, due to rainfall and vegetation type. So working out whether a farm is big enough for a type of animal is more than how big the parimeter fence is and whether you can walk around it in a day or not. I am pretty certain that this farm that Buff hunted on would not pass Nature Conservations standards in size to keep lions free roaming (got total roam of the farm) on a permanent basis. This however wouldn't stop the outfitter from buying a lion a few weeks before the hunt, and letting it roam over the farm. This is what I suspect happened. It is not illegal to do this in South Africa, but soon will be. Where the lion came from, is a different question. I have visited a Lion breeding farm, where lions are sold off for hunting or to europe/asia/america as pets in private zoo collections. However, this lioness could've been acquired from a huge reserve where she was sold off due to age ect...

The nature of lions is such, that when you walk up to them they will not run like antelope do. I have got pretty close (10-15m) to lions without knowing that they were there. They then gave me a warning, and as a last resort ran. 9 out 10 times a lion wont attack until it is injured or seriously threatened! When they are shot, they normally head for the nearest thicket and lie up, as lions seldom run very far, 150-200m max, even when they are hunting prey, as they are very large and expend loads of energy doing so. So whether this was a 500a, 5000a or 50000a ranch, the lion would act in the same way.

So not to take away from Buff his accomplishment of standing 'toe-toe' with a lion and sorry Buff if this post seems to do so. This lion wasn't chained up and could've charged at any point in time. Lions cover a gap of 100 yards in about 3 1/2 seconds, so 40 yards barely gives enough time to even think of a shot!

Was this a canned lion hunt? You decide! Would the lion be bought specifically for a hunt? Yes! All lions shot in South Africa on a private outfitters ranch would be bought for the hunt! South Africa is pretty fenced in place and lions don't roam around free anymore! Leopards are a different story though.......

Thanks Pete

'Impi! wo 'nans' impi iyeza
Obani bengathinta amabhubesi?'

Posts: 278 | From: South Africa Baby!!!! | Registered: Aug 2009  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Trad Bowhunter
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Thanks for sharing your hunt with us!
Posts: 131 | From: Georgia | Registered: Mar 2009  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Contributor 2014
Member # 10254

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I have no problem with what you did. Sounds dangerous enough to me. I enjoyed the story, and the pics. I enjoy your website as well. Wish i had the oppurtunities you have!! I look forward to more of them. My only question is why is this thread allowed on Tradgang? I thought the rules were no threads allowed for animals killed in an enclosure no matter what the size?

Lu 11:21 When a strong man armed keepeth his palace, his goods are in peace:

Posts: 732 | From: ny | Registered: Sep 2006  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Terry Green
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Originally posted by maxfit:
I thought the rules were no threads allowed for animals killed in an enclosure no matter what the size?

Can you show me where it says that in the rules please? Thanks.

"An anchor point is not a destination, it's an evolution to execution" - Me

"It's important, when going after a goal, to never lose sight of the integrity of the journey" - Andy Garcia

Black Powder Gang ......... &

Posts: 30671 | From: GAWGIA | Registered: Mar 2003  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Contributor 2007
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When I was in Africa in 2005 I saw first hand how fast a wounded lepard can cover ground (ureal blink of the eye stuff)and the fences I saw were certainly not animal proof! Amazing accomplishment (congratulations!)and thankyou for sharing, please post the video if you can get it worked out! Joseph

"Politicians are like diapers, they need to be changed often and for the same reason"

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Danny Rowan
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never mind

"When shooting instinctivly,it matters not which eye is dominant"

Jay Kidwell and Glenn St. Charles

TGMM Family Of The Bow
NRA Life/Patron member
NAHC life member
Retired CPO US Navy 1972-1993
Retired USCBP Supervisory Officer 1999-2017

Posts: 7889 | From: Guam | Registered: Jul 2003  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Trad Bowhunter
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I live on about 3000 acres currently and I can tell you, that alone leaves WELL enough ground for the animal to have a very sporting chance of getting away. 2000 extra acres would even increase the area for the lion to roam around in. To me, it's a fair chase hunt if the animal has every opportunity to escape, or perhaps charge in this case, and 5000 acres should give the lion well enough room to do either without any problem at all.


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