Game farm size and fenced areas

MJ75

Well-Known Member
Following on from another thread, what do people think about the size of fenced hunting areas in Africa? I personally know a few deer stalkers who've visited to be shocked at just how much of the countries fauna lives behind fences, and this creates an impression to some that there are only 'canned hunting' opportunities out there. Some areas are large, very large, so large that they contain self sustaining populations of species exhibiting natural behaviour, including running for the hills as soon as they see humans, all ideal for true hunters.
But do you have a minimum size area that you'd prefer to use if hunting a particular species?

Do you wish some outfitters were more transparent about the size of their game farms when considering where to visit?

How do you feel about 'put and take' game farms where animals are bought to be hunted and simply replaced when shot?

Is it something you consider of great importance when deciding where to hunt, or are you not really bothered?

Does the whole concept of a fenced area either put you off or entice you to hunt in Africa?
 

scotch_egg

Well-Known Member
Puts me right off to be honest. Especially seeing programmes about animal relocation where it's clearly movement of stock for hunting in others contained reserves.
 

MJ75

Well-Known Member
Puts me right off to be honest. Especially seeing programmes about animal relocation where it's clearly movement of stock for hunting in others contained reserves.

Can you elaborate? Which programmes made those claims?
 

Frank Homes

Well-Known Member
That is why i no longer hunt in South Africa and prefer true wilderness such as Mozambique. SA has its place and would recommend it to get a feel for Africa but some ranches are too small and many areas contain non indigenous farmed animals.

Frank
 

Mungo

Well-Known Member
The mistake is to expect SA to be a big empty wilderness. It is not - it's quite densely settled and the land is (mainly) privately owned. Farmers/ranchers/game farmers quite reasonably put up fences to contain thier stock (domestic and otherwise). To expect them not to do this is as unrealistic as expecting farmers in the UK not to put fences up to keep their cattle in.

It's all about expectation management: if you expect it to be the Great African Dream, and that you will be tramping out across endless empty veldt teaming with wildlife, you will be disappointed.
 

pheasant sniper 1

Well-Known Member
Its all about the purse and expectation.

A taste of Africa if thats all you can afford in a fenced environment is better than no taste atall in this lifetime.

Its big money for big animals yet compare a reasonably priced trophy or cull package on a farm out there and if you pick the right offer you may not see a fence atall .

There's loads of stalkers on here paying good money to be taken out on small patches of permission, fences everywhere.. Its only a big deal if you want it to be...

Like everything in life the old days are gone and the credibility of any hunt is best provided by word of mouth...
 

deerwarden

Well-Known Member
The last two hunts I've done have certainly NOT put me off, the areas are huge compared to the U.K. the last 40k to the concession I go to is off a normal made up road, as we know in the U.K., then once on the farm boundary, its a 20-30 minute drive to the lodge, in 10 days I don't see headlights in the distance, any glow from the nearest small hamlet that's 25 k in the another direction, just pure pitch black darkness. The stars and nebulars are amazing at times, the evening star rises and is vived. There are historic fences, many on cliff edges to stop animals falling over, and of course boundary fences with neighbours to keep cattle in or off, the game will just go through them. If you think that hunting concessions have tame animals then you haven't been to the right places, every animal I've taken has been fair game, when the first shot is taken, you have seconds to take another B4 the area is emptied of game, all marching upwards to the heights for safety. Anything other than hard hunting is not for me, I've earned every animal that has fallen to me by guile and sheer hard work, anything less you can keep, I'm sure there is canned hunting out there for the man with money in his pocket and no balls in his trousers. I've heard about it in the U.K. and I'm aware its worldwide, where wealthy hunters fly in are shown an animal that's been kept in certain areas by feeding, he walked round a bit shown the animal shoots it, then flies home, but my hunting has all been ethical and earned the hard way. deerwarden.
 

sikamalc

Administrator
Site Staff
Where ever you hunt in South Africa these days you will nearly always find it is fenced. This is even the case in parts of Zambia and Zimbabwe as well.

Having hunted most of SA in the past, and also Botswana and Zimbabwe, I can tell you that there is a world of difference as a rule between fenced and unfenced hunting. But this also depends on the size of the fenced area. This may be a huge area, 40,000 to 100,000 acres. In these cases it is as natural hunting as one could wish for and can be good value and well run.

However we do seem to see a large amount of rack em stack em hunts as I call them, which are nothing more than shooting game inside a small area of 2000 acres or even less. These hunts are fine for those that want to drive around and see all four fences in the first day, but not for me I am afraid. It is really put and take, nothing more, some people in the past have even sold Lion and Leopard hunts on these places and they are canned hunts. This was mostly in the past and hopefully it has now been eradicated by the government and PHASA.

I know I have been lucky to have experienced many places without fences and two under canvas, but small fenced areas are NOT an Africa experience in my opinion.
 

scotch_egg

Well-Known Member
Can you elaborate? Which programmes made those claims?


Apologies but I can't recall the programme as it was a couple of years ago. They were moving heards of animals as the land owner was selling up. The animals had been bought by another "reserve" owner.
 

John Gryphon

Well-Known Member
There is a huge annual auction of animals bred solely for "game ranches" to purchase in SA and other countries.

The target species are bred to be shot for the fella that wants to collect right or wrong.....


  1. [h=3]Details Page - Four new SA records at local game auction[/h]diepos.linmedia.co.za/details/19-07...new_sa...game_auction/20126‎




    Jul 19, 2013 - Four new SA records at local game auction ... The second annualGolden Breeders Game Auction held at Castle de Wildt near Modimolle ...


  2. [h=3]Rhinos sell for 17500 pounds each at South Africa game auction[/h]www.wildlifeextra.com/go/news/rhino-price013.html‎




    May 28, 2013 - At the annual game auction in South Africa run by Ezemvelo Wildlife, the wildlife and conservation body of KwaZulu-Natal, 40 white rhinos were ...


  3. [h=3]allAfrica.com: South Africa: Game Auction - Held At Willem ...[/h]allafrica.com/stories/201304190189.html‎




    Apr 17, 2013 - South Africa: Game Auction - Held At Willem Pretorious Nature Reserve ... Environmental Affairs staged the 28th Annual Game Auction from the ...


  4. [h=3]Farmer's Weekly | Game auction trends in 2012[/h]www.farmersweekly.co.za/article.aspx?id=34535&h=Game-auction...‎




    Jan 24, 2013 - Game auction trends in 2012 ... (Hippotragus niger) is one of the most valuable game ranch species in South Africa. ... Note: Various record prices gained during 2012 contributed to the highest annual auction turnover to date.


  5. [h=3]Records shattered at Namibian game auction - Landbou.com[/h]en.landbou.com/index.php/records-shattered-at-namibian-game-auction/‎




    Jul 29, 2013 - For the first time in the history of Namibia's game industry, a buck fetched ... and impressed visitors at Africa Game Bomas' annual game auction with its strong ... In contrast to trends in South Africa, rhino achieved good prices.

 

Bushwack

Well-Known Member
Where ever you hunt in South Africa these days you will nearly always find it is fenced. This is even the case in parts of Zambia and Zimbabwe as well.

Having hunted most of SA in the past, and also Botswana and Zimbabwe, I can tell you that there is a world of difference as a rule between fenced and unfenced hunting. But this also depends on the size of the fenced area. This may be a huge area, 40,000 to 100,000 acres. In these cases it is as natural hunting as one could wish for and can be good value and well run.

However we do seem to see a large amount of rack em stack em hunts as I call them, which are nothing more than shooting game inside a small area of 2000 acres or even less. These hunts are fine for those that want to drive around and see all four fences in the first day, but not for me I am afraid. It is really put and take, nothing more, some people in the past have even sold Lion and Leopard hunts on these places and they are canned hunts. This was mostly in the past and hopefully it has now been eradicated by the government and PHASA.

I know I have been lucky to have experienced many places without fences and two under canvas, but small fenced areas are NOT an Africa experience in my opinion.

2000 acres highly dense jess is large and you can 'walk and stalk' your ass off...yes, i know of farmers that does hunt on much smaller (200 acres) property's...i don't support that either. Not a fair chase to me! I suppose your will get in ever country your 'baddies'...if there is money involve...see the scenario on the Rhino's in SA....
 
Last edited:

MJ75

Well-Known Member
I knew they'd be a few people comment on negatively on the realities of hunting in fenced areas and hunting non indigenous species. What I would say is would those who oppose the latter practise also be opposed to hunting sika, CWD munties and arguable fallow here in the UK?

My perfect hunt would be hunting species in their native lands in an unfenced area, I think most would say the same. I doubt there is a single SD member who dislikes the idea of heading off into the african wilderness to hunt free chase, native species of their choice to be honest. But the costs involved make this a lot more challenging to accomplish. I've also hunted the exact same huge area that Deerwarden refers to. The first time I drove into the area I witnessed a mountain reedback fight its way through the fence to escape to the neighbouring property, so in this instance I'd consider that species and the springbok I saw to be truly wild as both could move through the reserve if they wanted to. The owner of this reserve really wante to introduce warthog, but as they'd breed like mad and then tunnel below the fence, annoying his farming neighbours it wasn't an option. So to some degree, you could argue that warthogs are free chase wherever you hunt them.

I have ground in Scotland which is about 1500 acres and I can walk and stalk that all day looking for roe deer, but there is a big difference here in my opinion. Roe don't live in herds of 200 to 300 animals, where as some plains game species do and so are far harder to spot. Hence me asking what sized areas would people see as fair chase for different species. A 2000 acre ranch would be a challenging area for duiker and dik dik I'm sure about that. I also reckon it's probably bigger than the permissions some of those opposed to fenced hunting currently stalk deer on.
 

tommo42

Well-Known Member
sa11 140.jpg Hi,been to lady grey area in eastern cape, very remote and cracking hunting ground,all the best graeme
 

deerwarden

Well-Known Member
Yep, love the place, nice view of nipple mountain in the background, and the river below, cant wait till next year to go again, as also described by me, very remote, lots of game, and challenging hunting. Whatever you hunt and take, is deserved, you've won it the hard way. Halfway through the hunt you will be taking midday naps to recoup your energy, the altitude takes its toll for a few days at first as well, every animal I've taken has been fair chase and hard won, no easy walk up take the shot and return to the lodge, we take pack ups for a midday snack and hunt all day. deerwarden
 

tommo42

Well-Known Member
Hi ,just waiting for guy to get back to me about the next trip in 2015 going for nyala this time and a few of the usual suspects and plenty of fishing,all the best graeme
 

re'M'ington

Well-Known Member
Surely there isn't a lot of difference to shooting a Bison in a fenced area in this country! I personally would never dream of shooting either.

Martin
 

Safari Hunter

Well-Known Member
In SA you have to realise that hunting is a business far more than it ever will be in the UK. The fences are there to conform to legislation. Every game farm that has any non indigenous animals has to have a certificate of animal enclosure (CAE) no matter what the size. Hunting in these farms can be done all year round if required.
Any land that is low fenced for livestock can only be hunted in June and July. If anybody wants to hunt with us in low (unfenced) areas in the Eastern Cape we can do this for any indigenous species ie. Kudu, Bushbuck, Grysbok, Blue Duiker, Klipspringer, Vaal Rhebok, Oribi, Warthog, Springbok, Blesbok etc. If you want a Nyala for example low fenced it has to be in KZN. There are no legal low fenced Nyala in the Eastern Cape as they are not indigenous to that area so the farm must be CAE. That goes for alot of other species to.
Kudu are everywhere and the fences do not contain them. I have personally seen a Kudu clear a high fence and others run through them.
The size of the land in some respects is irrelevant. How many stalkers on here shoot in deer parks in the UK? They are miniscule compared to an average farm in SA.
We have concessions from 300 hectares to 20000 hectares. I would challenge any of you to get a trophy Bushbuck or Kudu in the smaller areas in less than 2 days. It is hard hunting and densely populated with acacia bushes. Don't get me wrong, I also prefer to hunt large areas depending on the species but the smaller areas are also challenging. 300 hectares is 1.15 square miles and 20000 is 77 square miles. There is obviously going to be a lot of driving around to get to the animals!!
1500 acres has been mentioned on here in the UK, that is 607 hectares or about 2 square miles. If this is big enough here why not elsewhere? If an area is 40000 hectares, 154 square miles it would take about 8 hours to drive from one side to the other at 20mph looking for game. Now at the risk of getting slated do any of you guys actually know how big these areas are or do you just take what the PH says as gospel?
Cheers
Adrian
 
Top