Continuing subscribers will remember my report about an effort by Steve Kobrine to reopen the West African country of Ghana to international hunters. (See Article No. 2136.) Kobrine planned to offer trips for experienced hunters interested in collecting rare pygmy antelopes. At the time, Kobrine warned me that there were only pockets of game in Ghana but that he had found some areas with sufficient animals to offer a decent hunt opportunity. He says the director of wildlife there understands that trophy hunting can help protect that game by raising the necessary funds for conservation and giving it a higher value than what local hunters can sell the meat and hides for in the marketplace. The director worked with Kobrine to issue the necessary licenses and permits for international hunters to legally hunt and export trophies from Ghana, and the first hunters traveled there beginning this past March. Among them was subscriber Tom Hammond, who killed what may be the new Number One Maxwell duiker (see photo in the Trophy Gallery section of our web site). He sent me the following report on his experience and what fellow subscribers should expect in this destination.
“I just returned from hunting in Ghana, as the first American hunter licensed there in 35 years. Ghana lies in West Africa, next door to Ivory Coast and just south of Burkina Faso. Steve Kobrine worked two years getting the permits with the government and touring and checking the countryside for the best places to hunt. He ended up with two. The first is Miemia Bay on the southwest coast between Takoradi and Ivory Coast, about a 5½-hour drive from the capitol of Accra. The facility there is Kedas Lodge. The second place is outside Cape Coast, about three hours from Accra and near Kakum National Park. The lodge there is called Hans Cottage Botel Lodge.
“You can hunt two species in Ghana presently not found anywhere else in the world, and also a third rare species. At Miemia the local hunter who assists the PH will take you for royal antelope and Maxwell duiker. At Kakum, the local hunter will take you for royal antelope, Maxwell and black duiker.
“The male royal antelope, called adowa locally, weighs between two and 2½ kilos. It is pure reddish in color. You only hunt them at night. The female is slightly larger. The Maxwell, called ochowee, weighs about 70 percent more and has a streak down both sides of its face. Hunting for the Maxwell also is at night. The black duiker, oyo locally, is hunted in early morning and late evening deep in the forest. You sit by a producing palm nut or fig tree and call it in. They are a pure, shiny black with an orange tuff on the top of their head and white underside to their tail. They are very rare. The local hunter had not seen one in four months, but their tracks were there.....