The targets now available worldwide run the gamut from prairie dogs and groundhogs in North America to rabbits and small feral animals in New Zealand to jackals in South Africa. Unquestionably, going on a varmint shoot is the best possible practice for shooting at big game animals, as it presents the same problems one encounters when shooting big game - shooting at angles of elevation and depression, wind drift, heat mirage, range estimation and bullet drop. Anyone who can consistently hit prairie dogs at 250 yards can easily hit a mule deer or antelope at 300 yards or an elk at 350 yards. With all that in mind, here's a glance at a high-quality varmint shoot being offered in South Africa.
In South Africa, Dale Hedgpeth of Hedgpeth's Adventure In Hunting offers a shoot that includes a great variety of varmints, ranging from black-backed jackal, Cape silver fox and bat-eared fox to aardwolf, warthog, bush pig and feral hog. Also available are chacma baboon, velvet monkey, ground squirrel, two species of hares and meercat.
Shooters might have to deliver quick snap shots at close range in dense brush, but then again they might find themselves shooting at long range across vast savannahs and plains, as well as stalking - in other words, experiencing all the challenges of a big game hunt. Most shooters use high-velocity centerfire 22's such as the 22-250. Hedgpeth charges $300 per day for this hunt, with a seven-day minimum. This includes guides, airport pickup and return, ground transportation, lodging and meals. Some plains game species are also available on this hunt. Hedgpeth is also setting up a shoot in Argentina for 1998.
Further information on varminting is available from........(continued)