Jacobsen hunted with Johan Calitz Safaris (011-27-56-213-1633; www.johancalitzsafaris.co.za), booked through Jason Van Aarde (email@example.com). His PH was Edwin Young. In addition to his lion, Jacobsen also took a sable, eland, chobe bushbuck, waterbuck, hippo, hyena and warthog. "All were older animals in excellent condition," he says. "Sable, eland, bushbuck and waterbuck numbers were the highest I've seen in eight safaris. Elephant numbers were high too. We had daily multiple elephant encounters. This was an excellent safari, though not easy. This is big country, and Young is the kind of PH that likes to walk. We saw lion tracks daily for five days; three were from different big males. The lion travel up and down the Lugenda and Luatize River systems." Jacobsen ended up shooting his lion from a blind at only 53 yards on the second to the last night of his hunt.
Continuing subscribers will remember my November 2009 report (see Article ID 2346) about the Niassa Reserve and the excellent lion conservation program there that is part of the carnivore project managed by scientists Colleen and Keith Begg. That project has resulted in 100 percent success on six-year-old lion trophies. The requirements of the program mean PHs and hunters have been forced to pass on many lions over the last few seasons, but the results of the program are undeniable, and the future of lions and lion hunting in the Niassa Reserve are bright. It is a program the rest of the country and other destinations should consider implementing.
After receiving Jacobsen's report, I contacted Tharia Unwin of Johan Calitz Safaris........(continued)