Hunter Reviews Fair-chase Exotic Game Hunting on Rio Bonito Ranch


Published: March - 2011

A subscriber tells us he's found a fair-chase exotic game ranch hunt worth noting. The 16,000-acre Rio Bonito Ranch, located in the Hill Country near Junction, Texas (about 100 miles west of San Antonio), offers 16 species of exotic game on about 15,000 acres of open range. High-fenced hunting is also available here, and it is possible to include both free-range and high-fenced hunts on one outing. Subscriber James Grim writes: "There are 22 species in the high-fenced areas, but there's no guarantee of successthe owners of Rio Bonito told me that months will sometimes pass without seeing some of the available species. Hunters can spot and stalk, use elevated blinds or combine the techniques. Spot-and-stalk hunting may or may not be possible for you, depending on your physical abilities. However, comfortable elevated blinds are positioned to provide open shooting lanes and offer an outstanding opportunity for success. The terrain inside the fence is similar to the terrain outside, with rolling hills, heavy foliage, cedar trees, various species of oak and indigenous cactus and grass. There are numerous impenetrably thick bedding areas.

"On my hunt at Rio Bonito, I took free-range axis deer, sika deer, Persian ibex and an ibex cross. Blackbuck, fallow deer, Texas Dall, black Hawaiian sheep, Corsican sheep, aoudad, mouflon and more are also available. I hunted for free-range aoudad but never found a suitable trophy. Inside the fence, I took a water buffalo, addax and red deer using spot-and-stalk methods. I had hoped to take a scimitar-horned oryx, but could never stalk close enough for a shot.

"Rio Bonito offers the traditional 1x1 packages with a daily rate and trophy fees based on the size of the animal taken. There is also a four-day, three-night package for free-range hunts, including a guide, meals, accommodations and one trophy of any free-range species of any size for $2,445. The package price includes one horned game animal of any size and the opportunity to take unlimited pigs at no extra charge. Additional animals can be taken for a trophy fee of $1,350 each, regardless of........(continued)

 
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