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Subscriber-Written Trip Report
On Hippopotamus Hunting in Zambia

Below is one sample of such a Report which is made available to you FREE of Charge.

Report ID: 10404 Weapon Used: Rifle How Hunt Was Conducted? Guided
Date of Hunt: October 7, 2015 to October 16, 2015
Place of Hunt: Zambia -
Hunt Area: Nyaminga

Outfitter (or safari company): Faizel Lulat; Paya Kakuli Safaris. Email:;
Personal Guide (if any): Phil Menard
Booking Agent (if any): Mark Audino; Audino, Mark. 21 Parkview Manor Circle; Honeye Falls; NY; 14472-9371; Tel. 585-582-2926; Email:;
Trip Arrangements
(if self-guided):
License Required:

Major Game Animals Taken: Buffalo, Cape - Availability: Abundant - Trophy Size: 37"
Game Sought But Not Taken: Hippopotamus - Availability: the animals were confined to small pools and no sporting option was available
Game Condition Comments: There was abundant buffalo/bushbuck/kudu/impala. Very few zebra/wildebeest/hyena/warthog. The Luwangua River usually has very good crocs, but with the river being essentially dry, it was very limited.

SERVICE RATINGS (excellent, good, fair or poor)
Quality of Outfit: Good Guide/PH Ability: Good
Condition of Camp: Good Condition of Equipment: Good
Quality of Food: Good Trophy Care: Good
Name of Airline: South African Airlines and ProFlight Airline Service: Good
Airline Comments: Business class good as usual. Regional airlines were on time and no problem. Charter was small for our equipment and we packed LIGHT. The prices were reasonable as opposed to those in Tanzania and other locations.

Hunting Fees: Amount: $13000
Trophy Fees: Amount: $2500
Permits/Licenses: Amount: $0
Commercial Airfares: Amount: $7000
Charter Airfares: Amount: $900
Other Costs: Amount: $0
Total: $0

Problems of Hunt: Since opening hunting this year, the government also opened citizen hunting. The residents draw for a hunt on the game management areas that are sold to tourist hunters and between October 1st and the end of the season, they will share your concession. This means less sophisticated hunters from the cities are also hunting while you are trying to track your trophies except they aren't being very selective. This resulted in many missed opportunities due to intersections with the locals who were quick to shoot and pushing the game animals. There were a continuous flow of people in my assigned concession with several groups hunting at one time. It's their country and they deserve to enjoy their wilderness areas, but if you pay for a hunt and expect to have exclusive access to it, you better confirm that with your outfitter prior to booking a hunt during those dates as you may be disappointed to find the animals you have been tracking for hours have been intercepted by resident hunters doing the same thing. The pressure on the animals would frequently drive the animals back into the national park. This made access to the buffalo difficult.
Highlights of Hunt: Seeing the Luangwa River dry. I wouldn't have thought it possible.
Equipment Recommendations: There was no cell phone coverage(not that that is desirable) but a sat phone is needed if you plan to be in contact with the outside world. Actually, I think it makes it better as you can escape the constant cellular distraction. Sitting around the fire at night watching the glow on the faces of your hunting companions looking at their cell phones is not attractive and is not why I go. What happened to talking and not texting. Even in Africa.
Would You Recommend This Hunt to a Friend? no
Why? Not unless you have confirmed prior to your hunt that you will have access to the concession exclusively and that resident hunters have not been assigned by the government to "co-hunt" with you. These hunts are too expensive to have this happen.

Hunter Name: Emery Reynolds
Contact Information: Tel. 405-755-3540 - 4120 W Memorial Road, #208, OKC, OK USA, 73120 E-mail:
Hunting Experience: This was my eleventh trip to Africa. I have hunted Tanzania/Zambia/Zimbabwe.
Physical Condition: BMI of 24/daily exercise and gym work.

IMPORTANT NOTES (actions taken if hunter unhappy with hunt)
Notified Outfitter? no Notified Personal Guide? no Notified Booking Agent? yes
Seeking any kind of restitution or other settlement from agent, outfitter or guide? no
If Seeking Restitution, What is Sought? No. I don't believe they knew the magnitude of the problem prior to our hunt. Beware for the future. I would recommend Mark Audino to anyone wanting to hunt anywhere. He has been honest and informative in every contact and communication. This disappointed him more than it did me.

Try as I might, I couldn't get my PH to hunt hippo on land. Phil is a great guy and wouldn't hesitate to hunt with him again, but the circumstances with the resident hunters made a difficult problem for our pursuits. As many buffalo as I have taken, you still need your PH to help with trophy selection. My buff was the smallest I have harvested and in part it was the issue with limited chances due to the heightened sensitivities of the animals due to the pressure on them. If you are going to Zambia, my recommendation is to hunt prior to October or drive a good deal from the outfitter to compensate for the possibility of competition in your hunting concession. I met Derick Van Staden and his wife Sylvia who are the resident PH and camp manager respectively for the area. They were trying to buy the licenses of the resident hunters in their area to prevent the conflict. I don't know how successful they have been in that effort, but at least they are trying to solve the issue. This is another amazing section of Africa that I love to visit and it would be my hope anyone who ever dreamed of seeing this land would get to do so. Going to Africa is about the unpredictable, so I guess this is par for the course and it was a problem, but I've been enough times that it didn't spoil the vacation. But if this is your once in a lifetime spurge, be cautious. It could ruin what would otherwise be a magical outing. Would I go back? You know I would, but with both eyes open to the fact of resident hunting on tourist concessions. Good hunting.

Reply from Staden

This report sent by you will be forwarded to the Director General of ZAWA, Public Relations Officer, Local Ranger ( Lundazi), Manager of GMA's. I have already forewarded it to the Operator. ( Paya Kakuli Safaris). It is correct that a limited quota is set aside annually for resident and non-resident hunters. This is to continue the feeling amongst residents that it is not just a previledged few that have the use of their resources. ZAWA and the Operators try and avoid such conflict by only allowing residents to hunt after September. Unfortunately this is also a good time to hunt some species for trophies such a buffalo. Being the first year of operation it is unavoidable that some teething problems will arise. Careful planning, possible hunting demarcations and communication bewteen ZAWA the Operator and resident hunters will be done in the future to avoid such unfortunate incidents. Hunting hippo on land during the extreme hot months is a real challenge. They spend all day in the water to cool off and only leave the water well into the night to feed returning before sunrise. Two corrections are needed on the report: 1). Trophy fee was $2,500 not $25,000 2). The buffalo hunted in fact measured 37". Trust you will find this in order. Let me know if anything else is needed. Luangwa regards, Derick. PS. 1).SINCE THIS MORNING THE OPERATOR HAS SHOWN YOUR EMAIL TO THE DIRECTOR GENERAL AT ZAWA. HE HAS OFFERED TO MAKE A STATEMENT IF NEEDED REGARDING THIS INCIDENT. 2). THE OPERATOR IS WILLING TO FULLY COMPENSATE THE CLIENT FOR THIS HUNT.

Sylvia van Staden.

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