Hunting bushbuck in South Africa with Mkulu Safaris

Bushbuck scientific name: Tragelaphus scriptus

Hunting bushbuck in South Africa with Mkulu African Hunting Safaris.



Make your reservation

Hunting bushbuck in South Africa

Bushbuck scientific name: Tragelaphus scriptus sylvaticus

Hunting bushbuck in South Africa is hunting for another of the spiral horn family of African antelope. To qualify for the Spiral horn slam in South Africa the hunter must hunt the following spiral horned antelope:

  • Bushbuck
  • Nyala
  • Kudu
  • Eland

One aspect to remember when hunting trophy bushbuck in South Africa (whether in Limpopo or Eastern Cape) is that bushbuck are solitary animals only teaming up with females for mating purposes. Females with dependent offspring may team up with another female and her dependent offspring for limited periods of time.

Limpopo bushbuck are secretive animals that will lay down in case of danger. A short bark, not unlike that of a small dog serves as a warning call alerting other bushbuck of any danger in the vicinity.

Hunting bushbuck can happen suddenly so be at the ready at all times. Both the Limpopo bushbuck and Cape bushbuck are native to South Africa and occur from the far northern parts of the country right down to the Eastern Cape.


Bushbuck are known to be extremely dangerous when wounded. Bushbuck are not the largest antelopes alive, with a large male (male bushbuck are called rams) weighing in at between 110 and 125 pounds. However, what they lack in weight they make up for in tenacity and aggression when threatened.

Mature males have a dark brown furry coat with white spots on the flanks and white socks. A white chevron between the eyes are indicative of the relationship between bushbuck, kudu and nyala. Female bushbuck (ewes) are slight bodied and sport a lighter brown color to the rams.

Bushbuck males seldom fight as an injury will almost always lead to death. Therefore, there is an unwritten age-respect rule within the bushbuck family. Mostly when males contest breeding rights, the males will have a standoff showing the other hoe big and strong they are. The males arch their backs and strut around, circling each other to the extent one decides he cannot stand it anymore and retires gracefully and un-injured.

In some areas bushbuck become nocturnal if they are disturbed too much to their liking during the day. Activity reaches a peak during the early mornings, late afternoons and during the evenings. Early evening will see bushbuck move to their preferred grazing areas which normally is an alfalfa field or an irrigation field with succulent greens.

Information on hunting bushbuck in South Africa

Bushbuck hunting prices

The cost to hunt bushbuck in South Africa for the 2019 hunting season is $ 1 450.

Best caliber hunting bushbuck

The best caliber for hunting bushbuck South Africa would be a medium bore rifle that you can shoot accurately and feel comfortable using. There are numerous calibers out there that will be able to effectively hunt bushbuck with and we wish not to get involved in debating on the merits of each.

Mkulu African Hunting Safaris suggests the following calibers as being the best calibers for hunting bushbuck in South Africa:

  • 6,5 X 55
  • 270
  • 7 X 57
  • 7 mm Rem Mag
  • 7 mm 08
  • all 7 mm caliber rifles will be fine
  • 308
  • 30-06
  • 300 WSM
  • 300 Win Mag and any comparable calibers.
Best ammunition for hunting bushbuck

Mkulu African Hunting Safaris recommends you only use premium grade ammunition for hunting bushbuck South Africa.

Mkulu African Hunting Safaris preferred ammunition manufacturer is Barnes TTSX in just about any weight. Use  the projectile weight on which have a constant better performance in your specific rifle. Other premium grade ammunition manufactures you can use would be Federal Premium, Sierra and others.

Best gun scope for hunting bushbuck

There are numerous gun scopes and gun scope brands available on the market today. It is our experience that the more costly gun scopes like Leupold and Swarovski optics certainly provide more light under darker conditions. However, the single most important issue would be for the gun scope to be able to withstand the recoil once you squeeze the trigger.

A good 2 – 12 X 50 gun scope should be sufficient for hunting bushbuck in South Africa due to a wide zoom range and a long eye relief which will allow for greater flexibility to view the cross-hairs quicker.

Average bushbuck shooting distance

The average expected shooting distance when hunting Bushbuck in South Africa is 50 to 100 yards depending on the terrain you are hunting in.

Shot placement when hunting bushbuck South Africa

Broadside shot

The shot should be placed in line with the front leg, one third of the way up from the bottom of the brisket to the top of the back.

Quartering to shot

The shot should be placed at the spot bisecting the angle formed by the front legs, aiming at the same height as for a broadside shot and for the inside of the closer shoulder.

Quartering away shot

The shot should be placed at the spot by bisecting the angle formed by the front legs, aiming at the center of the opposite shoulder at the same height as for a broadside shot.

Facing on shot

The shot should be placed where the bottom of the throat meets the chest.

Shot placement diagram for hunting bushbuck

Gallery of bushbuck trophy hunting pictures

Tips for hunting bushbuck in South Africa

To walk-and-stalk when hunting bushbuck is the traditional way of going about it. Bushbuck are solitary animals only teaming up with a member of the opposite sex during mating season. Males can become extremely wily and are very hard to hunt indeed.

Extreme caution should be applied when on the final approach. Any sudden movements will attract the attention of a weary bushbuck and result in a no-hunt situation. Bushbuck prefer dense bush and forest areas making it difficult to move silently. Bushbuck have a tendency to congregate along river fronts and can be seen sunning themselves on the banks in the early mornings.

Bushbuck are part of the spiral horn family of antelope (Tragelaphus), making it almost as difficult to hunt as its cousins kudu and nyala. An ambush position usually leads to success.

Best time of year for hunting bushbuck in South Africa

Traditionally the bush in the best bushbuck hunting areas is rather dense during our summer months from November to April. From June to August the bush starts to recede rather quickly and during September and October the daily temperatures start rising while the bush recedes to a minimum

The best time of year to hunt bushbuck in South Africa is the second week of April until the end of October and even to mid-November when the bush has receded most.

When hunting bushbuck in Limpopo and Eastern Cape the terrain opens up to large open plains and even mountainous areas. This is where the skill of the hunter is tested with regards to marksmanship.

We can and do hunt bushbuck from January to December.

South African bushbuck hunting safari packages 2019