Hunting crocodiles in Africa

Hunting crocodiles in South Africa

Hunting crocodiles in South Africa is for the hunter to complete his / her Dangerous 7 hunts.

Crocodiles can be hunted while in the water as the head usually shows above the water. However, these shots are not always recommended. There will be a possibility of losing the trophy if the shot in the water is not instantaneously fatal.

The hunter needs to wait until the crocodile is in such a position where a well-placed shot can enter the vitals. A full broad side shot, or at the very least, an open neck area shot should be attempted where the projectile can penetrate sufficiently.

Below are a few suggestions with regards to minimum caliber, shot placement and tips for hunting crocodiles in South Africa.

Information on hunting crocodiles

Guns cope for hunting crocodiles

A good 2 – 12 X 50 gun scope should be sufficient for hunting crocodiles 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. An illuminated dot or illuminated cross-hairs can be very handy in low light conditions.

Crocodile hunting calibers

The best caliber for hunting crocodiles is the one you can shoot most accurate over 50 yards. A 243 will work well, but we recommend any calibers in the 300 range. These are the best calibers for crocodile hunting: 243, 270, 308, 30-06, 300 WSM, 300 Win Mag and 375.

Average shot distance

The average expected shooting distance when hunting crocodiles in South Africa is 50 yards depending on the river front or the lake shore you are hunting.

Ammunition for crocodile hunts

The recommended ammunition for hunting crocodiles in South Africa is premium grade soft nose ammunition like Hornady, Federal Premium and Woodleigh.

Link to South African plains game hunting packages
Link to African dangerous game hunting packages
Link to best caliber for hunting big game in Africa

Shot placement when hunting crocodiles

Taking a shot in the perfect world

The hunter needs to wait until the crocodile is in such a position where a well-placed shot can enter the vitals. A full broad side shot, or at the very least, an open neck area shot should be attempted where the projectile can penetrate sufficiently to the vitals.

Broadside shot

Crocodiles have a rather small area covering the vital organs for adequate shot placement.

Depending on the available angle, place the shot right behind the shoulder of the croc. This shot should result in a lung shot leading to the croc having to breathe regularly above water.

A shot to the exposed neck of a crocodile could lead to the spine being severed. A neck shot is the desired area to place your shot.

Head shots

Head shots are often recommended when there is a distinct possibility of the animal escaping into the water if the brain is missed, or when the only available shot is a head shot.

From the side the shot should be placed right behind the smile formed by the mouth.

Quartering away shot

Place the shot immediately behind the shoulder, aiming for an exit on the opposite shoulder.

Hunting crocodiles shot placement

With reference to the trophy crocodile above the following: it is sincerely suggested there is no decent shot to be taken. Relocate or wait for the animal to present a decent shot.

Crocodile hunting prices South Africa

Crocodile hunting prices South Africa are determined by the overall lenght of the animal.

We currently have two crocodiles over 14 ft total lenght available at a discounted hunting price for 2022.

These crocs are available at $ 5 800 apiece. If two hunters decide to hunt both animals on the same hunt we will allow for another small discount.

Crocodile hunting prices South Africa

Interesting Nile crocodile facts


Of all the crocodile species, the Nile crocodile is the largest. Females are noticeably smaller than the males. Bull Nile crocodiles have a pronounced, rounded snout while cow crocodiles have tapered, sharper snouts.

Mature Nile crocodiles have a gray to olive body color with a light yellow belly. Juvenile Nile crocodiles sport a greenish coloration with a yellow tinted belly region.

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Nile crocodile information

Some interesting Nile crocodile facts (in the following text, if we refer to crocodiles, it will be specifically referring to the Nile crocodile).

Nile crocodile scientific name: Crocodylus niloticus

Crocodiles average expected life span is 50 – 80 years

Crocodile adult body weight is 550 – 1 100 lb.

Average body length differs from between 11 ft to a massive 19 ft.

A male crocodile is known as a bull and females are known as cows.

The sex of the offspring is determined by the predominant heat of the eggs during incubation. If the eggs are incubated at less than 88⁰ F, the offspring will be female. If incubation takes place at between 88⁰ F – 93⁰ F (31⁰ C – 34⁰ C), the offspring will be male.

Nile crocodile dietary requirements

Crocodiles feed off any aquatic and land animals, including birds. Fish, toads and even insects when juvenile. Small game such as duiker will be taken up to impala and bigger game.

Video footage shows a crocodile that latched on to an elephant trunk while the elephant was drinking water. It did not end in a meal for the croc.

Crocodile hunting South Africa
Nile crocodile reproduction

When it comes to reproduction, bull crocodiles are by no means attached to a single female. They are rather promiscuous and will be attracted to as many females as they can defend against any form of competition.

Crocodile bulls attract the attention of mates by bellowing, slapping their snouts or creating a ripple effect in the water by blowing air from their nostrils.

Reproduction season is mainly between November and December when females will dig holes in sandy banks to lay between 20 and 80 eggs per year. Incubation lasts for between 80 and 90 days.

When the hatchlings start to hatch, the female will assist the new born babies to the water’s edge. She does this by accommodation as many hatchlings as she can hold in her mouth before letting them swim to a protected area.

Nile crocodiles become sexually mature between the ages of 12 and 16.

Crocodile distribution

Nile crocodiles are found over a wide area of the sub-Saharan African continent. These crocs are commonly found in rivers, swamps, large lakes and coastal estuaries.

Crocodile behaviour

Even though crocodiles are considered to be solitary, they will congregate in larger colonies and cohabitate. Crocodiles are considered to be nocturnal, but will never hesitate to take prey during the day.

Crocs, being reptiles, are cold blooded. This means they spend a lot of time alternating between sunbathing and cooling off as their body temperatures fluctuate. Male crocs are territorial and will defend their own territory.

Tips for hunting crocodiles in South Africa

The following tips for hunting crocodiles are done from the perspective of hunting from a blind along the banks of a river or lake.

Crocodiles always seem to be sleeping but the instant they sense any danger a mad dash ensues to water with nothing visible sticking out above water.

The hunter must wait for the croc to be out of the water or at least in shallow water where the vitals can be reached on a broad side shot.

Have metal hooks attached to a long rope ready to retrieve your trophy crocodile.

Bow hunting crocodiles is to complete the hunting of the Dangerous Seven or the Big 7.

Best time of year for hunting crocodiles in South Africa

We suggest the best time of year for hunting crocodiles in South Africa would be between September and April. Reason is that crocodiles are more active during the warmer / hotter months.

Crocodiles can be hunted year round.

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