Oryx is a genus of antelopes well adapted to dry open semi-deserts and steppes. Today, four main species of Oryx are recognized. South African Oryx, a.k.a. Gemsbok or Gemsbuck, has a healthy and abundant population in South Africa, Namibia, Botswana and Zimbabwe. It is also a popular animal with game farms and ranches. There is a free-ranging, huntable population in New Mexico, USA. Closely related to it is East African Oryx, divided into Beisa and Fringed-Ear susbspecies. The opportunities to hunt this subspecies are limited and exist mostly in Tanzania. Scimitar and Arabian Oryx are strictly protected across their native range, but healthy herds are kept on game farms and ranches in South Africa and the USA. A limited number are harvested each year with the proceeds going to finance the operation.
GEMSBUCK HUNTING METHODS
The most popular way of hunting this antelope is by the classic spot-and-stalk. Typically for Africa, hunters cover ground in vehicles, glass for animals and stalk them on foot once they are located. While on some game farms and ranches it may dwell in bush and scrub country, usually Oryx is a creature of wide open spaces, and is blessed with keen eyesight and natural wariness. This adds challenge to the hunt (and calls for a long-range, flat-shooting rifle). The long horns of the Oryx are as deadly as sabers (which is the reason why Oryx is sometimes called the Saber Antelope). Oryx are known to have killed lions, so you should be extra careful when approached a wounded Oryx.
WHEN TO HUNT GEMSBUCK IN TEXAS
Gemsbuck hunting opportunities exist year-round on private game ranches, as exotics, and/or in countries with generous hunting seasons. The best time for Oryx hunting, however, is a matter of debate. Some South African outfitters say it’s better to hunt between November – April, where flourishing vegetation of the bush makes stalking easier. In many areas, however, these dates will be too hot for long spot-and-stalk hunts on foot so it is much better to hunt from April to October.
WHAT IS THE COST TO HUNT GEMSBUCK IN TEXAS?
The most affordable Oryx hunting opportunities exist in Namibia, where management/cull hunts start at about $1,000. Shooting fee for a trophy South African Oryx varies from $600 to $1,500, with some outfitters charging even more for record book size horns. With daily rates and perhaps a few other trophies the price of a complete hunt will be in the $1,500 – $5,000 range. The shooting fees for a Scimitar Oryx run about $2,000 – $4,000 shooting fees. Arabian Oryx are as expensive as $15,000.