Course Outline

A hunter approaching a downed kudu from behind

Adrenaline is surging, and that’s good. But that’s not the time to throw away safety. After firing a shot, immediately make ready to shoot again if needed. Sometimes, you will remain in position and observe for a time. Other times, you will rush forward. After the shot or shots, you should reload your chamber and be ready. But before you move forward to check the animal or look for sign, be certain you engage your safety, and maintain full control of your rifle with both hands. Before you move may be a good time to top up your magazine, especially if you have fired more than one shot.

Approach any downed animal with caution, and do not rush ahead of your PH and trackers. Some “non-dangerous” African animals are extremely dangerous when wounded. Bushbucks are famous for being aggressive, likewise the entire sable-roan-oryx group. However, any cornered or injured animal can be dangerous. Zebras can become aggressive, and historical incidents of hunters being killed by wounded kudus are documented. Approach with caution with your PH. Check the animal carefully for any sign of life—rifle ready. And be fully aware of where your trackers and PH are. Once it is certain the animal is deceased, unload your chamber.

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