The findings of the third International African Hunting Survey, run by the African Hunting Gazette delivers some interesting content. I have endeavored to extract salient points which are not only interesting for those directly involved in the sector, but, more importantly, offer guidelines for future thoughts around ‘what can be done’ depending in which area of the industry you are involved. I say guidelines, because what is said in a survey and done in reality is sometimes very different – but it is something!
As a publisher with one simple objective – to promote hunting in Africa – and having just under 400 responses to these 40-plus points, I hope this survey is of value.
Once again, the most popular country for those that hunted more than three countries, was Zimbabwe, and the kudu, just followed by the Cape buffalo were Africa’s top animals epitomizing the African safari. When asked, if you had the opportunity to do one last safari, Tanzania came up tops once again.
Eighty-seven per cent said the recording in the trophy book was either unimportant or not that important, and fair chase was important or very important – with just over 50% saying the trophy size was either important or very important. Fair chase (93%) being a priority over trophy quality (7%) seemed a bit out, particularly given the anecdotal feedback from the market.
Eighty-nine per cent of the respondents said they have friends that could hunt Africa but have not done so. Of those, more than 50% said they had five or more friends in this category! This arguably is the greatest bit of feedback for the future of Africa’s hunting industry and is totally consistent with previous surveys.
Ninety-two per cent of people think hunting in Africa is good value. That, folks, is one heck of a statistic, too. Namibia is the country that offers the best value for money, with South Africa just behind.
Ninety-three per cent feel that their PH’s experience is either important or very important. Sad to think that 7% are happy to risk someone with no experience – but that’s the feedback. A disappointingly large 36% have been promised one thing and got something else when out on safari. There are always two sides to a story – but that affects perceptions for sure.
Sixty-eight per cent dip and pack their trophies back home – while those that have their taxidermy done in Africa think it (taxidermy) is either good value (71%) or excellent value (7%). Shipping is deemed to be expensive or very expensive by 69% of the respondents – no surprise there and why we started AHG Shipping. Eighty-nine percent said travelling to Africa was either “Not that bad or easier than they thought” which is another shot in the industry arm and something we should be proud of.
Word of mouth (friends) is still a critical component of marketing, and still only 53% know about the independent verification of outfitters program – Visited & Verified. Of course, there are all sorts of details one cannot drill down to in a survey like this – but it helps give an overview. I am happy to discuss anything directly, and hope that if it helps anyone in any small way – then we have achieved something for the betterment of African hunting. Here’s to a great 2019!
For the full survey – click this link.