The northern terrain consists mostly of savannah with some lightly wooded areas and some dense forest. Hunting in northern Cameroon is famous for one of its most sought after species, the Lord Derby Eland (Tragelaphus Eurycerus Eurycerus). Hunting in Cameroon is also known for its' large variety of antelopes including Roan Antelope (Hippotragus Equinus), Western Hartebeest (Alcelaphus Buselaphus), Buffon's Kob (Kobus Kob), Defassa Waterbuck (Kobus Ellipsiprymnus Defassa), Bohor Reedbuck (Redunca Redunca), Harnessed Busbuck (Tragelaphus Scriptus Knutsoni), Orebi (Ourebia Ourebi) and various varieties of Duikers (Cephalophus Cephalophus).
West African Savannah Buffalo (Syncerus Cafer Nanus Savanensis) are found in large numbers, herds of several hundred animals are not uncommon. Lions are hunted but only by tracking, as is the case in all of Western and Central Africa and not with bait as in Eastern Africa. Elephants are also abundant. They do not have long tusks, but hunting them is allowed. Hippos provide yet another hunting opportunity. The neighboring parks and wildlife preserves ensure the continued presence of dense animal populations which migrate freely between the parks, preserves and the hunting areas.
Hunting in the Northern part of Cameroon begins with a drive in a 4x4 from the camps then, once in the bush, tracking on foot. The terrain is fairly flat and the hunting is not very physically demanding. As is true for all of West and Central Africa, the large hunting areas in Cameroon are open territories, not fenced.
The average hunting concession area is approximately 220,000 acres and is rented and managed by hunting outfitters who are usually French hunting companies and/or French professional hunters and members of the members of the A.C.P. (Association des Chasseurs Professionnels - Association of Professional Hunters).
In northern Cameroon the hunting camps are permanent. The bungalows are comfortable and are often air conditioned. In most cases, camps are built along rivers and many of the camps have swimming pools. The French style cuisine is excellent and offers many opportunities to taste the meat of various types of game.
In the northern region, hunting areas are accessible by road from Garoua (pronounced ga-roo-ah), capital of the Northern district. The roads are good and the drive is on average 3 to 4 hours. The hunting season runs from mid-December through mid-May.
The south and southeast of Cameroon along with neighboring regions in the Congo and the Central African Republic also provide for an excellent hunting experience. These regions are covered with dense rain forest and are home to the Forest Elephant. Hunting Forest Elephant is always very exciting but requires a fair amount of physical exertion. Good physical fitness is recommended.
The forest is also home to the magnificent yet stealth Bongo and as with the Forest Elephant, the hunt is usually led by pygmies. The equatorial forest in Cameroon is also home to the Dwarf Forest Buffalo (Syncerus Caffer Nanus Stricto Sensus), Western Sitatunga (Tragelaphus Spekei Gratus), Giant Forest Hog (Hylochoerus Meinertzhageni), Bushpig (Potamochoerus), Yellow-Backed Duiker (Cephalophus Silvicultor), Blue Duiker (Cephalophus Monticola), Black-Fronted Duiker (Cephalophus Nigrifrons) and the White Bellied Duiker (Cephalophus Leucogatser).
Rain forest hunting is only done on foot which requires significant physical exertion and should not be undertaken lightly. The hunting camps are generally tent camps, however hunting in the forest also sometimes requires making "flying camps".
As in the northern areas, the southern areas are most often managed by French hunting companies and professional hunters. These are often the same companies that own or operate the areas in the north.
In the Southern region, hunting areas are accessible by air from the capital of Cameroon, Yaounde (pronounced ya-oon-dey) and flights average 30 minutes.
The hunting season in the rain forest areas runs from end of May through end of July.
Climate in Cameroon
There are two distinct hunting areas in Cameroon, one in the south commonly referred to as the Cameroon Forest and one in the north known as the Cameroon Savannah. These hunting areas fall into the southern and northern regions of the country which possess two distinct climates.
In the southern Cameroon Forest hunting area, the average daily temperature during the hunting season ranges from a low of 70DF to high of 83DF (21DC to 28DC). There are two dry seasons, one which runs from November to February and June to July. The rainy seasons can also be divided into two periods, the little rains which fall from March to June and the big rains which fall during August and September.
In the northern Cameroon Savannah hunting area, the average daily temperature during the hunting season ranges from low of 65DF to high of 84DF (18DC to 29DC) and is very pleasant. The dry season in the north is from November to April and the rainy season is spread out from May to the end of October, although very little rain falls in this area considering it is so close to the equator and droughts are not uncommon.
World Weather Online provides a very detailed look at current weather conditions, weather forecasts, a history and almanac for predicting average weather conditions during the time while you will be traveling in that part of the world. Click here for Cameroon's climate and temperature forecast.
Cameroon Hunting Season & When Hunting is Allowed
- Hunting Season - December 1st to July 31st
Most outfitters for Cameroon Savannah region run their hunting season from December 1st to May 31st and for Cameroon Forest region operate their hunting season from March 15th to July 31st.
- Trophy hunting may take place within the hours of daylight during the hunting season, no hunting is allowed at night and no hunting is allowed with artificial light.
- The government of Cameroon controls the minimum number of days for a hunting safari based upon certain species being hunted. Above and beyond the government regulations, the hunting outfitter may also impose their own guidelines as to the minimum number of days required to hunt certain species or combination of species.
- Shooting an animal from a vehicle is not permitted.
- Hunting from a vehicle is not permitted, though the vehicle can be used to reach the area from where hunting on foot can begin.
- Hunting of female, young and/or immature animals is prohibited and if shot, this animal will count as two animals taken from it's Group (See Cameroon Hunting Permits & Licenses section below to see what species are in each group) on your hunting license. The trophy fee will also be double the standard trophy fee for that species.
- The minimum legal weight of ivory for an Elephant is 11 pounds (5 kilograms) per side.
Species to Hunt in Cameroon
Cameroon offers a good selection of species for trophy hunting, including Elephant, Lion, Dwarf/Forest Buffalo, West African Savannah Buffalo, Western Bongo, Western Roan Antelope, Sing-Sing Waterbuck, Giant Forest Hog and a multitude of Duiker in addition to other species.