The gemsbok is a member of the oryx antelope family and is a spectacular trophy to hunt. Pay particular attention to the gender differences as it is fairly easy to get it wrong.
The gemsbok has exceptionally long, almost straight horns which are heavily grooved and a dark face-mask.
Oryx Trophy Minimums
Having been brought back from extinction in the wild, the wild populations of Arabian oryx, Oryx leucoryx, and scimitar-horned oryx,Oryx dammah, are strictly protected. However these captive-bred oryx may be hunted on game ranches in North America and South Africa. Consequently, Rowland Ward has separate categories for these introduced oryx subspecies. SCI has categorized the scimitar-horned oryx and Arabian oryx into either 'North America Introduced' and 'African Introduced'.
There is another oryx in both the SCI and Rowland record books - the Angolan gemsbok, Oryx gazella blainei. There is some dispute as to whether this is a separate subspecies or just a regular gemsbok in the south-west corner of Angola. Whatever the answer, this gemsbok is probably locally extinct in Angola and the SCI & RW records are just for historic interest.
SCI uses the term Kalahari gemsbok or giant gemsbok in their record book, for the regular gemsbok of South Africa, Botswana and Zimbabwe. The Kalahari gemsbok of Namibia has it's own SCI record book category.
The two East African oryx - the Beisa of Ethiopia and the fringe-eared from Tanzania were previously considered a subspecies of the gemsbok Oryx gazella but now are considered a distinct subspecies and have undergone a bit of reclassification. They are now Oryx beisa beisa and Oryx beisa callotis respectively. You will find both scientific names in use.
Where To Hunt An Oryx
All the oryx subspecies, including the Arabian and scimitar-horned oryx, are available to hunt on exotic game ranches in North America and South Africa.
- You can hunt a gemsbok in on private game ranches in Botswana, Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe.
- The beisa oryx can be hunted in the lowlands of Ethiopia.
- The fringe-eared oryx maybe hunted on a 21 day licence in Tanzania.
Oryx Hunting Prices (For Informative Use Only)
- In Botswana, the trophy fee for a gemsbok is between US$575 and US$1400.
- In South Africa, the trophy fee for a gembok ranges from US$900 to US$1500. Some outfitters offer gemsbok cows for the lower price of about US$850. In South Africa a 40" is the magic number for gemsbok horns with some outfitters having various trophy fees according to horn length. A gemsbok with horns over 40" may have a trophy fee of more than US$2500.
If you are after an Arabian oryx in South Africa, trophy fees start at around US$8500, rising to US$14200. A scimitar-horned oryx trophy fee is between US$2400 and US$4100.
If you are really into collecting exotic oryx, you can go for a golden oryx in South Africa. The jury is still out on whether a golden oryx is a new subspecies, a new species or just a colour variant but the price is POR. Read all about golden oryx in African Outfitter magazine. There are odd painted oryx available too at POR...of course.
- In Namibia, which is the true home of the Kalahari gemsbok, there are any number of gemsbok hunting packages available and the cheapest gemsbok prices. A male gemsbok trophy fee is generally between US$700 and US$850. Despite possibly having longer horns, a female gemsbok trophy fee is about US$500. With outfitters that pitch their trophy fees according to horn length, you could pay over US$1400 for a 40" plus gemsbok. A non-trophy or management gemsbok can be had for US$220.
A golden oryx can be hunted in Namibia, for example, on a 7 day package, including trophy fee, for about US$30000, otherwise the trophy fee is definitely POR. By the way, the golden oryx is sometimes known as the 'Burchell golden oryx'. This is because the original Namibian breeder is named Burchell and a descendant of William John Burchell, the explorer and naturalist.
- In Zimbabwe, the gemsbok range in the north-west corner of Zimbabwe but have also been introduced on game ranches. The trophy fee for a gemsbok is US$7000.
- In Ethiopia, the beisa oryx trophy fee is between US$2000 and US$4000.
- In Tanzania, the fringe-eared oryx can be hunted as one of the special northern species in Masailand. The Government trophy fee is US$2800 and with additional Community Development/anti-poaching fees, the total trophy fee will between US$3220 and US$4000.