The grysbok is a small antelope and looks quite similar to a steenbuck and even the Suni. The grysbok has a noticeably oversized nose and large eyes in relation to the rest of their body, this gives them a very good sense of smell, hearing and touch which helps inherently to navigate and thrive in the dense areas in which they stay. Grysbuck are mainly nocturnal animals and are seldom seen feeding or moving around during the day. They weigh a mere 20 pounds and stand 20 inches at the shoulder. Only the male grysbok carry a pair of sharp black upright horns and the females are actually slightly bigger in body size. There are two subspecies of grysbok, the Sharpe’s grysbok and the cape grysbok.
The cape grysbok can be hunted in the Western Cape and Eastern Cape of South Africa. They occur in mountainous areas within these regions and are native to the fynbos biome which occurs in South Africa. The cape grysbok is strikingly beautiful and carries an almost amber coat with white speckles. Their horns grow the longest out of the two species with an average of 2 inches.
The Sharpe’s Grysbuck is the far more common grysbok of the two subspecies. They are available for hunting throughout a wide distribution in Africa. Sharpe’s grysbok is slightly smaller than the Cape grysbok. Their coat is also lighter in colour and has a more brown shade than that of the Cape grysbok. The horns of a Sharpe’s grysbok only reach an average length of 1 inch. The Sharpe’s grysbok is also unique as they have a pair of false hooves above the fetlocks. This is obviously very difficult to see while hunting but will easily be noticed from up-close. The Sharpe’s grysbok occurs in Mozambique, Tanzania, Zambia, Limpopo region of South Africa, Caprivi Strip in Namibia and Zimbabwe.
Walking and stalking in areas where Grysbok is known to occur has been very successful. One should start at the edges of thick vegetation and areas with lots of cover. The grysbok comes out into small clearings when feeding and may present a shot. Grysbuck are nocturnal by nature and thus there is a better chance of finding a good grysbok after dark. Should it be legal to hunt with artificial light in the country you are hunting they may be shot using a spotlight. Late afternoon and early morning will also be excellent times to target these small antelope as this is when they are most active.
A good grysbok trophy will have solid thick bases and good horn length. Their horns are naturally very small and when it comes to the Sharpe’s grysbok their average horn length is only an inch. This makes choosing out a good trophy quite tricky as the window of opportunity to double check the horn length and get a shot off is very limited. Anything over 1.5 inches is outstanding for a Sharpe’s grysbok. The cape grysbok has longer horns and can be judged in relation to the ears. Look for a male that has horns which are almost as long as their ears and he will score well.
Due to their minute size and delicate coats of targeting Grysbok it is a good idea to use either a solid bullet out of a high powered centre fire rifle or a shotgun shooting game loads. Grysbok are smaller than you think and they are a small target. Their coats are also very unique in their own way and damaging the coat is not worth it as they are a rare species to hunt.
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