Out of more than 20 gazelle subspecies in Africa, only the huntable gazelles from Sub-Saharan Africa are included here.
As with many other ungulates, there has been a fairly recent overhaul of gazelle taxonomy. With the huntable gazelles here, the gazella genus has been replaced with nanger in the case of all the Grant's and Soemmerring's gazelles.
The Thomson's gazelle gazella genus has been replaced by Eudorcas and then the species has been further split into subspecies Eudorcas nasalis for the Serengeti Thomson's gazelle and Eudorcas thomsoni for the eastern Thomson's gazelle.
The southern Grant's gazelle can be hunted in northern Tanzania, north of the Ruaha river. They are quite large, have wide-spreading horns, are fawn-coloured with have well-defined nose spots and rump stripes.
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Southern Grant's Gazelle
The northern Grant's gazelle occur in Kenya and east of the Omo river, Ethiopia, so may only be hunted in Ethiopia. They are slightly darker than the southern Grant's and their horns are more parallel.
Northern Grant's Gazelle
The Robert's gazelle may be hunted in limited areas of northern Tanzania, west of the rift valley around the areas of Ngorongoro, Serengeti and Natron. It is a member of the Grant's family and the males have particularly different shaped horns that bend downwards. The females have normal Grant's shaped horns. Robert's gazelle are found together with ordinary Grant's gazelles and possibly interbreed so you could find an animal with one regular horn and one bent horn. In the Robert's gazelle records, SCI only accepts those horns that are judged to have sufficient robertsi conformation. Apart from the drooping horns, the Robert's looks just like a Grant's gazelle.
The Thomson's gazelle can be hunted in northern Tanzania and is easily distinguishable from the Grant's gazelle.They are smaller than Grant's and have distinctive black stripes on their sides and the white rump patch extends under the tail. However, some Grant's do have a black stripe on their sides but the white rump patch is always above the tail.
Bright's gazelle which is another member of the Grant's gazelle family, can only be hunted in Ethiopia, west of the Omo river. They are also found in north-west Kenya and north-east Uganda but are not huntable there. They are distinguishable from the northern Grant's gazelle as they are paler with only faint or absent rump stripes. In fact some experts think the northern Grant's and the Bright's are the same subspecies.
The Somali Soemmerring's gazelle is one of three Soemmerring's gazelles and is the only huntable one in the lowlands of Ethiopia. It is related to the Grant's gazelle but the main differences are that it is a smaller animal with a distinctive horn shape rather like the springbok of southern Africa.
Gazelle Hunting Prices
In Tanzania where you can hunt 3 gazelles, the Government trophy fees are US$450 for a Robert's gazelle which may only be hunted on a 21 day licence, US$450 for a southern Grant's gazelle and US$500 for a Thomson's gazelle, both of which can be hunted on all licence lengths. However with additional Community Development and anti-poaching fees, you are likely to pay between US$750 to US$2000 for a Robert's, US$750 to US$1200 for a southern Grant's and US$750 to US$1500 for a Thomson's gazelle.
In Ethiopia you can hunt a Soemmerring's gazelle on a 10 or 15 day hunt for a trophy fee of between US$2600 and US$3000. You can hunt a northern Grant's gazelle in the Omo Valley region on a 15 day hunt for a tropht fee of between US$220 and US$440. As there are no trophy lists featuring Bright's gazelle, it may be that outfitter's are hunting them as northern Grant's which some authorities believe are the same subspecies.
Gazelle Hunting Methods
As you can see in the videos below, the gazelles of Tanzania frequent the wide open grassy and often windy, plains of Masailand, so be prepared to drive around until you see a good trophy gazelle in the distance. Then you walk and stalk to get as close as you can but be ready to take a fairly long shot.
The Grant's gazelle was one of several animals named after James Augustus Grant (1827 - 1892) who was a Scottish explorer who joined John Hanning Speke in the expedition which solved the problem of the Nile source.
The Thomson's gazelle was named in honour of Joseph Thomson (1858 - 1895) who was a Scottish explorer and geologist. He led an expedition across what is now Tanzania, to find a route from Dar es Salaam to Lake Nyasa and Lake Tanganyika.
The Robert's gazelle is named after F Russell Roberts who sent a specimen to the British Museum. Not much is known about him other than he was an independent traveller in German East Africa (now, Tanzania) around 1903.
The Soemmerring's gazelle was named after Samuel Thomas von Soemmerring (1755 - 1830) who was a German professor of anatomy and physiology, medicine, anthropology, paleontology and an inventor. It was his anatomical work which led to the then new species of gazelle being named after him.
Bright's gazelle was named after a Major R G T Bright of the Rifle Brigade who explored central equatorial Africa. He later became the Chief British Commissioner of the Uganda-Congo Boundary Commission.
Gazelle Hunting Recommended Viewing
Masailands Glamour Game The 'glamour game' in Masailand are the highly-prized gerenuk, lesser kudu and fringe-eared oryx. Ken Wilson successfully hunts these plus Grant's gazelle, Thompson's gazelle, white-bearded wildebeest, East African impala, Kirk's dik-dik and Chanler's mountain reedbuck.
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