Big Country Safaris was established in 2016 by professional hunter Petrus Kok of Zimbabwe and avid Australian hunter and fisherman Alexander Jagers. It was by chance that that Alex and Petrus would meet through a mutual Zimbabwean friend whilst Alex was hunting in Zimbabwe, from there the rest is history.
The idea of Big Country Safaris was born on an invitation from Alex to Petrus for a month long hunting and fishing trip to the town of Katherine and its surrounding regions of the Northern Territory Australia where Alex calls home. Whilst on safari in and around Katherine Petrus identified the potential for a successful safari venture due to the first class numbers of game in particular the vast numbers of quality trophy Asiatic Water Buffalo witnessed on any given days safari as well as the other game including large wild oxen and wild boars to name a few. Furthermore the close proximity of Katherine to many of Australia’s world famous natural landmarks and Alex’s permanent lodge type accommodation providing a comfortable central base added merit to the idea of starting Big Country Safaris and the company slogan of ‘not just a hunt but a holiday’.
Through the passion for hunting and fishing, Big Country Safaris aims to provide a top class hunting experience as well as showcasing the Northern Territory’s unique and magical landscapes creating a safari and memories you will never forget. Today Big Country Safaris has an exclusive lease on the well renowned Bonanza Valley, Arnhem Land Concession and also conducts regular safaris on Conways Stations out of the first class purpose built hunting lodge.
The Asiatic water buffalo Bubalus Bubalis was introduced in the 1840’s to Northern Australia as a means of meat supply for the early settlers in their colonies. By the 1940’s these colonies had been abandoned and despite the buffalo being targeted for their meat, hides and trophy hunting they quickly multiplied and spread across the vast floodplains of the Northern Territory. The BTEC program of the 1980’s known as the Brucellosis and Tuberculosis Eradication Campaign would see numbers decimated from the estimated 350 000 head population of this time. It is estimated today that some 150 000 head still roam the north of the top end today.
The mature male buffalo bull ranges in size from 600-800 kilograms with bulls of 1000 kilograms not uncommon. During the dry season most trophy bulls will be found solitary in dry open plains with surrounding vegetation, rocky hills, gullies and sandy creek lines providing ideal cover. With the size, aggressiveness and the inch thick hide of the buffalo a min calibre of .338 is recommended, but the 375 H&H, 416 or 458 is ideally suited. Hunting will be done at close quarters with most close in stalks ranging from 15 to 50 metres and longer shots taken at 60-100 metres when stalking on open plains. Buffalo will be spotted and then stalked in many cases but most commonly the most impressive bulls will come from walking particular springs, swamps creek line and open plains. The buffalo’s strong sense of smell makes it all too aware of its sensory environment and surroundings making it such a desirable game animal both in size and the effort required to take one of these trophy animals. This amazing sense of smell only seems to get better and better with a bulls size and maturity. The water buffalos impressive wide sweeping horns make for an impressive trophy either as a skull mount or a beautiful shoulder mount and are bound to be a conversation starter on any keen hunter’s wall
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