It is day 91 of lockdown as I prepare this newsletter. At first, the lockdown was a strange experience, but very soon, it became a serious intervention that has been affecting the lives of all. Although we are frustrated by these circumstances, we will follow the rules like good citizens.
I have been hiding in the bush for a few days during this time because I am fortunate to have a piece of land with game and qualified for a permit to look after my animals and staff during lockdown. It gave me a different perspective on the world we live in. In the bush, we are far away from cities where people are faced with the realities of Covid-19, and we do not actually want to know about it. But even here we must be vigilant because the virus could be hiding among us.
Numerous special newsletters were sent in May, and because I did not want to burden you with yet another regular newsletter, hence this June newsletter.
- SA Hunters Corona virus (COVID-19) – We may hunt under restrictions
Subsistence hunting is allowed on the amended level 3 regulations as published on 5 June 2020. This enables game farmers to manage game populations by allowing hunting for own use. This decision made hunting an approved, regulated farming activity.
To achieve this change required an enormous amount of work and collaboration among all the relevant role players in the game and hunting community. Unfortunately, some people abused this opportunity to take their families with them to hunt, which constitutes a recreational activity that is forbidden and caused major upset at police roadblocks on our roads.
The lockdown regulations are still valid. Only hunters with travel permits to cross municipal, regional, and provincial borders, and with permits to transport meat, may hunt. Only hunters may overnight on game farms with restrictions of two persons per room, wearing of masks, and with all the hygiene and health regimens in place.
It is still not allowed to take children along to give them the chance to hunt. Do not take any risks that could cause government to recall the subsistence hunting regulations.
Travel safely, enjoy the opportunity to hunt and be responsible by obtaining all the necessary permits and licences.
- Shooting Affairs
All our national shooting competitions for the year have been cancelled. There is a possibility to have the national shotgun shooting competition because members had qualified last year. We will find out in due course whether we could host such a big event. For now, the general restriction of 50 persons per event still applies.
Members are getting impatient and want to practise. Shooting ranges are only open for work-related activities that involved training for the armed forces and security personnel. These ranges remain closed for sport shooting. Please do not take any unnecessary risks by visiting these ranges.
The President indicated that non-contact sport (such as shooting) will be allowed soon, subject to certain safety protocols. André van Heerden and his team already submitted proposals to the Department of Sport and Recreation. We will inform members as soon as we may go the shooting ranges. Please be patient and do not take risks.
We are aware that other associations announced that shooting ranges are open. Be careful! The current regulations apply to professional non-contact sport. What we do at SA Hunters does not qualify as a professional sport. However, these regulations do apply to sport shooting and we already applied for permission. Read the regulations here.
- Firearms Amnesty and Renewal of Firearm Licences
The Minister of Police’s request to Parliament to extend the amnesty, was too late and the application was amended to announce a new amnesty with the same conditions. The Portfolio Committee approved and referred the application to the National Assembly and the Council of Provinces.
We expect an announcement in July (maybe later in August) that the next amnesty period will be in place from 1 August 2020 to 31 January 2021. The conditions of the amnesty are likely to be the same as the one that had expired recently.
Those members that want to hand in firearms under the amnesty conditions, should be able to do so soon.
Remember to apply in time for the renewal of your licence and competency.
- Membership Fees
The Board agreed not to increase membership fees for the next year.
To accommodate members, SA Hunters amended its system to ease the pressure and enable members to pay their fees in four instalments. The membership period will be extended automatically by three months after every payment.
Members may choose to receive no magazines, one magazine or two magazines on renewal of their membership. Members only pay 50% of the shelf price of magazines over and above their membership fees.
- Retaining Dedicated Status
Because the Covid-19 restrictions prevented members from participating in activities, the Board agreed to maintain the dedicated status of all members for 2020. Where possible, register any qualifying activities as usual, but we will not cancel your dedicated status for 2020.
- Training for Dedicated Sport Shooting Status
The Board agreed in principle that SA Hunters may continue providing training for dedicated sport shooter status online. We hope to be ready for this process by September. This means that a person may join SA Hunters online, enrol for training and complete the multiple answer examination for dedicated sport shooter status through our website. We are dealing with the details before implementing the facility.
The demand for training for sport shooter status is still high. SA Hunters is working on the training protocols as offered by the branches. Some branches already offer training with Zoom, and we anticipate that classroom training would resume soon according to the Covid-19 restrictions, i.e. maximum of 50 persons per class and all other safety measures (physical distancing, hygiene and wearing of masks).
Likewise, members will soon be able to receive the range officer theoretical training online. This development is part of the sport shooting training. The practical part of the training will only resume once the shooting ranges are open.
- Hunting Affairs
Archers Rock Safaris sponsors hunting opportunity
Archers Rock Safaris offered a hunting opportunity to the value of R50 000 that members can win with a lottery ticket of R50. The hunting package is available for either rifle, bow or a combination of both. It includes:
One kudu bull up to 52 inch, one blue wildebeest bull up to 29 inches, two impala rams up to 22 inches, and one warthog with up to 12 inch tusks; free accommodation in five star lodge for two hunters or one hunter and one guest for four nights and five hunting days; and a free spa treatment. All meals, transport, cool room facilities and guides are included.
Archers Rock Safaris agreed to postpone this hunting opportunity to next year. Anyone that bought a ticket already will still stand the chance to win, while others have more chance to buy tickets. To stand a chance to win this prize:
- Transfer R50 or multiple amounts of R50 (for more chances to win) electronically to the bank account of SA Hunters at ABSA, account number 01443990077.
- Use your mobile phone number and Archers as reference.
This hunt will be available from June to August 2021.
Northwest Hunting Regulations
Northwest did not publish hunting regulations for 2020. The responsible MEC said on 24 June, that the hunting proclamations published in the Government Gazette, no 8001 on 23 April 2019, will apply to 2020.
This affects hunters that hunt on farms without exemption certificates (Certificate of Adequate Fencing) and where the hunting season ends on 31 July. The season will be not be extended.
In Northwest one may hunt on an exempted farm without having a licence but for species listed on the exemption certificate. A travel permit is required for transporting wild pig meat (bush pig and warthog). Landowners registered on SA Hunters’ online wild pig permit system, or the local state veterinarian may issue the transport permit. Hunting of game birds requires a licence during the open season on all farms. Rock pigeons are regarded as ordinary game and no licence is required.
Hunting licences available online at https://nw.nipas.co.za
The following persons t Northwest’s Department of the Environment can assist:
- Support to Members
Many of our members were adversely affected by Covid-19 circumstances. Here are opportunities that our members can consider supporting other members:
- Good quality bushveld firewood at reasonable price in Pretoria region. More detail available here.
- Covid-19 personal protections and sanitation products. Custom face masks that will not fog up your glasses, hand sanitiser, no-contact key and other essentials. More information available here.
- Game meat recipe book: Members qualify for R50 discount per copy. Ouma Leonè de Lange gives R50 discount and a R50 donation to SA Hunters for every recipe book sold on https://www.ouma-se-wildsboek.co.za
Use the “SAHUNT” promotional code when placing your order on the website. This recipe book is essential for each hunter. It includes 220 recipes of meals that can be made on the campfire; conversion tables for weight measurements and oven temperatures; and energy of various calibres.
Recruit members for commission
The Board agreed that a member or a branch that recruits ten or more members per year, can earn commission of between R100 to R150 per member. More information is available here.
- Ivory Project
The Doctari ivory knife project is back on track after we fell behind with orders and deliveries. This project entails the production of knives with ivory handles from the Nico van Rooyen ivory stock. Only 150 knives will be made. Place your order as soon as possible to avoid disappointment. 100 knives have already been ordered.
- Memorial publication
The lockdown also delayed the printing of our book, but we finally received and dispatched the first batch of orders. It is an excellent book. Although Father’s Day has come and gone, it will still make a welcome gift.
The book is in A4 format and available in two versions: one with an ordinary cover at R300 per copy, and a luxury version bound in buffalo leather at R1000 a copy of which only 100 copies will be available.
To order your copy:
- Transfer the correct amount (R300 for the ordinary version or R1 000 for leather bound version) in SA Hunters’ bank account at Absa, account number 01443990077.
- Use your member number and Book as reference. Check that you enter your member number correctly to ensure that we can process your order.
- Commercial Affairs
In November 2019, SA Hunters signed an agreement with Humansdorp Koöperasie that gives 5% discount on the regular prize of a range hunting and shooting products to members of SA Hunters. See the links below for information about the discounts. The following specials are available in July:
All Redding reload equipment 10% plus 5% = 15% discount
Please note that delivery could take longer than usual.
- Visit the following websites for more information:
- Place orders telephonically or with e-mail.
- You must be a paid-up member and provide your member number to enable Humansdorp Koöperasie to check your status.
- Place your orders with Eduan du Toit, Cheryl Coetzee or Riaan Vermaak at any of the following numbers ore –mail addresses:
- Telephone numbers
- (042) 2910431
- (042) 2951501
- Telephone numbers
- iii. (042) 2951082
- E-mail addresses
Your order will be dispatched by courier or other delivery method as soon as the money has been received.
The complete list of service providers that offer special discount to members of SA Hunters, are available below. Please note that the majority of these suppliers are closed during lockdown.
- Humansdorp Koöperasie
- Toyota SA
- Westvaal Nelspruit
- Wildman Hunting and Outdoor
- Hokaai Slaghuis
- Die Wildshoekie Vleismark
- LAVA Vakuumverpakking
- MAINSU Kragopwekkers
- Cens Digital Gehoorbeskerming
- Uitlaatstelle van De Graaf Autosentrum in Van der Hoffweg Pretoria
- Nitecore Flitse
- Fitch and Leedes
- Cassie Nienaber – Ladingontwikkeling en Herlaai
- Archers Rock Safaris
- Dovetail Wooden Boxes
- Compu Knit Personal protections and sanitation products
Click here for more information about any of the above-mentioned benefits.
- Photography Competition
SA Hunters’ annual photo competition will go ahead in 2020. The purpose of the competition is to compile a portfolio of the best photographs that our members have taken during the year. We will upload the photographs on our website and use it in presentations and advertisements at events such as the gala evening of our annual congress.
At the end of each month, we will choose photographs to add to our portfolio and publish them on www.sahunters.co.za Gold, silver and bronze certificates will be awarded to the best photographs.
Our sponsor donated a new camera for the winner of the best photograph. The prize will be handed over to the winner during the congress gala evening at the end of the year. We are also trying to obtain more prizes for different categories.
May month's finalists are here on our website. Look out for June's finalists who will be posted shortly after the end of the month.
Our categories for the 2020 competition are:
- Our Heritage. Any landscape, plant, or animal life (including birds and insects) that represents our country and neighbouring countries natural heritage.
- Hunting field. Photos depicting people or animals' hunting experiences and actions. Please remember that this category does not include photos of hunted animals. Send those photos to the magazine's Bokspog.
- Man in Nature. Any photos where people interact with nature.
Read here how to enter.
SA Hunters: CEO