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Hunters’ Code

A declaration of responsibility founded on respect for life and for nature

As SAHGCA members we declare;

That all animals are sentient creatures, and that  in the highest form of the humane taking of life as well as  in respect for the game we hunt, we at all times aim to achieve a one-shot-kill, while ensuring the responsible utilisation of all hunted game.

Having positively identified the animal and knowing that it may be legally hunted, SAHGCA members only take a shot if they are sure that:

  • it is safe to do so;
  • the animal is within range of the hunter’s personal shooting capability;
  • the firearm and cartridge combination is appropriate for the type and size of game;
  • the firearm and cartridge combination is appropriate so as to ensure a one-shot-kill over the given distance, and;
  • hunted game can be tracked and recovered.

As SAHGCA members we further declare that:

  • we have respect for life;
  • we hunt with  self-restraint;
  • we condemn killing for the sake of killing in the strongest possible terms;
  • we condemn any non-use of hunted game in the strongest possible terms;
  • we track wounded game and always endeavour to recover same;
  • we avoid public displays of hunted game;
  • we condemn the awarding of competition prizes for the killing of game in the strongest terms;
  • we keep photos of our hunts for our private collections and only publish those which show clear respect for dignity of hunted game;
  • we condemn pictures showing bloodied dead game or piles of dead game or of dead gamebirds.

During the hunt, SAHGCA members act within the bounds of the following guiding principles

Safety above all

  • No dead game animal can ever compensate for a hunting friend being hurt, maimed or killed.
  • We do not shoot at game we cannot identify positively and see clearly.
  • We do not consume any alcohol or narcotic habit forming substance before or during a hunt.
  • We see it as our duty to immediately, in a kind and positive manner, correct any transgression of firearm safety or of unsafe behaviour of anyone within our hunting party.
  • We constantly practice our shooting techniques and skills in order to know our hunting weapons so that we can execute our position on respect for life, and on a one-shot-kill.

Knowledge of huntable species and the Law
As SAHGCA members we strive to learn as much as possible, and more, about the species we hunt;

  • we positively identify the game we hunt as well as their gender before shooting, and;
  • we at all times obey the Law and comply with all hunting proclamations and hunting regulations.

Respect for landowners’ rights
SAHGCA members respect the land and property of the landowner where we hunt;

  • We ascertain which species and gender may or may not be hunted before commencing with the hunt;
  • We close gates and prevent veldt fires;
  • We believe in the host’s right to charge a fair price for his huntable species and in goodwill also in the host’s and guide’s share of the hunted game if they would so want it;
  • We condemn the bribing of guides in instances of missed shots or of wounded game not being recovered.

Cruelty against animals
SAHGCA members strive to prevent the wounding of the game they hunt, and do all in their power to recover wounded game until the last instance.  We condemn any form of cruelty towards animals, be these wild or domesticated.

Responsibility towards littering
Due to the respect hunters hold for the natural environment, we condemn any form of littering. – we always remove our own litter as well as that of others.

Conservation ethic
As hunting cannot be separated from the natural environment, all true hunters are also true conservationists. SAHGCA supports sustainable use as the cornerstone of effective and accountable conservation;

  • SAHGCA underwrites the principles contained in the IUCN’s World Conservation Strategy (1980) and all subsequent adaptations to that code;
  • SAHGCA actively supports the development of rural communities, based on the sustainable use of renewable natural resources in general and of game species in particular.

We always put something back
SAHGCA members always put something back into hunting and go out of their way to assist new hunters;

  • We support the collective effort of the international hunting fraternity to promote the Hunt as driver for the conservation of all game species.                                                                                                                                         

As SAHGCA members we cherish the spirit of goodwill which exists among all hunters and therefore accept, as do millions of fellow hunters all over the world, all responsibilities implied by the Hunt.

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