I shot one at about 250 yards (Africa) with a 30/06 and did not feel under gunned. They are about the size of a caribou. (They do know how to use their horns and have impaled more than a few lion in their native land, so don't underestimate a wounded one!)
Took one in South Africa with a 7mm Rem Mag, 175gr Nosler Partition, about 100yrd. shot. A PH will ask you to shoot them IN the shoulder, so IMO go heavy for caliber with bullet weight.A 30-06 with a premium 200gr bullet is a good choice. See ya, Bill
I have shot several Gemsbok and they are a very hearty animal! Any hunter using a 30-06 upward should not have a problem, if they put that bullet into the vitals. If your going to be using the front shoulder shot, best you be using a premium bullet such as TBBC, Swift A Frames or those Copper bullets. I used Nosler Partitions and TBBC bullets on all those I shot in Africa.
I've taken them in Africa with the .280 using 160 gr Grand Slams. One of my Outfitters guides for then in NM, on and off the WSMR. He's been near 100% and his daughter took a nice one back in February. He generally uses .30 cal's on them. Tags are drawn and run $1,600 I believe. He offers several options/prices, all based on days and whether your on range or off. The meat in Gemsbok is excellent.
I took a Gemsbok last fall in Namibia. I used a .30-06 and standard 180-gr. PMP ammunition (regular cup-and-core bullet). I shot this bull at about 180 yards as he was quartering away. The shot hit him on the left shoulder and, although he didn't "drop right there", he didn't go more than about 20-25 yards before falling over.
I took a couple of things away from this experience: First off, I felt comfortable using a .30-06 but I can't help but think that a tougher, bonded bullet wouldn't have been a better way to go. Granted, I'm not complaining about how the PMP ammo performed but we didn't recover the bullet and, as noted in a previous post, Gemsbok are very tough animals.
Secondly, I am glad I studied shot-placement for the animals I took, particularly Gemsbok and Wildebeest. The way a lot of African PG species are built can really throw a hunter off, especially if you are used to North American game. Both my PH and I were happy with where the shot was placed on this Gemsbok but he mentioned that it could have been an inch or two lower, which would have put it right in the middle of the "vital triangle".
Any good elk rifle works well in Africa where I have hunted them...Out of a deer stand in Texas brush country, I suspect a 270 or 30-06 would work plenty good. I'd opt for the heavy 150 and 180 gr. bullets respectively the the 270 or 06...
I've taken three. My first trip, I took one with a 7mm STW with a 160 gr NP bullet. Performance was OK, but this is a tough animal and I felt the bullet too small. I shot a second with a 7mm Rem Mag with a 175 gr NP. Performance and penetration were better, but hard to say the extra 15 gr bullet made a significant difference. Saw two shot with a .30-06 with 180 gr NPs and thought the larger diameter anchored them faster. Shot my last gemsbok with my .340 Wby with 210 gr NP bullet. Dropped in its tracks. Convinced me that the larger diameter for such a tough critter was useful, although perhaps not required. Once again, tough to beat the old '06 With a premium bullet!
7x57 Mauser with 160/175 gr good quality cup and core.
.280 Rem / 7x64 Brenneke with 175 premium or good quality cup and core like the South African PMP ProAmm.
7mm Rem Magnum only 175 gr premium bullets or the heaviest for calibre you get in any 7-8mm magnum)
.308W 180 gr. good quality cup and core.
.303 Brit 180 gr. good cup and core.
.30-06 180 - 200 gr good cup and core
See the trend? the faster the impact velocity the stronger the bullet must be as penetration suffers at impact above 2 600 ft/sec.
"Ballistc Tip" above 2,400 ft/sec very likely will not penetrate the shoulder. Certainly, when side on, the shot must be through the thick muscle of the low shoulder. They invariably will stand facing you quarter-on and then the shot in any case has to be through the shoulder.
I apply for a Gemsbok (Oryx) every year in New Mexico. They must hate me. If I ever draw a tag, I'll use my 30-06 with a 180gr CoreLokt or Partition. They have become relatively scarce here in these last few years.
They are tough animals, but they'll go down like any other with good shot placement. I've helped two hunters who drew out and neither had a problem. One took 2 rounds and we still had to chase it down. The other went down within a very few yards. 7mm Remington Magnum and 30-06 for those two. And I would agree about shooting in the shoulder.
looking at them they are very similar in body shape to nilgai and the advice on them, is, bust the front leg, but lower in the chest area than you would normally because they carry the motor a lot lower than deer do. I think all of these large antelope have a desire and will to live, so taking anything lighter than a 30-06 with a large premium bullet is crazy. I do believe if I had the chance to shoot one, then I would be looking to take at least my 300H&H (30-06 on steroids)with a bullet somewhere in the 190 to 220gr range. If the range was 150 or less then I would feel confident with my 375JDJ and a 250grain Barnes TTSX but only because that has a 16 1/2 inch barrel and I am confident at that distance.
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