Yesterday afternoon hunting buddy Pete and I stalked the dead cow on the edge of the jungle. The previous day, a dark boar had come to feed on the carcass a bit before sunset, at about 17:15. If he repeated that, Pete and I would be waiting for him.
We were in place at 16:45, our rifles mounted on bipods, the carcass a bit over 150 metres away. Pete was using his Sako 308Win and I had my Vanguard in 257 Weatherby Magnum. If a single animal appeared, I would take the shot, with Pete ready to deliver a second shot instantly, if needed. If a pair of dogs showed up, we would simultaneously shoot at the dogs on our respective sides. Ditto, if more than one pig appeared.
The appointed hour, 17:15, came and went. Pete and I sat in silence, scanning to our left and right. The sun was behind us, slowly sinking. The shadow of the spur we were sitting on crept towards the dead cow. As the shadows slide across the carcass, Pete whispered, “Pig, to the left.”
A big, pie-bald, boar sauntered ever so slowly out of the creek bank jungle, into the open. It was not the boar I was expecting. This boar I knew well. Over the last few years I have collected hundreds of photos, and video, of him visiting carrion in this vicinity. Out of all those images, only a few were ever taken in daylight, and they were at first light. He was a welcome and unexpected bonus. Only a few days ago, the trail camera captured some gruesome video of him feeding on the carcass.
I had a good look at him through the binos. He was in no hurry. Neither were we. There was no sign of any other pigs. Again, no surprise. In all the images I have collected, he was always alone.
Normally, I would wait until he started to feed and drop him into the carrion pile. However, I wanted to have a good look at this guy so, when he was a few metres away from the carcass, I waited until his right front leg stepped forward. Then I placed a 110 grain Nosler Accubond just above the point of his shoulder. He flopped over. Pete was ready to deliver a second shot, but the boar was down for keeps. We exchanged congratulations and then went to have a close look at him.
In daylight, and close-up, he was a good-sized boar. His tusks were nothing special, quite battered and worn. He was greying around the face and muzzle, indicating a bit of age on him. He was quite fat and healthy looking though.
I continue to make a big effort on wild dogs, with early morning and sunset hunts, when I am not taking the opportunity for a boar hunt. I have sighted dogs on three occasions, but without the opportunity for a shot. The trail camera has provided plenty of tantalising images and video, but never at the same time twice. There have been some important lessons learned too. Each time, I adjust my approach and remain confident that soon I will get to take a shot at those killer dogs.