Scimitar-horned oryx hunting in Texas is now being offered by 303 Ranch Outfitters. We give you extraordinary hunting opportunities for these large and beautiful animals that once inhabited almost the entire North African continent.
Extensively hunted for their meat, robust hide, and incredible horns, they are now extinct in the wild. Fortunately, they have been successfully bred in captivity and are now thriving in special reserves in Tunisia, Morocco, and Senegal and on private exotic animal ranches in Texas.
Scimitar-Horned Oryx: An Overview
The scimitar Oryx or scimitar-horned Oryx, also known as the Sahara Oryx, is a species of Oryx once widespread across North Africa which went extinct in the wild in 2000. It was domesticated in Ancient Egypt and is believed to have been used as food and sacrificed as offerings to gods.
This antelope stands a little more than 3 ft at the shoulder. The males weigh 310–460 lbs. and the females weigh 201–309 lbs. The coat is white with a red-brown chest, and black markings on the forehead and down the length of the nose and the tail is long, dark, and tufted. The calves are born with a yellow coat without any distinguishing marks, and their coats change to adult coloration at 3–12 months old.
Both sexes have beautiful long and slim horns that curve around to their backs. Their horns range from 30 to 42 inches, although 46 to 50 inches can be found on record books.
Both males and females reach sexual maturity at 1.5 to 2 years of age — births peak between March and October. Gestation lasts about nine months, after which a single calf is born, weighing 22–33 lbs. Both mother and calf return to the main herd within hours of the birth. Weaning starts at 3.5 months, and the young become fully independent at around 14 weeks old.
Scimitar-Horned Oryx: Distinct Traits
Scimitar-horned Oryx are truly amazingly adaptive animals. They inhabit semi-deserts and deserts and cope with their environment through their efficient cooling mechanism and very low requirement of water. They can do without water for 9 to 10 months by getting whatever water they can from the vegetation they eat.
They can tolerate a rise in body temperature of up to 116 degrees without the need to sweat as much, effectively conserving their water reserves. Their white coat helps reflect the heat of the desert, and their black skin protects against sunburn.
Their enlarged hooves enable them to walk easily on sand, and their dense eyelashes and strong eyelids protect against windblown sand.
The exceptional thing about these animals is that both males and females grow long, ridged, sharp-tipped, and curved backward horns that make for beautiful trophies. There is very little difference in horn size between males and females so that either sex can yield you that prized possession.
Aside from the stunning trophy horns, the meat of the scimitar-horned Oryx is truly excellent. When you bag that coveted animal, you will also have about 60-100 lbs. of meat that has been described as more finely-textured than venison and offers a mild flavor similar to lamb but without the aftertaste.
How To Hunt The Scimitar-Horned Oryx
The hunt is usually carried out as a walk where it is all about glassing for the oryx herds over the open land and spread bushes. Once the herd is located, stalking starts.
Sometimes a safari vehicle is used so that hunters can cover as much land as possible, and once the animals are spotted, the hunt begins!
The herd behavior of the Oryx makes the hunt for them quite challenging, as there are many eyes, ears, and noses to detect a hunter closing in, and often shots are taken at well over 150 meters.
As to the size of the gun, we recommend a minimum of a 150-grain bullet on these animals, and a 180+ grain is even better. We also recommend a bullet that will expand but hold its mass, such as a partition, A-frame, or bonded bullet.
Aside from your regular hunting gear, it may also be a good idea to bring sunscreen and bug spray.
At 303 Ranch Outfitters, we offer you the thrilling hunt of a lifetime with our Oryx hunting packages. We make your dream hunt a reality!