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Will your next dive be 3 hours long?

M77 Hawkeye African

Everything you need to know about rebreathers

The new Ruger

Dorado Tactics Catch gold

Masai Mara Inside the migration

Lion Encounter Underwater poison

Make a Plan

Cold drinks in the bush

contents 2 | Volume 5 Issue 2

8 Will your next dive be 3 hours long? Everything you need to know about rebreathers

20 Masai Mara Inside the migration

29 Lion Encounter Underwater poison

41 Dorado Tactics Catch gold

49 M77 Hawkeye African The new Ruger

67 African hunters of yesteryear The Maneating lions of Tsavo

87 Bush Cuisine Fer au Vin: Black mamba in brandy

95 Make a Plan Cold drinks in the bush

99 True North You have an enemy

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Magazine Reading Tips Read Online: Go to www.africanxmag.com to page through the virtual magazine.

Read it on your PC: Read the document like a normal magazine. You will need the free Adobe Reader. In Adobe Acrobat, choose View>Page Display>Two-up continuous

Hear the magazine! 1) In Adobe Acrobat, choose View>Read out Loud>Activate Read out Loud. 2) Choose View>Read out Loud and the option you want: Read This Page Only/Read To End of Document/Pause or Stop. 3) Choose View>Deactivate Read out Loud to deactivate the read out loud function This option is great for visually impaired outdoors enthusiasts

Jump directly to articles On the contents, just click on the article to jump straight there. To jump to pages or articles, click on one of the icons on the right in Acrobat Reader. The green circle gives step-by-step instructions for common features.

This magazine is fully web-enabled. You will see your cursor change to a hand over a link in many places in the magazine. You can click on: • author’s names to email them (when they allow it) • articles to comment about them on our blog • The video icon to watch interviews with outfitters, hunting lodge reviews and other interesting videos • advertisements to go to the advertisers

About this magazine This magazine is a radical departure from normal magazines. Of course, it is a superb-quality printed magazine. But you can also get it on: • The web • PC • Laptop • PocketPC • PalmPilot and many others All you need to do is to copy the .pdf file to your PDA using the synchronisation software provided with the device. For more assistance, contact your supplier. You also get a scaleddown version on your mobile phone. Just point your internet-enabled mobile phone to mobile.africanxmag.com and select the issue you want to read or download animal call ringtones. You can also order a printed copy (in color or black and white) of any past or present issue.

Read your way. Easy.


Note: Make sure you have the latest version of Acrobat Reader installed. To update, choose Help>Check for Updates in Adobe Reader. Volume 5 Issue 2 | 5

Photo Serge Melki

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Will your next dive be

3 hours


Everything you need to know about rebreathers


ith PADI endorsing the launch of recreational rebreathers with the introduction of their own rebreather courses, there may be a revolution coming. Volume 5 Issue 2 | 7

Source: Wikipedia 8 | Volume 5 Issue 2

How do they work? At shallow depths, a diver using open-circuit breathing apparatus typically only uses about a quarter of the oxygen in the air that is breathed in, which is about 4 to 5% of the breathed volume. The remaining oxygen is exhaled along with nitrogen and carbon dioxide - about 95% of the volume. As the diver goes deeper, much the same mass of oxygen is used, which represents an increasingly smaller fraction of the inhaled gas. Since only a small part of the oxygen, and virtually none of the inert gas is consumed, every exhaled breath from an open-circuit scuba set represents at least 95% wasted potentially useful gas volume, which has to be replaced from the breathing gas supply. A rebreather recirculates the exhaled gas for re-use and does not discharge it immediately to the surroundings. The inert gas and unused oxygen is kept for reuse, and the rebreather adds gas to replace the oxygen that was consumed and removes the carbon dioxide. Thus, the gas in the rebreather’s circuit remains breathable and supports life and the diver needs only carry a fraction of the gas that would be needed for an open-circuit system. The saving is proportional to the ambient pressure, so is greater for deeper dives, and is particularly significant when expensive mixtures containing helium are used as the inert gas diluent. The rebreather also adds gas to compensate for compression when depth increases, and vents gas to prevent overexpansion when depth decreases.

Rebreather history ●● Around 1620: In England, Cornelius Drebbel made an early oar-powered submarine. To re-oxygenate the air inside it, he likely generated oxygen by heating saltpetre (potassium nitrate) in a metal pan to emit oxygen. Heating turns the saltpetre into potassium oxide or hydroxide, which absorbs carbon dioxide from the air. That may explain why Drebbel’s men were not affected by carbon dioxide build-up as much as would be expected. If so, he accidentally made a crude rebreather more than two centuries before Saint Simon Sicard’s patent. (!) ●● 1808: The oldest known rebreather based on carbon dioxide absorption was patented

in France by Sieur Touboulic from Brest, a mechanic in Napoleon’s Imperial Navy. This early rebreather design worked with an oxygen reservoir, the oxygen being delivered progressively by the diver and circulating in a closed circuit through a sponge soaked in limewater. Touboulic called his invention Ichtioandre (Greek for ‘fish-man’). There is no evidence of a prototype having been manufactured. ●● 1849: A patent for the oldest known rebreather for which a prototype was built, also using an oxygen reservoir, was granted to Pierre Aimable De Saint Simon Sicard. ●● 1853: Professor T. Schwann designed a rebreather in Belgium; he exhibited it in Paris in 1878. It had a large back mounted oxygen tank with working pressure of about 13.3 bar, and two scrubbers containing sponges soaked in caustic soda. ●● 1878: Henry Fleuss invented a rebreather using stored oxygen and absorption of carbon dioxide by rope yarn soaked in caustic potash solution, to rescue mine workers who were trapped by water. ●● About 1900: The Davis Submerged Escape Apparatus was designed in Britain for escape from sunken submarines. It was the first rebreather which was practical for use and produced in quantity. Various industrial oxygen rebreathers such as the Siebe Gorman Salvus and the Siebe Gorman Proto, both invented in the early 1900s, were derived from it. ●● 1903 to 1907: Professor Georges Jaubert invented Oxylithe, which is a form of sodium peroxide (Na2O2) or sodium dioxide (NaO2). As it absorbs carbon dioxide in a rebreather’s scubber it emits oxygen. ●● 1907: Oxylithe was used in the first filming of Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea. ●● 1907: Dräger rebreather used for mines rescue. ●● 1909: Captain S.S. Hall, R.N., and Dr. O. Rees, R.N., developed a submarine escape apparatus using Oxylithe; the Royal Navy accepted it. It was used for shallow water diving but never in a submarine escape; ●● 1912: The first recorded mass production of rebreathers started with the Dräger rebreathers, invented some years earlier by Hermann Volume 5 Issue 2 | 9

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Stelzner, an engineer at the Dräger company. The Dräger rebreathers, especially the DM20 and DM40 model series, were those used by the German helmet divers and German frogmen during World War II. ●● 1930’s: Italian sport spearfishers used rebreathers systematically. This practice came to the attention of the Italian Navy, which developed its frogman unit Decima Flottiglia MAS, which was used effectively in World War II. ●● World War II: Captured Italian frogmen’s rebreathers influenced design of British rebreathers. Many British frogmen’s breathing sets’ used aircrew breathing oxygen cylinders salvaged from shot-down German Luftwaffe aircraft. The earliest of these breathing sets may have been modified Davis Submerged Escape Apparatus; their full-face masks were the type intended for the Siebe Gorman Salvus, but in later operations different designs were used, leading to a full-face mask with one big face window, at first oval and later rectangular (mostly flat, but the sides curved back to allow better vision sideways).

developed by Dr. Christian J. Lambertsen for underwater warfare and he is considered by the US Navy as “the father of the frogmen”. [12][13] Lambertsen held the first closedcircuit oxygen rebreather course in the United States for the Office of Strategic Services maritime unit at the Naval Academy on 17 May 1943. ●● c.1960 to c.1990: In this period in Britain there was very little rebreather use by civilians, and no easy way for the general public to obtain rebreathers, and the BSAC prohibited rebreather use by its members. The Italian firms Pirelli and Cressi-Sub at first each sold a model of sport diving rebreather, but after a while discontinued those models. Some home made rebreathers were used by cave divers to penetrate cave sumps. ●● 1989: The Communist Bloc collapsed and the Cold War ended, and with it the perceived risk of attack by Communist Bloc forces, including by their combat divers. After that, the world’s armed forces had less reason to requisition civilian rebreather patents, and automatic and semi-automatic recreational diving rebreathers started to appear.

Rebreather advantages

Early British frogman’s rebreathers had rectanLong dive times Royal Navy frogman in August 1945, gular counterlungs on the here equipped with a Davis apparatus, Perhaps the most significant adchest like Italian frogman’s a rebreather originally conceived in vantage is greatly increased gas rebreathers, but later Brit1910 by Robert Davis as an emerefficiency. Usually, a diver only gency submarine escape set. ish frogman’s rebreathers uses a small fraction of the oxygen had a square recess in the of each inhaled breath and most of top of the counterlung so it the oxygen leaves the lungs unused when the diver could extend further up toward the shoulders. exhales. This means that oxygen and other gases in In front they had a rubber collar that was the exhaled gas is wasted when the diver exhales clamped around the absorbent canister.[9] and as you know, this gets worse with greater depths Some British armed forces divers used bulky because of the increased pressure. thick diving suits called Sladen suits; one version of it had a flip-up single faceplate for Rebreathers retain most or all of the exhaled breath, both eyes to let the user get binoculars to his processes it, and returns it to the diver as breathable eyes when on the surface. air. Because there are almost no exhaled bubbles

●● Early 1940s: US Navy rebreathers were

at all, there is no change in gas usage efficiency at Volume 5 Issue 2 | 11

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greater depths. This makes rebreathers more beneficial as the depth increases.

marine life and fish are often frightened and will not allow close proximity.

For example, a standard scuba cylinder contains enough gas to sustain an average resting person for about an hour and a half at the surface. The same cylinder will last only 45 minutes at 10 meters and less than 10 minutes at a depth of 90 meters - but if that same cylinder were filled with oxygen and used to supply a closed-circuit rebreather, the diver could theoretically stay underwater for two days - whatever the depth!

Semi-closed rebreathers reduce the volume of exhaled bubbles, and closed-circuit rebreathers essentially eliminate bubbles entirely. This allows divers are able to approach marine life much more closely without disturbing behavioral patterns - great news for specimen collection and marine photographers.

Decompression Efficiency This advantage only applies to closed-circuit rebreathers, not oxygen or semi-closed rebreathers. Oxygen rebreathers are limited to depths where decompression is not an issue. The reason it applies only to closed-circuit rebreathers and not semi-closed rebreathers has to do with differences in the breathing gas dynamics of these two types of rebreathers. Semi-closed rebreathers maintain a more-or-less constant fraction of oxygen in the breathing gas, whereas closed-circuit rebreathers maintain a constant partial pressure of oxygen in the breathing gas. his means that the non-oxygen portion of the breathing gas which the part that determines decompression obligations is kept at a minimum. This allows the diver to stay longer at depth without requiring decompression and also to speed up the decompression process whenever there is a decomression obligation

Breathe warm, moist gas The breathed gas is warm rather than cold, as in open circuit because of the pressure reduction of substantial amounts of gas just prior to inhalation. So, less gas used in rebreathers means less cool gas is introduced. Our lungs contain a dense vascular system and much heat can be lost through exhalation. The rebreather allows the retention of body heat because temperature is maintained, in varying degrees, within the loop. In addition, rebreather gases are also warmed by the chemical reaction during the carbon dioxide scrubbing process.

The Sound of Silence Conventional scuba releases a large burst of noisy bubbles at each breath. This affects the behavior of

Rebreather disadvantages Compared with open circuit scuba, rebreathers have some disadvantages, including expense, complexity of operation and maintenance, and more critical paths to failure. ●● A malfunctioning rebreather can supply a gas mixture which contains too little oxygen to sustain life, or it may allow carbon dioxide to build up to dangerous levels. Some rebreather designers try to solve these problems by monitoring the system with electronics, sensors and alarm systems. These are expensive and susceptible to failure, improper configuration and misuse. ●● Oxygen rebreathers (simple closed circuit) are limited to a shallow depth range of approximately 6 m, beyond which the risk of acute oxygen toxicity rises to unacceptable levels very rapidly. ●● Semi-closed circuit rebreathers are less efficient than closed circuit, and are more mechanically complex than open circuit or closed dircuit oxygen rebreathers. ●● Closed circuit rebreathers are yet more mechanically complex, and generally rely on electronic instruments and control systems to monitor and maintain a safe breathing gas mixture. This makes them more expensive to produce, more complex to maintain and test, and sensitive to getting their circuitry wet. ●● Depending on the complexity of the rebreather, there are more failure modes than for open circuit scuba, and several of these failure modes are not easily recognised by the diver without technological intervention. A major disadvantage of a rebreather is that, due to a failure, gas may continue to be available for breathing, but the mixture provided may not support life, and this may not be apparent to the user. With open circuit, this type of failure can only occur if the diver selects an unsuitable gas, and the most Volume 5 Issue 2 | 13

Click on the image to see rebreather training on closed circuit scuba diving system

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common type of open circuit failure, the lack of gas supply, is immediately obvious, and corrective steps like changing to an alternative supply would be taken immediately. The bailout requirement of rebreather diving can sometimes also require a rebreather diver to carry almost as much bulk of cylinders as an open-circuit diver so the diver can complete the necessary decompression stops if the rebreather fails completely. Some rebreather divers prefer not to carry enough bailout for a safe ascent breathing open circuit, but instead rely on the rebreather, believing that an irrecoverable rebreather failure is very unlikely. This practice is known as alpinism or alpinist diving and is generally maligned due to the perceived extremely high risk of death if

4 Golden Rules

tion from a trusted, experienced and current instructor ●● Support. Make sure there is local support and other divers using the same kit near you. Also check the of support and service, turnaround times, availability of oxygen cells and other parts. Check online for comments and complaints from customers. ●● Manufacturing company. Check the history and stability of the manufacturing company. ●● Alarm systems. Make sure the unit provides visual, and or audio and tactile alarm systems. ●● Other features . Check for features such as “auto on” electronics, redundancy. battery type and sharing or replacement. ●● Cost. You should not buy a cheap parachute, so buy the best rebreathing equipment that you can afford.

The last decade of statistics show that equipment brand has not been a factor in accidents. Ergo, the most important decision you can make is not which make of rebreather you will buy, but rather the commitment to use your equipment safely.

Be safe

Four factors will prevent 90 percent of the accidents:

Make a pledge to yourself and your family that you will abide by the four Golden Rules.

1. Use a checklist every time you dive. 2. Do a proper, relaxed and complete prebreathe for five minutes with your nose blocked. 3. Don’t jump in the water unless all systems are working perfectly. 4. Replace your oxygen cells proactively every year.

Factors when buying a rebreather Beyond that, several factors may influence a purchase decision: ●● 3rd Party tests. Check for third-party tests for oxygen tracking, canister duration and other factors., as well as for details on their CE or equivalent testing. ●● Weight and size. Is it portable enough for your needs - will it conform to airline baggage weight constraints. ●● Training. Check the availability of instruc-

●● Self service. Check what you can reliably do yourself regarding needs ●● Consumables. Check the availability and cost of consumables like the scrubber and batteries.

A different way of diving The mouthpiece Unlike normal gear, you just drop the mouthpiece into the water - because water would fill the breathing loop and the scrubber canister. You will have to close the valve on the mouthpiece before you take it out of your mouth.

Adjusting boyancy You can’t adjust buoyancy by inhaling or exhaling, because the same amount of air just goes back and forth between your lungs and the rebreather. and never changes volume or buoyancy.

Pressure As depth increases, the increasing pressure will collapse the counterlungs just as it collapses BCs and dry suits. Some rebreathers automatically add more Volume 5 Issue 2 | 15

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gas to the breathing loop while other models require you to add gas manually.

Using the gas You will need to be frugal when inflating your BC or clearing your mask. This is because gas used for those actions is depleting a much smaller total supply. Also, you need to watch your gauges closely and buddies need to check each other‘s kit for air leaks.

Heavy breathing If you are exerting yourself - like pulling something or swimming against a current - your body will take oxygen out of the breathing loop faster than normal. Closed-circuit systems and passive semiclosed-circuit systems will sense this and add extra oxygen. However, active semiclosed systems will not. This means that you will have to remember to purge the breathing loop. This is done by exhaling the oxygen-poor gas through your nose so the rebreather can replace it with richer gas.

Ascent When commencing an ascent on a semiclosed-circuit rebreather the loop must be purged to enrich your breathing mixture, or the drop in pressure may cause the partial pressure of oxygen may become too low. Closed- circuit systems add oxygen automatically. You will also notice that during the ascent the rebreather will vent gas as the counterlungs expand. This is the only time the rebreather dumps a lot of gas, the reason being that “sawtooth” profiles are especially wasteful.

You may find that you are becoming increasingly buoyant during and ascent, caused by the rebreather not venting gas fast enough. You may have to manually dump from your BC, your dry suit or from the rebreather to maintaind acceptable buoyancy.

The bottom line ●● It is not only about the equipment - it is especially about you. Don’t even consider a rebreather is you are a flyby-the-seat-of-your-pants person. You may die without even realising it. With a rebreather, you will have to take full responsibility for your own safety. ●● Rebreathers are more complex than open-circuit gear - and you will have to be able to assemble, clean, maintain and repair the kit. The chances of your local African dive shop having a specialist are slim. The simplest rebreather has all the parts of your open-circuit setup plus a lot more - and all those parts, the connections between them and the 50+ O-rings need regular maintenance. ●● Like a pilot, you will need to be disciplined and religiously follow procedures and checklists. Filling scrubber canister and assembling the breathing loop involve steps that must be followed precisely - and tests that can’t be skipped. During the dive you have to watch gauges more closely than on open circuit. All said, the rebreather frontier offers great advantages - and great dangers. Be honest with yourself and make your decision with your head - not with your heart.

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i Mara Inside the migration


s far as they eye could see, in their thousands and tens of thousands, the wildebeest came.

Stringing down from the smooth yellow hills like ants in single file, they stopped and waited at on the bank of the Mara river in their uncounted masses. Below, the ancient crocodiles were waiting in the swift brown water, faces set in a sardonic, reptilian grin. They were ready.

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The great mass milled about, nervously watching the far bank. None wanted to be the first to go. They had no choice. And still the multitudes kept streaming down from the low hills, heads low, moaning softly. They joined the throng and waited. Suddenly an old male, the patchy skin smooth and grey with age, leapt far out into the river. It was the signal. Like a flock of birds, moving together with choreographed instinct, the masses began to cross. Pushed from the back, the animals in the front were forced over the bank and into the water - where the giant reptiles waited patiently. The crossing had begun. No television programme - no matter how carefully edited and eloquently narrated - can describe being in the middle of the pandemonium and action of the crossing. The bleats, the dust, the river, the death all combining to create the greatest spectacle I have ever seen. This is one of the greatest natural spectacles in the world. The annual movement of massive herds of wildebeest continues year-round in Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park and Kenya Masai Mara National Reserve.

Great Migration Movements December to May For the wildebeest only one place is truly home - the short grass plains of the southern Serengeti, from Lake Nduni to the Ngorongoro Conservation Area. This is where they are born and where they seek to return whenever there is plentiful grazing. From December up to May, once the November rains create ample grazing, up to two million wildebeest can be found here.

April - June The herds disperse throughout the central Serengeti, heading mostly in a north-western direction, towards the Western Corridor and the Grumeti River. Some will travel directly north, towards Seronera, while a few leave the Serengeti altogether.

June - July The wildebeest encounter the first major obstacle in their quest - the Grumeti River. In dry years, the river is reduced to a series of pools and the herds can Volume 5 Issue 2 | 21


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easily pick their way between the hippos and crocodiles in their depths. In wet years, the wildebeest are forced to plunge headfirst into waters inhabited by some of Africa’s largest crocodiles.

July - September The herds head north towards the lush plains of the northern Serengeti and the Masai Mara. The next set of spectacular river crossings takes place at the Mara River any time between July and October. Hundreds of thousands of wildebeest may congregate on the banks of the river, gazing dreamily at the green grass on the other side but not one will make a move.

October Most of the wildebeest are now in Kenya’s Masai Mara, although some still remain in the Serengeti. As the rains shift from east to west, the herds may cross the Mara River repeatedly, following the life-giving rains and the green grass that springs up after them.

November The herds now return to the place of their birth, the grassy plains of the southern Serengeti. Unlike their previous movements, the wildebeest do not wander off in smaller groups, but depart suddenly in a concerted movement, arriving in the south within just a few weeks.


have returned to the short grass plains of the southern Serengeti. We flew to Nairobi where we visited Karen Blixens’s home and ate impala, zebra, eland and other meats at the famous Carnivore restaurant. After sleeping over at the Nairobi Serena we took a charter to the small Mara airstrip.

Kichwa tembo We overnighted at the luxurios Kichwa Tembo tented camp. Translated, it means The Place of the Elephant) and it has been immortalised through famous tales of an olden day Masai Mara safari. Kichwa Tembo lies directly in the path of the Great Migration making it an ideal destination for the ultimate Masai Mara safari. The Masai Mara National Reserve is one of the richest and most diverse wildlife areas in the world. Known as the ‘spotted land’ to the Maasai, the reserve is home to a vast number of resident wildlife, as well as part of the annual phenomenon of the Great Migration. The migratory wildebeest, zebra, kongoni and topi join abundant elephant, hippo, buffalo, giraffe, lion and cheetah in the Mara. Leopard and serval are frequently encountered, while endangered black rhino can be found in the dense bush thickets.

By mid-December almost two million wildebeest will

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The Masai Mara National Reserve is part of a huge conservation area that also includes the Serengeti National Park and the Ngorongoro Conservation Area in neighbouring Tanzania. With no fences or man-made barriers, wildlife can move freely throughout this area, constantly recreating an ageless natural cycle. Go and see the migration. Borrow money if you must. Take the ones you love and just go. You can always get more money - but you can never borrow more time.

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Lion Encounter Underwater poison

Photo Peter Southwood

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t was a beautiful day at Malongane and the clear, calm Mozambican waters were slick as oil. We were going to dive Bass City, a formation of 5 rocks of almost identical size. I saw him 18 meters down in the gin-clear water. At 6 feet long, he looked like a massive grey barrel – and he was close. His protruding eyes watched me impassively as his massive gills pumped the clear water through his slightly-open mouth through which my head and shoulder would comfortably fit. His skin changed colour from slate-grey to blotched dark metal grey as I finned closer. I extended my arm and he moved away slightly but held his ground, his pectoral fins moving lazily. I began to stroke him softly while his beady stayed fixed on me. Bert was used to scuba divers and enjoyed the attention. Bass City is famous for its resident “tame” potato bass Bert. There are 4 other large potato basses on this reef but Bert is the only one who will come and swim with you – and allow himself to be touched. 22 meters, and I finned toward and overhanging coral shelf to investigate. The mechanical sound of my regulated breathing was loud in my ears and it sent a stream of silver bubbles to the surface far above. It was when I tried to use my hands to maneuver myself to peek under the ledge that I struck the Lionfish with my right hand.

Mitch Mitchell

Shocked, I watched a broad ribbon of blood fly from my fingers in the slight current. It looked purple in the diminished light.

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Photo Jens Petersen

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Photo Alexander Vasenin

The lionfish is one of the most venomous fish on the ocean floor ranking second only to stingrays in the total number of envenomations worldwide, with an estimated 40,000-50,000 cases annually. Lionfish have venomous dorsal spines that are used purely for defense, and when threatened the fish often faces its attacker in an upside down posture which brings its spines to bear. Lionfish stings are usually not fatal to humans. When is stung, intense throbbing, sharp pain, tingling sensations, sweatiness and blistering will result. In worst case scenarios the symptoms may include headache, nausea, abdominal pain, delirium, seizures, paralysis of limbs, changes in blood pressure, breathing difficulties, heart failure and tremors, pulmonary edema, and loss of consciousness A common treatment is soaking the afflicted area in hot water, as there is currently no anti-venom. However, immediate emergency medical treatment is still advised as some people are more susceptible to the venom than others. The red lionfish (Pterois volitans) is a venomous coral reef fish in the family Scorpaenidae, order Scorpaeniformes. P. volitans is natively found in the Indo-Pacific region, but has become a huge invasive problem in the Caribbean Sea and along the East Coast of the United States, along with a similar species, Pterois miles. Red lionfish are clad in white stripes alternated with red, maroon, or brown. Adults can grow as large as 17 inches (43 cm) in length, while juveniles may be shorter than 1 inch (2.5 cm).[1] They can live up to 10 years.[2] It has large, venomous spines that protrude from the body like a mane, giving it the common name of the lionfish. The venomous spines make the fish inedible or deter most potential predators. Lionfish reproduce monthly and are able to quickly disperse during their larval stage for expansion of their invasive region. There are no definitive predators of the lionfish, and many organizations are promoting the harvest and consumption of lionfish in efforts to prevent further increases in the already high population densities.

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Reproduction They are mainly a solitary species and courting is the only time they aggregate, generally one male with several females. Both P. volitans and P. miles are gonochoristic, only showing sexual dimorphism during reproduction. Similar courtship behaviors are observed in all Pterois species, including circling, sidewinding, following, and leading. Lionfish are mostly nocturnal, leading to the behaviors typically around nightfall and continuing through the night. After courtship, the female releases two egg masses that are fertilized by the male before floating to the surface. The eggs are kept together by a mucus which disintegrates within a few days to release larvae. Data suggest Lionfish can reproduce monthly, through all seasons of the year.

Early life history and dispersal Although little is known about the larval stage of the lionfish, some traits of the larvae include a large head, a long, triangular snout, long, serrated head spines, a larve pelvic spine, and coloration only in the pelvic fins. Larvae hatch 36 hours after fertilization. They are good swimmers and can eat small ciliates just four days after conception. The larval stage is the shortest stage of the lionfish’s life, with a duration of about one month.

Venom Lionfish venomous dorsal spines are used purely for defense. When threatened, the fish often faces its attacker in an upside-down posture which brings its spines to bear. However, its sting is usually not fatal to humans. If a human is envenomed, that person will experience extreme pain, and possibly headaches, vomiting, and breathing difficulties. A common treatment is soaking the afflicted area in hot water, as very few hospitals carry specific treatments. However, immediate emergency medical treatment is still advised, as some people are more susceptible to the venom than others.

Predators and prey In its invasive range, few predators of the lionfish have been documented. Most larger Atlantic and Caribbean fish and sharks that should be able to eat the lionfish have not recognized them as prey, likely due to the novelty of the fish in the invaded areas. Volume 5 Issue 2 | 35

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Lionfish have, however, been found in the stomachs of Nassau and tiger groupers in the Bahamas.

and be followed by tissue sloughing, inflammation and loss of sensation around the sting.

The lionfish themselves are voracious feeders and have outcompeted and filled the niche of the overfished snapper and grouper. When hunting, they corner prey using their large fins, then use their quick reflexes to swallow the prey whole.

Other symptoms may include, nausea, muscle weakness, shortness of breath and low blood pressure. Mild subsequent pain may persist for days to weeks.

hey hunt primarily from late afternoon to dawn. High rates of prey consumption, a wide variety of prey, and increasing abundance of the fish lead to concerns the fish may have a very active role in the already declining trend of fish densities. As the fish become more abundant, they are becoming a threat to the fragile ecosystems they have invaded. Between outcompeting similar fish and having a varied diet, the Lionfish is drastically changing and disrupting the food chains holding the marine ecosystems together. As these chains are disrupted, declining densities of other fish populations are found, as well as declines in the overall diversity of coral reef areas

Envenomation Classic envenomation consists of one or more puncture wounds, each discolored by a surrounding ring of bluish tissue. Immediate and excruciating and localized pain immediately follow envenomation. This pain may spread to involve the entire limb and regional lymph nodes, peaking at around 60-90 minutes and lasting up to 12 hours if untreated. Subsequent swelling caused by fluid in your body’s tissues, redness or rash, and warmth may involve the entire limb. Stings rarely result in tissue necrosis in the absence of secondary infection as is the case in stingray envenomations. Small blisters - particularly on the hands - may form

The severity of envenomation depends upon multiple factors including the offending species, the number of stings, and the age and underlying health of the victim. Scorpaenidae stings are progressively more severe from Pterois (lionfish) to Scorpaena (scorpionfish) to Synanceia (stonefish).

Treatment ●● Gently remove visible spines ●● Apply direct pressure to sting area control bleeding ●● Administer pain relief medication ●● Transport for medical evaluation. ●● Stay alert to serious systemic symptoms and prompt institution of appropriate life-saving procedures, such as cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and treatment for anaphylaxis. Most references recommend that initial therapy consist of immersion into hot water (upper limit of 114 degrees Fahrenheit or 45 degrees Celsius) after removal of visible spines and sheath, in order to inactivate the components of the venom that might otherwise cause a severe systemic reaction. The affected limb should be immersed in water no warmer than 114 degrees Fahrenheit, or 45 degrees Celsius. Be careful not to inflict thermal burns by placing a limb as a result of loss of feeling or decreased sensitivity as a result of pain into scalding water. Medical treatment may include antibiotics, cardiovascular agents and corticosteroids Source Wikipedia

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Dorado T

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Tactics Catch gold

Mike Laubscher


orado is Spanish for “golden” and it reminds one of El Dorado, the lost city of Gold, which is due to the conspicuous coloring of this species. Dorado is also a constellation in the Southern Sky that has a Large Magellanic Cloud surrounding it. The Dorado - also known as Mahi-mahi and Dolphin fish - is one of the most fun fish to catch in our oceans, their greedy gregarious feeding habits along with the aerial acrobatics when hooked up make this species a firm favourite amongst offshore anglers, not to mention the fact that they also make good table fare. The name Mahi-mahi comes from Hawaii which means “very strong” and I am

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A stunning Bull Dorado caught offshore Durban

Johan Putter with a nice Dorado caught at Coconut Bay from a kayak 42 | Volume 5 Issue 2

quite certain that this derives from the fight these fish give when hooked up.


You will often find them hunting near shallow pinnacles and ledges, colour lines, current lines, weed lines - and one of my personal favorite places - is by floating debris. Off Durban you will also find them at the FADS.

I love using feathers for Dorado

There are many lures that can be used, and I have Dorado are surface dwellers and are found offshore caught them on small spoons meant for Queen in temperate, tropical and subtropical waters all over Mackerel right through to large 12 inch Konas meant the world, they are an extremely fast growing spefor Marlin so there is no cies with an average saying which lure is perlifespan of around 5yrs, fect for them, I will list average sizes caught are some of my favourites from 6-15Kgs, they can which have produced get larger with some fish me many Dorado over reaching well over 20Kgs the years. which are usually bulls and are highly sought Lipped Lures. after by Sport anglers worldwide. These fish ofMy personal favourites ten swim in small shoals are the shallow runners when younger, and the Halco Laser Pros in the mature ones are usually 160 size found in pairs, so you can be sure if you catch Rapala X-Rap Splash Rapala X-Rap Splash Baits - Size 14 a male the female is right Baits in size 14 there close by. Colours that I prefer are Dorado will usually be around when water temperaPink, Red heads and Blue Silver. tures reach 24°C and higher. They are known as These can be trolled from 4 knots right through to an open water species it is common that they are around 9 knots. caught out in the deeper waters, but these fish can also often be found near shallow reefs and even right behind the breakers. Feathers

When you go out looking for Dorado you need to find these types of places and you will most likely find Dorado. They are not a difficult fish to hook up as they are ravenous greedy predators that will eat just about anything that moves from small to large, fast moving and slow moving, they like bright colours and shiny things and so just about any lure will do the trick.

Medium size Konas

Tuna Feathers work extremely well, just change the Tuna hook to a single Jet Feathers, specifically the Williamson ones Small flash feathers Colours that I prefer Blue/ White, Red/White, Black/ Purple, Green/Yellow, Red/Black These can be trolled from 6 knots right through to around 12 knots.

Konas from 6 inch right through to 9 inch, with 8 inch being my favourite. Cup Faced Konas work like a charm off the riggers Slanted faced Konas are best off the corners, and don’t be scared to come in close, even as close as 5 meters Volume 5 Issue 2 | 43

When trolling Konas I like to stick a large one far back on the shot gun, typically I like to use a mould craft wide range here. Colours that I prefer Orange/Yellow, Black/ Purple, Blue/Pink, Blue/ White, Red/Black These can be trolled from 6 knots right through to around 12 knots. Lures like the Island lures are ideal for adding strip baits, and 6 inch cupped faced lures like the Williamson Sailfish Catcher are perfect for adding whole dead baits into your trolling spread. Once you have a hook up and you are fighting the fish, do not clear all your lines and never ever stop the boat, keep it at least one motor engaged. I usually like to keep one of the rigger lines and the shot gun out as far too many times you will get the mate screaming off with one of these whilst you are fighting the initial hook up.

Dead Baits and Live Baits Halco Laser Pro 160

Dorado loooove dead sardines and mackerel, these can be fished in several ways, as mentioned above you can use sardines to add some flavor to you Konas, and you can also troll them slowly behind the boat, especially when you find floating debris, weed lines and so on.

You can also fish these dead baits or live Mackerel on the drift using balloons which keep baits close to the surface. Where you keep close to a weed line or near debris and - there is a fast current - there is no need to use balloons as the speed alone will keep your baits up. Drifting dead sardines and live mackerel like this works extremely well when the North East wind is blowing. You can also use spinning rods and cast these dead sardines at the weed lines or debris whilst on the drift. For drifting dead baits I like to use a leader of 0.8mm - 1.0mm and a narrow gauge J hook from 6/0 to 8/0 which you simply push through the eye sockets, and a 7/0 circle hook also works extremely well.

Keep a spinning rod handy for pitch baits and once you get your first fish close to the boat hold him there about 10m away, rig up a dead sardine on the spinning rod and cast it out and let this drift because if it was a shoal all the other Dorados will be following that fish, only once this baited line goes on with Feathers and Island Lures a fish do you bring in the initial fish, and you repeat this procedure until there is no more action, often you can get another 5 or 6 Dorado Again, once you have the 1st fish on, do not boat him once you have the initial hook up, but almost always until you get the second hook up. you will at least catch the mate. This method makes your boat into a FAD (Fish Aggregating Device) all by itself and you will often find 44 | Volume 5 Issue 2

the Dorado feeding right at the boat. Often using this method we have had 5 or even 6 fish on at the same time.

Handling Dorado To have a clear conscience after writing this article, I have to include a little about handling these fish. Dorado are bad tempered fish, and when hooked up fight like mad and jump like crazy, once on board they go even crazier and if not dealt with correctly can cause injury to those on the boat, especially when chain gangs are involved. The best thing to do is before you gaff the fish, have a crew member open the fish hatch so when you gaff the fish, you gaff and bring over board directly into the fish hatch in one move and shut the door.

Bullfighting and keeping your wickets A few years ago whilst fishing with some clients we had a good day catching Snoek (Queen Mackerel), but now the Snoek had gone quiet and so we made our way to the deep side of No.1 to do some bottom fishing. Before I even had the bottom rods ready we noticed Dorado flashing by the boat, and so I changed the

rigging and we started pitching dead sardines, I remember that day very well because we already had 11 Snoek onboard and we only had 19 sardines on board and each one produced a Dorado. The fishing was crazy mad and for most of the time all 5 of us had a Dorado on and we were running around the centre consul deck knitting whilst the fish who were trying their utmost to tangle us up, we already had about 10 Dorado on board when one of the guys hooked into a Big Bull of around 15Kg’s and he really tested the spinning tackle to its limits but eventually we got this angry slapping Small Konas ball of Dorado onto the boat. This was where the real fun began, because when I gaffed him and swung this bad tempered fish overboard he wriggled off the gaff landing on deck, 3 guys were still fighting their Dorado’s and this Bull decided to start flapping his way around the deck chasing and slapping everyone on board, luckily the hook had come out so there was no danger of this but we all got our fair share of Dorado blood painting. The beast was determined not to be caught and when at the bow he tried to jump over board, to me there was no ways this fish was going back and I pulled him back and sat on him, it was when I sat on this Bull that he decided to snack on my family jewels rendering me useless for several minutes!

An outdoors person who loves, respects, admires nature and God’s creation with a passion, Mike has been fishing since the age of 7yrs old where he started in Durban harbour. With a special love for animals, especially fish and birds, Mike collected Tropical marine fish and kept an aquarium for many years, which he says taught him a lot about fish behavior. Mike is in his sanctuary when out on the water surrounded by nature, away from the hustle and bustle. Visit his web site at http:// www.bluewatercharters.co.za

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nd f ale a


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M77 Hawkeye African The new Ruger

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turm, Ruger & Company, Inc., had its beginning in a small machine shop occupying a rented frame building in Southport, Connecticut. In January, 1949, with an initial investment of only $50,000 and an idea, William B. Ruger and Alexander M. Sturm started production of a .22 caliber autoloading pistol–a design which was so successful that it became the cornerstone upon which one of the most comprehensive lines of sporting firearms ever made in America was established. Volume 5 Issue 2 | 51

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After Alex Sturm’s death in 1951, William B. Ruger continued to direct the Company until his death in 2002. William B. Ruger, Jr. continued to provide guidance, which helped make this Company a sound and successful enterprise, until his retirement in 2006. The Company has continued to prosper, under new management and guidance from their Board, with new products and fresh perspectives.

Trigger The African Hawkeye is fitted with a LC6 trigger with smooth, crisp out-of-the-box performance.

Ruger, in this relatively short time, has established itself as a leading small arms design organization, developing a unique and broad line of fine quality sporting, military and police firearms to become one of the world’s most famous producers of revolvers, pistols, rifles and shotguns.

Extractor The extractor is a non-rotating, mausertype round feed extractor - one of the best ever invented.

Since 1949, Ruger craftsmen have built many millions of firearms. During its six decades of growth and progress under the leadership of William B. Ruger, the Company developed a business philosophy and implemented policies which represent a constructive influence in the life of modern America. From the beginning, Ruger played a positive role in conservation efforts and has supported the interests of shooters through such groups as the National Rifle Association, National Shooting Sports Foundation, and many regional sportsmen’s organizations. The Company has always endeavored to market its firearms for constructive and recreational purposes, to emphasize the traditional and responsible aspects of shooting, to render meaningful public services, and to encourage shooters in constructive, responsible, and safe participation in the shooting sports. Its motto, “Arms Makers For Responsible Citizens ,” exemplifies this Company philosophy. Today, Ruger is particularly mindful of those elements which have contributed to the creation of its success, and extends heartfelt thanks to its many loyal employees and customers.

Floor plate The floor plate is steel and hinged for easy unloading. The latch is flush with the trigger guard to avoid accidental dumping of cartridges.

Muzzle-brake system The muzzle-brake system includes a removable, radial-port muzzle brake that significantly reduces felt recoil. Switching between the brake and weight does not affect the bullet’s point of impact for a particular load.

The New Hawkeye African

Three-position Safety

The Hawkeye African features a standard length action, which results in a shorter bolt stroke and easier feeding than traditional magnum-sized rifles. Models chambered in 375 Ruger boast one of the most practical, hard-hitting cartridges for large and dangerous game. It is available in American Walnut in right and left-handed models, 300 Win Mag, 338 Win Mag, 375 Ruger, 416 Ruger and 223 Remington. Metalwork is satin blue alloy steel.

The safety allows the hunter to lock the bolt and unload the rifle with the safety engaged.

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Scope Mounts

Other features

Integral scope mounts are machined directly on the solid steel receiver. Scope rings are included free with the rifle.

The rifle also features: ●● a rugged, one-piece stainless steel bolt

Stock The stock is walnut and ergonomically designed with more rounded contours along the barrel, bottom of the stock and on top of the pistol grip

●● swivel studs with both a barrel-band mounted stud and optional fore-end stud supplied for mounting sling swivels

Sights Front sights are large, white bead with shallow, Express-style windage-adjustable “V” notch rear sights.

Built with versatility, style and performance in mind, these rifles meet the challenges of hunters throughout the world. Offering shooters a host of functional enhancements that provide rewarding shooting experiences - slim ergonomics, classic checkering of the walnut stock, and the LC6™ trigger - Ruger M77 Hawkeye rifles will impress knowledgeable shooters with their performance-improving features. In addition, these bolt-action rifles contain all the value-added characteristics of yesterday’s Ruger rifles: positive floor plate latch, integral scope mounts, three-position safety and hammer-forged barrels. All of these innovations, combined with legendary Ruger reliability, are features that big game hunters from Africa to Alaska can feel. Chambered in calibers from the varmint shooting 204 Ruger to the big bore 416 Ruger, there is an M77 Hawkeye for every game animal, on every continent and in any weather.

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African hunters of yesteryear

The African hunters of days gone by have had experiences few hunters have today. In those days, the game was much more plentiful and regulations were non-existent. Hunting was more dangerous in those days - no chopper evacuation when clawed up by a wounded leopard and no protection against marauding tribesmen. We can learn something from them. In this series, we feature some of the writings of the hunters that came before us and who hunted in an era we think of with nostalgia.

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The Maneating lions of



by Lieut.-Col. J. H. Patterson, D.S.O.


day or two after the departure of my allies, as I was leaving my boma soon after dawn on December 9, I saw a Swahili running excitedly towards me, shouting out “Simba! Simba!” (“Lion! Lion!”), and every now and again looking behind him as he ran. On questioning him I found that the lions had tried to snatch a man from the camp by the river, but being foiled in this had seized and killed one of the donkeys, and were at that moment busy devouring it not far off. Now was my chance. Volume 5 Issue 2 | 69

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I rushed for the heavy rifle which Farquhar had kindly left with me for use in case an opportunity such as this should arise, and, led by the Swahili, I started most carefully to stalk the lions, who, I devoutly hoped, were confining their attention strictly to their meal. I was getting on splendidly, and could just make out the outline of one of them through the dense bush, when unfortunately my guide snapped a rotten branch. The wily beast heard the noise, growled his defiance, and disappeared in a moment into a patch of even thicker jungle close by. In desperation at the thought of his escaping me once again, I crept hurriedly back to the camp, summoned the available workmen and told them to bring all the tom-toms, tin cans, and other noisy instruments of any kind that could be found. As quickly as possible I posted them in a half-circle round the thicket, and gave the head jemadar instructions to start a simultaneous beating of the tom-toms and cans as soon as he judged that I had had time to get round to the other side. I then crept round by myself and soon found a good position and one which the lion was most likely to retreat past, as it was in the middle of a broad animal path leading straight from the place where he was concealed. I lay down behind a small ant hill, and waited expectantly. Very soon I heard a tremendous din being raised by the advancing line of coolies, and almost immediately, to my intense joy, out into the open path stepped a huge maneless lion. It was the first occasion during all these trying months upon which I had had a fair chance at one of these brutes, and my satisfaction at the prospect of bagging him was unbounded. Slowly he advanced along the path, stopping every few seconds to look round. I was only partially concealed from view, and if his attention had not been so fully occupied by the noise behind him, he must have observed me. As he was oblivious to my presence, however, I let him approach to within about fifteen yards of me, and then covered him with my rifle. The moment I moved to do this, he caught sight of me, and seemed much astonished at my sudden appearance, for he stuck his forefeet into the ground, threw himself back on his haunches and growled savagely. As I covered his brain with my rifle, I felt that at last I had him absolutely at my mercy, but . . . . never trust an untried weapon! I pulled the trigger, and to my horror heard the dull snap that tells of a misfire. Worse was to follow. I was so taken aback and disconcerted by this untoward accident that I entirely forgot to fire the left barrel, and lowered the rifle from my shoulder with the intention of reloading -- if

I should be given time. Fortunately for me, the lion was so distracted by the terrific din and uproar of the coolies behind him that instead of springing on me, as might have been expected, he bounded aside into the jungle again. By this time I had collected my wits, and just as he jumped I let him have the left barrel. An answering angry growl told me that he had been hit; but nevertheless he succeeded once more in getting clear away, for although I tracked him for some little distance, I eventually lost his trail in a rocky patch of ground. Bitterly did I anathematise the hour in which I had relied on a borrowed weapon, and in my disappointment and vexation I abused owner, maker, and rifle with fine impartiality. On extracting the unexploded cartridge, I found that the needle had not struck home, the cap being only slightly dented; so that the whole fault did indeed lie with the rifle, which I later returned to Farquhar with polite compliments. Seriously, however, my continued ill-luck was most exasperating; and the result was that the Indians were more than ever confirmed in their belief that the lions were really evil spirits, proof against mortal weapons. Certainly, they did seem to bear charmed lives. After this dismal failure there was, of course, nothing to do but to return to camp. Before doing so, however, I proceeded to view the dead donkey, which I found to have been only slightly devoured it the quarters. It is a curious fact that lions always begin at the tail of their prey and eat upwards towards the head. As their meal had thus been interrupted evidently at the very beginning, I felt pretty sure that one or other of the brutes would return to the carcase at nightfall. Accordingly, as there was no tree of any kind close at hand, I had a staging erected some ten feet away from the body. This machan was about twelve feet high and was composed of four poles stuck into the ground and inclined towards each other at the top, where a plank was lashed to serve as a seat. Further, as the nights were still pitch dark, I had the donkey’s carcase secured by strong wires to a neighbouring stump, so that the lions might not be able to drag it away before I could get a shot at them. At sundown, therefore, I took up my position on my airy perch, and much to the disgust of my gun-bearer, Mahina, I decided to go alone. I would gladly have taken him with me, indeed, but he had a bad cough, and I was afraid lest he should make any involuntary noise or movement which might spoil all. Darkness fell almost immediately, and everything became extraordinarily still. The silence of an African jungle on a dark night needs to be experienced to be realised; it Volume 5 Issue 2 | 71

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is most impressive, especially when one is absolutely alone and isolated from one’s fellow creatures, as I was then. The solitude and stillness, and the purpose of my vigil, all had their effect on me, and from a condition of strained expectancy I gradually fell into a dreamy mood which harmonised well with my surroundings. Suddenly I was startled out of my reverie by the snapping of a twig: and, straining my ears for a further sound, I fancied I could hear the rustling of a large body forcing its way through the bush. “The man-eater,” I thought to myself; “surely to-night my luck will change and I shall bag one of the brutes.” Profound silence again succeeded; I sat on my eyrie like a statue, every nerve tense with excitement. Very soon, however, all doubt as to the presence of the lion was dispelled. A deep long-drawn sigh -- sure sign of hunger -- came up from the bushes, and the rustling commenced again as he cautiously advanced. In a moment or two a sudden stop, followed by an angry growl, told me that my presence had been noticed; and I began to fear that disappointment awaited me once more. But no; matters quickly took an unexpected turn. The hunter became the hunted; and instead of either making off or coming for the bait prepared for him, the lion began stealthily to stalk me! For about two hours he horrified me by slowly creeping round and round my crazy structure, gradually edging his way nearer and nearer. Every moment I expected him to rush it; and the staging had not been constructed with an eye to such a possibility. If one of the rather flimsy poles should break, or if the lion could spring the twelve feet which separated me from the ground . . . the thought was scarcely a pleasant one. I began to feel distinctly “creepy,” and heartily repented my folly in having placed myself in such a dangerous position. I kept perfectly still, however, hardly daring even to blink my eyes: but the long-continued strain was telling on my nerves, and my feelings may be better imagined than described when about midnight suddenly something came flop and struck me on the back of the head. For a moment I was so terrified that I nearly fell off the plank, as I thought that the lion had sprung on me from behind. Regaining my senses in a second or two, I realised that I had been hit by nothing more formidable than an owl, which had doubtless mistaken me for the branch of a tree -- not a very alarming thing to happen in ordinary circumstances, I admit, but coming at the time it did, it almost paralysed me. The involuntary start which I could not help giving was immediately answered by a sinister growl from below.

After this I again kept as still as I could, though absolutely trembling with excitement; and in a short while I heard the lion begin to creep stealthily towards me. I could barely make out his form as he crouched among the whitish undergrowth; but I saw enough for my purpose, and before he could come any nearer, I took careful aim and pulled the trigger. The sound of the shot was at once followed by a most terrific roar, and then I could hear him leaping about in all directions. I was no longer able to see him, however, as his first bound had taken him into the thick bush; but to make assurance doubly sure, I kept blazing away in the direction in which I heard him plunging about. At length came a series of mighty groans, gradually subsiding into deep sighs, and finally ceasing altogether; and I felt convinced that one of the “devils” who had so long harried us would trouble us no more. As soon as I ceased firing, a tumult of inquiring voices was borne across the dark jungle from the men in camp about a quarter of a mile away. I shouted back that I was safe and sound, and that one of the lions was dead: whereupon such a mighty cheer went up from all the camps as must have astonished the denizens of the jungle for miles around. Shortly I saw scores of lights twinkling through the bushes: every man in camp turned out, and with tom-toms beating and horns blowing came running to the scene. They surrounded my eyrie, and to my amazement prostrated themselves on the ground before me, saluting me with cries of “Mabarak! Mabarak!” which I believe means “blessed one” or “saviour.” All the same, I refused to allow any search to be made that night for the body of the lion, in case his companion might be close by; besides, it was possible that he might be still alive, and capable of making a last spring. Accordingly we all returned in triumph to the camp, where great rejoicings were kept up for the remainder of the night, the Swahili and other African natives celebrating the occasion by an especially wild and savage dance. For my part, I anxiously awaited the dawn; and even before it was thoroughly light I was on my way to the eventful spot, as I could not completely persuade myself that even yet the “devil” might not have eluded me in some uncanny and mysterious way. Happily my fears proved groundless, and I was relieved to find that my luck -- after playing me so many exasperating tricks -- had really turned at last. I had scarcely traced the blood for more than a few paces when, on rounding a bush, I was startled to see a huge lion right in front of me, seemingly alive and crouching for a spring. On looking closer, Volume 5 Issue 2 | 73

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however, I satisfied myself that he was really and truly stone-dead, whereupon my followers crowded round, laughed and danced and shouted with joy like children, and bore me in triumph shoulder-high round the dead body. These thanksgiving ceremonies being over, I examined the body and found that two bullets had taken effect -- one close behind the left shoulder, evidently penetrating the heart, and the other in the off hind leg. The prize was indeed one to be proud of; his length from tip of nose to tip of tail was nine feet eight inches, he stood three feet nine

inches high, and it took eight men to carry him back to camp. The only blemish was that the skin was much scored by the boma thorns through which he had so often forced his way in carrying off his victims. The news of the death of one of the notorious maneaters soon spread far and wide over the country: telegrams of congratulation came pouring in, and scores of people flocked from up and down the railway to see the skin for themselves.

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If you’re going home, you don’t get wet. The day the monkey is destined to die, all the trees get slippery.

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Cleaning your mamba

Bush Cuisine Cut of the head and bury it: sometimes stepping the head cab inject venom into the foot.

Pull of the skin like the stocking from a leg

Put a stick through the body just behind the head.

Remove the intestines - this is the start of a great meal


Ingredients ●● 15ml (1 tablespoon) Vegetable oil, butter or fat ●● 75g (3 oz) bacon, rinded and chopped ●● 175g (6 oz) mushrooms, chopped - make sure they are not poisonous ●● 1 onion, skinned and chopped ●● 1 medium-sized mamba or other snake, cleaned and cut into 3cm/1½” pieces ●● 60ml (4 tablespoons) brandy ●● 45ml (3 level tablespoons) flour ●● 400ml (¾ pint) red wine

1. Heat the oil and butter a pan and fry the bacon, mushrooms and onions for 3-4 minutes, until browned. Remove from the pan. 2. Powder the snake with cornflower and fry for 8-10 minutes until golden brown 3. Pour the brandy over the snake, remove from the flame and light the liquid with a burning stick from the fire. When the flames die down, remove the snake but not the liquid - from the pan. 4. Stir the flower into the fat remaining in the pan and cook for 2-3 minutes 5. Gradually add the wine and guinea fowl/francolin stock and bring to the boil until thickened. Add sugar and seasoning.

●● 150ml (¼ pint) guinea fowl/francolin stock

6. Return the snake, bacon and mushrooms and onion to the pan

●● 15ml (teaspoon) sugar

7. Cover and cook for 1 hour until tender

●● Salt and pepper

8. Garnish with lemon, parsley and tomato and serve

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Fer au Vin:

Black mamba in brandy

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We are the green revolution. We do not print many thousands of copies and have hundreds stay on the shelves or come back to us. We distribute digitally and print on demand only. This is negates the necessity of the cutting down of trees to make paper - which will never be used.

Viva la Revolution!


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Make a Plan

CLICK HERE to buy your copy of Make a Plan now for only $8.50

Hints and advice are given in good faith to be of help in emergencies. The writer as well as the publisher, personnel and agents concerned does not accept any responsibility for any injury, accident or damages that might arise from the use of any of the hints. 96 | Volume 5 Issue 2


Cold drinks in the bush There is nothing better than an ice-cold beer or drink after a warm day in the veld - but is almost undrinkable if it is lukewarm. What do you do to get them cold quickly? Firstly, don’t even think to put them in the freezer, that takes too long to get cold. ●● If ice is available, put the bottles or tins in a container, preferably insulated and cover with the ice. Then throw a couple of handful of salt over the ice. Wait a minute or two and then throw water in to cover the top of the bottles or tins. If there is more ice at hand, put another layer of ice with salt on top. Wait for about ten min- utes and see, ice cold drinks ready to quench an intense thirst. If you are really so desperate for refreshments and you do not worry about cost, the next method will work faster and better. ●● Put the bottles or tins in a container and then spray a big carbon dioxide (CO2) fire extinguisher empty over the drinks. It is not only very impressive but your drinks will also be ice-cold in a minute. ●● The very best idea is to put your drinks in the fridge early. If there is no fridge the following ideas might help to get your drinks cool but unfortunately not ice cold. ●● Bury your drinks in wet sand or place it in a flowing stream or a deep water pool. Just remember where you buried it or make sure it cannot wash away. ●● Evaporation usually leads to cooling. Those old canvas water bags that were hanging in front of the vehicle to cool, is a very good example of the phenomenon. Here Dr Wallace Vosloo is a variation of the principle. ●● Look for a tree where the wind is blowing. Now place your drinks in a jute bag. The opening of the bag must hang loosely. Wet the whole caboodle properly with water then hang it on the tree. Fill another container with water and hang it next to the bag – a big bucket or a 20 litre drum, cut open, will work well. Place the opening of the bag as deep as possible in the water container. The water will slowly, through capillary action, flow from the container to the bag full of drinks and thus keep it wet. ●● Evaporation, driven on by wind, will cause that the bag and its contents, will cool down. Just remember to keep the bag filled up with water so that the bag stays wet, and exercise patience because the process is rather slow.

is an Engineer and Scientist by profession. His family has lived in Africa since 1696 and he has a deep love for the continent. He is a practical outdoorsman and loves traditional hunting, axe and knife throwing, longbow shooting, black powder rifle- and cannon shooting, salt and fresh water fly fishing and tracking. The art of survival is Wallace’s main field of interest and his passion is to transfer these old forgotten skills to young hunters.

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Your African safari is a unique experience. Now you can document your hunt day by day and revisit those exciting times for years to come. 31 Full days of journaling space with vital information: ●● safari clothing ●● personal item checklists ●● health and first aid ●● mammal identification information with photographs, tracks, dung and SCI and Rowland Ward qualification minimums.

Know how to administer CPR. Deal with dangerous animals up close. Identify and treat bites from snakes, spiders and scorpions. Know the right emergency numbers to dial in an emergency – it’s all there. A must-have item for every serious hunter. Sturdy PlastiCoil binding for durability and easy opening, 110 pages, 6.0 x 9.0 in. Full color covers and cream interior printed in black and white.

Volume 5 Issue 2 | 99

True North

100 | Volume 5 Issue 2

You have an enemy I drove you in disgrace from the mount of God, and I expelled you, O guardian cherub, from among the fiery stones. (Ezekiel 28:16) So evil entered the Story. I am staggered by the level of naïveté that most people live with regarding evil. They don’t take it seriously. They don’t live as though the Story has a Villain. Not the devil prancing about in red tights, carrying a pitchfork, but the incarnation of the very worst of every enemy you’ve met in every other story. Dear God—the Holocaust, child prostitution, terrorist bombings, genocidal governments. What is it going to take for us to take evil seriously? Life is very confusing if you do not take into account that there is a Villain. That you, my friend, have an enemy. One of the things that surprised me when I first read the New Testament seriously was that it talked so much about a Dark Power in the universe—a mighty evil spirit who was held to be the Power behind death, disease, and sin . . . Christianity thinks this Dark Power was created by God, and was good when he was created, and went wrong. Christianity agrees . . . this is a universe at war. (C. S. Lewis, Mere Christianity)

John Eldredge

Satan mounted his rebellion through the power of an idea: God is holding out on us. After their insurrection was squelched, and they were hurled from the high walls of heaven, that question lingers like smoke from a forest fire: Is God truly good? Is he holding out on us?

Profile for African Expedition Magazine

African Expedition Magazine Volume 5 Issue 2  

Will your next dive be 3 hours long? : Everything you need to know about rebreathers | Masai Mara: Inside the migration | Lion Encounter: Un...

African Expedition Magazine Volume 5 Issue 2  

Will your next dive be 3 hours long? : Everything you need to know about rebreathers | Masai Mara: Inside the migration | Lion Encounter: Un...

Profile for axmag