Without wanting to retract from the beauty and splendour of other game species, I feel that hunting Sable fall into a sort of prestige category. It is in my opinion one of the “holy grail” group of plains game antelope joined only by a few other such as the Roan, Livingston and Lord Derby Eland. For any serious hunter it is a must have in your trophy room. Although hunting Sable is expensive, it is a sure fire way of separating the average hunt form the exceptional one.
The Sable is a large African antelope and really stands out in his home on the plains, especially during winter when the veld takes on its natural color. The name 'sable' is indicative of this beast's color. The bulls display a shiny black coat, while the female of and their young have a dark reddish brown. This majestic animal also displayas pure white markings on its belly and face which are n vivid contrast of the rest of its body. The Sable is a bit smaller and slightly slender than its cousin the Roan, but still one of the most majestic of the African antelopes.
Both sexes carry horns. The horns of the Sable bull are exceptional and the longest of any African antelope, except the Kudu. Dependant on water, they prefer open and sparse woodland area in close proximity to the grasslands. Normally living in herds of up to 30, larger herds are not uncommon. Like the Roan, Sable bulls are very territorial and the hunter is in for a serious encounter if he does not retreat. When this animal feels threatened, it will go into combat which is done by kneeling and rapid sweeps of its sharp and powerful horns. This can often result in the death of one of its combatants. Hunters should be very weary of this animal, because when he is cornered, wounded or just feels a bit threatened, he will not hesitate to charge you.
Hunting Sable is best during the early morning hours and late afternoon when he grazes in or near the open grasslands. Being a daily drinker, you can ambush him as he approaches the water. When hunting sable in the herd, look for the bull to be somewhere on the edges.
The Sable bull is a proud animal and always appears to remain at a distance. This rather cocky attitude makes him very easy to approach. Use this trait against him, but remember his aggressive nature and stay alert in case of a charge. The mature Sable bull is indeed a majestic animal and is a must have if the opportunity presents itself.