Hunting Damara Dik Dik in Namibia
Are you planning on hunting Damara dik-dik in Namibia? If so, then a little background information is in order. The Damara dik-dik is a small antelope, genus Madoqua, that lives in the bush of Namibia and south-western Angola. Currently, it is only huntable in Namibia The name “dik-dik” comes from the sound the female makes when alarmed. Both the male and female also make a sharp whistling sound if they sense danger. Damara dik-diks are around 12-16 inches at the shoulder; weigh between six and sixteen pounds, and can live up to ten years in the wild. The Damara dik-dik is a highly sought after member of Africa’s tiny ten antelopes.
When you hunt Damara dik-dik in Namibia, you need to know that the females are larger than the males when it comes to picking animals to hunt. Males have horns about three inches in length that slant back on their heads. When alarmed, the Damara dik-dik will run in a series of stiff legged bounds. Soft pads on their hooves absorb the shock of impact.
Just about every predator will hunt Damara dik-dik in Namibia. A short list includes; lions, caracals, hyenas, wild dogs, monitor lizards, leopards, cheetahs, jackals, baboons, and more. Life is rough when an animal is at the bottom of the feeding chain.
Dik-diks are adapted to dry areas and tend to live in the bush where there is adequate cover. They are browsers and don’t need water to survive. They will drink from puddles or other small sources of water if available. Damara dik-diks are monogamous and if you see one, its mate isn’t far away. It’s possible that their monogamy could be an evolved trait because of the dangers involved in looking for a partner. Female Damara dik-diks gestate for around 170 days before producing one faun. The survival rate for the newborn dik-dik is 50%.
The best way to hunt Damara dik-dik in Namibia is by walking and stalking in their areas. They are active in the early morning and late afternoon; preferring to spend the day in the brush under cover. Damara dik dik blend in with their environment and are hard to spot unless they move. Once their spoor has been located, tracking can start. They have a select habitat and that’s where to begin. Some of the best areas in Namibia for Damara dik-dik are the Grootfontein area of Damaraland and the Kaokoveld region in the northwest.
Firearms for hunting Damara dik-dik in Namibia consist of any small caliber centerfire. A premium bullet is a necessity. You don’t want a bullet that explosively expands on contact and ruins the skin. If you are on a tiny ten safari, then you will have a rifle with a suitable caliber and bullet like Barnes’ .243 Winchester 80 grain Triple Shock. Aim for the chest, but not on the shoulder. This animal would make for a great bow hunt. A long, careful stalk, a close shot, and very little damage to the hide.