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EXTRACT FROM THE FOLLOWING THIRD PARTY SOURCE: Written by: Rene Vollgraaff and Kevin Crowley for Fin24

The sale of a greater kudu bull more than tripled a previous record at a game auction, going for a price of ZAR9.4 million.

Kudu bulls are prized for their magnificent horns. © Shutterstock
Kudu bulls are prized for their magnificent horns. © Shutterstock

The animal, known as Hercules, is about 12 years old with spiral horns of more than 1.7 metres long, and was bought by a group of game farmers from the Thabazimbi area, according to the seller, Dries Visser of Dries Visser Pure-Bred Game. The previous record for a kudu bull was ZAR2.4 million.

“If he is looked after, he can still be used for breeding for about three years,” Visser said by phone on Monday. “He was bought solely for his blood and genetics.”

Driven by growing demand from international hunters for exotic and large horned animals, South Africa’s game ranching industry is worth close to ZAR12 billion a year and is growing at about 10% annually, according to Barclays Africa Group.

Mystery, a tuberculosis-free buffalo with a 1.35m horn span, was bought for ZAR40 million by a group including billionaire Johann Rupert in 2013, while Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa sold three white-flanked impala antelope for ZAR27.3 million last September.

Other breeds fetching high prices include golden gnus, where a recessive gene gives the normally blue-black wildebeest a yellowish coat.

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