Roan Antelope - Hippotragus equinus


After eland, roan are Africa’s largest antelope, a heavy-bodied animal with sickle shaped horns much like the sable but much shorter. They are roan in colour with older bulls turning grayer with age and young being chestnut brown. They have very large tufted ears with black and white mask-like facial features.

Roan were listed by CITES but were downgraded a few years ago and there are no current restrictions.

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Southern roan – 66″
East African roan – 66″
Western roan – 66″


Roan prefer open wooded savannah and open plains with constant water and grass, avoiding thick bush. In some areas, they live at high altitudes above the forest line and grow thick shaggy coats against the cold.

They are found grazing along the edges of dambos and plains in the early mornings and evenings and have keen senses.

They live in herds of up to 25 animals with the lead bull maintaining a relatively small territory. Younger and old bulls are ousted from the herd and form bachelor groups with older bulls being solitary.

hunting tips – the hunt
Shot placement is important as they are capable of “running for miles” when poorly wounded. They are aggressive when pushed or cornered and care should be taken when approaching the wounded animal.

Sometimes their natural curiosity affords an easy shot which resulted in large numbers hunted for meat by early settlers.


hunting tips – the calibre
Roan are strong large bodied animals and a well-placed shot from a heavier plainsgame calibre is essential – such as 7mm & 300 Magnums with heavy grained soft-nosed bullets.

hunting tips – the trophy
A good bull will have full curving horns starting with thick bases running up high before the backward curve. Usually the horns do not curve downwards but run parallel to the back and the tips are fairly widespread from each other.

A downward curve at the tips would signal an exceptional trophy.

hunting tips – where
Four sub-species are commonly described:

Western Roan – Cameroon, CAR
Sudan Roan – Ethiopia
East African Roan - Tanzania
Southern (Angolan) Roan – Namibia, South Africa, Zambia






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