SPANISH IBEX SLAM
In Spain we have 4 different types of Spanish Ibex:
Gredos Ibex (Capra Hispanica Victoriae), Beceite Ibex (Capra Hispanica Maritimus), South Eastern (Capra Hispanica Penibeticus) and Ronda Ibex (Capra Hispanica meridionalis).
The first description of 4 different types of Ibex was written by PhD’s Forestry Engineers Jorge de la Peña, and Jose Maria de la Cerda in their article “El Macho Montes” which was published in June of 1971.
These two scientists worked on a sample of 240 trophies of Spanish Ibex taken from the different mountains of Spain, and gathered on occasion of the Great National Exposition of Trophy Animals which took place that year in Madrid in conjunction with the Conseil International de la Chase, (CIC).
This sample of trophies allowed the two scientists to reach the conclusion that 4 different types of Spanish Ibex could be differentiated in the areas of distribution indicated in the map which are defined by the name of their mountain range as follows;
GREDOS IBEX, (Mountains of Gredos and Batuecas, principally)
BECEITE IBEX, (Mountains of Beceite and Tortosa principally)
SOUTH EASTERN IBEX, (Mnts. of Almijara, Sierra Nevada, Lujar and Almería principally)
RONDA IBEX, (Mountains of Ronda and Málaga principally)
It should be mentioned that there were two more types of Ibex in Spain unfortunately today extinct; Spanish Pyrenean Ibex, which used to inhabit the Pyrenean Mountains, and another North Western Ibex, Capra Lusitanica.
Famous Spanish naturalists, Mr. Jose Maria Almendral, author of the book “Macho Montes: Origen vida y muerte” (Spanish Ibex: origin, life and death), published in 1979, in which he shares the same conclusion of the four existing types of Spanish Ibex. There are also some prehistoric paintings that clearly show the difference in horn configuration of the Spanish Ibex.
The differences refer to:
The body size, -the largest being the Gredos Ibex and the smallest the Ronda Ibex-
The hide coloration, -the darkest being the Gredos and the lightest the Ronda Ibex-
The horn size, -the largest being Gredos and Beceite followed by South Eastern and the smallest the Ronda Ibex
The horn configuration, and the insertion of the horn into the skull.
Famous english naturalists Chapman was also fascinated by the wildlife of Spain, striking up a friendship with fellow wildlife enthusiast Walter J Buck. The pair became joint managers of a 40-mile (64 km) stretch of coast at Coto Donana, near the river Guadalquivir, in 1882, which they ran as a nature reserve. It was here Chapman discovered Europe’s major breeding ground for flamingos, and helped save the Spanish Ibex from extinction.
There are now 35,000 Ibex, thanks to hunting restrictions initiated by Chapman. He also co-authored two books with Buck about hunting and fishing at the site, Wild Spain in 1893 and Unexplored Spain in 1910. The land was later acquired by the Spanish and 65 square kilometres are still managed as a nature reserve.
It is to be noted that the horn configuration is not uniform and not the “typical” one in “all” the animals of a specific mountain range; actually you can find variations amongst the animals of a given herd. Similar as with the cape coloration, which varies depending on the time of the year, even though the general description is still valid throughout the year.
Based on all the above SCI record book committee in their meeting held in March 29 and August 20, 1986, was presented with the above information by Cazatur founder Ricardo Medem, and voted to create four categories of the Spanish Ibex, based on the following description of the four types of horn configuration and Trophy medal class scoring, which at this moment (March 2021), SCI scores is the following:
Spanish Ibex, Gredos type; (Capra hispanica victoriae)
Typical Lira form with a strong growing curve. The horn keel is aggressive with all helicoidal turn over 180º. The size of the knobs decreases progressively from the growing point to the tip which is very thin. SCI medals category, starts at: Bronze 70 SCI points, Silver 76 1/8 SCI points, Gold over 82 SCI points.
Spanish Ibex, Beceite type; (Capra hispanica maritimus)
Horns with a straighter and more vertical growing curve. The horn keel is well defined with a helicoidal turn of less than 180º. The size of the knobs remains the same along the first half of the horn and decreases towards the second half to the tip which is not so thin. SCI medals category, starts at: Bronze 69 SCI points, Silver 75 5/8, Gold over 80 3/8 SCI points.
Spanish Ibex, South Eastern type; (Capra hispanica penibeticus)
This type of horn configuration resembles the ones of sheep therefore it is nick named “Mouflon type”. The main characteristic is the strong curve growing aggressively backwards from the skull. The horn keel is very smooth which provides an almost round section. The form of the horns is circular with the tips growing towards the neck. SCI medals category, starts at: Bronze 63 SCI points, Silver 68 7/8, Gold over 74 4/8 SCI points.
Spanish Ibex Ronda type; (Capra hispanica meridionalis)
The growing of the horns is flat and with a small angel. The horn keel is well marked with a helicoidal turn of 90º. The size of the knobs is the same along the first part of the horn and decreases slowly to the tips which are broomed. It resembles the Alpine Ibex. SCI medals category, starts at: Bronze 56 SCI points, Silver 62 3/8 SCI points, Gold over 66 5/8 SCI points.
All four Ibex represent the Spanish Ibex Slam.
Any of these 4 species hunts, are free range. After almost 45 years of experience, CAZATUR has the privilege of hunting only at the best hunting grounds of the country for each of them. Either at private areas, or Government Game Reserves, the hunter will have typically several different chances, and will see a good number of mature billies on each hunt. We have local game keepers daily scouting each area, which makes the difference on the results of the hunt, and this is why a 2 days hunt it is normally more than enough to collect any of these Ibex.
A Spanish Ibex Slam can be done by any hunter in regular condition, does not need to be prepared for any extreme type of hunting, neither in steep long hikes, or far distances shooting. It does not mean that any of these hunts are easy or not fair chase. They certainly are, but again, due to our daily game scout and the management of our areas, we have a high population of animals, as we also have different areas that we use depending on the hunter´s condition.
If hunting for the Spanish Ibex Slam at the same time, we organize these hunts in 12 days, which gives us plenty of time to hunt all 4 Ibex, as well as to transfer between areas all over the country. It is for us a must, to present any of our non-hunting companion’s clients, with a joyful, fun and educational, parallel sightseeing program, which we call HUNTOUR®
This will take place as you transfer from one area to the other one, with organized sightseeing tours around the areas that we will be at. It is important for us that you get to know our history, culture and lifestyle, as will enjoy at the best accommodations around the areas, as well as the finest restaurants with local and rich cuisine, that Spain has to offer, at any place we will be at.
Any of the Ibex that our clients hunt, are mature, either if they choose to hunt for a SCI silver or gold medal, as well as if they choose not to go over the size that is included in basic price (SCI bronze medal) on each Ibex. We will always hunt for Ibex over 9 years old, also in the south for both; South Eastern & Ronda Ibex. For Gredos & Beceite Ibex, seldom the Ibex are not over 10 years old, this is a management Spanish policy, that we like to follow on any of our hunts.
CAZATUR it is a member of the Spanish Professional Hunters Association (APTECE), which priority is to offer a high-quality service as well as defend conservation through ethical and responsible hunting. The association has created 2 different awards for the clients of its members, whom have hunted the Spanish Ibex Slam. The first award consists on a beautiful silver Spanish Ibex pin, and it is meant for any hunter that has completed a Spanish Ibex Slam with the members of this association. The second award, which is a Spanish Ibex bronze sculpture, will be presented to the hunter that has completed his Spanish Ibex Slam, with members of the association, with a combined SCI score between the 4 Ibex exceeding 300 SCI points. The association ethics committee of which Eduardo is Chairman, amongst all the hunters that present the application, will decide the hunters who receive the award each year. The awards will be presented at the Wild Sheep Foundation Conventions. CAZATUR has many clients whom Spanish Ibex Slam is over 300 SCI points, being specialized in it. Again, if a client requests to hunt for the 300+ Club, we will organize and hunt for it, but if not, we do the same effort to meet his requirements for a lower scoring Ibex Slam.
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