Springboks prove lucrative for Royal Port Alfred
Royal Port Alfred Golf Club in the Eastern Cape had a unique R4.5-million windfall in 2014 through the sale of 27 of their resident springbok at different game auctions. A rare coffee-coloured ram ( pictured) sold for R3 million at the second auction.
“Royal Port Alfred have had springbok roaming the course for about 15 years,” said manager Corrie van Zyl. “We’re always reducing their numbers – farmers come in and take them away – but this year we were told they would fetch good prices. We put five batches (four ewes and a ram in a batch) on auction at Sidbury. The buyers looked at photographs of our springbok, and were noticeably interested when they learned we had received ewes from a herd at Nanaga which was known for having the coffeecolour gene. That information substantially increased the price we received for the five batches, plus we sold a coffeecoloured ewe for R340 000. Word got around about our springbok, and months later there was another game sale, at Hartswater in the Northern Cape, where a farmer paid us R3 million for the ram.”
To get the springbok, the buyers had to come to Royal Port Alfred, dart their animals (using a helicopter), and then transport them away. The ram is still to be fetched.
“Royal Port Alfred had a profitable year even without the sale of the springbok, but this money will allow us to complete all our immediate projects and most of it will be invested for the future.”