In the dense, wild bush of Angola, in Africa, a hunter tracks and kills the largest animal ever shot on earth
A VAST EXPANSE OF ANIMAL
There the enormous elephant lay on his side, amidst the carnage of blood, broken trees and trampled brush that had marked his last struggles. When I let my eyes roam over his vast expanse I could hardly believe that any animal could be so big, and T understood why it had taken so many heavy-caliber bullets to finish him off. And when I got out my tape measure and stretched it to cover his huge dimensions, I knew that I had not been wrong: this was the biggest land animal ever brought down with a gun. But before giving the measurements, I must confess the shock we got when I put the tape across my elephant’s foot and found that it measured, instead of the three feet of the spoor we had been following all day, only a little over two feet. The measurement was still a world record, but it was a foot short of the track size I had first noted a year before beside the lake. When we began to examine the body, we soon understood why: Besides the 16 bullets from our own rifles, we found a strange slug embedded in the left front leg. It was not a modern bullet, but a piece of iron shot, the kind used in old muzzle-loading flintlock rifles. It had crippled him in the left front leg, so that the step he took with that foot was shorter than normal. As the animal ran, the left hind foot partially superimposed its print over the front one—making it look much bigger than it actually was.
Brave man, brave! I enjoyed reading your jubilant victory-report. You are also already in the Guiness Book of Records???