Posts Tagged ‘hunting’

I know the below article from Outdoor Life Magazine is controversial but I want to share it anyway because as a Zimbabwean it is a subject close to my heart. I know the article is about Tanzania but the subject is transferable except that the percentages in Zimbabwe’s case are even higher with regular tourism not bringing in anything like as much as the big game hunters.

I personally have never hunted a lion and even if the national lottery came a calling would the desire ever possess me, I have hunted plains game for meat though and would do so again tomorrow if the opportunity and finances presented themselves.

What do my readers think?

TTFN

Mr Bunny Chow

Hunting: The Only Way to Save the African Lion 

The New York Times ran an editorial Sunday arguing that the only thing that can save the African lion is legalized hunting.

In the piece, director of wildlife for the Tanzanian Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism Dr. Alexander N. Songorwa explains that American sport hunters constitute 60 percent of that country’s trophy hunting market and that money from this group finances Tanzania’s game reserves and wildlife management areas. Yes, Dr. Songorwa points out that some of the money for these operations comes from tourists but “[hunters] pay thousands of dollars to pursue lions with rifles and take home trophies from what is often a once-in-a-lifetime hunt. Those hunters spend 10 to 25 times more than regular tourists and travel to (and spend money in) remote areas rarely visited by photographic tourists.”

The editorial continues by breaking down how that money impacts the country.

“In Tanzania, lions are hunted under a 21-day safari package. Hunters pay $9,800 in government fees for the opportunity. An average of about 200 lions are shot a year, generating about $1,960,000 in revenue. Money is also spent on camp fees, wages, local goods and transportation. And hunters almost always come to hunt more than one species, though the lion is often the most coveted trophy sought. All told, trophy hunting generated roughly $75 million for Tanzania’s economy from 2008 to 2011.”

If the United States Fish and Wildlife lists the African lion as endangered, as many are proposing, the decision would be “would be disastrous to [Tanzania’s] conservation efforts.”

Lion hunting, of course, is heavily regulated in Tanzania.  Females and lions under 6 years of age may not be hunted.

For now…

If the USFWS lists the African lion as endangered, no one from the US will be hunting them.

 

Advertisements

I am infuriated The Sun that most respected and widely distributed newspaper of the ill-informed proletariat has published a ridiculous headline grabbing piece of nonsense about hunting in Africa complete with pictures of hunters and their families posing next to trophy giraffe.

They then go on to say how giraffe numbers are dwindling across the continent and then down the bottom allow a little comeback which brings in as an almost aside that professionally managed hunting is actually paying for the majority of conservation in Africa.

Without big money hunters spending big money to hunt miniscule numbers of animals conservation measures like CAMPFIRE (Communal Areas Management Programme for Indigenous Resources) would not exist and the wildlife protected would cease to have value to the local population who in turn would cull these animals as pests and for food without any meaningful regulation.

I am a nature lover and hunter and am disgusted that such nonsense can be published and distributed without properly informed or reasoned debate.

Now before you weigh in and say poor pretty giraffe in the Sun’s pictures just stop for a moment and think beyond the headline that this giraffe probably lived a far better life than any domestic animal. He would have been an old bull who had probably sired several future generations and his trophy fee will have helped feed dozens if not hundreds of starving people as well as provided funding for game rangers and education in the very same areas from which the animal was hunted.

I’m going to stop now before my blood boils any further but I urge you next time to read beyond the headline and think.

TTFN

Mr Bunny Chow

P.S. if you are interested in an ethical trip to Africa for hunting or just sightseeing you could do a lot worse than getting in touch with Joseph Nyabezi of Honey Badger Tours