Born Free Foundation - Keep Wildlife in the Wild

Alerting the world

Two television programs have been especially effective in the past at drawing the world's attention to the excesses and cruelty involved in canned hunting in South Africa: the Cook Report shown on British television on 6th May 1997, and then the screening on the popular South African program, Carte Blanche.                 

The 1997 Cook Report footage was horrific. We see a lioness pacing alongside a fence, frantic to get to the three cubs she had been separated from that morning. The professional hunter arrives with his client, a German tourist. We see a bullet slam into her side and her body twists in the air alongside the fence. She has made no attempt to run away - and why should she? Her cubs are on the other side of the fence and why she should fear humans, they had been feeding her up until two days ago.

We learnt that hunters are advised how to lame a lion by shooting it in the shoulder so no damage is done to the head, the ‘trophy’. One procurer of lions explains that breaking a lion's limbs makes the killing of the maimed animal "easier on the dogs, easier on us." With sickening disregard for the animals the man goes on to say that lions are easy to maim, they are "soft-skinned, with a highly developed nervous system… it hurts them... Smoke him and he'll bounce around."

The Cook Report researchers were even offered Bengal tigers and jaguars, big cats not indigenous to South Africa.

International outrage followed the screening of this programme, and the Born Free Foundation launched it's ‘Ban the Can’ campaign. Animal rights groups and sickened members of the public and the media have continued to highlight what goes on to provide the hunter with his trophy, but the animals keep on dying. For example, in 1997 there were 300 lions held in South African captive breeding facilities - the number has now grown to over 3,000 and perhaps as many as 6,000.

Born Free Foundation
Broadlands Business Campus, Langhurstwood Road
, Horsham, RH12 4QP, UK - Charity Reg. No. 1070906

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