Born Free Foundation - Keep Wildlife in the Wild

Shooting animals for ‘sport’

Shot lion
Shot by a hunter (c) Campaign Against Canned Hunting Inc South Africa

Hunters are prepared to pay large sums to kill wild animals. Should Kenya allow trophy hunting to begin again? The debate is on, as Winnie Kiiru reports.

The trophy hunting debate continues in Kenya and other part of Africa. Those of us who cannot understand how people take pleasure in killing animals are puzzled by this debate. Even more disturbing are the flawed arguments used to promote hunting as beneficial to conservation. It’s said to generate more income per client than tourism while having a limited environmental impact.

Hunting operations do not rely on the elaborate infrastructure required for tourism and can generate incomes in remote and degraded areas not viable for photographic tourism. The truth is, however, that the ethical, social and biological problems associated with trophy hunting far outweigh any positive contribution the industry can possibly make.

Canned Hunting

Canned hunting, the hunting of wild animals in a confined area from which they cannot escape, is not only legal in South Africa, it is flourishing.  Hunters from all over the world, but notably from the United States, Germany, Spain, France and the UK, flock to South Africa in their thousands and send home lion body parts, such as the head and skin, preserved by taxidermists, to show off their supposed prowess.

The animals involved are habituated to human contact, often hand-reared and bottle fed, so are no longer naturally fearful of people. Such animals will approach people expecting to get fed-but instead receive a bullet, or even an arrow from a hunting bow.  This makes it easier for clients to be guaranteed a trophy and thus the industry is lucrative and popular.

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