Trophy Hunting

Black Bear, Pine Nut, 8-yr old female

Every year, trophy hunters kill thousands of exotic wild animals, representing hundreds of different species, in foreign countries, primarily in Africa. They prefer to kill the most beautiful, the biggest and the rarest.

Wealthy trophy hunters pay big bucks to local cash-stripped governments for permits that grant them a choice of which animal to kill—Donald Trump’s two sons just killed several wild animals, including a giraffe and an elephant in Zimbabwe. The list of “huntable” species is usually very long and includes more common species such as impala, black bears, common zebra, giraffes, and baboons, but also endangered species such as elephants, leopards and white rhinos (the Western African black rhino was recently officially declared to be “extinct”).

There is also no regard for species protected under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) such as the African elephant or leopards. In fact, the more rare the animal, the more thrill to kill for the “big game” hunters, and the higher the price for the permit.

Competition and Bragging rights
Trophy hunters do not care about conservation, the struggle for survival of many animals. What they care about is killing the biggest and the best, and bringing home full trophy mounts or body parts. Heads, horns, tusks, and other body parts of most of these animals are legally, and sometimes illegally, imported as trophies to the United States by the hunters.

Trophy hunting hurts conservation
The mantra of trophy hunters is that their killing “benefits conservation”, but not only are individual animals brutally sacrificed, trophy hunting poses a significant threat to the very survival of African lions. Similarly, considering that African elephants are already endangered— by some estimates facing extinction in 50 years—it is ludicrous to argue that trophy hunting benefits elephants.

The ESA allows importation of endangered species only for scientific research, enhancement of propagation, or survival of the species. However, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), which implements the ESA, has broadly interpreted the term “enhancement” to include trophy hunting of protected species, and trophy hunters often take advantage of the loopholes to find ways to take “their trophies” across the U.S. border, under the guise of scientific research and other permits for exemption.

In 1997, Kenneth Behring, millionaire, trophy hunter and former president of the Safari Club International (SCI), paid the government of Kazakhstan to allow him to shoot an endangered Kara Tau argali sheep, of which only 100 individuals were left. He then donated $100 million to the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History and solicited the help of the museum for an import permit. A public outcry ensured and USFWS withdrew the permit. This is not an isolated case and the reality is that many museums have been involved in facilitating the killing and import of endangered species by trophy hunters in the past.

The Safari Club International (SCI)
Trophy hunting is an elitist hobby for those excited to pay tens of thousands of dollars for a safari with the goal of killing a beautiful, large or rare exotic animal. Many trophy hunters are members of powerful and wealthy organizations such as the Safari Club International (SCI), which promotes competitive trophy hunting throughout the world, even of rare and sensitive species, including in cowardly “canned hunts”, through an elaborate awards program.

Killing contests
SCI members kill particular species of animals to win so-called ‘Grand Slam’ and ‘Inner Circle’ titles. The list of macabre ‘contests’ include the Africa Big Five, (leopard, elephant, lion, rhino, and buffalo); the North American Twenty Nine (all species of bear, bison, sheep, moose, caribou, and deer); and the Antlered Game of the Americas, among many other contests. SCI members take short cuts in their hurry to beat competitors by killing captive and defenseless animals in canned hunts, both in the United States and in other countries. Corruption and unethical behavior is rampant in this bloodthirsty competition. “Hunters” lure animals to their guns with bait, shoot them from helicopters or vehicles with spotlights, or in or near national parks. There are 29 awards in all, and in order to win all of them, at the highest level, a hunter would have to kill 322 animals of different species or subspecies.

The “Holy Grail” for SCI members
The “Holy Grail” for SCI members is the club’s record book, a three-volume compendium of thousands of pages listing names of who killed what animal, where and when. The list spans more than 1,100 species, some of which have since become extinct. Meticulous scores and rankings are recorded for the biggest tusks, horns, antlers, skulls and bodies, with photographs of grinning men and women posing with their high powered rifles or archery gear next to dead animals, often holding the animals heads up to display their “prize”.

SCI contributes large sums to mostly Republican candidates, and supports those who are eager to help further the club’s shameful agenda to weaken and to circumvent the intent of the Endangered Species Act (ESA), the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) and to legally import once-banned trophies of endangered and threatened wildlife.

Examples of the SCI’s efforts to derail wildlife protection include fighting a current petition to protect the African lion under the ESA. Along with the National Rifle Association (NRA), SCI intervened with a law that directed the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to remove the Northern Rocky Mountain wolves from the endangered species list. In 2007, SCI testified at a U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service hearing opposing the proposed listing of polar bears as a “threatened” species under the U.S. Endangered Species Act.

The SCI continues to create and feed a culture glamorizing death and violence globally, across political lines, international borders, and against wildlife and even people. Fortunes are made on the back of millions of animals whose lives are taken by trophy hunters for the sake of killing in an endless spiral of competition.

And while most empathic people prefer to simply watch these magnificent animals, already struggling to survive in human-dominated landscapes, trophy hunters fulfill their lust to kill the largest animals and the most exotic animals to rack up SCI awards. Underlying these actions are futile efforts to transcend weak character, arrested emotional development, narcissism, sexual perversion, anger and finally, a misguided attempt to overcome their own disconnect to nature.

What you can do:

  • Contact IDA if you are interested in helping to end trophy hunting.
  • Before you vote for a legislative representative, find out if he/she is supportive of trophy hunting, canned hunts or even involved in the killing of “big game” or any exotic animals. If yes, do not vote for this person!
  • Before booking a safari in foreign countries, make sure the outfitting company does not endorse safari hunts and has no ties to any trophy hunting organization such as the Safari Club International and others.

 

One of Cecil’s cubs is killed by rival male after the lion was slaughtered last month – sparking fears remaining survivors have just DAYS to live

  • Cecil was shot dead by U.S. dentist Walter Palmer, sparking global outrage
  • Now one cubs was killed by a rival male attempting to mate with its mother
  • Fears raised for remaining after Cecil’s brother Jericho abandoned them

Read more.


One of Cecil the lion’s cub has been killed by a rival male triggering fears that the survivors may only have days to live.

The much-loved lion was slaughtered by American dentist Walter Palmer last month, sparking outrage around the world.

Now a further tragedy has befallen the pride after one of his cubs was killed by another male as he attempted to mate with its mother. And without a pride leader to protect them, locals fear that the remaining cubs could have just days left to live.

Experts had warned the trophy shooting of Cecil could trigger a ‘cascade of deaths’ as cubs are typically killed by the next lion in the hierarchy so he could father his own offspring with the females in the pride.

Local guides had given the pride – originally made up of three lionesses and now just seven cubs – just a five per cent chance of survival after solitary males were spotted prowling nearby their former den in Hwange National Park.

Hopes were raised when it appeared that the new pride leader – Cecil’s brother Jericho – appeared to be looking after the cubs.

Many were relieved after a team at Oxford University’s Wildlife Conservation Unit, which had been studying Cecil before he was shot dead, said the lion’s brother had stepped in to safeguard the young.

Tragically, it was not to last and after local sources confirmed the cubs had now been abandoned by Jericho.

Now it appears a rival male has taken advantage of the unprotected pride to try and mate with one of the females – killing one if his competitor’s offspring.

Research project leader David MacDonald said: ‘The natural law in lion society is that when a male dies and his weakened coalition is usurped, the new incoming males kill their predecessors’ cubs.’
The much-loved lion was killed by American dentist Walter Palmer last month, sparking outrage around the world
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The much-loved lion was killed by American dentist Walter Palmer last month, sparking outrage around the world

Macdonald had warned earlier this week that Cecil’s death could lead to a ‘cascade of other deaths’.

He said: ‘At a personal level as I have watched this lion… and gloried in his magnificence and beauty. I was very deeply saddened by this.

‘To the extent that it was illegal it was completely reprehensible.

But I hope that some good might come out of it in terms of raising the profile of lion conservation around the world.’

A source at the Zimbabwe park told the Sunday Mirror that the small pride’s three lionesses had attempted to fight off the invading lion’s advances but warned that the big cats would not be able to protect the cubs for much longer.

The news is likely to spark further fury towards Palmer who has been in hiding since reports of the shooting broke last month.

Since then, campaigners have protested outside his dentist surgery while he has even received death threats amid growing anger over the protected animal’s slaughter.

Tributes to the butchered lion have poured in thousands of miles away at Dr Walter Palmer’s office in Bloomington, Minnesota, where protesters dressed as ‘dentist hunters’ also threw stuffed lions at his house.

Celebrities including models Cara Delevingne and Candice Swanepoel have also blasted the dentist, calling him a ‘poor excuse of a human being’.

The head of the pride Cecil was shot by Minnesota dentist Palmer, who paid £35,000 to shoot the 13-year-old lion on 1 July.

Palmer has admitted killing the 13-year-old predator, who was fitted with a GPS collar as part of the Oxford University study.

But he said in a statement he had hired professional guides and believed all the necessary hunting permits were in order.

He has not been sighted since his identity was revealed by Zimbabwean conservationists earlier this week.

Zimbabwe today called for Palmer to be extradited from the United States after accusing him of killing the much-loved animal illegally.

Environment minister Oppah Muchinguri said the dentist should be handed over to Zimbabwean officials to face justice, adding that she understood prosecutors had started the legal process to make that happen.

Referring to the 55-year-old trophy hunter from Minnesota as a ‘foreign poacher’, she said: ‘We are appealing to the responsible authorities for his extradition to Zimbabwe so that he can be made accountable for his illegal actions.’

 

Every year, trophy hunters kill thousands of exotic wild animals, representing hundreds of different species, in foreign countries, primarily in Africa. They prefer to kill the most beautiful, the biggest and the rarest.

Wealthy trophy hunters pay big bucks to local cash-stripped governments for permits that grant them a choice of which animal to kill—Donald Trump’s two sons just killed several wild animals, including a giraffe and an elephant in Zimbabwe. The list of “huntable” species is usually very long and includes more common species such as impala, black bears, common zebra, giraffes, and baboons, but also endangered species such as elephants, leopards and white rhinos (the Western African black rhino was He then donated $100 million to the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History and solicited the help of the museum for an import permit. A public outcry ensured and USFWS withdrew the permit. This is not an isolated case and the reality is that many museums have been involved in facilitating the killing and import of endangered species by trophy hunters in the past.

The Safari Club International (SCI)
Trophy hunting is an elitist hobby for those excited to pay tens of thousands of dollars for a safari with the goal of killing a beautiful, large or rare exotic animal. Many trophy hunters are members of powerful and wealthy organizations such as the Safari Club International (SCI), which promotes competitive trophy hunting throughout the world, even of rare and sensitive species, including in cowardly “canned hunts”, through an elaborate awards program.

Killing contests
SCI members kill particular species of animals to win so-called ‘Grand Slam’ and ‘Inner Circle’ titles. The list of macabre ‘contests’ include the Africa Big Five, (leopard, elephant, lion, rhino, and buffalo); the North American Twenty Nine (all species of bear, bison, sheep, moose, caribou, and deer); and the Antlered Game of the Americas, among many other contests. SCI members take short cuts in their hurry to beat competitors by killing captive and defenseless animals in canned hunts, both in the United States and in other countries. Corruption and unethical behavior is rampant in this bloodthirsty competition. “Hunters” lure animals to their guns with bait, shoot them from helicopters or vehicles with spotlights, or in or near national parks. There are 29 awards in all, and in order to win all of them, at the highest level, a hunter would have to kill 322 animals of different species or subspecies.

The “Holy Grail” for SCI members
The “Holy Grail” for SCI members is the club’s record book, a three-volume compendium of thousands of pages listing names of who killed what animal, where and when. The list spans more than 1,100 species, some of which have since become extinct. Meticulous scores and rankings are recorded for the biggest tusks, horns, antlers, skulls and bodies, with photographs of grinning men and women posing with their high powered rifles or archery gear next to dead animals, often holding the animals heads up to display their “prize”.

SCI contributes large sums to mostly Republican candidates, and supports those who are eager to help further the club’s shameful agenda to weaken and to circumvent the intent of the Endangered Species Act (ESA), the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) and to legally import once-banned trophies of endangered and threatened wildlife.

Examples of the SCI’s efforts to derail wildlife protection include fighting a current petition to protect the African lion under the ESA. Along with the National Rifle Association (NRA), SCI intervened with a law that directed the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to remove the Northern Rocky Mountain wolves from the endangered species list. In 2007, SCI testified at a U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service hearing opposing the proposed listing of polar bears as a “threatened” species under the U.S. Endangered Species Act.

The SCI continues to create and feed a culture glamorizing death and violence globally, across political lines, international borders, and against wildlife and even people. Fortunes are made on the back of millions of animals whose lives are taken by trophy hunters for the sake of killing in an endless spiral of competition.

And while most empathic people prefer to simply watch these magnificent animals, already struggling to survive in human-dominated landscapes, trophy hunters fulfill their lust to kill the largest animals and the most exotic animals to rack up SCI awards. Underlying these actions are futile efforts to transcend weak character, arrested emotional development, narcissism, sexual perversion, anger and finally, a misguided attempt to overcome their own disconnect to nature.

What you can do:

  • Contact IDA if you are interested in helping to end trophy hunting.
  • Before you vote for a legislative representative, find out if he/she is supportive of trophy hunting, canned hunts or even involved in the killing of “big game” or any exotic animals. If yes, do not vote for this person!
  • Before booking a safari in foreign countries, make sure the outfitting company does not endorse safari hunts and has no ties to any trophy hunting organization such as the Safari Club International and others.

About Beverlee McGrath

Founder of HELPANIMALSNV.ORG and HELPANIMALSCA.ORG. ALSO: Nevada Legislative Specialist & Special Projects • ASPCA • Best Friends Animal Society • Nevada Humane Society • SPCA of No. Nevada • NV Political Action for Animals • Lake Tahoe Humane Society & SPCA • Compassion Charity of America • Pet Network Humane Society • Wylie Animal Rescue Foundation • Paw Pac • Lake Tahoe Wolf Rescue • Hidden Valley Horse Rescue • Fallon Animal Welfare Group • NHS Carson City
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