Categories: Animal laws

New US Federal Law Will Dramatically Reduce Lion Trophy Hunting

The last time I wrote about the trophy hunting of African lions was when I discussed Cecil, the famous Zimbabwean lion, who was shot with a bow and arrow by the infamous dentist Walter Palmer1. The world knew about this and the world was sick of it except for the damned trophy hunters of which there are many in America.

It may surprise people to know that between 2005 and 2014, more than 1.2 million trophies of over 1,200 different species of animal were imported into America. American hunters have killed 5,552 African lions over the past 10 years and imported parts of their bodies into America as trophies. In 2014, 727 lion body parts were imported into America as trophies. These are depressing statistics to people who love animals.

Canned lion hunt. Millionaire Banker, Tory Advisor and member and supporter of Countryside Alliance Sir David Scholey and his trophy lion kill. Disgusting.

And now for the good news. Well before Cecil was slaughtered for pleasure by that ridiculous dentist Walter Palmer, the federal government of America had been debating a law which makes it obligatory that anyone wanting to import lion parts first has to get a permit from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife service (“the service”). The law came into effect yesterday 22nd Jan 2016. The service will only grant a licence under exceptional circumstances and only when the killing enhances the survival of wild lions. It is hard to imagine when those circumstances might arise and therefore the law is, thankfully, very restrictive.

It is expected that this long-awaited law will result in a dramatic reduction in the killing of lions in Africa by American trophy hunters. In addition it should end, at a stroke, canned hunting of lions in South Africa. There are many canned lion hunts in South Africa which, as you may be aware, is the shooting of lions in enclosures so that the cowardly hunter can take a body part back to America. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife service have stated that under no circumstances can canned lion hunting be deemed to be beneficial to the survival of the lion and therefore killing a lion in an enclosure in South Africa for a trophy will never be permitted if the American who does it wants to bring the trophy back to America. Ninety percent of canned lion2 hunters are Americans.

Of course trophy hunting will still go on in America and elsewhere as it is promoted by organisations such as the Safari Club International. In February the Safari Club International annual convention in Las Vegas raises $14.7 million through auctioning off hundreds of hunts. Polar bear trophies can still be imported into the United States. And Americans can still trophy hunt hundreds of wolves in the great Lakes region and Wyoming. It will take many generations before trophy hunting will be no more which is a depressing thought for anybody who cares about the welfare of animals.

Source: Wayne Pacelle’s blog. Wayne is the President and CEO of The Humane Society of the United States.

Note 1: Cecil was not killed initially by Palmer’s arrow but killed later after being injured. It is not clear whether he was shot with a gun or if a bow and arrow was used again.

Note 2: In South Africa.

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Michael Broad

Hi, I'm a 71-year-old retired solicitor (attorney in the US). Before qualifying I worked in many jobs including professional photography. I have a girlfriend, Michelle. I love nature, cats and all animals. I am concerned about their welfare.

View Comments

  • I hate current day hunting. I can see it if your family is starving but that is almost never the case. Why the response of these people to the sight of a beautiful powerful animal is to kill it, I will never understand. True strength would be to see a man take on a lion, mano a mano, with no weapons. That would be a true test of strength. To me these are weak,cowardly people who like to kill. . .it makes them feel powerful.

  • "Note 1: Cecil was not killed initially by Palmer’s arrow but killed later after being injured. It is not clear whether he was shot with a gun or if a bow and arrow was used again."

    You sure don't know much about hunting, do you. Ever get out of your basement much?

    Even in the USA a bow-hunter is given a FULL DAY to track down a deer (or any game animal) that was only injured by an arrow and then slit its throat for LEGALLY REQUIRED AND LEGAL HUMANE DEATH BY EXSANGUINATION. To fail to do so, then the hunter faces steep fines if they don't track down that game animal and slit its throat.

    The laws are no-doubt the very same in the UK.

    • Charming sport isn't in? When it seriously injures an animal and leaves the animal in pain and massive distress for a day for the pleasure of the hunter before being slaughtered -- and you enjoy this stuff. God, you are a horrible person. I do know this rule by the way. I have read about it before. The reason why I mentioned the delayed kill in Cecil's case is to provide the facts. You are too eager to criticise and too keen to be rude, nasty and aggressive. Your nasty character comes through in your words.

  • By discouraging law-abiding hunters to fund all the efforts needed to ensure the survival of game animals, then the only ones who will kill them are poachers and sell them on the black-market, without ever one penny going toward their continued survival and survivable population counts.

    In short: You have doomed the lion, like any native animal that is not backed by hunters that want them to exist forever, to death and eventual extinction.

    Nice going. I suggest you get your little fund-raising shoes a-shufflin' and raise several $billions every year so that you can save them from certain extinction without hunting them. And since that's NEVER going to happen you can kiss your lions good-bye. You're all talk. All of you.

    • "By discouraging law-abiding hunters to fund all the efforts needed to ensure the survival of game animals"

      The words of a deluded wanker, really. This is American law, you fool. The people want this law and only nasties like you reject it for some false and deluded reasoning.

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