Here is a list of really important articles relating to canned hunting in South Africa.
Chris Mercer, founder and director of registered South African NGO Campaign Against Canned Hunting, answers the following frequently-asked questions:
1. Those in favour of hunting say that captive-bred lions are helping to ‘save’ the wild population. How do you respond?
The Department of the Environment has published amendments to the Threatened or Protected Species( TOPS) regulations (and given the public 60 days to file comment.
Campaign Against Canned Hunting, the NGO that has spent more than a decade exposing the abuses of lion farming and canned lion hunting, has extracted from the 101 page document those provisions that affect lions and comments upon them below.
Allow me to connect the dots to explain how the decision of the S.A. Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) in the canned hunting case could contribute to the extinction of wild lions in S.A.
To recap, the Minister for the Environment (at that time Van Schalkwyk) tried to impose a 24- month wilding rule on the captive lion breeders in the TOPS regulations (TOPS = Threatened Or Protected Species Regs).
The Predator Breeders (lion farmers who supply the canned hunting industry) objected and sued the Minister.
HOW THE HUNTING INDUSTRY IS A THREAT TO OUR NATIONAL INTERESTS.
Which national interests are threatened?
1. Our economy.
2. Our land use.
3. Our unemployment problem.
4. Our wildlife heritage.
5. Our foreign currency reserves.
6. Our Fiscus – tax receipts.
7. Our agricultural industry.
8. Our tourism industry, and the jobs that come with it.
9. Our efforts to stop corruption.
10. Our efforts to transition to a more caring society from a violent one.
11. Our environment.
This is the first in a series of articles aimed at showing how wealthy American hunters are a force for evil in the third world. Their hunting dollars pervert conservation policies in vulnerable third world countries, instigating and perpetuating evils such as captive lion breeding and canned hunting.
By conspiring with wealthy landowners in South Africa to build up a vast inventory of captive lions, all bred for the bullet, the hunters have helped open the floodgates to exploitation by the Chinese traditional medicine industry for lion bones.
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It is the end of the game for South Africa’s wildlife.
To understand how lions and rhino and all other formerly wild animals, including exotic species such as tigers, have become domestic livestock, just look at the state of government in S.A.
Decades of corruption, ineptitude and mismanagement in the public sector have brought this country to its knees.
To sum up:-
1. The proposed TOPS regulations will allow the canned hunting industry to continue to flourish.
2. The few restrictions that they do seek to impose on the hunting industry are:-
a) Of dubious legal validity;
b) Unenforceable anyway by dysfunctional conservation structures;
c) Sympathetic to the canned hunting fraternity; eg they allow bow hunting of lions and other large animals like buffalo to continue.
d) Of absolutely no value whatever in preserving biodiversity.
Hunting, along with dealing in wildlife trophies, has been banned in Kenya since 1977. Trophy hunting was accurately described by the new Kenyan democratic government as ‘a barbaric relic of colonialism.’
The Lies that Hide the Cruelty
I am in awe at the success of the hunting industry’s invasion and occupation of the field of conservation. This enables them to exclude real conservationists, who think that conservation should be about protecting wildlife, by referring to them dismissively as ‘bunny huggers,’ ‘radicals’ or even ‘extremists.’
One strategy employed by the hunters is to get ‘prestigious’ entities and celebrities to make grandiose claims in support of the ‘sport.’ Same tactic as the tobacco industry. Not surprisingly, since propaganda is designed to confuse, it is apparent that many people who are intuitively opposed to hunting are confused by the pro-hunting arguments. This impedes efforts to get the sport banned. However, none of the claims made by the hunting fraternity to justify their cruel ‘sport’ bear intelligent analysis. There is a good expose of the hunting arguments in Mathew Sculley's book ‘Dominion’ and also on our website.
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