Touchy subject...Hunting in Africa...

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Apr 12th, 2003, 07:30 AM
  #1
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Touchy subject...Hunting in Africa...

I am so saddened every time I accidentally come across a website that is for hunting game in Africa.

Here is one photo that I just came across that it not unlike many of the others that I have seen recently:

http://www.marbellahuntingclub.com/html/showphoto.asp?file=zam004.jpg

I just don't understand how one may take pleasure in the slaughter of such beatiful animals. I realize that the money may be too good to pass up for the African travel industry and also that a lot of hunting goes on in private hunting game reserves where the government may not have as much jurisdiction, but shame on both the hunters and the hunting reserves that allow it.

I am not a vegetarian by any means, but I don't exactly think that the hunters who are sometimes paying upwards of $5,000 USD for a license to kill a leopard or lion are exactly killing the animals to satisfy a hunger pang.

Are there any organizations out there to try to stop hunting around some of our favorite game parks??? I know when I was at Matetsi Water Lodge last year that there is a neighborging private area where hunting goes on:

http://www.john-sharp-safaris.com/area4.htm

It is no wonder that we were unable to spot any lions or leopards at Matetsi. It is disgusting that at the place shown above that someone can take the life of a leopard for $2,750 USD, a lion for $2,200 USD, a zebra for $850 USD, a giraffe for $750 USD and a poor baboon for a mere $25 USD.

I apologize if this is the improper forum for such a discussion but I don't know where else I would vent. Hopefully these hunting lodges will die out, but with the prices they charge and with the sick smiles that are plastered on the hunters faces as they pose with the beautiful animals they have just slaughtered, I don't think hunting is going to disappear anytime soon.
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Apr 12th, 2003, 07:50 AM
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What is really horrific IMO is that one of the hunters that has the sick smile on his face with the 175 pound leopard that he has killed appears to be a Doctor that on another website is winning accolades for the Christian missionary work and dental/medical services that he is providing. I realize that the Doctor is probably not the hunter and it is one of his sons, but the website does mention that they all do missionary work in Africa:

http://www.acu.edu/acu-today/spring99/news03.html

http://www.john-sharp-safaris.com/gallery.htm
(see picture of Dr. John Estes)

Perhaps I am completely out of line with this thread and am out to lunch with my personal views but I just think this thread had to be put out there so I could hear the views of others. If I am wrong, I won't bring it up again.
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Apr 12th, 2003, 08:30 AM
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LizFrazier
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Rocco-
We all know this goes on. I personally don't want to be reminded of it here. It is legal to hunt in South Africa, not East Africa. When we were in Botswana, where hunting reserves are right next to the other reserves, one place had no lions. Because of hunters in the adjoining reserve. I don't like it and that isn't what I expect here. Thanks. Liz
 
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Apr 12th, 2003, 08:55 AM
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See, sometimes when you just post a quick thought it comes out as sounding harsh. Rocco, I didn't mean to be so critical of you, you just see this so close in Botswana it makes me sick. It will go on and it is how it is I guess. You do know how much I appreciate you and would never want to hurt your feelings. But I really don't want the reminder. Liz
 
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Apr 12th, 2003, 02:39 PM
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LizFrazier, actually I did not know this went on until I went to Tanzania some years back (pre-internet) and picked up a booklet listing all the fees for killing various animals. What surprised me most was to see cheetah on the list.
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Apr 12th, 2003, 02:49 PM
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I must admit that whilst I don't like to be reminded of it, I don't think it's an inappropriate topic for discussion here - as long as the thread heading is clear about the subject, surely those who aren't interested can skip the thread - no one forces us to read each one.

For me the reason it's interesting is because I had thought that the "photographic" hunter was gaining ground over the actual hunter and I thought this industry was dying out - that it would be lobbied against by those who need to protect the game in order to attract the photographic hunters amongst us.

Are there actions those of us who feel this is wrong can take?
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Apr 12th, 2003, 06:58 PM
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Kavey,

I, too, thought that hunting in Africa was a thing of the past until I was at Matetsi and my ranger told me that there was a neighboring hunting lodge.

While Matetsi liked to blame the lack of predators on poachers supposedly crossing over the Zambezi from Zambia, I believe the true reason for a lack of predators was because they had the misfortune of stepping over the invisible boundary between Matetsi Water Lodge and Matetsi's hunting area.

I know that there are arguments to be made by hunters that their hunting fees go to preserving wildlife, but in the end, they are only doing it so that they can, in turn, kill these beautiful animals so that they have a good photo opportunity and/or taxidermied animal.

Hopefully more people like us that only like to shoot animals with our cameras will discover Africa and there will not be a need to have hunting lodges in the near future.

Perhaps this is sexist, but I cannot believe that a woman could be there supporting her husband, often with child in tow, on these endeavors. However, in the hunting websites that I have come across there is often the wife pictured, proud that her husband killed an elephant, giraffe, leopard, lion, buffalo or whatever else he can set his sights upon.

I, too, would be very interested if anybody knew of any organizations that were opposed to the hunting industry in Africa. While I don't blame anybody for looking the other way and not wanting to be reminded, I think that for myself, a more proactive stance suits my conscience better. Again, please don't interpret this as a slam against anyone that disagrees.

I would like to think that if there was a boycott of areas that allowed hunting by people staying at high end private game reserves, that the local governments would think twice about allowing hunting lodges. I mean it is not only the hunters money that goes to the preservation of wildlife, but it also our money that goes towards the same goals, only for the animals that we pay to exist, cease to exist for stepping foot in the wrong private game reserve.

Anyway, I am opposed to hunting whether it is in Africa or at home in the USA. It just seems a little more disturbing when I see that Americans with a little money can come all the way to Africa, pay a few thousand dollars and have a license to kill. To see an M.D. like I did on that link that I posted do this kind of thing, probably right after he is done with his missionary work, really sickens me. Isn't a doctor supposed to be a healer??? Aren't Christians taught "Thou Shalt Not Kill???"

Anyway, I think that this problem should not be ignored when we, collectively, may have the power to make a difference to put an end to this disgusting practice. Just my two cents.
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Apr 12th, 2003, 07:37 PM
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Hunting is not a thing of the past at all in Africa, in fact, it is a growing industry. I was recently drawn to an issue of "Big Game" magazine because of the fantastic photo of a male lion on the front cover. Turns out it is a magazine dedicated to hunting. Anyway, looking through the advertisements, I could not believe the number of hunting "safaris" advertised for Zambia, Botswana, Tanzania, Zimbabwe and South Africa. I was astonished. A friend of mine from Tanzania recently visited us here in the US and said that the number of places opening for big game hunting in that country is "scary," in her words. I know first hand of the hunting in Tanzania. When we were in Selous Game Reserve last year, our guide told us the permit prices for hunters. Such a shame.
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Apr 14th, 2003, 12:05 AM
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Growing? Wow!

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Apr 14th, 2003, 02:55 AM
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Why is it that some people just can't stand for other people to do what they personally don't like? As long as the species is not in danger of becoming extinct (such as black rhino and wild dogs)and is reasonably well regulated, which it is in South Africa, and provides jobs for locals, I can't see a problem with it. In Africa, it is not like the animal is going to have a nice retirement at the end of it's life. When it gets sick or old it becomes lion or hyena food.
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Apr 14th, 2003, 03:45 AM
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Harold
We're all different and we react differently to all manner of things - the things that make me sad, happy, worried, curious, angry, ecstatic are not likely to be the same as they are for someone else. No one here has said that a hunter isn't entitled to his or her own opinion - but in the same way, those of us who do not believe it is right are entitled to hold and to discuss that opinion too.
Because I believe hunting for sport is wrong, I will take actions I deem appropriate to stop it from happening. Because hunters deem it to be acceptable, they are entitled to take actions to keep the sport alive.
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Apr 14th, 2003, 05:11 AM
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Harold,

I think I'll pass on your idea of a "nice retirement."
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Apr 14th, 2003, 09:57 AM
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Hunting, as objectionable as it is to many, isn't the problem that poaching is. Just consider the rhino in Botswana, now being reintroduced. Give your financial support to that program, or to others. That would help immeasurably.
 
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Apr 14th, 2003, 12:12 PM
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rhtt
You are absolutely right - I don't think I've watched an Africa based wildlife documentary that has not highlighted the poaching problem.
I think that stopping poaching at the Africa end needs to be combined with educating the buyers of the "medicines"/ items made from the kills in order to stop the demand.
No demand = no reason to supply.
Strong demand = ingenuity to find a way.
Does anyone have any links I can look at for organisations that support this?
At the moment the only charity I support monthly is Action Aid and they are about people not wildlife.
Kavey
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Apr 14th, 2003, 02:01 PM
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http://www.hoothollow.com/TripUpdateDeathintheMara.html

This isn't what you asked for but it may concern you as well.

This link takes you to an amazing first hand account of lions being killed in Masai Mara and how the ecosystem is changing there.

It also lists email addresses to voice your concerns regarding conservation issues.
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Apr 14th, 2003, 05:56 PM
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To Kavey, WILD AID is an organization that helps fight poaching. National Geographic just did a story on them.
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Apr 14th, 2003, 11:57 PM
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Thanks so much.
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