The Dallas Safari Club (DSC), which hosts a large annual hunting convention in the United States, has formally announced its position on South Africa’s controversial captive bred lion hunting industry.
DSC said: “After a thorough analysis and deliberation, the Board of Dallas Safari Club has concluded that the practice of captive bred lion hunting is not a practice that is in keeping with its values of ethical and fair chase hunting. Therefore, Dallas Safari Club does not support the practice of captive bred lion hunting.”
The Club said that few animals in Africa or the world are as iconic as the African lion, and that it had carefully considered all sides of the argument before making its decision.
DSC said on Thursday that while captive bred lion hunting is legal in South Africa, several professional hunting associations and hunting conservation organizations have commented on the negative impact that it has on them and the hunting community in general.
The Club said: “We recognize the value of ranching for wildlife. However, to date there is no evidence or scientific research to suggest that captive bred lion hunting contributes to the conservation of wild lion.”
They said: “As hunters we understand the benefits of lion hunting. Dallas Safari Club has stated, and firmly believes, that in the fight to save lions, hunters are their best allies.”
The Club is a focal point for hunters, conservationists and wildlife enthusiasts, and is a member of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature. It provides grants of over a million dollars a year to projects that carry out its mission.
The Dallas Safari Club’s opinion carries a lot of clout in the hunting industry. Following their definition of the ideal “huntable male lion” (based on claims that scientific research showed that hunting older male lions had no negative effect on populations), their model was adopted by an international assembly of conservationists representing 84 different countries.
DSC pointed out that captive bred lion trophies are not permitted to be imported into the US from South Africa, and that regardless of captive bred lion hunting being legal in SA, the Club has a “responsibility to support and encourage ethical hunting practices”.
Born Free Foundation is calling on people around the world to complete their survey on Trophy Hunting. See below…
BREAKING: The Confederation of Hunting Associations of South Africa are calling on 'every hunter' to 'do this survey' & support #TrophyHunting Make sure your voice is heard! Complete our survey https://t.co/IeGykcX83R @BornFreeFDN @BornFreeUSA @NickyAACampbell @rickygervais pic.twitter.com/NKJqKKtP3G
— Will Travers (@willtravers) January 11, 2018