Thousands of trophy hunters from around the world will gather next week in Nevada, USA for the world’s largest trophy hunt convention, held by Safari Club International, at which “trophy hunter” Donald Trump Jr. is also scheduled to speak, according to Humane Society International, Africa. One of the hunts up for bid is apparently a black-tailed deer hunt with Trump Jr. in Alaska for $17,000.
The annual convention – which takes place February 5 to 8 – is attended by many South African operators, promoting hunting trips to South Africa and other parts of the continent.
This year’s convention will feature approximately 870 exhibitors selling wildlife parts from animal heads to hides, as well as trophy hunting trips to kill animals including black bears, wolves, leopards, elephants, caracal, bat-eared foxes, duiker, giraffe and zebra, the Humane Society said in a media statement on Wednesday.
Jeff Flocken, president of Humane Society International, said, “The trophy hunting industry’s conservation claim is shattered by SCI’s promotion of and profit from killing rare and imperilled animals.”
According to Flocken, “trophy hunting is unethical, ecologically devastating, and inflicts cruelty on wild animals.”
He says: “It’s time that we move beyond a colonial pastime and celebrate wild animals in their natural environment.”
Audrey Delsink, wildlife director for Humane Society International/Africa, said, “As usual, a range of African species are up for auction including megafauna like Cape buffalo, leopard and hippo.
“The offering up of a tuskless elephant in Zambia, small charismatic mammals such as bat-eared foxes, caracal, African wildcat, black-backed jackal in South Africa, and multiple duiker species in Mozambique, demonstrates that the hunt really is just about killing for kicks and a competitive species checklist quest.
“With our environment facing so many challenges and onslaughts from multiple sources, it is incongruous that such killing for kicks continues.”
According to reports, Botswana President Mokgweetsi Masisi is slated to attend this year’s convention to accept an award.
Last year, the government of Botswana lifted a ban on elephant hunting in the country, for which he received SCI’s praise, despite local and international backlash and opposition from elephant experts.