South African hunter is believed to have been eaten by crocodiles
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South African hunter is believed to have been eaten by crocodiles after human remains are found inside two beasts

  • Hunter Scott Van Zyl, 44, vanished last week after going on a hunting safari 
  • His footprints were later found leading to banks of Limpopo River in Zimbabwe
  • Police shot two Nile crocodiles who they suspected of eating the father-of-two
  • Remains found inside the crocs are now being tested by forensics experts

A South African hunter is believed to have been eaten by crocodiles after human remains were found inside two beasts.

Scott Van Zyl, 44, vanished last week after going on a hunting safari with a Zimbabwean tracker and a pack of dogs.

The father-of-two, whose company runs hunting trips for foreign clients, is thought to have been eaten by crocodiles on the banks of the Limpopo River in Zimbabwe.

South African hunter Scott Van Zyl, 44, is believed to have been eaten by crocodiles after human remains were found inside two beasts

South African hunter Scott Van Zyl, 44, is believed to have been eaten by crocodiles after human remains were found inside two beasts

He vanished last week after going on a hunting safari with a Zimbabwean tracker and a pack of dogs

He vanished last week after going on a hunting safari with a Zimbabwean tracker and a pack of dogs

The professional hunter and his tracker had left their truck and walked into the bush in different directions.

Later that day his dogs returned to the camp without Mr Van Zyl. His rifle and belongings were found inside the truck.

Mr Van Zyl’s footprints were later spotted leading to the river bank and trackers found his backpack nearby.

Sakkie Louwrens, who was part of the search team, said police suspected two Nile crocodiles may have eaten Mr Van Zyl.

‘We found what could possibly be human remains in them,’ he told The Telegraph.

The father-of-two, whose company runs hunting trips for foreign clients, is thought to have been eaten by crocodiles on the banks of the Limpopo River (pictured) in Zimbabwe

 Police and animal nature conservation services decided to shoot the reptiles.

The remains are being tested by forensic experts to see whether they belong to Mr Van Zyl.

At least four people have been killed by crocodiles in Zimbabwe in the past month.

In March, villagers cut open a crocodile and found the remains of an eight-year-old boy inside the beast.

The shocking scene was captured by an eyewitness with a smartphone in the village of Mushumbi Pools in northern Zimbabwe’s Mashonaland Central Province.

Villagers suspected the crocodile had killed and eaten the young boy, and shot the animal dead.

Police shot the crocodiles and are testing the remains found inside them to see if they belong to Mr Van Zyl (pictured with his wife)

Zimbabwe has recently been hit by heavy rain, raising river and dam levels, which can bring crocodiles to areas where they are not normally seen.

A crocodile was recently shot dead in Beatrice, a farming community in the neighbouring province of Mashonaland East, with what were believed to be the remains of a fisherman in its stomach.

In November, last year a 13 year old boy who was fishing to pay for his school fees was killed by a crocodile in southern Zimbabwe.

Owen Chianga and his friend, Liberty Ruzivo, 15, were attacked by two crocodiles while they were fishing in the Save River near the village of Birchenough Bridge.

Nile crocodiles typically feed on fish, antelope and zebra, which they snatch from the shallows and before engaging in a twirling, drowning method known as ‘the death roll’.

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Donald Trump Jr. taps hunting pal for Interior liaison


President Donald Trump’s eldest son is an avid hunter and played a key role in picking Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, who is also a hunter and fisherman. And now Donald Trump Jr. has asked Jason Hairston, a former San Francisco 49ers linebacker and founder of hunting gear company Kuiu, to serve as a liaison among himself, Zinke, sportsmen’s groups and the White House on conservation and public lands issues, Hairston said on Thursday.

“I’m absolutely going to take the position,” Hairston told POLITICO, but the job won’t come with a salary, and he plans on staying in California where he lives and managing his business.

But an official with the Interior Department said there had “been no discussion of creating of a new role like this” and White House deputy press secretary Stephanie Grisham said in an email there were no new personnel announcements.

Hairston said Donald Trump Jr. had hoped to play the liaison role between Interior and the White House himself, but his decision to stick with running his father’s business empire with his brother, Eric Trump, put a kink in that plan.

“It’s really a role he was hoping to fill, but he can’t because of conflict of interest,” Hairston said.

Hairston and Donald Trump Jr. have been hunting buddies for at least two years — and Donald Trump Jr. tweeted out his congratulations last year after Hairston’s company was featured in a Bloomberg news article. The two have tracked game together in mountain ranges in the West and Canada, and Hairston helped to organize meetings between sportsman groups and Donald Trump during his campaign, including a February 2016 gathering in Las Vegas, Hairston said.

The president “knows that it’s not just a sport, that it really is something that’s more meaningful to hunters and how important wildlife and conservation are because of everything Don and Eric have experienced and shared with him,” Hairston said. “So he’s not just pacifying his kids over this. He understands it and gets it.”

Outdoor recreation groups have recently stepped up their fight against efforts by some Western Republican lawmakers to force the Interior Department to transfer more of the vast amounts of public lands it controls in the West to states — a move the groups say would cut them off from prime hunting and fishing ground. And having Hairston as their advocate would give them a direct line to the White House.

While he said his position hasn’t been given a formal starting day, Hairston said he has “already started with the work on it,” including “meeting with different organizations to determine what challenges and issues we’re facing and really just what we should be working on — what’s important.”

Hairston has met with Zinke twice: once before Zinke was confirmed as secretary and again on March 7 when Hairston traveled to Washington and talked with the heads of conservation and hunting organizations. Those included the National Rifle Association, Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership, National Shooting Sports Foundation and Safari Club International.

More than 20,000 trophy hunters descend on Las Vegas to join ‘pay to slay’ auctions

by Tom Bawden Environment Editor
The hunts, which will eventually kill about 600 animals in 32 countries, have outraged activists…

More than 20,000 trophy hunters are descending on Las Vegas this week to take part in a series of “pay to slay” auctions that have outraged animal rights activists.

The hunting jamboree, at which delegates will bid for the right to take part in 301 hunts that will eventually kill about 600 animals in 32 countries, is organised by Safari Club International (SCI), whose members include the notorious killer of Cecil the lion.

The four-day extravaganza at the Mandalay Bay hotel and convention centre on the Las Vegas Strip includes live music from country veteran Merle Haggard and Blood, Sweat & Tears.

The auction features an array of items including a white gold leopard broach – starting price $39,000 (£27,500) – and bullet gift certificates.

But the centrepiece of the event is unquestionably the auction of packages to hunt – and in some cases stuff – big game. Lots range from Iberian red deer and Pyrenean chamois to Australian water buffalo and African elephants.

The description of the 10-day Alaska Brown Bear and Black Bear hunt, which has a starting price of $75,150, reads: “This all-inclusive hunt is an outstanding option for hunters who want an all-in-one luxury hunting experience…in amazing areas boasting the highest density of bears in the world.”


US dentist Walter Palmer, who shot Cecil the lion, with another of his trophies

It adds: “Method of take is hunters’ choice.”

The Ultimate Hunters’ Market has been condemned by animal rights activists, amid a renewed focus on the ethics of big game hunting after SCI member and US dentist Walter Palmer killed Cecil in Zimbabwe last year.

Wendy Higgins, of Humane Society International said: “The auction site reads like a grotesque killing-for-kicks catalogue, in which the lives of the precious wildlife are sold to the highest bidder so that they can be slaughtered for fun.

“It is a tragic indictment on our society that, despite the global outrage over Cecil the Lion’s pointless killing, this scale of trophy hunting is still going on,” said Wendy Higgins, of Humane Society International.

League Against Cruel Sports chief executive Eduardo Goncalves added: “It beggars belief that there are still people who are excited by the prospect of slaughtering an animal for target practice and turning it into a trophy.”

The Safari Club International (SCI) is expected to raise more than $2.5 million from auctioning the mammal hunts alone, which have been provided from various hunt organisers.

The club runs the convention annually and it provides the majority of its income – most of which is used to lobby Washington.

Urgent: Stop the Las Vegas Trophy Hunting Auction!

theo bronkhorst

BY: Jennifer Johnson

  • TARGET: Mandalay Bay Hotel & Convention Center, Las Vegas


 42,991 supporters


we’ve got 42,991 supporters, help us get to 45,000

More than 20,000 trophy hunters are descending on Las Vegas this week to place bids at a trophy hunting auction. 

Sign this petition to demand the Mandalay Bay Hotel cancel the 4-day event and promise not to hold any future auctions encouraging the slaughter of animals.

This disgusting event is organized by Safari Club International (of which the notorious killer of Cecil the lion is a part) and is selling off permits to kill 600 animals in 32 countries. Animals targeted by the event include the Iberian red deer and even African elephants.

These are animals we need to be protecting, not encouraging people to kill. Join the campaign asking Mandalay Bay Hotel and Convention Center to shut down this event and promise not to hold another animal slaughter auction.

Hunting clubs, rhino hunter sue Delta over trophy ban

Hunting clubs and a man who paid $350,000 for a license to hunt a black rhino in Namibia have sued Delta Airlines, saying its ban on transporting some big game hunting trophies hurts conservation efforts and violates its global obligations.

In a lawsuit filed in federal court in Texas on Thursday, the hunter of the endangered black rhino, Corey Knowlton, along with the Dallas Safari Club, the Houston Safari Clubs and others said that the transport of the trophies is allowed under a strict systems of global permits and Delta must abide by its obligations.

“Tourist hunting revenue is the backbone of anti-poaching in Africa. If there are fewer users, as Delta’s embargo envisions, there are fewer boots on the ground and reduced security for elephant, rhino and other at-risk wildlife,” the lawsuit said.

Delta officials were not immediately available for comment.

Delta was one of three U.S. airlines in August that banned the transport of lion, leopard, elephant, rhino or buffalo killed by trophy hunters, in the fallout from the killing of Zimbabwe’s Cecil the Lion about a month earlier.

Delta is the only of the carriers with direct service between Johannesburg and the United States and its decision was seen as carrying the most weight.

There has been an international outcry against trophy hunting among animal lovers since it emerged that American dentist Walter Palmer killed Cecil, a rare black-maned lion that was a familiar sight at Zimbabwe’s Hwange National Park.

Eleven African countries issue lion hunting permits. Of them South Africa’s hunting industry is the biggest, worth $675 million a year, according to the Professional Hunters Association.

Hunting groups argue the money generated from the legally sanctioned hunts bolster the coffers for conservation in emerging African countries that want to use their limited finances for social programs.

In the middle of this year, the cargo division of South Africa’s national carrier, SAA, lifted an embargo that had been in place since April on the transport of legally acquired hunting trophies of African lion and elephant, rhinoceros and tiger.

“It should be remembered that hundreds of legally acquired wildlife specimens, such as hunting trophies, pass through our main ports of entry and exit monthly without incident. Penalizing an entire industry for the illegal actions of the few is not in the country’s best interests,” South Africa’s Environment Minister Edna Molewa said at the time.

(Reporting by Jon Herskovitz; Editing by Sandra Maler)

Letter in Response to Oct. 9th Gray Wolf Article

by Rosemary Lowe

It’s about time that the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service stopped genuflecting to the NM Game & Fish Dept. & Commission, which is entrenched in an antiquated, anti-wildlife mentality with trophy hunting, trapping & ranching interests in control. Two of the Game Commissioners are members of the infamous Safari Club International, which continues to promote shameless trophy hunting around the world, including endangered species. The Mountain Lion ( a New Mexico wild cat) is on their “Grand Slam Cats of the World”  Trophy hunting list. It  was apparent to those of us attending these meetings, that this department has no interest in wild life protection/ preservation, nor in any democratic process. Most people do not hunt, trap or ranch. Yet their voices are never heard.
If we want to save wolves, mountains lions, & other native animals, , we must  take on those special interests who are the impetus behind this despicable  state agency:  Tell these public lands rancher-moochers who graze everywhere on our National Forests, wilderness areas, BLM and state lands,  we want them off ! Wildlife need these lands to survive.
Now it is up to the US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) to take full control of the Mexican Wolf Recovery program. The failure of the federal government to protect public land in Nevada from rancher Cliven Bundy set a dangerous precedent for New Mexico. Also, Catron County ranchers have resisted the Federal Mexican Wolf Reintroduction Program from the beginning. In May last year the Otero County Cattle Growers Association and their parent organization New Mexico Cattle Growers Association held a rally to “protect our land from federal designation.” The federal government must be prepared to protect federal wildlife habitat in the face of armed resistance.
Rosemary Lowe

Safari Club International Awards by Captain Paul Watson

Sea Shepherd Conservation Society

Safari Club International has some 50,000 members, 150 chapters and collects $3.17 million in membership dues each year. It raises another 7 million from their annual convention. But what is truly despicable about this organization is that it encourages slaughter through awards.

SCI’s record book system ranks the biggest tusks, horns, antlers, skulls and bodies of hunted animals. Hunters are rewarded with trophies for completing a “Grand Slam”. There are 15 “Grand Slams”. The ones that cover Africa are:

1. “The African Big Five Club” African lion, African leopard, African elephant, African buffalo and an African rhinoceros.

2. “Dangerous Game of Africa” requires a minimum of five from the African lion, African leopard, African elephant, African rhinoceros, African buffalo, hippopotamus and Nile crocodile.

3. “African 29” African lion, leopard, elephant, rhinoceros, buffalo, and a small cat, eland, bongo,kudu, nyala, sitatunga, bushbuck, sable antelope, roan antelope, oryx/gemsbok, waterbuck,lechwe, kob or puku, reedbuck or rhebok, wildebeest, hartebeest, mamalisc, impala, gazelle, pygmy antelope, springbok, dik-dik, bush duiker, forest duiker, nubian ibex, aoudad, hippopotamus, and wild pig.

4. “Cats of the World” minimum of four of: lion, leopard, cheetah, jaguar, cougar, lynx, cougar or puma, serval, carcal, African golden cat or bobcat.

There are dozens of other reward categories where members can buy special gold and bejewelled pins for the number of kills they rack up.

There is also the “Global Hunting Award” that requires the killer to have hunted 6 continents to receive a diamond award, a minimum of 17 native in Africa, 13 native or introduced in North America, 4 native or introduced in South America, 6 native or introduced in Europe, 6 native to Asia and 4 introduced in the South Pacific, for a total of 50 animals.

There is the “Hunting Achievement Award” that requires a minimum of 125 animals, or 60 if hunting with a bow.

And for women they have the “Diana Award”, given to women who “have excelled in international big game hunting”.

And finally there is the obscenely named “World Conservation & Hunting Award” given to hunters who have killed on six continents and have killed more than 300 species. This “esteemed” award goes to the killer who has taken all 14 “Grand Slams”, the 23 “Inner Circles”, “Pinnacle of Achievement” (fourth) and the “Crowning Achievement Award”.

It is this award system that is driving thousands of wealthy primarily white men and a few women to spend millions of dollars stalking animals around the world for the sole purpose of killing the in the name of vanity and self-glorification.

See the SCI hit lists here:

See More

— with Darlene Robinette and 48 others.

Alice Susan Harding's photo.

Petition to UN: sue, ,Safari Club International,Dallas Safari Club

United Nations: sue, ,Safari Club International,Dallas Safari Club

This petition is awaiting approval by the Avaaz Community
United Nations: sue, ,Safari Club International,Dallas Safari Club
813 signers. Let’s reach 1,000

Why this is important

A petition for the UN to sue, ,Safari Club International and Dallas Safari Club,Craig Packer and Colleen Berg for deliberate lying and exaggerating lion populations in Africa for the money they get from lion trophy hunting.
Posted February 4, 2015

Safari Club–Center of Rhino Hunting Controversy–To Auction Off More Rare Animal Hunts

The 6,000 member Dallas Safari Club will auction off rare animals hunts this weekend during the banquet at its annual convention, which is a “showcase of hunting, sporting and outdoor adventure,” according to the Club’s website. During the auction, “bidders of any age or gender” will have the chance to bid on “amazing items,” including “youth hunts in New Zealand and Texas, a challenging Mid-Asian ibex hunt in Russia, and a bongo hunt in Cameroon.”

One of dozens of animal hunts at Dallas Safari Club Auction

The 2014 convention made international headlines when one attendee, Corey Knowlton, paid $350,000 to shoot an endangered black rhino in Namibia. Mr. Knowlton, who has purportedly received death threats, tells critics that he is motivated by “conservation.” Specifically, he claims that his substantial contribution will be allocated to rhino conservation efforts and that killing the rhino in question would actually benefit other rhinos in the area who he has been attacking.

But, if conservation is really Mr. Knowlton’s motivation, then why doesn’t he allocate a small part of his winning bid to relocate him?  And, if he’s concerned that the menacing rhino is harming the others, then why hasn’t he  shot him down hasn’t he done it in the 12 months since he won the bid?  Could it be because the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service has not yet issued a permit to import the rhino’s body and that Mr. Knowlton has no intention of returning from Africa without his “trophy.”

In an interview with Jane Velez-Mitchell on, Christopher Gervais, the director of the Wildlife Conservation Film Festival & Biodiversity Conference, says that killing animals is not the way to preserve them: “You do not hunt a vulnerable species in the name of conservation. Other organizations are conserving without hunting and killing.” Conservation funds. he says, can be raised through photography safaris during which animals are shot with cameras instead of guns.

Shooting rhinos with cameras

Your Turn

Please sign the petition to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service to deny a permit that would allow 2014 Dallas Safari Club auction winner Corey Knowlton to import a black rhinoceros trophy from Namibia.

Petition for Elephants

Sign for Elephants

We the People…

  • Refuse to allow the elephant species to disappear…
  • Refuse to allow poached elephants’ tusks to fund terrorism…
  • Refuse to allow the deaths of rangers as they defend elephants…
  • Refuse to allow the bloody ivory trade to continue in the United States of America.

Sign the Petition

Pass the Word!




The Elephant Crisis &
How You Can Help

100 elephants per day are slaughtered in Africa for their tusks. We must end the ivory trade, or it will be the end of elephants. This May, it is vital that elephants receive 100,000 signatures across America to the White House.

We petition the president to:

Unequivocally ban the ivory commerce to save elephants from extinction



How to Sign the Petition

They don’t make it easy but it’s really this simple:

  1. Create an Account with We the People
  2. Check your email for the confirmation message
  3. Follow the confirmation link to activate your account

Ok, that’s sorted.

NOW I’m Ready to Sign!



The Crisis

On average, 100 elephants per day are being slaughtered in Africa so their tusks, also known as ivory, can be sold. At this rate a species that has walked the earth for millions of years will be made extinct. Poaching is being conducted in mass by sophisticated criminal syndicates that often slaughter an entire herd with machine guns. The tusks eventually end up being traded illegally in the #1 market, Asia, and the #2 market, the United States. The U.S. Department of State has also identified elephant poaching as a national security risk, as ivory is used to fund acts of terrorism such as the 2013 Westgate Mall terrorist attack in Nairobi, Kenya.

Photo by Billy Dodson

It is essential to eliminate the demand for ivory. Though many people may think ivory is illegal to trade today in the U.S., that is not the entire story. There are loopholes in the law that allow “old” or “antique” ivory to be bought and sold. The problem is, it is very difficult and expensive to tell old ivory from new ivory and thus the domestic and export ivory trades continue. These are the loopholes that are wiping out the elephant right here at home.

On Feb. 11 the president launched a new National Strategy for Combating Wildlife Trafficking which eliminated the commercial ivory import trade. However ivory continues to be smuggled into the U.S. and we need to go further. We must stop all commercial ivory sales including the domestic and export trades.

Americans Petition for Elephants

Photo by Billy Dodson

The petition urges the United States president to TOTALLY BAN the ivory trade, with only very narrow noncommercial carve-outs for museums and other cultural institutions. This immediate and historic measure for another species is required to save the elephants from extinction. It is important to know that elephants were relatively safe just 7 years ago. But at the end of the last decade the global ban was “temporarily” lifted. Today the high price of ivory is wiping elephants out faster than they can reproduce. An elephant is killed every 15 minutes.

This petition is different than many you may have come across. This one is built on the backbone of the First Amendment established in the U.S. Constitution to petition our government for change. Upon 100,000 people – like you and me – signing this petition at the administration must respond.

We have only one month to achieve this goal between May 1 and May 30. As the poaching crisis is urgent we ask you to please sign now.

Sign the Petition




“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

The First Amendment, United States Constitution

“The right to petition your government is guaranteed by the First Amendment of the United States Constitution. We the People provides a new way to petition the Obama Administration to take action on a range of important issues facing our country. We created We the People because we want to hear from you. If a petition gets enough support, White House staff will review it, ensure it’s sent to the appropriate policy experts, and issue an official response.”

The White House

A small elephant with large ears and budding tusks standing in a field of tall grass
Photo by Mike Paredes

Beginning May 1 people across the nation are invited to Sign for Elephants. The petition may only be signed online as a requirement of the Administration.

It takes under five minutes to:

  1. Create an Account with We the People
  2. Check your email for the confirmation message
  3. Follow the confirmation link to activate your account
  4. Sign the petition
  5. Share with friends and family!

NOTE: A key step to Sign for Elephants is activating your account by clicking on a link sent to your email address from the White House which redirects you to the petition page. Once this is done, you can sign the petition.

Sign the Petition