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.”
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 JaneUnchained.com, 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.
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.
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.
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
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.
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
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 http://petitions.whitehouse.gov 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.
“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 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.”
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:
- Create an Account with We the People
- Check your email for the confirmation message
- Follow the confirmation link to activate your account
- Sign the petition
- 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.
Hunters and the SCI have began a colossal lobbying program emailing and telephoning, meeting every US House representative to now try and OVERTURN the Elephant Trophy Hunting ban from Zimbabwe and Tanzania into the United States. We’re not going to allow them to win. We need YOU on our side TODAY.
Please contact the USFWS TODAY and inform them politely there is to be no ban overtur…n of Tanzania and Zimbabwe trophy Elephants.
TAKE ACTION TODAY AND STOP PRATS LIKE THIS BELOW FROM KILLING MORE ELEPHANTS FOR THE FUN OF IT.
Contact USFWS here TODAY – http://www.fws.gov/duspit/contactus.htm
Dear Hunting Community.
Attack us as much as you wish, you’ll never defeat us.
International Animal Rescue Foundation Africa..
THANK YOU FOR TAKING ACTION
Poor baby, imagine his mental distress, anxiety and loss of sleep from not receiving the right head in the mail…
Rick Vukasin is demanding reimbursement or else the original argali horns, but he said a possible exchange is complicated by international treaties governing hunting of the rare sheep, a threatened species in Tajikistan.
By SCOTT SONNER
The Associated Press
RENO, Nev. — A big-game hunter from Montana is suing a Canadian outfitter and a renowned hunting guide in Tajikistan he accuses of turning his once-in-a-lifetime adventure of bagging a rare, wild argali sheep known as the “Marco Polo” into a nightmare.
Rick Vukasin, 65, said in a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in Reno last week that he spent more than $50,000 pursuing the animal in the Pamir Mountains of northeast Tajikistan near China’s border in December 2012.
The electrician said he felt like he was literally on top of the world after he tracked, shot and killed a 400-pound, big-horned ram with the coveted, spiraling horns at an elevation of 14,000 feet. But he was mortified two months later, when he opened the box shipped to his home in Great Falls to find the horns were not the 58-inch-long ones from his trophy animal.
“I could tell right away,” Vukasin said. “I was sick.”
The native Montanan who grew up hunting deer on the eastern front of the Northern Rockies had stalked moose in Saskatchewan and red stag elk in New Zealand.
“But the thing I really wanted to do was a Marco Polo sheep hunt,” he said. He pored over books, guides and websites before settling on the excursion halfway around the world.
“The biggest of the species is in Tajikistan. So I figured if I was only going to be able to do this once, I’m going top shelf,” he said.
Vukasin and his guide, Yuri Matison, saw animals the first day but had difficulty tracking them, partly because it’s hard to breathe at that altitude, he said. But the next day he said he “felt lucky” to land a prize with a rack in “pretty good shape … not all busted up from fighting.”
The horns he ended up with are missing a few noticeable chips and weathered to the point he suspects they are at least 2 years old.
Vukasin said Matison and the booking outfitter — Ameri-Cana Expeditions of Edmonton, Alberta — first insisted the horns were the originals and then offered to send a replacement.
Vukasin is demanding reimbursement or his original horns, but he said a possible exchange is complicated by international treaties governing hunting of argali, a threatened species in Tajikistan. Only 60 permits are issued there annually for the sheep named after the 13th-century explorer.
The Safari Club International considers the argali’s horns the “most spectacular” of all the world’s sheep, according to its record book.
Vukasin said Ameri-Cana co-owner Dan Frederick dismissed his concerns, telling him “It’s just hunting.”
“Granted,” Vukasin said, “you can have bad weather or you might not see any animals or you might miss the shot. That’s hunting.
“But to shoot the animal and take pictures of it and then not to get it, somebody has to be responsible.”
Frederick didn’t return calls or email seeking comment. The Associated Press was unable to locate Matison.
Vukasin said he contacted an FBI agent in Great Falls, Mont., who indicated he probably was a fraud victim but there was little authorities could do unless they found a number of other hunters who’d also been duped.
FBI spokesman William Facer in Salt Lake City said Friday the agency could not comment.
Linda Linton, a Reno lawyer, said she filed Vukasin’s lawsuit there because Matison and Ameri-Cana advertise and do business there regularly at conventions of the Safari Club International and the Wild Sheep Foundation, the latter of which named Matison to its Mountain Hunter Hall of Fame in 2009.
Vukasin is seeking $75,000 in damages for lost money, “worry, anxiety, loss of sleep, physical and mental distress.”
“I’ve been fighting them more than a year. I finally got fed up and decided to do something about it,” he said, adding he’s convinced others have been victimized. “I have this stuff sitting in my living room and every time I look at the horns, I just get that much more mad.”
By Dave Golowenski For The Columbus Dispatch
Sunday February 9, 2014
A divergent range of sportsmen’s groups commended the passage in the U.S. House of Representatives of the Sportsmen’s Heritage and Recreational Enhancement Act (SHARE) last week.
The package of eight bills represented by SHARE would promote hunting and fishing on land managed by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management and make the purchase of a federal duck stamp easier. Among the act’s authors is Rep. Bob Latta (R-Bowling Green).
Groups including Safari Club International, the National Rifle Association and the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership praised the bill and urged the Senate to follow the House’s bipartisan approval.
Meanwhile, a measure that would raise the price of a federal duck stamp to $25 from the current $15 moved out of a Senate committee last week. Revenues generated by the stamp help fund wetlands conservation.
No bump in price has occurred since 1991, the longest period without an increase since the program was established during the 1930s.
A Mississippi hunter is reporting he got his 8-point buck after he blew his nose. The sound apparently ticked off the buck, which came running toward the hunter’s stand in full attack mode.
When I wrote my book, Exposing the Big Game, its subtitle, Living Targets of a Dying Sport, was appropriate. But like so many things in this rapidly changing world, by the time the book came out, that subtitle was becoming obsolete. Now, in the second decade of the 21st century, the sport of blasting birds, murdering deer, culling coyotes and plunking at prairie dogs—in a word, hunting—is seeing a seemingly inexplicable resurgence.
Lately we’re seeing longer hunting seasons on everything from elk to geese to wolves, with more new or expanded “specialty” hunts like archery, crossbow, spear (and probably soon, poison blow gun) in states across the country, than at any time in recent memory. Meanwhile, more Americans are taking up arms against the animals and wearing so much camo—the full-time fashion statement of the cruel and unusual—that it’s starting to look ordinary and even, yuppified.
So, when did cruel become the new cool and evil the new everyday? Are the recruiting efforts of the Safari Club and the NRA finally striking a cord? Did the staged “reality” show “Survivor” lead to the absurdly popular thespian cable spin-offs like, “Call of the Wildman,” “Duck Dynasty” and a nasty host of others? Is “art” imitating life, or is life imitating “art?” Did the author of the Time Magazine article, “America’s Pest Problem: It’s Time to Cull the Herd,” ratchet up the call for even more animal extermination?
Whatever the reason, I don’t remember ever hearing so many shotguns and rifles blasting away during the last week of January. By the sound of the gunfire, coupled with the unseasonably dry and warm weather here in the Pacific Northwest, you’d swear it was early autumn.
Three Amigos Becomes Law; DSC Lauds Move for Rare Species
WASHINGTON (Jan. 21, 2014)President Obama has signed into law the 2014 Omnibus Bill, which includes a Dallas Safari Club (DSC)-backed provision to ensure the future of three antelope species nearly extinct in their native countries but flourishing on ranches in Texas.
The Three Amigos provision, for which DSC has lobbied over the past several years, exempts U.S. populations of scimitar horned oryx, Dama gazelle and addax from Endangered Species Act protections. The exemptions clear the way for ranchers to maintain herds of these exotic game animals and to offer hunts without federal intervention. Hunting revenue incentivizes ranchers to ensure that populations will continue to thrive.
Author of the provision, Rep. John Carter (R-TX-31), said, This legislation gets big government out of the way so that ranchers can begin working to bring these rare antelope populations back to former levels. This has been a long time in coming, but we got it done.
Rep. Pete Sessions (R-TX-32) and Rep. Ken Calvert (R-CA-42) also were key supporters.
Im pleased that the House and Senate were able to reach an agreement that allows American sportsmen to continue conserving the Three Amigos, said Sessions. Despite the onerous and unnecessary federal regulations that have recently threatened the ongoing work to preserve the existence of these endangered antelope, this Omnibus Bill takes important steps to protect the Three Amigos and preserve a rich sporting heritage.
The antelope were exempt from the Endangered Species Act from 2005 until 2012. During that time, populations experienced dramatic growth in the U.S. However, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service was forced to remove the exemptions due to legal action that prompted a cumbersome and lengthy permitting process, all of which led to a dramatic population decreases. For example, scimitar horned oryx numbers in Texas are now at nearly half of 2010 levels.
Were very grateful to Congressman Carter for offering Three Amigos legislation, and to Congressman Pete Sessions and Senator John Cornyn for insisting that it be part of the Omnibus Bill. This conservation measure wouldnt have happened without their dedicated leadership. Senator Cornyn also played a big role behind the scenes in securing Senate support for this specific legislative fix, said Ben Carter, DSC executive director. Thanks to our DSC team and the Exotic Wildlife Association (EWA) reps in Washington for helping to make this happen.
Organizations partnering with DSC on this legislation include the EWA, Congressional Sportsmens Foundation, National Rifle Association, Safari Club International and North American Deer Farmers Association. DSCs Washington representative Glenn LeMunyon and EWAs Liz Williams and John Blount also played vital roles in the process.
About Dallas Safari Club (DSC)
Desert bighorns on an unbroken landscape, stalking Cape buffalo in heavy brush, students discovering conservation. DSC works to guarantee a future for all these and much more. An independent organization since 1982, DSC has become an international leader in conserving wildlife and wilderness lands, educating youth and the general public, and promoting and protecting the rights and interests of hunters worldwide.
Read more: The Gilmer Mirror – Three Amigos Becomes Law DSC Lauds Move for Rare Species
I don’t know who is sending would-be rhino Corey Knowlton all those death threats we keep hearing about, but I think it’s just terrible.
It’s terrible they waited until after he’d killed all those other 120 species—from every continent—that line the walls of his trophy room. Too bad they held off until he had a chance to murder one of every species of wild sheep in existence, for instance. It’s a shame the 35 year old lived long enough to become the co-host of a hunting show on The Outdoor Channel which extols the virtues of snuffing out wildlife and encourages animal assassination in the name of sport.
It’s an absolute tragedy they waited until he won last week’s Dallas Safari Club auction to hunt a black rhino in Namibia. Now, unless the threats are in fact serious and carried out in the coming weeks, he will get the chance to destroy yet another undeserving sentient being in the name of ego, selfishness, arrogance and hedonism.
For those not keen on lethal action, here are 3 things you can do to help:
1) PETITION: http://e-activist.com/ea-action/action?ea.client.id=104&ea.campaign.id=24844
2) PETITION: http://www.ifaw.org/united-states/get-involved/protect-black-rhinos-trophy-hunters
3) FB page with USFWS contact info and sample letter for writing to ask them to deny permit: https://www.facebook.com/events/242483775925213/
Believing the spin that “hunters are an endangered species,” trophy-hunter hunting group, the Sahara Club, a conservation group dedicated to preserving the hunter herd for future generations of trophy-hunter hunters to harvest, auctioned off a chance to hunt an aging, expendable hunter to raise funds for their cause. Taxidermy services will also be awarded to the winning bidder. Proceeds will be used to enhance hunter habitat for the species known taxonomically as Homo huntsman horribilis and will go towards funding more logging roads to allow access for their trucks and four-wheelers, as well as building more conveniently located gas station/mini-marts, taverns and mobile home parks.
Biologists blame a long history of inbreeding for the decline in hunter fertility and viability. When asked about the ethics of hunting down and killing this unfortunate individual, a Sahara Club spokesman stated, “Overall I think it will be a good thing. While it may bad for this individual hunter, it is in the interest of conservation of the hunter species.” If the auction idea proves to be a success, the group plans to hold similar events for loggers, ranchers, commercial fishermen and other resource extractors also said to be endangered species by industry spin doctors.
Individuals chosen to be hunted down and harvested can thank the Safari Club for recently coming up with the idea of auctioning a rhino trophy hunt on an endangered black rhinoceros.
(This has been another installment in EtBG’s “Headlines We’d Like to See.”)