Grizzly Group Takes Aim at Trophy Hunting, Sets Sights on Provincial Election Candidates

Above the stone fireplace in the comfortable Saanich home, photos of grizzly bears are pinned in a casual collage.

Cubs are shown frolicking in the grass, a curious bear stands on his hind legs looking through a camera lens and, jarringly, at the top, is a massive grizzly lying lifeless in the grass, eyes closed, claws digging into the dirt, as two jubilant hunters smile into the camera.

The photo, typical of those found in hunting magazines that promote the chance to travel to Super, Natural B.C. to kill grizzles, provokes a visceral response among hunt opponents and a newly-formed group wants to harness that gut reaction.

Justice for B.C. Grizzlies is led by a small core of volunteers who, for years, have tried to end the trophy hunt by arguing the facts — such as the uncertainty of population numbers, studies that show bear viewing generates far more in visitor spending than bear hunting and — what should be the clincher for politicians, but, curiously seems to be ignored — polls clearly demonstrate that British Columbians are overwhelmingly against the hunt.

In the leadup to next spring’s provincial election, the group is aiming for hearts and minds by asking B.C. voters and political candidates to consider the hunt from a moral and ethical stance.

We are the moral high ground. We are not the scientists,” said Barb Murray, who has fought against the hunt for more than a decade.

We can speak with our hearts…We all have a heart and a brain and we know wrong from right. Tweet: ‘We just have to stand up & be counted and make our politicians be accountable to the majority’ http://bit.ly/2bkTYEX #bcpoli #trophyhuntWe just have to stand up and be counted and make our politicians be accountable to the majority on this ethical issue.”

The hunt is outdated and archaic, pointed out supporter Val Murray.

It’s 2016, and stopping the hunt is morally and ethically right,” she said.

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Justice for B.C Grizzlies will officially launch in September and members will then start the hard work of pinning down politicians and candidates and bending the ears of friends and neighbours.

Supporters will be asked to sign a pledge to actively lobby to end the hunt, and ask candidates in their riding where they stand.

The group will work alongside others fighting the same battle, such as Raincoast Conservation, the David Suzuki Foundation and Pacific Wild, but will take a different approach in hopes of attracting those who have not thought about the morality of killing an apex predator — listed as a species of special concern by the federal Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada — in order to put a head on a wall or rug on the floor.

In 2001, in the dying days of the NDP government, a moratorium was imposed on trophy hunting until more scientific data could be compiled, but, as soon as Gordon Campbell’s BC Liberals were elected, the moratorium was rescinded.

That decision has stuck, despite the growing distaste of British Columbians and a 2004 European Union ban on imports of all B.C. grizzly parts after an analysis found the hunt was unsustainable.

Polls show the number of people who oppose the hunt is steadily growing, with an October 2015 Insights West poll finding that 91 per cent of British Columbians and 84 per cent of Albertans say they oppose hunting animals for sport. The margin of error for B.C. is plus or minus 3.1 per cent.

Along the way, hunt opponents have gathered some high profile support, including Martyn Brown, former chief of staff to Gordon Campbell and former deputy minister of tourism, trade and investment.

Brown agrees that putting pressure on politicians and political candidates is the way to “make the B.C. government bow to the wishes of the 91 per cent of British Columbians who say they don’t support it.”

Grizzly Group Takes Aim at Trophy Hunting, Sets Sights on Provincial Election Candidates http://www.desmog.ca/2016/08/15/grizzly-group-takes-aim-trophy-hunting-sets-sights-provincial-election-candidates  @christyclarkbc

Photo published for Grizzly Group Takes Aim at Trophy Hunting, Sets Sights on Provincial Election Candidates

Grizzly Group Takes Aim at Trophy Hunting, Sets Sights on Provincial Election Candidates

Above the stone fireplace in the comfortable Saanich home, photos of grizzly bears are pinned in a casual collage.

desmog.ca

  • Smog Canada, Brown wrote “In our hearts, most of us know that the grisly business of trophy hunting is not right. Rather, it demeans us as the planet’s apex species.”

So, why does the Christy Clark Liberal government insist on continuing the hunt?

The two main arguments are that the grizzly population is healthy, with an estimated 15,000 bears, and the hunt puts money into the economy.

But government estimates of population numbers are based on models and expert opinions, not a count of bears, and many researchers believe numbers are much lower — possibly in the 6,000 range — and kills much higher than the approximately 300 grizzlies killed by hunters each year that the province reports.

A study by Raincoast Conservation Foundation, Simon Fraser University, University of Victoria and the Hakai Institute, which analyzed 35 years of grizzly mortality data, found kill limits are regularly exceeded.

At least nine sub-populations of grizzlies in B.C are on the verge of disappearing and, in addition to the hunt, grizzlies face disappearing habitat, poachers, and vehicle collisions.

The current hunt subjects grizzly populations to considerable risk. Substantial overkills have occurred repeatedly and might be worse than thought because of the many unknowns in management,” Raincoast biologist Kyle Artelle said after the study was published in the peer-reviewed journal PLOS ONE.

Following the Raincoast study the David Suzuki Foundation and the University of Victoria Environmental Law Centre requested an investigation by Auditor General Carol Bellringer, who agreed to look at whether the province is effectively managing the grizzly bear population.

Bellringer is expected to issue a report in the spring and hunt opponents are crossing their fingers it will be released before the election.

They are also hoping that the departure of Energy and Mines Minister Bill Bennett, who has said he will not run in the election, will help their cause.

Bennett, a key member of Clark’s cabinet, has been a strong supporter of the hunt.

On the financial front, a study by the Center for Responsible Travel, in conjunction with Stanford University, found that, in 2012, bear-viewing groups in the Great Bear Rainforest generated “more than 12 times more in visitor spending than bear hunting.”

Bear-watching also directed $7.3-million to government coffers compared to $660,500 from hunters and created 510 jobs a year compared to 11 jobs created by guide outfitters.

The overwhelming conclusion is that bear viewing in the Great Bear Rainforest generates far more value to the economy, both in terms of total visitor expenditures and gross domestic product and provides greater employment opportunities and returns to government than does bear hunting,” says the study.

However the Guide Outfitters Association of B.C. is a powerful lobby and a generous contributor to the Liberal Party.

Between 2011 and May 2015 the association contributed almost $37,000 to the Liberal Party and a little over $6,000 to theNDP.

Jefferson Bray, owner of the Great Bear Chalet, in the Bella Coola Valley, in a letter to Bellringer, wrote “This global obscenity continues because it is lobbied, bought and paid for.”

Although the Guide Outfitters Association of B.C. is the voice of those arguing to keep the grizzly hunt, the bulk of softer support comes from hunters who belong to the B.C. Wildlife Federation, who are afraid the end of the grizzly hunt would be the thin end of the wedge, said Barb Murray.

But Justice for B.C Grizzlies has no problem with those who hunt for food and the group has hunters among its’ supporters, she emphasized.

I am a hunter and I have never shot a bear,” said David Lawrie, a former forests engineer with the B.C. government and an inaugural member of Justice for B.C. Grizzlies.

And, when it comes to the government being capable of providing us with the number of bears, I don’t believe it. They can’t even provide us with the number of trees in the annual allowable cut and trees don’t walk,” Lawrie said.

This summer, the Wildlife Federation supported a call by Green Party leader Andrew Weaver to require trophy hunters to pack out edible meat from grizzly bears, but the support was immediately dismissed by hunt opponents.

If Weaver’s bill is somehow approved, most of the muscles of the bears will be transported out of the bush and dumped into landfills in B.C. and beyond, while their heads and hides will continue to be transformed into rugs for living rooms and prizes for trophy rooms, “ Raincoast executive director Chris Genovali and Raincoast guide outfitter coordinator Brian Falconer wrote in an op-ed in the Times Colonist.

Weaver’s bill died when the session ended and a Green Party spokesman said Thursday that, ideally, Weaver wants to see a complete ban on grizzly trophy hunting in B.C.

As the government made it clear that is not on the cards, Andrew tabled the bill as an interim measure with the goal of making trophy hunting more costly and regulated, especially for out-of-province hunters,” Mat Wright said in an email.

The major hope for reversing the legislation lies with the NDP and, so far, the party has not decided where it is going with the contentious issue.

Environment critic George Heyman said in an interview that discussions have taken place in caucus and will continue once summer vacation is over.

We will be letting people know our decision before the election,” said Heyman.

We understand that over 90 per cent of British Columbians oppose it and we are taking it very seriously,” he said.

It is obvious many British Columbians do not trust the government’s numbers and conservation is the first principle for theNDP, Heyman said.

We understand the importance of conserving this iconic species and we will make a responsible decision,” he said.

Which is exactly what Justice for B.C. Grizzlies wants to see.

Image: Princess Lodges via Flickr

The Trump sons go hunting again. Will more trophy photos follow?

By Kerry Lauerm <http://www.washingtonpost.com/people/kerry-lauerman>
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/animalia/wp/2016/08/06/the-trump-sons-go-hunting-again-will-more-trophy-photos-follow/

an <http://www.washingtonpost.com/people/kerry-lauerman> August 6 at 6:00 AM

What went so wrong with Trump sons that they could kill this beautiful
creature
In the heat of the campaign – and during a particularly brutal week
< https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/08/05/donald-trumps-polling-problem-in-the-proverbial-one-chart/>
for their father — Donald Trump’s two sons suddenly disappeared. Donald
Jr. and Eric, according to reports, left the country on a hunting trip.

Beyond that, curiously little is known. Bloomberg Politics reported
< http://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2016-08-03/trump-campaign-does-damage-control-after-infuriating-a-top-republican>
that the trip was a fundraiser for a foundation run by family members
of Tyrone Woods, a Navy SEAL slain in the Benghazi, Libya, attack. Various
political reporters heard that they fled to the Yukon, a favorite hunting
location of Donald Jr. He then posted an Instagram
< https://www.instagram.com/p/BIsUz4ohpwL/?taken-by=donaldjtrumpjr&hl=en>
photo
of himself with his son, which showed them in Canada for a “Father son
trip” — but in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories.

The campaign didn’t respond to requests for more information. Their media
silence could very well be just mean they’re on a needed vacation. But it
could also be a way to dodge the uncomfortable subject of the Trump sons’
well-documented love of hunting — a subject that stalks them on social
media like one of the very large predators they have killed for sport.

*[The death of Cecil the lion and the big business of big game trophy
hunting
< https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2015/07/29/how-the-death-of-cecil-the-lion-at-the-hands-of-american-walter-palmer-has-shed-light-on-the-big-business-of-big-game/>]*

It all started in 2012, when photos of the sons with big-game trophies
leaked to an animal rights group, and then exploded on social media.
Gothamist
< http://gothamist.com/2012/03/13/photos_donald_trump_sons_awesome_at.php#photo-2>
reported
that the photos showed the men posing with “a dead elephant, kudu, civet
cat and waterbuck while on a big game safari in Zimbabwe.” In one shot,
Gothamist said, “Donald Jr. proudly holds a dead elephant tail in one hand
and a knife in the other. In another, the brothers are seen standing beside
a 12’8″ crocodile hanging from a noose off a tree.”

It was a time when big-game hunting became a fresh cause for social media
shaming (see GoDaddy CEO Bob Parsons, and his notorious elephant video
< https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/faster-forward/post/godaddycom-ceo-faces-backlash-for-elephant-shooting/2011/03/31/AFTwBRBC_blog.html>).
The photos have regularly resurfaced ever since.
BLOG-Trump-Probably-Hates-This-News-About-Wind-Energy-0722-2015

Ted Nugent tells NRA crowd: Donald Trump is ‘the [expletive] kicker’

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If someone has their heart set on casting their vote for Donald Trump, I wouldn’t necessarily want to tell them where they should go or what they should do; but when Ted Nugent recommends something, I tend to do the opposite–if only out of spite.

____________________________________________________

from the Washington Post:

LOUISVILLE, Ky. | Hard rock legend Ted Nugent on Sunday delivered a profanity-laced speech urging gun-rights supporters to get behind Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, telling the National Rifle Association’s annual convention that they must stop the Democrats this year.

Donald Trump is the [expletive] kicker,” the rock guitarist/gun rights advocate said in a speech billed as “Ted Nugent: 2016 Election Do or Die for America and Freedom.”

He took particular aim at Bernard Sanders, the self-described socialist who is challenging Hillary Clinton for the Democrats’ presidential nomination, saying the Vermont senator is “preaching communism.” Mr. Nugent said 58,000 American warriors died fighting communism — presumably referring to the death toll in Vietnam.

“Hey Bernie: eat [expletive] and die,” said Mr. Nugent, who is known as the “Motor City Madman.” “[Put] that on MSNBC!”

Mr. Nugent went on to say it’s time for people to coalesce around Mr. Trump, who chased the remaining opponents from the GOP presidential race earlier this month.

“Don’t give me this ‘He’s not your favorite guy’ crap,” he said.

“You don’t deny your dying child life-saving medicine because you don’t like the captain and his boat,” he said. “You get on the damn boat and you get the medicine to the child, and then you fix the captain.”

“Do you know what I’m saying?” he said. “So we need to elect him and then stay on him.”

Copyright © 2016 The Washington Times, LLC.

Please enable JavaScript to view the &amp;amp;lt;a href=”http://disqus.com/?ref_noscript”&amp;amp;gt;comments powered by Disqus.&amp;amp;lt;/a&amp;amp;gt; 

Click to Read More:  http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2016/may/22/ted-nugent-rock-legend-tells-nra-crowd-to-support-/?utm_campaign=shareaholic&utm_medium=facebook&utm_source=socialnetwork

Calling all animal lovers: Trump’s sons are proud murderers of endangered species.

View image on Twitter

Horrible people doing horrible things,

More Daily Beast:

The Trump boys were hunting in Zimbabwe—the same country where Cecil was killed—and though Zimbabwean animal conservation groups looked into the incident, the hunt was deemed perfectly legal. Once the photos went viral online, Donald Trump Jr. tweeted (and then deleted

CnxlOqgW8AATJy5_1_.jpg

 

 http://www.dailykos.com/story/2016/7/20/1550051/-Calling-all-animal-lovers-Trump-s-sons-are-proud-murderers-of-endangered-species

Man steals, crashes boat belonging to hunter who killed Cecil the lion

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/crime/police-man-steals-crashes-boat-belonging-to-hunter-who-killed-cecil-the-lion/ar-BBuDdDW?li=BBmkt5R&ocid=spartandhp

8 / 21

USA TODAY
Alexi C. Cardona3 hrs ago
In this undated photo provided by the Wildlife Conservation Research Unit, Cecil the lion rests in Hwange National Park in Hwange, Zimbabwe.© Andy Loveridge, AP In this undated photo provided by the Wildlife Conservation Research Unit, Cecil the lion rests in Hwange National Park in Hwange, Zimbabwe. NAPLES, Fla. — A stolen boat that crashed off of Marco Island in the Gulf of Mexico last weekend belongs to the Minnesota dentist who sparked international fury after killing Cecil the lion last summer at a national park in Africa, police said.

Andrew Derwin, 26, of Marco Island was arrested Tuesday on a felony grand theft charge. Police said he stole and crashed a boat belonging to Walter Palmer off Caxambas Pass on the southern end of Marco Island.

Officials initially were called to reports of a boat crash at the Caxambas Park Marina on Sunday afternoon.

Marco Island Fire Rescue and Collier County EMS performed first aid on a passenger, Nicolas Stolinas, who suffered serious injuries when struck by the vessel’s propeller.

Police said they soon learned the boat had been stolen and was registered to Palmer.

Derwin, Palmer’s neighbor, took the keys to the boat from the rear lanai of Palmer’s home Sunday, according to Marco Island police.

A woman who watches over Palmer’s house told officials the Minnesota dentist left the keys on the lanai for a boat maintenance person to service the vessel. Palmer was supposed to let the woman know when to take the boat keys back inside the house.

The boat is valued at $61,175.

Collier County Sheriff’s Office arrest records state Derwin has been arrested 13 times on various charges, including driving under the influence, forgery…

More: http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/crime/police-man-steals-crashes-boat-belonging-to-hunter-who-killed-cecil-the-lion/ar-BBuDdDW?li=BBmkt5R&ocid=spartandhp

British Columbia source of ‘vast majority’ of bear trophies


A grizzly bear is photographed in the Orford River, in British Columbia, in this 2011 file photo. (JOHN LEHMANN/THE GLOBE AND MAIL)
A grizzly bear is photographed in the Orford River, in British Columbia, in this 2011 file photo. (JOHN LEHMANN/THE GLOBE AND MAIL)

.

More than 300 shipments of grizzly bear products – including skins, skulls and rugs – have moved from Canada to the United States through U.S. ports over the past three years.

Those transactions are among nearly 17,000 imports of North American bear parts – mostly black and brown, but including grizzlies – from Canada to the United States over the same period, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Most common grizzly bear parts imported into the U.S. from Canada, 2013-2015

0102030405060708090100110120130BonesRugTrophySkullSkin2

THE GLOBE AND MAIL » SOURCE: U.S. Fish and wildlife service
data
share
×
Part Number
Skin 127
Skull 122
Trophy 78
Rug 13
Bones 2

Most common grizzly bear parts imported into the U.S. from Canada, 2013-2015

The United States has no restrictions on the legal import of grizzly bear parts and products. The European Union, however, suspended imports of grizzly hunting trophies from British Columbia in 2004 over conservation concerns.

The shipments reflect a key factor in British Columbia’s controversial grizzly hunt – American trophy hunters, who pay thousands of dollars to come to the province to hunt a species protected in parts of the United States.

Faisal Moola, director-general for Ontario and Northern Canada with the David Suzuki Foundation, estimates “the vast majority” of grizzly imports to the United States over the past three years came from B.C., based on previous research he conducted and export data he recently obtained from the provincial government.

“About 40 per cent of grizzly bears being killed in B.C. are being killed by foreign trophy hunters,” Dr. Moola said.

“The reason Americans are coming to Canada to shoot grizzly bears in B.C. is because there are no more grizzly bears in places like Washington State or California – or they are legally protected and you can’t shoot them, in places like Montana or Wyoming,” he added.

According to B.C. government figures, 29 per cent of bears were killed by “non-resident” hunters – those who don’t live in British Columbia and must enter a lottery to win the right to hunt a grizzly – in 2013. The rate was 38 per cent in 2014 and 29 per cent last year.

The average number of grizzly bears killed in each of the last three years, province-wide, was 242, with the majority of those killed by B.C. residents.

According to documents obtained through a freedom of information request from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, thousands of bear products – sorted into three-letter categories that include TRO, or trophy, which means “all the parts of one animal,” and SKU, for skull – have been shipped to the United States through dozens of ports since the beginning of 2013.

The U.S. import data obtained by The Globe and Mail do not distinguish between bears killed in recent hunting seasons and trophies that may be years or even decades old. The data also do not say whether the imports came from British Columbia or elsewhere in Canada, including Nunavut and the Northwest Territories, which also have legal grizzly hunts. (Alberta suspended its hunt in 2006.)

British Columbia’s grizzly hunt draws impassioned debate. Opponents decry the killing of animals for sport. Supporters maintain that a regulated grizzly hunt can help protect stocks of other animals, such as moose and caribou, while generating significant economic benefits.

There is also debate over whether British Columbia’s hunting regulations, which keep about 35 per cent of the province off-limits to grizzly hunting, do enough to protect grizzly bears.

Both the provincial government, which oversees the grizzly hunt, and an industry group that represents guide outfitters who depend on the hunt for part of their livelihoods say the number of bears “harvested” do not pose a conservation concern.

“Research completed by highly qualified experts over the past 20 years has consistently indicated that there are between 14,000 and 16,000 grizzly bears in B.C.,” the Guide Outfitters Association of British Columbia said in an April statement about the hunt. “Hunters only take 250 to 350 bears per year – a sustainable level that poses no conservation threat, especially considering that harvest is heavily biased towards mature males.”

Regulations prohibit hunters from killing bears that are less than two years old.

Conservation groups, including the Suzuki Foundation, challenge those claims, maintaining that the hunt is unsustainable and aggravates threats to grizzlies from other factors, including habitat loss.

Hunt opponents also worry that bears killed in British Columbia could be from threatened grizzly populations – either from parts of the province where hunting is restricted because of conservation concerns, or from Alaska or other states where some grizzly populations have been deemed at risk.

Grizzlies are not officially “endangered.” The Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada, or COSEWIC, lists grizzly bears as a species of “special concern” – one that may become threatened or endangered. Grizzly bears are also listed in Appendix II of CITES, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wildlife Fauna and Flora, as a species that is “not necessarily now threatened with extinction but that may become so unless trade is closely controlled.”

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in March proposed “delisting” grizzly bears from the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem – which would open the door to a grizzly hunt in the area, although not in Yellowstone and Grand Teton national parks – after conservation measures resulted in bear numbers rebounding from as few as 136 in 1975 to about 700.

A comment period that closed in May resulted in more than 100,000 submissions, both for and against the proposal.

Trophy hunting of grizzly bears to continue in British Columbia

A grizzly bear is photographed in the Orford River, in British Columbia, in this 2011 file photo. (JOHN LEHMANN/THE GLOBE AND MAIL)A grizzly bear is photographed in the Orford River, in British Columbia, in this 2011 file photo. (JOHN LEHMANN/THE GLOBE AND MAIL)

British Columbia is cracking down on the use of sheep and goats as pack animals for big game hunters in its latest set of hunting and trapping regulations. But the contentious trophy hunting of grizzly bears will continue unchanged.

The provincial ministry responsible for hunting produced updated regulations on Monday, and although it has rejected a proposal to increase the number of grizzly hunting permits for resident hunters in the Peace River region, environmentalists are disappointed that the status quo remains in place.

The major changes include additional record-keeping requirements for butchers, and a new ban on bringing domesticated sheep or goats along on big game hunts to act as beasts of burden because of fears that the animals may pass on disease to wildlife. The report did not say whether this was a common practice. Steve Thomson, the Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, says in the report released Monday his major concern in wildlife management right now is around the declining moose population, and he promised a new BC Moose Tracker app that will allow people to record moose sightings.

Mr. Thomson could not be reached for comment, but in a statement, ministry officials maintained that the current grizzly bear hunt is sustainable.

Auditor-General Carol Bellringer has announced she will conduct a performance audit to determine whether the province is effectively managing the grizzly bear population . The province says there are 15,000 grizzlies in B.C. and that hunting is allowed only after conservation targets and aboriginal harvests for food, social and ceremonial uses are met.

Ms. Bellringer’s report is not expected until next spring, and Ian McAllister, executive director of Pacific Wild, an environmental organization, said that means the B.C. Liberal government’s current approach won’t be effectively challenged until the May, 2017, provincial election.

“This institutionalizes the trophy hunt in wildlife practices,” Mr. McAllister said. “It’s an indication of what Premier Christy Clark is thinking about this file and that is almost inconceivable given the unprecedented input over the past year.”

Pacific Wild has led opposition to the grizzly bear hunt, particularly in the newly proclaimed Great Bear Rainforest. Mr. McAllister says the Coastal First Nations, along with a large majority of British Columbians, are opposed to trophy hunting of grizzlies. (Polls suggest anywhere between 88 and 95 per cent of British Columbians are against trophy hunting.)

The provincial government has been reluctant to curtail the hunt, however, saying it is confident in the science behind its quotas. As well, the province maintains that hunting in general is good for the economy: The province is home to 100,000 resident hunters who, along with guide outfitters, put $350-million into the economy each year by the province’s reckoning.

Mr. McAllister said he is hopeful the Auditor-General will agree that the province is not adequately managing the population of grizzly bears. He said the timing of her report at least will help raise the profile of the issue in next year’s provincial election.

“It will be a high-profile issue in the run-up to the next election.”

However, it is not clear the New Democratic Party will offer an alternative position. The party has said it is still consulting before deciding whether it would promise to restore the moratorium on trophy hunting that it put in place in 2001, when it last help power.

The lone Green Party MLA in B.C., Andrew Weaver, last year introduced a bill to ban the trophy killing of grizzly bears. That bill would treat grizzlies the same as black bears, so hunters would be required to harvest edible portions of a bear.

U.S. hunters import 126,000 wildlife ‘trophies’ annually

U.S. hunters import about 126,000 “wildlife trophies” annually and killed about 1.26 million animals between 2005 and 2014, according to the Humane Society International and The Humane Society of the United States.

Trophy hunting is the killing of animals for body parts, such as the head and hide, for display or decor rather than for food and sustenance. A recent study examining the motivation for such hunts found that U.S. hunters glamorize the killing of an animal to demonstrate virility, prowess and dominance.

A report from Humane Society International/Humane Society of the United States titled Trophy Hunting by the Numbers: the United States’ Role in Global Trophy Hunting, uses an analysis of hunting trophy import data obtained from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Some findings:

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• Trophies are primarily imported from Canada and South Africa, followed by Namibia, Mexico, Zimbabwe, New Zealand, Tanzania, Argentina, Zambia and Botswana.

• Trophy hunters most want to kill American black bears, impalas, common wildebeests, greater kudus, gemsboks, springboks and bonteboks.

• Trophy hunters highly covet the so-called “African big five” — lions, elephants, leopards, white rhinos and buffalo. All of these species, except the African buffalo, are classified as near threatened or vulnerable on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.

• The U.S. ports of entry that received the most wildlife trophies in the past decade were New York City; Pembina, North Dakota; Chicago; Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas; and Portal, North Dakota.

“This report clearly shows the dire impact American trophy hunters are having on wildlife in other countries,” said Teresa M. Telecky, director of the wildlife department at HSI.

She continued, “It’s outrageous that every year hunters take the lives of thousands of animals, many threatened with extinction, just to win a prize and show off. These animals need protection, not to be mounted on a wall. The fact that rare, majestic species are entering the U.S. in large and small ports of entry should alarm lawmakers and the public concerned about trophy hunting.”

Hunting groups promote the hunts, offering accolades and awards to club members. The largest of these groups, Safari Club International, recently concluded its convention in Las Vegas, where more than 300 mammal hunts for more than 600 animals were auctioned off, and other hunts were arranged privately on the exhibit floor. An African lion trophy hunt can cost $13,500–$49,000. An African elephant hunt can cost $11,000–$70,000.

SCI often uses the revenue from hunt sales to lobby against wildlife protection measures.

U.S. “trophy hunters” highly covet the African big five. The import numbers for 2005–14 are 17,200 African buffalo, 5,600 African lions, 4,600 African elephants, 4,500 African leopards and 330 southern white rhinos. Photo: GraphicStock

U.S. “trophy hunters” highly covet the African big five. The import numbers for 2005–14 are 17,200 African buffalo, 5,600 African lions, 4,600 African elephants, 4,500 African leopards and 330 southern white rhinos. Photo: GraphicStock

For certain species, including lions, elephants, leopards and rhinos, the U.S. is the largest trophy-importing country.

HSI and The HSUS, in a statement on the report, pledged to continue to seek new protection under the U.S. Endangered Species Act for species that meet the criteria for listing.

The African lion is the latest species to receive ESA protection, after a multi-year effort by animal protection organizations, including HSI and The HSUS.

The groups are seeking increased ESA protections for species currently listed in a lower category of protection, as was recently done for the African elephant. HSI and The HSUS are also urging corporations — such as Swarovski Optik  — to end sponsorship of trophy-hunting advocacy organizations.

Brooklyn Park safari hunting convention draws protesters

LA rally

http://www.startribune.com/brooklyn-park-safari-hunting-convention-draws-protesters/370377931/
“The protesters, from Minnesota-based Animal Rights Coalition and
Minnesota Animal Liberation, held signs displaying slogans such as
“Killing Isn’t Conservation” and alluding to the event’s connection to
Walter Palmer, the Minneapolis dentist whose killing of Cecil the Lion
in Zimbabwe stirred international controversy last summer. The
Minnesota SCI is not connected to Palmer, according to President Ryan
Burt, who said he “respects the First Amendment right to protest.””

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