Hunting, to some people, is considered a sport. Trophy hunting in Africa however, is poaching. I call it poaching because frankly, the idea of hunting down wild animals as a sport irks me. I mean, out of all the sports known to man, someone settled on hunting. Worse still, are the reasons people make to justify their sick sport.
Allow me to break down some of these misconceptions.
“Animals killed, provide meat and nutrition for the neighboring tribes”
I blame this on the media. First of all, tribes living near wildlife reserves and national parks do not go around killing giraffes, rhinos and elephants for meat. They have domesticated animals for meat, milk, and eggs. These tribes opt out of hunting large animals. Some go for small ones that get easily caught in traps or killed with poison arrows like gazelles. If indeed they hunt down elephants, where would they store the extra meat?
Don’t believe me? Here are tribesmen that didn’t even hunt. They took a piece of meat from a pack of lions and left. The badassery.
Watch as these tribesmen steal food from lions.
The sheer confidence… pic.twitter.com/9xpgdCSVen
— Facts About Africa (@OnlyAfricaFacts) March 18, 2019
Small animals are hunted once in a while and eaten whole. The surplus is preserved for a day or two. These tribes that hunt are also small in number meaning, there’s a balance between the animals they consume and the ones that get born. These tribes do not have the technology to hunt down large animals. They go hunting in groups of three or four, so how would they bring down an elephant with nothing but bows and arrows?
“Trophy hunting controls the population”
Thanks to global warming and human-wildlife conflict and other factors, the number of wild animals is steadily decreasing. Hunters and poachers moonlighting as tourists hunt these animals pushing them to extinction. It’s scary how the numbers are decreasing. In Kenya alone, the number of lions has gone from 50,000 to less than 5,000. Don’t even get me started on the elephants, the gentle giants.
“Brittany” cuddles with a dead leopard she had killed
Even in the driest of deserts, there’s an eco-system. Some die to provide food and shelter to others. It’s natural and beautiful but let human beings come in and play God. Yikes! Some of these animals decrease in number due to low birth rates like the rhinos. Humans are in no way helping them by hunting them down.
“Trophy hunting will help kill off the old, infertile animals”
First time I heard this sorry excuse, was when Prince William tried to justify his love for trophy hunting in Africa. I have a question; if indeed trophy hunting is only for old and infertile animals, why hasn’t anyone ‘hunted’ the queen? Isn’t she old too and infertile? If we don’t kill off our elders why should we kill off theirs? This is also the same guy who hides behind the conservation of wildlife in Africa.
Leave these animals alone and let them die peacefully of old age. Allow nature to do what does she does best.
“In Africa, trophy hunting is perfectly legal”
For some African countries, trophy hunting is allowed but here’s the dirty side of it. When trophy hunting was made legal in places like Zimbabwe or South Africa, these laws were made by white people. Africans had little to no say at all. Trophy hunting was for the elite colonialists. They were in government, they ran national parks and they also had a market to sell their hunt. Colonization didn’t just affect the people, it also affected the wildlife. Illegal trophy hunting still continues even though countries have repelled those laws for conservation.
Sadly, White people still own hunting companies in parts of Africa.
“Money paid for trophy hunting uplifts the community or adds to a country’s economy”
How? Can someone explain to me how dead animals are beneficial to a country? It’s more profitable when wildlife is alive and free in reserves and national parks. The belief that Africa is so poor that we need hunting money is insulting, to say the least. This money never contributes to anything but greed.
They’ll give you numbers like hunters pay about 12,000$ to hunt a lion or elephant. But think about it for a second. These people will come here, kill off our animals, take pictures, and then go back to their homes. That money won’t even help the communities that benefit from tourists. Now that there are no lions, will tourists visit the place? Will the residents be able to sell the work to them? No.
Trophy hunting destroys people’s lives. It’s the women who are most affected but yeah, here’s some 12,000$ for hunting companies.
Only one group benefits from trophy hunting, the hunters. The adrenaline they get when they track and hunt down these animals. The trophies they take home to show off to their friends. The pictures they take for social media. They don’t care if they kill off a whole species as long as their hunt looks pretty. So next time you defend hunters, think about all the species humans have prematurely driven to extinction.
Follow us on Twitter and Facebook and yes, we’re on Instagram too.