Can trophy hunting actually help conservation?

Can trophy hunting ever be a useful tool in the conservationist’s toolbox? On the surface, the answer would appear obvious. It seems as if the killing of an animal – especially an endangered one – for sport is directly contradictory to the goal of ensuring the survival of a species. The question has been asked again following the auction last Saturday night of the right to hunt an endangered black rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis) in Namibia. And the answer, as usual, is more complicated.

The permit was sold for $350,000, well above the previous high bid for a permit in that country, $223,000. While the Dallas Safari Club had the dubious distinction of being the first organization to hold such an auction outside of Namibia itself, it’s fairly unremarkable and actually quite common for an African nation to sell permits for trophy hunting, even for endangered species. Indeed, both Namibia and South Africa are legally permitted by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) to sell five permits for the hunting of adult male black rhinos each year.

And it’s not just rhinos. For example, a 2000 report from TRAFFIC, an organization that works with the WWF, IUCN, and CITES to track the international trade of wildlife, describes how Namibia alone was the site of almost 16,000 trophy hunts that year. Those 16,000 animals represent a wide variety of species – birds, reptiles, mammals, and even primates – both endangered and not. They include four of the so-called “big five” popular African game: lion, Cape buffalo, leopard, and rhinoceros. (Only the elephant was missing.) The hunters brought eleven million US dollars with them to spend in the Namibian economy. And that doesn’t include revenue from non-trophy recreational hunting activities, which are limited to four species classified as of “least concern” by the IUCN: Greater Kudu, Gemsbok, Springbok and Warthog.

The issues here are complex and highly politicized. There are several questions that science can’t help address, primary of which is whether or not the money raised from the sale of hunting permits is used for conservation, something often promised by hunting tour operators. But empirical research can help to elucidate several other questions, such as whether hunting can ever help drive conservation efforts.

In 2006, researcher Peter A. Lindsey of Kenya’s Mpala Research Centre and colleagues interviewed 150 people who either had already hunted in Africa, or who planned to do so within the following three years. Their findings were published in the journal Animal Conservation. A majority of hunters – eighty-six percent! – told the researchers they preferred hunting in an area where they knew that a portion of the proceeds went back into local communities. Nearly half of the hunters they interviewed also indicated that they’d be willing to pay an equivalent price for a poorer trophy if it was a problem animal that would have had to be killed anyway.

Lindsey’s team also discovered that hunters were more sensitive to conservation concerns than was perhaps expected. For example, they were less willing to hunt in areas where wild dogs or cheetahs are illegally shot, in countries that intentionally surpass their quotas, or with operators who practice “put-and-take hunting,” which is where trophy animals are released onto a fenced-in property just before a hunt. Together this suggests that hunters were willing to place economic pressure on countries and tour companies to operate in as ethical a manner as possible. Approximately nine out of every ten hunters said they’d be willing to hunt in places that were poor for wildlife viewing or which lacked attractive scenery. That is, they said that they were willing to hunt in areas that would not have otherwise been able to reap an economic benefit from ecotourism.

It’s encouraging that trophy hunters seem willing to take conservation-related issues into consideration when choosing a tour operator, but it is possible that they were simply providing the researchers with the answers that would cast them in the best light. That’s a typical concern for assessments that rely on self-report. Better evidence would come from proof that hunting can be consistent with actual, measurable conservation-related benefits for a species.

Is there such evidence? According to a 2005 paper by Nigel Leader-Williams and colleagues in the Journal of International Wildlife Law and Policy the answer is yes. Leader-Williams describes how the legalization of white rhinoceros hunting in South Africa motivated private landowners to reintroduce the species onto their lands. As a result, the country saw an increase in white rhinos from fewer than one hundred individuals to more than 11,000, even while a limited number were killed as trophies.

In a 2011 letter to Science magazine, Leader-Williams also pointed out that the implementation of controlled, legalized hunting was also beneficial for Zimbabwe’s elephants. “Implementing trophy hunting has doubled the area of the country under wildlife management relative to the 13% in state protected areas,” thanks to the inclusion of private lands, he says. “As a result, the area of suitable land available to elephants and other wildlife has increased, reversing the problem of habitat loss and helping to maintain a sustained population increase in Zimbabwe’s already large elephant population.” It is important to note, however, that the removal of mature elephant males can have other, detrimental consequences on the psychological development of younger males. And rhinos and elephants are very different animals, with different needs and behaviors.

Still, the elephants of Zimbabwe and the white rhinos of South Africa seem to suggest that it is possible for conservation and trophy hunting to coexist, at least in principle. It is indeed a tricky, but not impossible, balance to strike.

It is noteworthy that the Leader-Williams’ 2005 paper recommended that legal trophy hunting for black rhinos be focused mainly on older, non-breeding males, or on younger males who have already contributed sufficient genetic material to their breeding groups. They further suggested that revenues from the sale of permits be reinvested into conservation efforts, and that revenues could be maximized by selling permits through international auctions. Namibia’s own hunting policy, it turns out, is remarkably consistent with scientific recommendations.

Even so, some have expressed concern regarding what the larger message of sanctioned trophy hunts might be. Could the possible negative consequences from a PR perspective outweigh the possible benefits from hunting? Can the message that an auction for the hunting of an endangered species like the black rhino brings possibly be reconciled with the competing message that the species requires saving? This question is probably not one that science can adequately address.

However, it might just be worth having a quick look at some numbers. 745 rhinos were killed due to illegal poaching in 2012 in Africa, which amounts to approximately two rhinos each day, mostly for their horns. In South Africa alone, 461 rhinos were killed in just the first half of 2013. Rhino horns are valued for their medicinal uses and for their supposed cancer-curing powers. Of course, rhino horns have no pharmacological value at all, making their harvest even more tragic. The five non-breeding rhinos that Namibia allows to be hunted each year seem paltry in comparison, especially since they are older males who can no longer contribute to population growth.

I don’t understand the desire to kill a magnificent animal for sport, even if the individual is an older non-breeding male. The sale of the right to kill an animal for a trophy surely reflects the value that animal lives hold in at least some corners of our society: that killing an animal for fun isn’t wrong, as long as you can afford it. It is right to worry about the sort of message that sends.

But if an endangered species as charismatic as the black rhinoceros is under such extreme threat from poaching, then perhaps the message that the species needs saving has a larger problem to address than the relatively limited loss of animals to wealthy hunters. The real tragedy here is that the one rhino that will be killed as a result of Saturday’s auction has received a disproportionate amount of media attention compared to the hundreds of rhinos lost to poaching each year, which remain largely invisible. And while there remains at least a possibility that sanctioned trophy hunts can benefit the black rhino as they have for the white rhino, there is only one possible consequence of continued poaching. It’s one that conservationists and hunters alike will lament. – Jason G. Goldman | 15 January 2014

Sources: Leader-Williams N., Milledge S., Adcock K., Brooks M., Conway A., Knight M., Mainka S., Martin E.B. & Teferi T. (2005). Trophy Hunting of Black Rhino: Proposals to Ensure Its Future Sustainability, Journal of International Wildlife Law & Policy, 8 (1) 1-11. DOI:

Lindsey P.A., Alexander R., Frank L.G., Mathieson A. & Romanach S.S. (2006). Potential of trophy hunting to create incentives for wildlife conservation in Africa where alternative wildlife-based land uses may not be viable, Animal Conservation, 9 (3) 283-291. DOI:

Leader-Williams N. Elephant Hunting and Conservation, Science, 293 (5538) 2203b-2204. DOI:

Photo: Male black rhino and calf, Karl Stromayer/USFWS. Public domain.



  • Garry Rogers January 16, 2014 at 11:28 am

    Thank you for the discussion. I pinned, tweeted and scooped it (see the scoop at


    • Sasha August 19, 2015 at 6:33 pm

      You have got to be kidding. So, let’s justify controlled killing in order to save a species….hmmm…first, let’s look at why the species is in trouble in the first place. I’m sure it’s human and human growth and expansion and lack of respect for the fact that we share this planet with a million other species we’re willing to decimate if means $$. Second, let’s say for a minute that there existed a higher species trying to “save” our species (humankind) the same way – controlled hunting. How many of you would be up for that? Your mother, your daughter, your grandfather, your father, your son is next on the list. Or even you, yourself. Does that feel right? Does it feel fair? This problem needs to be solved at it’s core. Hunters are using this BS conservation theory to treat a symptom. This is not where it all started. You don’t make up for poachers by killing more animals legally and charging for it! You put all your time, money, and effort into protecting the animals, capturing the poachers, and prosecuting to the fullest extent, which should be extensive! You don’t go around saying, “Ok, the poachers are going to get this many so let’s charge this much and allow this many to be shot so we can then use the money to save others.” It’s the most ass-backwards line of thinking! Don’t treat the symptom, PREVENT THE PROBLEM FROM EVER OCCURRING.


      • Jenny September 8, 2015 at 6:08 pm

        Sasha, I think the point of this article is saying that in some cases, the funds and efforts put into conservation by governments and conservationists are insufficient to solve the problem on a larger scale.

        As much as it doesn’t sit well with those of us who uphold such idealistic views as yourself, the fact remains that putting a price on an individual wild animal’s head may actually help the species – and even entire habitats – as a whole. You cannot deny that money makes the world go round, and hunters have a lot of money – why not use that fact to help save a species? Is that not better than continuing to doggedly advocate for preservationist agendas while the world’s natural areas disappear before our eyes?

        I have a background in ecology, and ecologists are taught to value species at population level, rather than at the level of the individual animal. If sacrificing a few animals for the greater good of the species is the most effective way of reclaiming habitat, than I say it should be considered.

        I don’t think you will get much traction with your argument by comparing humans with other animals. Suggesting that all animals in this world should receive equal rights with humans is simply not practical. Whether you like it or not, killing is the basis of every food web, including the ones in which humans participate. Survival necessitates winners and losers. In order for you to survive and live a long life, other beings must lose out and perish. This is likely to be true, even if you are vegan. Growing vegetable crops require the clearing of native habitat, which means that many wild animals are deprived of their homes and food sources, and either die or fail to reproduce. Regardless of what you eat or don’t eat, simply living your life requires you to take from other organisms, in one way or another.

        Finding a balance between the needs of human societies and the conservation of natural areas and wildlife requires practical, imaginative solutions, not idealistic imaginings and emotive arguments. Myself, I do not have the desire to cut an animal’s head off and mount it on my wall, but neither am I overly sentimental about the loss of that animal’s life. All humans are either directly or indirectly responsible for the death of other organisms, every single day of our lives – this is a fact of nature. I believe that we need to remove the high emotion from this debate, and investigate every possible solution on it’s merits, objectively and with open minds.

      • Jackie May 9, 2016 at 5:33 pm

        I know I’m a few years late to this discussion (up until yesterday I didn’t even know that “conservation” was a goal of trophy hunters!) but I just heard this awesome episode of radiolab about this very black rhino hunt! It’s worth a listen.

        One point that the podcast made which this article did not seem to address is that, in the specific case of the black rhino, adult males beyond reproductive age tend to get violent and kill their own species, decreasing overall population. In this sense, the hunt can almost be seen as a benevolent euthanasia.

        However, I see your point too, Sasha, and one of the commenters on this episode opined that we should stop putting ANY economic value on the death of an endangered species. (Listen to the part about the elephant tusks). Fascinating stuff!

        What I will say is that, there are more ideas going on than I (a vegan animal lover) knew before hearing this episode. It’s a shame that people threatened this man who won the auction when he really does prioritize conservation. Though it’s valid to question the method here, some folks were threatening to harm him and his family and that is unacceptable.

      • Dale August 3, 2016 at 9:11 pm

        Yea…here’s your answer bust every killing tool..kill every poacher. ….kill every politican that puts this into law #!!!!

  • Carter & Olivia Ries January 16, 2014 at 5:29 pm

    Using old animal conservation methods for a critically endangered species is just wrong. We need to look at these instances differently if we want to try and keep the species for future generations to enjoy.

    The $350,000.00 spent for the right to kill the rhino could be better spent to actually save the species without having to pull the trigger. It is sad that the auction went through and that we did not get more people to stand up and realize that rhinos will literally become extinct in our lifetime unless we all try to help. Pulling the trigger on any rhino at this stage is just foolish.

    Before anyone lashes out against our comments, please understand that the issue here has nothing to do with any anti-hunting mentality, we are merely concerned about finding a way to save the species for at least One More Generation… and beyond.

    Our two young founders actually have had contact with the person who won the bid and we are trying to set up a face to face so we can explain our thoughts and try to understand why anyone would want to contributor to the decline of such a rare animal.


    • Sean Saville July 15, 2014 at 3:59 pm

      Hi Carter & Olivia,

      I hope you do not think I am lashing out and I will try not let any emotion come into this reply.

      Just logically thinking about what you have said and wondering where the $350,000.00 would be coming from, that is to be better spent? The way I see it is that, as some people have said in the comments, hunters don’t really care about the conservation of the animals they are hunting but they are the only ones willing to spend $350,000.00 for the right to kill one. So ‘logically’ wouldn’t it be better to have the $350,000.00 to protect a herd of Rhino for the sake of one animal, apposed to no money contributed, therefore no monetary reason for private game farms to exist, causing less conservation efforts, and the loss of the whole herd!


    • Patrik December 14, 2014 at 8:30 am

      The article talks about it being an older non-breeding male. It is essential to remove these individuals, especially when it comes to endangered species. It’s something that you need to do for a new male to be able to establish dominance within a group. If you don’t, there is simply no breeding happening, or dramatically reduced breeding rates, and you quickly doom a species to extinction.

      So your alternatives are either sedating it and moving it somewhere like a zoo. Which is far more likely of being unsuccessful with the animal being as old as it is, and which is probably just going to have the result of being a costlier and less clean way of killing the animal. Or you can kill the animal outright. Which you can easily monetize like what was done in this instance, and you can put that money back into other aspects of conservation.

      If it wasn’t a hunting ticket being sold it’s very likely that it would just have been one of the people doing conservation work pulling the trigger.


      • william huard May 22, 2015 at 5:43 pm


        (22/5/15) – The Government of the Republic of Botswana notes with alarm the CNN documentary portraying an American hunter, Mr. Corey Knowlton, shooting one of the world’s most endangered species, a black rhino, in Namibia.

        We would have hoped that the amount of money he paid for the hunt could have been used instead to relocate the rhino to a country like ours, where we would have welcomed such an initiative and put the rhino in an area it would not be a threat to other rhinos and contribute to our tourism and education efforts.

        We therefore appeal for such consideration in future.

        As for Mr. Knowlton, whose actions and unconvincing attempts to justify them, is not welcome in Botswana.
        Botswana would have taken him. Your comment is just pure rubbish. Wildlife would do just fine if hunters didn’t feel the need to save the wildlife from themselves.

      • Gaetano Bonaviri June 13, 2015 at 10:45 am

        There is no scientific evidence that male rhinos ever become infertile, no matter how old they are. “Wild black rhinos can live to be 40 years of age. Removing a rhino that is less than forty years old — for example, a 30-year-old rhino — deprives the population of perhaps ten more years of genetic contribution, which is vital to the genetic diversity of this Critically Endangered species. Additionally, the fighting among wild black rhinos is a natural behavior which has evolved through millions of years of natural selection.” “Older male rhinos who survive these fights and other threats long enough to become old and dominant carry the most genetic fitness.” (1)

        “It does not make the slightest sense to hunt such a bull in a free-range area where the populations is still slowly clawing their way back from near extinction, and has only filled less than 25% of their pre 80’s range. There are numerous private reserves and sanctuaries that currently have no rhinos, that would happily cover the cost of darting and relocating a free-range bull to retire gracefully, or start the nucleus for a new breeding population. One of these is the renowned conservation lodge that has an area of 22 000ha set aside and fenced in with rhino proof fencing already.” (2)


      • steve September 3, 2015 at 2:19 am

        Patrk, December 2014?

        Please explain where and how you managed to supply an answer such as this.

        It is essential to remove these individuals, especially when it comes to endangered species. It’s something that you need to do for a new male to be able to establish dominance within a group. If you don’t, there is simply no breeding happening, or dramatically reduced breeding rates, and you quickly doom a species to extinction.

        So your alternatives are either sedating it and moving it somewhere like a zoo.

        I am very confused as what happened before we intervened did the rhinos just hunt each other then? I have been involved in many black rhino breeding projects and personally witnessed rhinos dominating each other for breeding grounds and establishing new territories. That thing on the end of there face is a defence mechanism have you any idea how deadly it is when used in the correct and natural way? So should we not leave the species to do what they are designed to do and in there natural environment?

    • Nancy P. May 20, 2015 at 9:08 pm

      These rhinos have become endangered because of poachers and hunters. Therefore, the need to ‘preserve’ the species exists. Killing an elderly male was now ‘justified’ so a new male can take over and breed — because humans have destroyed the species. Humans created the problem. If the goal is to preserve the species just leave them alone and let nature take its course.


    • dleomiles November 3, 2015 at 3:16 am

      Its not the high paying hunters that causing demize of animals its the long as the finacial gain is used wisely


      • Save our Africa October 15, 2016 at 12:38 pm

        It has been documented that around 65% of the declination certain animals animal species are the fault of over hunting, this does include “Trophy Hunters”and habit loss. All 3 are brought upon by humans. Rhinos among all other species were doing just fine until the noisy humans came in and decided that nature needed some fixing problem. they didn’t have.

        Every trophy hunter including Knowleton, “DOES NOT’ do this in the name of conservation. They do it for themselves. This people were raised with silver spoons and think because they have money they can do anything they want. I’ve read up on many of these hunters pages and they admit that they love to kill, it give us an unbelievable adrenaline rush.. They claim that the money goes into conservation, economical values, feeding poor villages and whatever else they can stick in there to justify what they do is for the greater good.
        Then why are the villages still destitute,without water or protection from wildlife???? Believe me, when I say, as soon as they get the O.K. to go, conservation is the last thing on their minds. Funds rarely go to these towards these needs. As far as feeding poor villagers are concerned, give them real food instead of throwing a dead caucus at them. In the case of the recent kill of the black Rhino,they may have or have not have gone to conservation.. I have yet to do research on this country, but this animal did not to die. Relocating the animal or the younger bulls would have benefited on both sides. The only problem is..where would they get a hunter who would do this without the prize “the head” Like it or not, this hunter poached this animal..He’s taking the same thing, the head with the horns attached.

        Relocation would have been a better solution..Project Australia is airlifting 80 Rhinos from South Africa to Australia in order to protect and boost their population.

    • dleomiles November 3, 2015 at 4:02 am

      Trophy hunters do not contribute to decline in animals


      • sandra January 16, 2017 at 6:46 pm

        You are so wrong. No disrespect but I think you need to read more. You missed something

        As indicated in Genesis 1:26, God gave man control over the rest of His physical creation: “And God said, Let Us make man in Our image, after Our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea…and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing…”The Creator then went on to very clearly indicate which kinds of animals were fit for human consumption, in Leviticus 11 and Deuteronomy 14:3-21. Very plainly then, hunting and killing animals for food cannot be wrong. King David was a hunter of game, and the disciples were fishermen. During one particular trip, it is recorded (Luke 5:1-9) that Jesus Himself even helped them with that day’s catch.
        It is also not wrong to kill predators. Again, the record of David’s youth indicates in I Samuel 17:34-36 that he killed a lion and a bear to protect his flock of sheep.

        When killing animals, one must carefully discern the purpose and attitude. Is it truly for food? Or is it more for the sport or trophy? Keep in mind that animals are, after all, part of God’s creation and, as such, should be treated with a certain amount of respect.

  • Andrew Wyatt January 21, 2014 at 12:43 pm

    The point made in the final paragraph characterizes the entire issue in a nutshell. It is a travesty that so much attention and drama surround this one rhino and the DSC auction. Over 1000 Black rhinos lost their lives to poachers in 2013. Everything important that happens for an endangered animal happens at the species level. The life of a single “management” bull to potentially save hundreds of rhinos from poachers is a reasonable price to pay. This is about the pragmatics of real conservation in Africa. Great article!


  • Daniela BBarbr July 3, 2014 at 11:37 am

    Great article!


  • Lloyd July 3, 2014 at 8:30 pm

    You are building part of an assessment based upon asking hunters who already know they are involved in a sport that is criticized, what they would choose to do if given certain circumstances that would be better for the animals? You are asking these questions to people who are killing the animals for sport. What do expect them to say? No they don’t care. That’s like asking oil companies if they care about the environment. Some of the hunters are wealthy and it’s common place to justify actions in support of business decisions. It’s like water running off their backs. If they really cared, they would be giving a lot more funding towards conservation and not just paying the guide service and calling it good. They receive high intensity thrills by killing innocent animals and are willing to tell you what you want to hear in order to keep doing it. I cannot believe that a school of higher learning would actually provide a poll to a group of people that are quite aware that they need to protect their character and credibility. Please tell me that you are not a staff member of the University.


    • RJ July 9, 2014 at 9:23 am

      Did you read the article? Did you click on the Mpala link? It seems the poll was given by an organization unrelated to UW. The writer even says that the hunters might be answering dishonestly. Please tell me that you are not a person who doesn’t read things before rushing to judgment in the comment section.


  • Bianca July 16, 2014 at 11:50 am

    People find all sorts of excuses as to why its ok to take a life…”the meat is donated to the villagers…the money is given back to the community…they were old…conservation efforts…if it weren’t for hunters there’d be no animals.” How about donating directly to villagers, communities, actual conservation efforts? These animals are born to die by the hands of ignorance. They aren’t wild animals. They are forced to pro-create so the babies can be born and raised for humans to kill. Its disgusting and how in the world is that conservation of any kind?! Anyone who believes they’re doing a good thing has the veil of ignorance draped over their eyes. How can people not see that life is precious for all beings? That just because we have guns, we simply do not have the right to use them to take the life of an innocent being. Wake up, the world doesn’t have room for closed minds. Its the only planet we get, these are beings we should be proud to have on our planet, that we should keep safe. Excuses just aren’t good enough anymore. Also, if you make excuses for mankind to kill these animals, you’re only giving others the opportunity to do the same. Hence, the “lottery” for the rhino. Its just wrong. How about that? Its not even a consideration for those who are blind from conditioning. Live from your soul for a day and you’ll realize the travesties that happen which we are often part of. Its about changing and educating. Not giving people with too much money an opportunity to sell their souls to the nasty side of ego. Humanity needs to evolve.


    • Anne August 1, 2014 at 4:14 am

      Well said,

      I have seen many hunters make the comment “animals are here for our use” and I wonder what on earth you could do to make someone with that attitude see that they do not in fact have the moral right to slaughter animals no matter how much they have paid or which side of the law they are on.

      Regarding the honesty of replies, just try looking at the general mentality of those who post on facebook pages of hunters like Jim Shockey, Kendall Jones, Melissa Bachman, Eva Shockey etc etc if you want honesty. They simply do not care.


      • Issis August 15, 2015 at 6:13 pm

        Agree. Unfortunately many Christian and other religions have inculcated the belief that the world – it’s lands,animals, oceans etc. are “god’s gift” to humans, to use as they please. The rape of the environment, the slaughter of animals (farm as well as wild) are all deemed placed on the earth to satisfy even the most base human needs and desires (i.e. trophy hunting). It is long past due that formal religious leaders should speak out to protect the environment and the nonhuman creatures which inhabit it. As for those who consider it their right to blast away at sentient creatures or who choose to ignore the hideous treatment of most farm animals that arrive in their stores as pristine, cellophane wrapped body parts … Perhaps their callousness cannot be erased. Movies like The Deer Hunter and documentaries like Paul McCarthy’s “If Slaughter Houses Had Glass Walls” ( ) should be required viewing.

    • Jake December 2, 2014 at 12:49 pm

      You call people ignorant and heartless but have never looked at anything from their perspective. Try telling someone who lost a loved one to a bear or big cat that those animals are entitled to their own living just like we are. Try telling a farmer who has lost cows to wolves that they are majestic animals and shouldn’t be harmed. When animals interfere with human life, they need to be managed. That doesn’t mean all of them should be slaughtered, but would you give up your living so that a small group of animals could have what they want?


      • Carol Crunkhorn January 2, 2015 at 8:17 pm

        Animals follow the laws of nature and the earth is in balance, until the arrival of human animals. We do not behave like any other species, we are unique in our ability to upset the balance of nature and our “management” of it has caused irreversible damage. We are the only species that behaves as a virus behaves when it tries to destroy its host and so far we seem to be succeeding.

    • Andrew January 29, 2015 at 2:46 pm

      I would imagine you are a vegan and use no animal products of any type in your life to make a comment like that? No leather shoes or anything? Highly unlikely.

      And if you don’t , you are just as much of the problem for the greater demand of crops that ruin the habitat of these animals.

      Not to mention plants are also a life form. They communicate and have to consciousness on some level that we don’t fully understand. So you are killing life when you eat vegetables, and the vegetables are grown on land that used to belong to the animals and so they are being killed through removable of habitat for you to eat vegetables.

      The fact is in Africa the only way these animals will be saved is by making them more valuable and a desirable commodity. The poachers will kill all of these animals if there is not a battle to save them. The demand from the largely Asian culture which values the horn will keep them poached to extinction. This old rhino will die in a few years anyway, or will be killed for nothing or poached and have its horns cut off and the rest of it left to rot. It is a war over there and people in this country have no idea.

      Is a very complex argument and to judge others seems very narrow minded to me. The fact is here’s someone who understands this better than you or I and is willing to pay $350,000 that is going to save the species more than your judgmental words ever will


    • dleomiles November 3, 2015 at 3:23 am

      You are so correct and the bible allows us to hunt to


  • Leon Kachelhoffer January 23, 2015 at 9:24 pm

    In order for wildlife to survive, especially in wilderness areas, it has to benefit those whom actually live on the land and essentially own it. These are the rural African communities, they are on the front line.

    It is this group that determines the future of wildlife in the wilderness and protected areas.
    Simply put if they derive a tangible benefit from the wildlife, it will have a value and therefore will be protected.
    For them its a matter of survival. If wildlife doesn’t pay and in fact cost them. In the form of competition for space and damages to crops and livestock wildlife does not win. It looses every time.

    Rural communities do not see wildlife like we do. They see as food and a competition/menace. Elephants raid their precious crops, predators kill livestock and people. Their lives and livelihoods are at stake. How would we react if something or someone threatens that?? If we were in their shoes we’d react EXACTLY the same.

    These areas in which the rural communities live are the buffer zones between protected areas and developed land. These are not area generally suited to Ecotourism as the area settled and this niche market has come to view wildlife and wilderness not people mixed into the bush.

    In order for the animals to survive in these areas they have to have a value to the inhabitants. Controlled trophy hunting fits this bill and led to many areas been protected and even rehabilitated.

    Controlled Trophy hunting achieves two main objectives. Firstly, It generates revenue for these rural communities which, in most places are the only funds for development of basic/essential services – Education, health and water.
    Secondly – The selective hunting of a few animals and targeted “problem animals” goes along way to appease rural people.

    When and where the rural people realize a tangible benefit from sharing the land with wildlife it survives and thrives. Where wildlife does not it is depleted.
    There are many examples. It is a matter of human nature and survival.
    Who are we, as outsiders, to tell the people living on the land what to do with the land or wildlife?? What we can do is provide alternatives means of survival.


  • Andrew Baldry January 23, 2015 at 10:01 pm

    In Zambia all hunting is done on communal lands that buffer our National Parks and these lands are available for non consumptive activities but seemingly few others want to invest in wildlife and rural communities therefore it is left to us hunters to provide that protective umbrella over many thousands of miles of wilderness.


    • Steve August 8, 2015 at 5:41 pm

      If continual trophy hunting is protecting animals, why are these animals still threatened or endangered? In reality, trophy hunting and poaching amount to the same thing. Both diminish a species. Killing animals to save them is a belief of the ignorant and the ploy of hunters.


  • Pierre February 7, 2015 at 1:09 pm

    Very well written. Unbiased and factual despite the author’s personal dislike in hunting.
    That’s being professional.


  • I2Year Old February 17, 2015 at 12:32 pm

    I believe that hunting is bad for sport because the more species we eradicate the deeper we are putting ourselves in a hole. Inside this hole there will be no more hunting of anything unless we fix our game and stop this by no longer hunting for big endangered animals. We have eradicated more then 7% of all animals (meaning the went extinct) by having father daughter hunts. where the father kills a lion by cold blooded murdering the lion and then putting the blame on the daughter by having her take a selfie and then posting it on face book.


  • Cathy dye February 27, 2015 at 8:35 am

    Read the article. I really can read and understand pseudo scientific articles. I am and a always be anti hunting. True if you need it for food I can see that but to hang an animals head over the fireplace seems rather ghoulish and not really artistically pleasing. Is in spite of all the reasons people hunt I say bullshit. People hunt because they enjoy killing plain and simple. So please if you are a hunter just admit you enjoy shooting big guns and watching animals die.


  • Midnight Panther April 7, 2015 at 7:10 am

    This article was great. No sides were taken without research or logical reasoning.

    I am against hunting and killing animals, especially the ones which are endangered. I do not like seeing pictures of hunters with their trophy catch. In short, I do not like wasting God’s beautiful creation in the hands of greedy and id run minds. One can never be justified on the laws of men but on the laws of God.

    I can say that I can relate to both sides. I have a ranch here in the Philippines and when our livestock is threatened by predators, we have no choice but to kill these animals. We only kill if it is necessary to do so. My family and I are against hunting for self satisfactory. We save birds, etc… when hurt.

    We are not vegan and we eat meat just like a normal being. And I think that the mass breeding of chickens and cows are exceeding to the amount of meat people eat each day.
    I thinks it is unreasonable that the world have a lot of chickens and cows and none would use it. They are God’s creation and functioned to satisfy us.

    The point is, Why not hunt in places where livestock and people are threatened by predators so that for once, hunting could be useful. And not spend million dollars on “buying to kill”.
    Rhinos and other plant eating animals HAS NEVER done anything wrong to you. So why kill them just for trophy? To let people know you were brave enough to kill such a “beast”? Well, first of all, it’s not bravery. You are being such cowards. And the only one who is the beast among the 2 of you, is the one who killed an innocent animal.

    And for the anti hunting people, STOP telling people to NOT eat meat. We need meat in our daily lives as long as we know we are not eating a lion’s meat or a bear’s meat. You get my point? I also do not like hunters eating meat of different kinds of endangered animals. But maybe if they are aware that the meat is totally mass bred, then it would not be such a great deal.

    And yes, I believe animals have souls. But once they die, their souls will just disintegrate. They will vanish. Not like human beings.

    No hate okay? I am just speaking on my side. This was just an idea. And yes I read the article. no need to tell me if I read or whatever.

    Have a nice day!


    • Cliff April 25, 2015 at 6:43 am

      You are a hypocrite. You hate hunting and killing of animals. But you kill your innocent cows and chickens for meat! How can you even think there is a difference? Keep drawing your mental lines in the sand.

      In many parts of the world, the cow is sacred and to kill one is the ultimate sin and act against humanity.

      Please rethink you position without being in your little box. The world is a large place with a lot of different beliefs and traditions. And many are not the same as yours.

      It never stops to amaze me the small and hypocritical thinking many people have. I even hear and read people saying that to kill to eat is ok, but to kill for trophy is wrong? What is the difference? The trophy to the meat hunter is the meat! What difference does it make if the trophy is the skin or the meat?
      Others say it is ok to eat meat as long as it comes in the cellophane wrapped packages in the store, since no animals were harmed in that process! Hmmmm, stupidity sure does run rampant through the anti-hunting community. Or maybe I missed it, as I thought the meat in the stores came from live animals that were killed for that purpose! Maybe I need to find the store that they use where meat grows in the cellophane for people to eat and no animals get killed!
      Incredible stupid people.


      • random stranger July 29, 2015 at 6:43 am

        Ah, typical vegan. You talk about the horror that is killing of animals regardless whether it is for food or etc. Tell me. What’s the difference between the killing of animals and the killing of plants?

      • Issis August 15, 2015 at 6:01 pm

        To Random Stranger: Most edible plants (i.e. lettuce, tomatoes, potatoes, etc.) can regenerate and, if tended properly, will live out their expected life cycle. Virtually all edible plants die after a season, although most will release seeds in order to reproduce in the next growing cycle. Unpicked vegetables and fruit literally go to waste … drop on the ground, rot, etc. Killing animals, on the other hand requires a deliberate lust to inflict pain, suffering and death. Trophy hunting, where only the heads are desired and displayed is barbaric.Anyone who achieves satisfaction from such display demonstrates a lack of common decency and humanity.

  • Fooboo April 19, 2015 at 10:35 pm

    This is a good article and I appreciate the information it contains. It makes a persuasive pragmatic argument in favour of trophy hunting, and I’m usually willing to concede to pragmatic arguments if they’re accurate and truthful.

    Ultimately, however, it strikes me that regardless of whether or not the money paid by a rich trophy hunter for the right to shoot an endangered animal helps conservation efforts, it takes a disturbed individual in this day and age to want to go out and shoot an endangered animal for a trophy in the first place, and that’s something that can’t be sidestepped.

    It seems like the animal world equivalent of the Department of Justice allowing wealthy people to come in and personally throw the lever on death row inmates in order to raise a few thousand extra dollars per execution.

    The animals may or may not be at a point where their culling is beneficial, and the money could certainly help, but at the same time it sends a very clear message that, if you have enough money to throw at something, the rules of common decency don’t apply to you and you can get away with things that would normally be subject to intense moral scrutiny. I think that’s quite sad, regardless of the pragmatics.


  • Alex Brown April 23, 2015 at 9:35 am

    The overall economic impact of trophy hunting is very small, something like 0.27% of GDP in African countries where trophy hunting is allowed. Why is rhino poaching so high in a country like S. Africa where trophy hunting is allowed? Because the purported economic benefits of that are 1) very tiny and 2) not trickling down to locals.


    • Cliff April 25, 2015 at 6:07 am

      The vast majority of Rhino poaching is taking place in the Government controlled parks where there is no trophy hunting allowed.

      In areas where trophy hunting of those species is allowed, there is minimal poaching as the animals has much more value than just a photo to tourist as they do in the parks.

      It is just easy to understand economics of Africa. It has to pay to stay.


  • Cliff Tulpa April 25, 2015 at 5:58 am

    Trophy Hunting is synonymous with conservation. The trophy hunters are the only ones willing to put up the money necessary to pay for the management for the survival of the endangered species as well as the conservation and enhancement programs of other large mammals.
    The average Eco-tourist does not provide any funding for conservation and to believe they do is a myth. Without the millions of dollars spent by trophy hunters, the wildlife and conservation programs to protect the endangered animals would not exist.
    The Trophy Hunter will spend days and weeks, that he pays for each day, in areas of low density of game and animals to see. He pays daily rates, community service fees, community conservation fees, area fees, license fees, game scout salary fees, as well as any trophy fee on an animal he may harvest. And he normally does this from low-cost and low environmental footprint, using tents and temporary camps.
    The Eco-tourist that wants to take photos and see the animals would not even spend a full day in those areas as it may take several days just to see one animal! The Eco-tourist would be demanding his money back if he was taken to these areas where trophy hunting takes place. Eco-tourist companies are not willing to put in the luxury lodge, swimming pool, white linen table cloth restaurants, the spa, and all the other pampering amenities required by Eco-tourism. Eco-tourist really want a luxury lodge located inside a zoo.
    The world would be without white rhinos and many other animals that were on the brink of extinction without the efforts of trophy hunters working through management programs to protect them.
    The Trophy Hunter is actually the ultimate and highest level of Eco-Tourist and Conservationist.


    • dixie April 28, 2015 at 9:55 pm

      Why can’t the Trophy Hunter become an eco-tourist? Why can’t an eco-tourist be someone who’s willing to pay for all that high-class amentiies? Why does trophy hunters have to kill to enjoy those amenities?? What is this saying about us humans??? This is all in the mental thinking of a trophy hunter, who thinks that because one has money, one can spend it anyway he/she wants, including killing animals.

      DUDE! Trophy hunters should just change their hobby from killing into photographing those animals, and still spend money on whatever fees you want to spend on. Problem solved!

      Can’t? That’s because they basically don’t care about lives. If they did they’d put the money in anyway, WITHOUT killing animals.


      • r May 4, 2015 at 2:48 am

        I don’t mean to attack your comment in particular. I see a common thread in many comments similar to yours, it’s just that yours particularly pricked me.
        To answer a question of yours…. I agree; why can’t an ecotourist pay as high an amount as a trophy hunter? I wish they would, but there are very few people that would consider paying $350k to see exotic game. There’s little demand.
        The article was fantastic in showing that careful allocation of permits can dramatically change populations of endangered species. Regardless of your opinion about trophy hunting, that fact remains. So you getting upset at hunters for “killing” game doesn’t stem from the ineffectuality of conservation efforts as a result of hunting. It must come as a result of your personal convictions. Part of being a contributing adult in this world is the ability to set aside convictions and look at the science of what is happening in the situation. So what is happening?

        Hunters stimulate local economy. =good

        Hunters provide conservation funds that aid in protecting endangered species from poachers. = good

        Hunters are directed in removing game that is interfering with breeding processes. This promotes breeding and variety in the gene pool. This means stronger, resilient individuals. = good

        Hunters have a very limited availability of hunting permits. =good

        Hunters don’t erect hotels and other monstrosities in hunting grounds. That means humans have as little contact with animals as possible. = good

        Bottom line is it works when properly managed, and it works well. Sounds to me like hunting doesn’t need to change, but your convictions should allow room for reason and science to influence your judgements. Don’t expect others to hold the same convictions as you. I’m not telling you to love hunting at all, just asking you to look at the facts. And the fact is that this mans money and passion has done more for those endangered animals than yours or anyone else’s convictions have ever done.

    • Gaetano Bonaviri June 13, 2015 at 11:58 am

      “Trophy hunting advocates present the industry as large, citing figures such as US$200-milllion in annual revenue. But in the context of national economies, the industry is tiny, contributing at best a fraction of a per cent of GDP. Nature-based tourism does play a significant role in national development, but trophy hunting is insignificant. Across the investigated countries, trophy hunting revenue was only 1.8% of tourism revenues.”

      And according to a comprehensive study ordered by IUCN on big game hunting as a tool for conservation in Africa:
      “The economic results of big game hunting are low. Land used for hunting generates much smaller returns than that used for agriculture or livestock breeding. Hunting contributions to GDP and States’ national budgets are insignificant, especially when considering the size of the areas concerned. Economic returns per hectare, for the private sector and for governments are insufficient for proper management. Returns for local populations, even when managed by community projects are insignificant, and cannot prompt them to change their behaviour regarding poaching and agricultural encroachment. The number of salaried jobs generated (15 000 all over Africa) is low considering that 150 million people live in the eight main big game hunting countries, and that hunting takes up 16.5% of their territory. To summarise, the hunting sector uses up a lot of space without generating corresponding socio-economic benefits.”

      The truth is hunting industry feeds itself and the benefits for wildlife are mith. Those who run the hunting concessions and the government absorb most of the money and very little actually goes to the locals and those in the forefront in the fight against poaching.

      The truth is an elephant is much more ‘valuable’ alive than dead: he can be watched throughout his lifetime by ecotourism customers.
      ” Alive a single elephant can contribute $22,966 to tourism per year and because elephants live for multiple decades, the total revenue that each elephant can generate during its lifespan is immense – $1,607,624.83.”, according to the analysis conducted through the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust’s Iworry campaign and released in October 2014…/2013/09/Dead-or-Alive-Final-LR.pdf

      The truth is hunters destroy for $10.000 – $20.000 an intelligent, social, empathic animal that can generate $1.6 million and call this conservation


  • A M Roos May 12, 2015 at 2:36 am

    Why do we not leave this to the experts. I love for animals can intervere with a wrong opinion.


  • Alan Dean Foster May 22, 2015 at 8:46 am

    There are good arguments on both sides of this issue, but please keep one thing in mind. This is not “hunting”.

    A solo bowman seeking out deer in the Canadian Rockies is a hunter. Someone taking a stroll with a high-powered rifle, with guides, over a short distance, to the known location of the target animal, is not a hunter. He is a slaughterhouse worker; just better-dressed.


  • william huard May 22, 2015 at 5:37 pm

    Ask the African LION in South Africa how trophy based wildlife conservation is working out for them! 18 years post the Cook report- when a lactating female lion was led away from her 3 cubs to the next enclosure- shot by a german trophy hunter in front of her cubs- and then the “hunter” posed for the trophy by opening up the lions mouth to show how he conquered the king of beasts…..Now- south african breeders take wild lions from the wild to reinforce the gene pool- and, maximize their profit margins by selling the lion skeleton to chinese dealers.
    No mention at all about the human depravity of all of this?
    I offer the story of big John- the lion from zambia. A massive specimen who controlled two lion prides. Killed because a trophy hunter had to have him- and, what happened to John’s cubs once the rogue males came in? Conservation? Hardly


    • R May 27, 2015 at 11:12 pm

      I agree. That is a deplorable example of how governments issue permits in exchange for quick money. I would say that is irresponsible and practically criminal. Fortunately that is not the case for all African Safari hunts. The article showed two fantastic example of Namibia rhinos and Zimbabwe elephants where scientists recommendations were considered and implemented to the benefit of the species.

      Also another important fact to consider is the ridiculous ratio of poached rhinos to legally purchased rhino tags. The real criminals are the poachers, not the hunters. Over 700 rhinos killed illegally! Thats what needs fixing. The conscientious governments take the money generated from say the 5 rhino permits and invest it in tighter park security and an increased manpower to patrol the park. Before we put those hunter’s heads on the chopping block, let’s put conservation efforts toward ridding the earth of those illegal and immoral poachers.


      • Kathleen July 30, 2015 at 12:27 pm

        I would like to see proof money goes back for protection. I do believe those funds come from donors all over the world. This is about blood money not conservation. When you pick off the top of the gene pool what do you have left? When you run out of animal targets who will be next, the elder or sick? I am in environmental science and behavior and have researched enough to know some conservation “feel good tags” are just a shame. African countries need to work on population control first and understand what carrying capacity is.

  • Rose May 26, 2015 at 1:27 pm

    Your’e right. Completely. Money will save lives…. NOT


  • Linda June 7, 2015 at 10:54 pm

    It doesn’t matter any more for the Black Rhino. The last one died a few months ago. They are extinct. Now the hunters can concentrate on the other endangered species. Maybe they could even make a contest to see how many species they can eliminate from this Earth. (sarcasm intended)


  • FRED BRAND June 12, 2015 at 10:08 pm



  • Manuel F. Nunez June 21, 2015 at 1:03 pm

    Nature handles an animal species just fine without the necessity of humans to get involved. Humans are the ones who create the problem, because some humans are sick and enjoy hurting and destroying animals (HELLO: when you kill an animal, you are going beyond hurting it; you are destroying it). There is such a clear difference between people who hunt to eat and people who hunt because they enjoy hurting and destroying animals. You want to watch animal populations rise in Africa? Here is an idea: BAN Trophy Hunting completely and execute (on site if possible) any who violate these laws. Threaten every single African Trophy Hunting Safari group with life imprisonment for every member who does not leave the African continent within a 30 day period and carry it out. Have the Pan-African Union sign a mutual accord to help and aid each other. Place every single known member of a group that sponsors African Trophy Hunting on a lifetime ban from every single African nation and place every single client on a lifetime ban from all African nations also, as personae non gratae. Create Kickstarter campaigns fueled by various wildlife organizations and National Geographic. Watch the numbers soar. Giving these sick bastards the right to get their jollies by butchering animals for no reason other than their lust of destruction and on top of that making them out as heroes is just demented.


    • Kathleen July 30, 2015 at 12:30 pm

      Well said. I agree as an environmental scientist with a psychology background. There is a common thread with trophy hunters and narcissist personality disorders as well as serial killers. Nature takes care of nature fine. Humans on the other hand should focus on bigger things that can kill them like a mass virus outbreak.


  • adam baillie July 27, 2015 at 1:47 pm

    It is an incredibly complex issue and highly political. But with the current system of trophy hunting conservation is undoubtedly uncontrollable. It’s a 6 billion dollar industry and with the high demand and desire to hunt and kill combined with unstable political stability and regional poverty there will always be a problem. And IT IS a fundamental contradiction! to sacrifice any number of lives to indirectly protect others with finances? Not right! when there is financial gain benefited from the death of wildlife you can be sure there will be death of wildlife. The African safari industry (people wishing to experience african wildlife naturally and peacefully in its own environment) is worth more than 20 billion dollars. To conclude, we need to remove the complications the focus needs to shit to real conservation real respect of wildlife. Each and every person involved in t
    he process of trophy hunting has a choice there is an alternative. Peace!


  • Wolf Lover Steve July 29, 2015 at 5:36 pm

    When it comes to lion hunting. The fiercest lions are the ones that are targeted, thus negatively affecting the gene pool. So the answer in many cases is no. When a hunter comes to Africa for big game hunting, they want an animal that they can go home and brag about.


  • Lawrence Papadopoulos July 30, 2015 at 10:13 am

    I didn’t comment on this article until now, but the recent actions of Walter Palmer just really hits home. I’m Sick and tired of hearing the blood sports defended. Conservation should never be pursued on behalf of the hunting culture. No amount of money can make up for the loss and no legal protections should effectively protect hunting of any sort. Period. The act itself is the thing we need to prevent. It’s needless death and destruction and should be discouraged in all cases. This man, Walter Palmer, represents a perverted branch of human development… thrill killing. This is a condition not found in nature and should be treated as an illness. I say it is supremely unhealthy to allow this kind of behavior to go unchallenged.
    These are sick people and should not be allowed to fulfill their fantasies just because they pay. They are high up on the violence scale and only a short step from killing fellow humans. Yes hunters, you are the problem, not the solution.


    • Issis August 15, 2015 at 6:20 pm

      Well said… Anyone who is “thrilled” by inflicting pain, suffering (Cecil lasted 40 hours with who knows how many arrows piercing his body before being slaughtered with bullets) and death on sentient creatures is sick … pure and simple. These are not starving individuals hunting to feed themselves and their families, but engorged egos with a sadistic need to inflict pain and death. No amount of high talk can disguise the basic psychology that motivates such individuals.


  • Kathleen July 30, 2015 at 12:22 pm

    I don’t buy it. “Conservation” in Africa is about money. There is millions of dollars donated by people who think they are helping only to find that some organizations there allow hunting of what we are trying to protect. Killing old animals as protecting a species? Hardly, when they run out of animals will they start throwing old people or sick people out to be targets?


  • ron awde August 6, 2015 at 1:59 am

    It is obscene.

    If conservation sells out by letting sociopaths slaughter endangered species…then we don’t need to bother conserving anything because all we are doing is perpetuating the idea of animals as legitimate ‘trophies’ for the same economic elite that caused the problems in the first place.

    A true conservationist doesn’t need the thrill of the hunt…..they will do whatever they can to support the preservation of a dwindling world wildlife heritage.


  • Davey du Plessis August 14, 2015 at 12:22 pm

    The ‘hunting for conservation’ myth has been challenged and debunked already. The money doesn’t go to communities, it goes to the animal owners – in SouthAfrica, all hunting lodges are privately owned and managed as businesses, not conservancies and animals are commodified, similar to how farm animals are bred as products. Other African countries are riddled with corruption who can barely find the resources to treat there own people with dignity and ensure basic rights – all hunters know that corruption is rife in all African countries and they all know little to no money goes to where it should.
    Lions are already being intensively bred and commodified from birth to death, selling them to different industries depending on their age -Cubs for petting, juveniles for ‘walking with lions activities’ adults for trophies or breeding. Elephants are undergoing similar commodifying patterns as lions. Hunting is just legalized poaching for the rich and the only reason there is a remote conversation about its effectiveness is because of the large amounts of money mixed in the debate. Even the short term spikes we have seen in the population of hunted species does not reflect the genetic strength/diversity of the species – lions numbers boomed for a while but genetic diversity reduced due to intensive breeding, we have now ended up with many ‘domesticated lions’ but ‘wild lions’ are a threatened species. Conservation is not just about the amount of animals alive, it’s also about the potential for genetic diversity and for the animals to live a relatively ‘wild life’. Any animals that are commodified are eventually domesticated, controlled and fall into the same category as farmed animals.


  • steve September 3, 2015 at 2:16 am

    Patrk, December 2014?

    Please explain where and how you managed to supply an answer such as this.

    It is essential to remove these individuals, especially when it comes to endangered species. It’s something that you need to do for a new male to be able to establish dominance within a group. If you don’t, there is simply no breeding happening, or dramatically reduced breeding rates, and you quickly doom a species to extinction.

    So your alternatives are either sedating it and moving it somewhere like a zoo.

    I am very confused as what happened before we intervened did the rhinos just hunt each other then? I have been involved in many black rhino breeding projects and personally witnessed rhinos dominating each other for breeding grounds and establishing new territories. That thing on the end of there face is a defence mechanism have you any idea how deadly it is when used in the correct and natural way? So should we not leave the species to do what they are designed to do and in there natural environment?


  • Amanda Hall October 3, 2015 at 3:17 pm

    My law school, UC Hastings, College of the Law in San Francisco, CA will have a legal debate on hunting of endangered/vulnerable species both nationally and internationally as well as hunting in general on October 30, 2015. Admission is free and it is open to the public. Registration is required as space is limited.


  • Pearl November 5, 2015 at 11:00 pm

    Its disgusting that their now deciding to put a price on an animals head! Sasha is right…we will only be telling trophy hunters that you know what its OK for you to kill these animals as long as you pay this amount of money…its all just greed…there are people out there that are trying so hard to protect these animals..they have feelings too you know…they have mothers and children like we humans do..they hurt too..why is it OK then for us to decide whether they live or not. the time will come when god will punish you hunters and greedy bastards!!!!!


  • Tammy December 19, 2015 at 3:23 pm

    Can there be a more STUPID question? Help how ? Too inflate the stupid humans who trophy hunt/lazy mans way ego’s more? That has got to be the most ignorant question i have ever seen asked. Its all about money now but in a few years their grandchildren and great grandchildren can take pride in telling all friends that yheir famy member helped to make these beautiful creatures extinct.


  • troy grant March 6, 2016 at 1:24 pm

    Trophy hunters usually only kill the strongest, most beautiful and best examples of the species, weakening the gene pool.

    We have “catch and release” fishing. We could have “dart and release” hunting.

    “Trophies” could be tranquilized, photographed, treated for disease and parasites, data taken and then released unharmed.

    Dangerous predators could be fitted with collar-receivers that would provide a gradual shock as they get nearer transmitters on people, domestic animals and property. Soon they would learn avoidance and these collars would not be needed.

    Dart “hunters” would need to learn about dosages, curing diseases and parasites, photography, taking and publishing data and would be free to dart all year long with no seasons.

    Hunting outfits could convert to dart hunting at little or no cost to their businesses. No dart hunting season would mean greater income.

    Dart hunting means no animal heads on the wall catching dust to your wive’s chagrin, or scaring children. Large color photos of the dart hunt would decorate the walls instead.

    Most of all, the number of species would increase and restore nature. And lean, grass-fed organic store bought meat tastes much better than tough, gamy wild meat.

    Google “tranquilizer guns for sale”.


  • Marthinus March 13, 2016 at 10:31 am

    So he loves wildlife so much that he is prepared to pay $350 000 to help save the Rhino. But will he give the money to conservation without killing the animal? No. You know why? Because it has NOTHING to do with conservation but with the joy and PLEASURE of killing an animal.

    If he loves animals that much why not just donate the money without killing?

    I tell you what. For every asshole in this world that actually think that killing a Rhino or any other trophy hunting is helping conservation, how would you react to this?

    I will pay India $350 000 to kill a child in Somalia so that they can save the lives of thousands who are starving. Same thing. Not so logical now?

    Sick, stupid human beings


  • Josef March 15, 2016 at 5:54 pm

    This is Africa you are talking about. I am absolutely sure that all of the money is pocketed by the politicians. It is for money and that is all.


  • Paulo July 29, 2016 at 2:57 am

    For the stupid comments that I read. Final point. Best way to conserve a species is to leave then alone. Simple.please don’t try to tell me that the money can be used in good ways when nobody knows where the money goes. 2nd point.concentrate in controlling human population. We the ones that is causing the extinction of other species. And we still try to find ways to cure virus. No sense at all. Greedy and stupid comments that I read here apart from the first comments. Idiots


  • Billy Kubie October 18, 2016 at 7:44 am

    Please just go watch either of these videos. I think they explain this issue very well. The fact that you wish all humans had the same views as you will not change the nature of humanity. I try to understand all viewpoints but when people ignore all forms of rational thought and launch angry rants about animal rights, it makes it hard.


    John Stossil: killing animals to save them.

    Adam Conover: Adam ruins animals


  • Anis December 8, 2016 at 12:03 pm

    Trophy hunters are dim-witted humanoids! Genes and money are not the same thing! When numbers dip too low so does genetic diversity so all that money going “back into local area” means one or a few people in power getting it all and no conservation efforts will happen.


  • Anis December 8, 2016 at 12:05 pm

    Great idea! Let’s cure people with cancer by giving them cancer! Same logic.


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