I received the Press Release set out below directly from PHASA the other day stating that Hermann Meyeridricks, president of the Professional Hunters’ Association of South Africa (PHASA), is asking the hunting association to reconsider its position on lion hunting.
In the below letter emailed to PHASA members, Meyeridricks says that the campaign against trophy hunting has intensified around the canned or captive-bred lion hunting issue since its current policy on lion hunting.
As I am sure you are aware, the campaign against trophy hunting has intensified around the canned or captive-bred lions issue since our last annual general meeting.
When we embarked on a public relations campaign to counter the critics of hunting two years ago, we took the view – valid at that time – that they were a small if vociferous group of animal-rights activists, and that the attitude of our broader society was neutral on this question. This, I fear, is no longer the case.
From my dealings with the media and the community, it has become clear to me that the tide of public opinion is turning strongly against this form of hunting, however it is termed. Even within our own ranks, as well as in the hunting fraternity as a whole, respected voices are speaking out publicly against it.
With airlines and now shipping lines refusing to transport hunting trophies, we have to face the fact that the lion issue is putting at risk not only the reputation of professional hunting in South Africa but its very survival.
PHASA’s current policy on this issue is, broadly speaking, that we accept the legality of and demand for captive-bred lion hunting, and are working with the predator breeders to improve its standards and conditions to a generally acceptable level. We have not made sufficient, demonstrable progress on this front.
Against this background, I have come to believe that, as it stands, our position on lion hunting is no longer tenable, a view shared by our PR advisors. The matter will be on the agenda again for our next annual general meeting, which will take place on 18 November. I appeal to you to give it your serious consideration, so that together we can deliver a policy that is defensible in the court of public opinion.
Have a look here http://www.jwksafaris.com/south-africa-pricelist
You can see the amount of money international hunters spend when they come out to hunt trophy animals, they are not cheep. They hunt the older animals past their breeding age and whom have normally been kicked out the herds / prides.
The animal activists normally base everything on feelings and emotions regardless of what it does and being done for conservation.
If there were a shortage of any animals (not due to poaching) then we could have a whole different discussions. It is the hunters and the concessions that keep the population in good steed and minimise the poaching as they have every incentive in the world to make sure they have good breeding stock. They are the people prepared to create an environment for these animals to exist.
As a hunter, looking after my concessions, paying anti-poaching units to do patrols – who would pay them in those areas if I was not there? Who is going to look after the Lions – there are only 3000 in the wild in RSA and 6000 in breeding programs.
Remember people, you cannot save a forrest by hugging a tree!!!!
PH, Adriaan Wepener