A Texas hunting group has announced it will auction off a permit to kill an endangered black rhinoceros - with proceeds going to the cause of saving the black rhinoceros.
It’s a plan that even the Dallas Safari Club (DSC) has admitted seems ‘counterintuitive’ and has raised ire among wildlife organizations.
Ben Carter, the DSC’s executive director, says Namibia has an annual quota to kill five black rhinos and has ‘selected’ the club to auction one of them.
'First and foremost, this is about saving the black rhino,' said Ben Carter, DSC executive director. “
'There is a biological reason for this hunt, and it’s based on a fundamental premise of modern wildlife management: populations matter; individuals don’t. By removing counterproductive individuals from a herd, rhino populations can actually grow.'
Namibia has a black rhino population of 1,795 animals.
The critically endangered species has been decimated by poachers who hunt it for its valuable horn, and habitat loss.
Since the mid-1970s, the population has been reduced by about 90 per cent.
The DSC says the auction could generate up to $1 million for rhino conservation.
The idea of hunting an endangered species in order to preserve it has drawn widespread scorn.
'It's like the old saying, If you love something, set it free. Then, when it has a bit of a head start, open fire,' Colbert said.
He suggested facetiously that instead of killing one rhino, all 5,000 remaining black rhinos should be shot, which would raise $3.7 billion which could be used to keep one remaining rhino safely confined.
'I believe this is the only practical way to save the species,' Colbert said.
The black rhino hunt permit will be auctioned in January, but there is already a petition against it.
'It is bad enough that paid poachers kill for the horn's imaginary medicinal properties, but what is far worse is that the thoughtless pay for sport hunting resulting in yet one more dead endangered animal just so they can hang the decapitated head on their wall only to puff about it over cocktails,' writes Cindy Arent, the originator of the petition.
Al Jazeera reports that poachers in South Africa kill at least one rhino every day.
'Poachers come by helicopter and dart a rhino from the air with a powerful tranquilizer, a drug three thousand times more powerful than morphine.
'As [the rhino] succumbs to deep sedation, they take a chainsaw to her face. The machine's sharp teeth tear into her skull, removing her nasal cavities, exposing parts of her brain. [The horn] will be sold to a middle man for a small fortune.'
Powdered black rhino horn is highly sought after in China, where it is used to treat various ailments.
adoptpets: Stephen Colbert reported this absurdity out on his last Thursday’s telecast. The US Fish & Wildlife service has endorsed this hunt proving once again they hate wildlife and love hunters. I liked Stephen’s suggestion that in order to raise funds for the Dallas Safari Club that we auction off the chance to kill one of them.
Please sign this petition calling for the end of hunting a critically endangered species under the disguise of “conservation”: