Azara Blog: Hunting allegedly might have a conservation role

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Date published: 2006/10/28

The BBC says:

Rifle-toting tourists hunting exotic animals could actually help protect Africa's vulnerable species, a leading conservationist has suggested.

Elephant populations had benefited from a permit system that allowed sport hunters to kill a limited number of the beasts, according to Eugene Lapointe.

Mr Lapointe was head of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) between 1982-90.

Animal welfare campaigners rejected the idea as "morally unjustifiable".
...
Dr Lindsey, who is not a hunter, carried out research to assess both the positive and negative effects of hunting on conservation.

He found that the industry is not without setbacks. Estimates of how many animals can be shot without threatening the population are sometimes based on guesswork, because no research data is available.

Irresponsible lodge owners, who allowed illegal and unethical practises, such as hunting caged animals or shooting from cars, posed a severe threat to the industry's prospects.

Hunters also needed to find ways to make sure that the money from rich tourists did not end up in overseas bank accounts, but reached local communities, he added.

All rather anodyne and obvious, but of course there are indeed plenty of people who believe that killing certain species of animals (well, mostly mammals) is "morally unjustifiable". Killing for "sport" is stupid but stupidity is by itself not enough of a reason to disallow something.

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