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Africa GeographicOpinion Editorial

Opinion: The untold story behind hunting in Botswana

Hunting in Botswana: Human-wildlife conflict scientist takes a deeper look at whether the historic hunting ban was good or bad for elephants and people.

Yes or no – boycott tourism lodges in Greater Kruger because of neighbouring trophy hunting operations?

Does it make sense to boycott tourism lodges in the Greater Kruger because of trophy hunting on neighbouring properties? Our CEO answers the question.

Opinion: The future is here – safari game drives will never be the same again

Our CEO test drives the best electric 4×4 vehicle around, and wants one.

Opinion: Selinda Reserve in Botswana was not hunted out, say former owners in reply to Dereck Joubert

Previous leaseholders of NG16, also known as Selinda Reserve, respond to Dereck Joubert’s article on the state of the Selinda concession.

Opinion: Europe first plundered elephants for ivory – should Western countries preach to China?

The Elephant Protection Initiative takes a long view and considers the changing role of China in the illegal ivory trade.

Opinion: Trophy hunting in the Greater Kruger versus broader conservation priorities

Trophy hunting in the Greater Kruger – biodiversity conservationist provides perspective, and suggests that well-funded groups opposed to hunting have a disproportionate voice in social media, compared to local communities that are affected by living amongst or near wildlife, and carry the costs.

Opinion: Loss of wilderness is Africa’s primary cause of wildlife population reductions

Lodge owner says that the loss of wilderness areas is the main reason behind reductions in populations of lions, elephants and other species.

Wildlife vet: the Botswana elephant debate is actually about a bigger conservation issue

Botswana elephant debate: Wildlife vet says that this is NOT about too many elephants in Botswana, it’s about too many elephants in areas where humans, livestock and elephants overlap.

Opinion: Put down the petitions – help create alternatives for Botswana beyond elephant hunting

Botswana elephant debate: Tourism marketing manager urges the tourism industry to create alternatives beyond elephant hunting.

Opinion by human-wildlife conflict specialist: Botswana has found her voice about elephants – but will we listen?

Human-wildlife conflict specialist comments on the recent recommendations regarding the hunting ban and human-elephant conflict in Botswana.

Opinion: Dr. Mike Chase on elephant poaching in Botswana

Dr Mike Chase, from Elephants Without Borders, provides a statement on the elephant poaching in Botswana.

Opinion: Dereck Joubert reacts to Botswana hunting and culling recommendation

Respected filmmaker and conservation spokesperson Dereck Joubert has reacted to the Botswana government committee proposal to resume trophy hunting, and commence with elephant culling. Plans also include erecting fences to prevent certain wildlife migrations, and improve on human-wildlife conflict mitigation methods.

Opinion: Activist exposes South Africa’s lion park scams

Lion activist says let’s call a scam for what it is.

Opinion: Pro hunter responds to our CEO regarding hunting in Greater Kruger

Professional hunter Paul Stone has responded to Simon Espley’s opinion editorial questioning whether the trophy hunting industry will ruin Kruger National Park’s expansion plans.

Opinion: Our CEO asks whether the trophy hunting industry could ruin Kruger’s big expansion plan

Our CEO asks whether the trophy hunting industry will bring the Greater Kruger to its knees.

Dereck Joubert sets the record straight about trophy hunting impact on lions and refutes claims of so-called benefits

An opinion post by Dereck Joubert as he sets the record straight about trophy hunting impact on lions and refutes claims of so-called benefits.

Opinion: Ecologist responds to Guardian newspaper article against trophy hunting

Campaign against trophy hunting – a western urban cultural imposition on rights of rural African communities: arrogant cultural superiority or ignorance?

Opinion: Why trophy hunting is counter-productive as a ‘conservation tool’

Trophy hunters target the largest or rarest animals they can find – or those with the biggest horns, tusks or manes. Yet both science and common sense tells us that that goes against nature’s law of survival of the fittest.

Opinion: Farcical quotes from the lion farming colloquium in South Africa

An opinion post on the colloquium on lion farming in South Africa.

Botswana elephant poaching debate: Wildlife vet speaks his mind

Botswana elephant poaching debate: Wildlife vet speaks his mind.

Scientists question BBC reporting over elephant poaching crisis in Botswana

A group of prominent scientists have questioned the reporting by the BBC of the elephant poaching crisis in Botswana.

Elephants: Listen to the people of the Okavango – opinion

The elephant – an iconic species that is beloved around the world is not such a gentle giant to the people who actually live with Earth’s largest mammal. This is the story of over 16,000 people from 15 settlements in the eastern Okavango Delta panhandle who are trapped between a river and over 18,000 elephants.

Leopard hunting quota was issued despite official report showing significant population declines

The official report into leopard populations reveals significant population reductions, and yet the SA government has announced a resumption in trophy hunting. Does this make sense? A respected biologist suggests not.

Biologist questions science behind leopard trophy hunting quota

After only two years of no leopard hunting, we now have apparently accumulated enough population data to reinstate a hunting quota and lift the zero quota. I find this very hard to believe for such a cryptic species.

Leopard trophy hunting – let’s talk numbers

The South African Department of Environment and Wildlife (DEA) has brought back trophy hunting quotas for leopards despite announcing last year that “ trophy hunting posed a high risk to the survival of the species”.

Video: South African rhino doing circus tricks in Russia – what’s next for our wildlife industry?

South African rhino doing circus tricks in Russia

A two-ton white rhino, sold from a South African farm, is being forced to perform tricks at Russian circuses.

Elephant poaching in Botswana: Prime tourism concessions now being hit

Fresh results from an ongoing elephant survey in northern Botswana reveal that a significant number of fresh carcasses have been found in a prime tourism concession operated by a prominent eco-tourism company.

Bone trade: Are Africa’s leopards next?

leopard © Simon Espley

According to a report, China is issuing permits to trade in leopard bones for use in Chinese medicinal products, despite there not being enough leopards left in that country to supply the trade volumes on the permits. As Africa has the largest wild leopard population, should we be worried more than usual about the fate of these big cats?

Opinion: Poachers getting out on bail are not helping South Africa’s rhinos

An opinion piece about the current judicial system in South Africa and how poachers getting out on bail are not helping the country’s rhinos.

Skye the lion – the beginning of the end for trophy hunting in the Greater Kruger?

The highly controversial shooting of a male lion by a trophy hunter in the Umbabat section of the Greater Kruger could conceivably mark the beginning of the end for trophy hunting in this part of Africa.

Opinion: The (high) road to a Greater Kruger National Park

An alternative, constructive perspective to the Greater Kruger Protected Area is offered, in contrast to the more acrimonious narratives that are doing the rounds in response to the hunting of a lion in the area.

Kruger lion hunted – what we know

A large male lion was trophy hunted on Thursday morning last week in the Greater Kruger National Park.

Zambia’s hippo cull: Valid concerns and questions from those affected

© Umlilo Safaris

A showdown is looming between tourism operators in Zambia’s South Luangwa National Park and trophy hunters, in the wake of the Zambian government’s decision to cull up to 2,000 hippos over a 5-year period in Luangwa Valley, across the river from the tourism lodges – and to award the culling contract to a South African trophy hunting outfit Umlilo Safaris (so much for the empowerment of local people and generation of revenue that stays in Zambia).

Opinion: Africa is not Disneyland

Some imagery that comes to our screens can be tough to stomach, and every now and then Africa really tests one’s emotional make-up.

Opinion: Saving Africa’s wilderness spaces – a new paradigm in conservation

An opinion piece that covers the foundational impact that habitat loss and habitat fragmentation is having on the future of Africa’s wildlife.

Opinion: Like the fossil fuel industry, trophy hunting is unsustainable

Trophy hunting is like the fossil fuel industry. They’re both messy, unsustainable, in need of an alternative approach and, ultimately, fail to deliver on their promises.

Opinion: Will I be attacked by a wild animal while on safari?

Will I be attacked by a wild animal while on safari? A number of recent news headlines in South Africa have probably contributed to an increase in this particular question (or some version of it), and two recent incidents appear to highlight again just how dangerous wild animals can be.

Opinion: Timbavati increases conservation levy to fund anti-poaching and other costs

An opinion piece that touches on finding ways to increase financial contribution to the conservation effort in the Greater Kruger.

Opinion: Tips for dealing with African border posts

Here are some thoughtful tips for getting into that essential ‘border state of mind’ when dealing with border post crossings in Africa.

When wild animals attack tourists

Leopard in camp site

An opinion piece in response to the leopard attack that recently occurred.

Mr President: Selling wild-caught baby elephants to China is just plain evil

Elephant kicked during capture in Zimbabwe

An open letter to the president of Zimbabwe regarding the recent exportation of wild-caught baby elephants from Zimbabwe to China.

Opinion: Hunting’s threat to conservation

Photo for illustrative purposes only

An opinion piece in response to Peter Flack’s recent article that offered a hunter’s perceived threats to conservation in South Africa.

Opinion: Elephants damage only 1% of Hwange’s vegetation

One of the main motivations for killing elephants in Hwange National Park in Zimbabwe is the argument that they destroy the plants and this is accepted by many as a problem. Let’s discuss whether this argument is not just an excuse for proponents of culling to get more ivory for the ivory trade, or to justify higher quotas for nearby hunting areas.

Opinion: Worth more alive

An opinion piece on the questionable role of trophy hunting in conservation.

Opinion: Hunting is sustainable (ab)use

None of the existing role players in conservation understand what is required to save Africa’s vanishing wilderness. The issue is just too broad and deep – and politically charged.

Opinion: The voice missing from the elephant trophy debate? Africans

People are likely to live with wildlife only when they have some realistic incentives to bear the costs of doing so. If wildlife doesn’t in one way or another form part of the livelihoods of people, it will inevitably make way for activities that do. For elephants, these incentives mean tourism and, yes, even trophy hunting.

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