Lion Hunting RSA - A very strong opinion from Jensen Safaris

Discussion in 'News & Announcements' started by BRICKBURN, Jan 13, 2012.

  1. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR GOLD BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    After JaimieD had a query here on AH I started to do some research. You know, the whole canned Lion thing. Court battles, Associations, outfitters, etc.

    I searched the latest President of the SA Predator Breeders Association (SAPBA): Prof. Pieter Potgieter and voila.

    I got this from Jensen Safaris website. Jensen Safaris Home Page
    It was posted in Danish but I translated it with assistance and thought I would share it on AH.

    My favorite part about this rant is his illustration of respect for American Hunters:

    "The American hunters are a gullible lot, and the SA hunting industry have for years been feeding on their willingness to turn a blind eye to any factor, as long as they could ensure the killing of large trophies."





    Letter published in the latest issue of SA JAGTER/HUNTER

    Dear Sirs,

    In your April issue Prof. Pieter Potgieter describes the successful court action by lion farmers, where new laws forcing farmers to ensure that lions live a natural life of a minimum of 24 months before being hunted, were suppressed on a technicality in the Free State High Court, as a victory for the hunting industry in SA. Nothing could be further from the truth.

    The laws were newer made to protect the lion population in the country - they were actually promulgated in order to protect the reputation of our professional hunting industry, which was suffering greatly from numerous examples of unethical so-called "canned" lion hunts, which by neglect of the authorities had developed into an industry of considerable proportions. To suggest that "self-discipline" amongst lion farmers would be a suitable solution equals the famous joke about letting the wolf look after the sheep.

    Comparing lion breeding with the release of game birds in Europe is irrelevant. I was educated as a gamekeeper in Denmark, and I can assure you that all game birds where released in the forest at the age of 5-6 weeks, and thereafter lived a natural life in the forest, mixing with the population of wild pheasants and ducks. By the time we hunted these birds, they were as wild and natural as they could possibly be. Likewise it is no excuse to compare it with the ridiculous artificial farming of giant red deer trophies in New Zealand. Whilst still in velvet, the deer are caught, and the ends of their antlers are then cut with an axe, in other to achieve an unnatural number of points. This unethical practice is being widely reported upon in overseas magazines. When next time you see one of those giant trophies advertised, you can rest assured that it has been created entirely by human interference in the growth process.

    The American hunters are a gullible lot, and the SA hunting industry have for years been feeding on their willingness to turn a blind eye to any factor, as long as they could ensure the killing of large trophies. Many African species are now being hunted in small fenced areas of Texas, and a huge portion of the lions appearing in the record books can be described as canned lions, most of them released on the very day of the hunt, and often drugged. There was every reason for Minister van Schalkwyk to interfere in the practice, and one can only hope that the laws be rewritten as a matter of urgency, so that we can again proudly market South Africa as a hunting destination, where "fair chase" is as important as creating an income for both outfitters and the owners of hunting land.

    You must realize that attitudes are changing, especially in Europe, where the actual quality of the hunting experience is becoming more important than numbers and inches. All hunters like to shoot large trophies - make no mistake, but the price can be too high, especially if the hunt takes place in a small fenced area or from a vehicle or in other unethical ways. Such a trophy may present much less value to the client, and he is unlikely to recommend the experience to others.

    I've been a hunting outfitter in SA for over 30 years, and I myself have had to adjust to this new attitude. We do a lot more walking, and try to enhance the entire hunting experience in such a way, that the clients and their friends keep coming back. Danish hunting magazines often refuse to publish stories on South African lion hunts, because they all know that it is being done in an unethical way not befitting a decent sportsman. Many of the hapless victims of this con do not even realize they've been taken in, although they do usually notice, that apart from their grand lion trophy, no other lions had been noticed in the veld. Of course not - God forbid that those lions would feed on anything else than dead donkeys and refuse from abattoirs. That would mean they'd lived a natural life in the bush, and none of those lions ever have. Some of the huge black-maned lions have been known to loose their color in the tanning process, because they have been artificially dollied-up before the hunt, and the poor taxidermists has to go and buy hair dye at the local supermarket, in order to satisfy the proud hunter.

    It will be absolutely no loss to the SA hunting industry if this entire menace is closed down. Let the Yanks breed their own lions in Texas and let them out in the morning of the hunt - it does not befit a first class African hunting country to use such methods. And don't call it lion hunting, but rather lion "shooting", because hunting it is not.


    Kind regards,
    JENSEN SAFARIS,

    Holger Krogsgaard Jensen
  2. Code4

    Code4 AH Enthusiast

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    I'm sure every nationality has been type cast and stereotyped at some stage. I know Aussies are often seen as, unsophisticated and a bunch of tight arsed scrooges always looking for a bargain who don't tip well, if at all. There have been Australian outfitters who refuse to have their own country men as clients for these reasons.

    I have heard disparaging remarks made about Spanish and French hunters too and not in Africa.

    Brickburn, don't believe the remark about Americans is anything unique or special. Every country has it's fair share of trophy hunters who couldn't give a shit about anything except size and scores and are happy to pay for it.
  3. Jaco Strauss

    Jaco Strauss SPONSOR AH Elite

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    As long as they do not increase quotas on wild lion hunting, on free roaming areas Because of a closure of a certain Market I have no issued with them closing down Lion hunting in SA, also the entire and by that I do mean the entire hunting fraternity should consider the possibility of closing Lion hunting all round.

    As there seems to be very limited Scientific, and I repeat very little to NO scientific proof regarding the sustainability of so called wild lion hunting in free roaming areas.

    As avid conservationist I would much rather hunt lion in an controlled enviroment and still ensure the survival of wild populations, than pressure the already twindling number of Lion in "Wild Africa"

    There is no difference in doing this (dropping a lion on a property of 5000 acres plus and hunting it) And bringing in a kudu, impala, blesbuck or any other specie for that matter and hunting it.

    In all actuality if controlled well the lion option would make more sense than the above mentioned plains game tactic and than hunting an already pressured population of wild lion due to various
    other factors including human encroachment, farming, Tb to mention but a few.

    Food for thought.
  4. 35bore

    35bore AH Legend

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    Very well put Jaco.
  5. Hartzview Hunting Safaris

    Hartzview Hunting Safaris SPONSOR AH Fanatic

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    Very well said Jaco. I do a Lott of these hunts and we do it the right and ethical way. I challenge anybody to come and hunt one of these cats with me and see if you will stand your man when a lion mock charges you up to 15yards. If you tell me that the lion have no chance of killing you as hunter you do not know what you are talking about. These cats are self sustainable and they will catch for themselves within 2 days after being released. I am not sucking this out of my thumb I Am talking out of experience!

    This kind of hunting takes pressure of the wild lion population and it ensures the growth of good genes and healthy population in the wild areas. It also helps hunters that cannot afford to spend 90 to 100k for a hunt in Tanzania. It is the same as shooting impala in a 3000ha.

    Thats my opinion!

    Jacques
  6. Jaco Strauss

    Jaco Strauss SPONSOR AH Elite

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  7. Jaco Strauss

    Jaco Strauss SPONSOR AH Elite

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    Mr. Jensen

    Every US hunter that joins in on such a safari also signs a permit stating "hunt of captive bred lion" so I would not go as far as to call them gullible.
    Apart from this I tend to prefer US based hunters as they are less prone to alcohol ABUSE!

    My best always
  8. nsok

    nsok AH Veteran

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    I think that maiking generalizations is not good
  9. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR GOLD BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    Me too!
  10. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR GOLD BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    Definitely food for thought.
    It would be nice to have some more science on the "wild" lion populations that are hunted.

    More food for thought.
    The other post on the SAPBA shows there is a group trying to get some better rules in place to ensure sustainability of the industry.
  11. Jaco Strauss

    Jaco Strauss SPONSOR AH Elite

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    Brickburn, will post a thourough report soon just need to get back home,

    Me three hence the alcohol statement! Airbag aka jaco strauss!

    My best always.
  12. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR GOLD BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    It can be a challenge to shoot from the hip. Sometimes you miss. :)
  13. 505ED

    505ED AH Veteran

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    I agree a little with American clients being a "gullible lot"--we want adventure--true adventure-- and most of us will pay alot for it.

    I do have a slight rub with Lion hunting. I watch alot of hunting flims...I mean alot! I get a kick out of watching some. I just bought Beast of Legend and in one of the Lion hunts they bait,put a game camera on the bait tree--then find one of them in the river bed and shoot him while he is sleeping--hummm... What really is the difference, but hunting one under a high fence other than you--might know what they look like. If it is hunted on a property greater than lets say 2500-3000 hect and its not let out the "day before" then it would be damn near the same. Maybe cat hunting is not for me.

    As for Americans being gulliable well yes we are. How many times have you seen on shows-"good shooting John" and it took 4 shots to tip the animal over. We pay for adventure and a vacation from our "regular lives" and PH's do a good job of bolstering what we are missing.

    Just some thoughts.

    Ed
  14. 6MM

    6MM AH Veteran

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    To funny watched a show a couple of weeks ago where a guy hit a kudu or gemsbok waaaay back and the PH said wow great shot. LMAO, and only on TV it only went about 200 yards.
  15. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR GOLD BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    6mm, You have to love that editorial delusion. How dumb can they think viewers are?
    I always wonder about the wisdom of including kill shots.
    It becomes all to obvious how bad we can be. In all respects.

    But, that is entertainment........ right
  16. Bert the Turtle

    Bert the Turtle AH Veteran

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    I was at a Texas ranch where a major firearms manufacturer was filming some of their new products in action. On the edited films, everyone was a great shot and they they were all one-shot kills. I think this kind of thing does a disservice to the inexperienced hunters who are trying to learn. It can lead to disappointment in ones own performance if more than one shot is needed or worse, lead to not taking a second shot when it is needed. I think they should brag more about stalking close than shooting far and more about putting in an insurance shot than how fantastic the first shot was.

    Back to the original topic, there seems to be less objection to game farming in general than a particular distaste for farming lions in particular. It seems to stem from the idea that lions are "noble" and deserve better. I think it is dangerous to ascribe human traits to a lion: he is no more "noble" than any other animal. That said, I am not personally interested in shooting a drugged lion, nor one disoriented from just being released. But, I can't help but think that it not only relieves some hunting pressure on wild lions, it also preserves or expands the lion gene pool. So I can see some potential benefits to it. After all, there are no shortages of cows, sheep, chickens, or any other animals that man raises to earn his living.

    I personally shot a bison under conditions that most anyone would call canned. I didn't know it would be that way and how the hunt came about is a long story, but the bottom line is I ended up walking out into a field and shooting the thing. I wanted the meat and hide no different from buying a beef carcass at the butchers, except I killed it myself. I don't claim it as a trophy, because it wasn't but it cooks up just the same. So, in that circumstance, I participated in a canned hunt, but the bison lived a much better life than a feedlot cattle would have, died better than a lot of cattle would have, and filled the same role in my freezer that a feedlot steer would have. So I may have done more good that harm in the aggregate.

    My main concern about the canned lion is that it is bad publicity. The anti-hunters have a field day with this kind of thing. It only takes a few seconds to present a very emotionally charged image of the drugged " "noble lion " and the pathetic hunter who is so bloodthirsty yet insecure in his abilities to meet the challenge of a real lion but still in need of the ego boost of killing a lion. And people on the fence about hunting eat that up and tar us all with the same brush. It isn't that a lion is better or more noble than any other animal, but rather that the bambi worshippers think he is that gets us into trouble. I've dealt with a person who thought a leopard hunt was a terrible thing to de, no challenge at all, bad for the leopard population and evidence of a sick mind. She would not listen to reason because the image of hunters this sort of thing out in her head was too strong and too negative.
  17. Jaco Strauss

    Jaco Strauss SPONSOR AH Elite

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    Bert we also do get bad wraps on a continual basis for being christian, democrats, republicans, to far left, to far right, to much on the fence, to wealthy and on and on there is however only one way to cut it if we stop lion hunting they wont stop it will just carry on to the next. So we need to be prepared as best we can.

    Brickburn, I have a full thesis on the sustainability of lion in free roaming areas, this includes disease, natural selection, human pressure and a main chapter under hunting, As mentioned I am tied in expos at the moment but will get to it, I am also in possesion of the revised policy on large carnivore hunting in SA.

    My best always, will sort asap!
  18. Bert the Turtle

    Bert the Turtle AH Veteran

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    Agreed. Even if we stop this kind of hunting, people will still be against hunting. And I am not sure that we should stop it. Seems to me that if there is a market for it, then it is likely to be overall good for lions to offer it.
  19. spike.t

    spike.t GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    i agree with jaco sound common sense. brickburn if you go to African Lion Working Group: Research you will find a lot of info by paula white from the university of california who has been studying lions in the luangwa for a number of years , and other researchers involved in lion projects.
  20. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    Whether it's wolf hunts in the USA or lion hunts in Africa. We need to stick together as a hunting community. In house fighting only helps the anti-hunters. As far as lion hunting in RSA, I just think we need to police ourselves and make sure everyone is running a fair hunt. No drugged lion, Lion is free on the property for a while before the hunter arrives...etc. As far as ethics go...everyone has conscience and that will determine who wants to participate in anyone hunt.

    All as I know, if there wasn't lion hunts in RSA, there would be far fewer people completing the "Big 5" in Africa. Not that means anything to me. The whole competition for awards and prestige is not for me. But I can't help but think these hunts save lions in some way.

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