To all my fellow lovers of the dark Continent. I found this opinion on the Professional Hunters Of Africa page on Facebook. This could be a real disaster for all of Africa if things don't change and thanks to a recent past administration in our American Government they did more harm than any good.... OPINION. ANTI-HUNTERS WORLDWIDE, REJOICE! By Zig Mackintosh. Here is some fantastic news for the anti-hunting lobby and those that believe hunting has no role to play in wildlife conservation. The Tanzanian government is planning to assess 12 game controlled areas (GCA) that no longer qualify for the wild life protection so that arrangements would be made to release them for public use. This was said by the deputy minister for Natural Resources and Tourism, Mr Josephat Hasunga, in the Parliament on Wednesday May 2. This will be conducted through the Tanzania Wildlife Research Institute (Tawiri). The assessment will involve hunting plots as well. He was responding to a question by Biharamuro West Member of Parliament Oscar Mukasa, who sought to know if the government had started the process of releasing the disqualified GCA's to local government authorities. "It's a cross-cutting process that involves the Ministry of Agriculture and that of Livestock and Fisheries, this is to make sure that the land in question will be put to proper use," said the deputy minister. http://allafrica.com/stories/201805020764.html Okay so why are they considering turning wildlife reserves into agricultural areas? It’s economics, stupid! Safari hunting operators can no longer make money in these areas because of issues such as the of the ban on the importation of lion and elephant trophies into the USA. One of the country’s largest safari hunting operators, Eric Pasansi closed his company earlier this year and handed back all of his hunting blocks to the Tanzanian government. This is what he had to say: “I confirm that I surrendered all my hunting blocks of all my companies today. My family has been the longest operating company in Tanzania- for more than 40 years. We have been the biggest operator in Tanzania and all of Africa. We have held the largest part of the Selous, with prime blocks, the same since 1978 which I finished surrendering all today. We have gone from 126 safaris per year to a handful because of the closure of US elephant and lion trophy imports. We cannot book enough 21-day safaris to make a profit or stay in business without lion and elephant imports into the US. Our losses are escalating so I have to stop. When U.S. elephant and lion hunting imports were threatened we stepped up our anti-poaching to 2.4 million dollars in three years. We by ourselves funded 100 Selous Game Reserve Game Scouts for many years. The efforts of Tanzania, of my companies and foundation have been completely ignored by the US Fish and Wildlife Service, so we have already been operating at a loss for too long it is time to stop and I cannot guarantee that the biodiversity of the hunting areas will not be lost now! Everything will end very quickly and wildlife will disappear in these areas that represent almost 1/3 of Tanzania territory. I have already returned 10 blocks the past years and with no hunters in the field it is going to be very difficult to save our last elephants. Our involvement in anti-poaching has become almost zero this year because our income losses. I think that the decisions by USFWS will eventually exterminate all Tanzania wildlife outside national Park because of their determination to stop the importation of trophies into the US. The real truth is that everyone does not care and nobody can realize the irreversible damage caused by such decisions. It is certainly the END OF THE GAME if your governments do not realize and help Tanzania. Anyway, it is already too late for me, and soon it will be too late for other outfitters.” So what alternatives do the Tanzania government have? If there is no return on wildlife, then it has to be something else and that something else is agriculture because that is the easiest path to take. Trying to keep those areas going as wildlife refuges would be prohibitively expensive and and will ultimately fail. By turning to agriculture the wildlife will inevitably disappear along with the forests that will be leveled for farmland. The effects of livestock and human activity on the rivers and riverine vegetation will become apparent very quickly. Poaching and logging pressure on the remaining adjoining safari hunting areas will be immense. So well done to the worldwide anti-hunting movement, your hard work is starting to pay off!