Saturday, January 11, 2014

Dallas Safari Club Holds Permit Auction to Hunt and Kill Wild Black Rhinoceros

two black rhinoceros
Black Rhinoceros grazing in Kenya; image credit: Flickr CC; by siwild

Is it okay to hunt and kill a Black Rhinoceros? 

Some people feel that this is the message being sent by the Dallas Safari Club - which held an auction for permit to hunt down and kill a Black Rhinoceros down in the wild. The permit auction was on Saturday, January 11, 2014, granting the winner exlcusive permission to hunt a specific Black Rhinoceros in Namibia, Africa. The Black Rhinoceros being hunted and killed is past his prime, and threatening other wildlife in the area, according the Executive Director of the Dallas Safari Club.

Both the Humane Society and the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) have publicly spoke out against the Dallas Safari Club permit auction, which is essentially endorsing the killing of an endangered animal in the wild.

Is the Dallas Safari Club Sending the Wrong Message to Conservationists?

The North American regional director of the IFAW, Jeffrey Flocken, says: "The auction is telling the world that an American is will pay anything to kill their species...that is, in fact, making a spectacle of killing an endangered species."

The Dallas Safari Club has opened the permit auction up to anyone in the world, and will grant the permit to the highest bidder. The last time this type of auction was held, the winning bid was $223,000.00 USD.

The winning bid on Jan. 11, 2014 was $350,000.00 USD.

Some Dallas Safari Club member have even received death threats in protest of the auction, which have been reported to the F.B.I. for investigation.

Does it Matter That the Black Rhinoceros is on the Endangered Species List?

The Executive Director of the Dallas Safari Club assures everyone that the money collected from the auction is being used to protect the Black Rhinoceros in the wild, despite the fact that his auction is granting a permit to kill one of an endangered species. He said the animal was "likely to be targeted anyway, because it was becoming aggressive and threatening other wildlife."

Despite his reassurance, there are many people that are outraged that the Dallas Safari Club is granting a permit to hunt and kill an animal considered to be an endangered species.

How Many Rhinoceros are Left in the Wild?

It is estimated that about 4,000 Rhinoceros live in the wild today. There are about 1,800 in Namibia, Africa today. The main reason for their dwindling numbers is loss of habitat, and the other reason is illegal poaching for their ivory tusks.

Black Rhinoceros butt
Black Rhinoceros rear; image credt: Flick CC; by siwild

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