Wednesday, August 02, 2006



The South African Minister for Environmental Affairs and Tourism, Martinus van Schalkwyk issued two draft regulations on Tuesday, May 2, 2006 regarding threatened and protected species and the much-anticipated draft National Norms and Standards for the Regulation of the Hunting Industry. These are available on the Department’s website at

The new regulations would put an end to unethical game hunting: canned hunting (the shooting of animals in enclosures which allow no means of escape), the captive breeding of predators other than for conservation purposes, the trade in exotics and the translocation of species from outside their natural range. The regulations ban the intensive breeding of listed large predators such as cheetah, lion and leopard, unless it has an express conservation purpose. “In effect,” said the Minister, “The days of captive breeding of listed species for any purposes except science and conservation, are over. Large predators kept in captivity can no longer be hunted which has not been rehabilitated in an extensive wildlife system and been fending for itself in the wild for at least two years.”

Hunting will now be strictly regulated, being required to adopt fair-chase principles and humane methods, conducted by certified professional hunters adhering to sustainable game off-take quotas. The International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW), one of the organizations campaigning for tougher controls, welcomed the draft regulations. Jason Bell-Leask, the organization's southern Africa director, commented, "Let's hope they go far enough to address unethical hunting practices and, in the words of the minister, rid this cancer from society". Other African countries need to introduce preventative and protective legislation without delay so as to halt the stealthy invasion of the canned hunting / captive breeding industry. Namibia already has an active canned hunting industry, as does Zimbabwe.

The owner of Antelope Park, Andrew Connolly admitted at the WECSZ talk by Ian Michler on the “Captive Breeding of Predators and Canned Hunting” held in February 2006 in Livingstone, that he had sold 35 lion to three breeders in South Africa four years ago. When asked if he was aware that these breeders were canned hunters, he said he was not aware. The main question is, if the Livingstone Walking with Lion release programme is unsuccessful, what will happen to the surplus lion once they have outgrown the money-making walks. Are we introducing “put and take hunts” in Zambia?

Ali Shenton
Wildlife & Environmental Conservation Society of Zambia (Livingstone Branch)