Objections to the setting of a lion bone export quota

This letter and the subsequent submission was prepared by the Coalition to Stop the Captive Breeding and Keeping of Lions and Other Big Cats for Commercial Purposes and submitted to the Department of Environment, Forest and Fisheries.


Dear Honourable Minister Creecy, Honourable Deputy Minister Sotyu and Ms Phoshoko,

Thank you for the opportunity to provide information to be considered for the determination of the 2019 lion bone export quota. This is a matter of great public concern involving our national heritage, and the protection of same for future generations, in accordance with the guaranteed Constitutional right to environment. The importance of this cannot be underestimated.

The initial establishment of a legal export quota of lion bones in 2017 was based purely on purported market dynamics in the preceding years of unregulated and uncontrolled lion bone exports, i.e. an annual average export quantity of 800 lion skeletons. However, applying some form of data to an issue does not equate to science and hence this quota had no grounding in science or research.

At the time, lion bones were predominantly a by-product of the trophy hunting industry, a situation which has changed dramatically since the USA’s 2016 restrictions on trophy imports. This was a significant turning point for the industry that reacted by starting to breed lions purely for the bone export market. This had further grievous animal welfare implications, as a lion bred for its bones does not require to be in good physical health.

We believe that the setting of a lion bone quota should not be considered in a silo of CITES permits, nor is it the mandate of just the Department of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries (DEFF). The establishment of such a quota has much wider implications for, inter alia, wild lion and other wildlife conservation, animal welfare, ethics, Brand SA, and potentially human health, that concern all members of the public, as well as other government departments.

Not only is the export quota decided in isolation, it is now also presented as a science-based consideration with a so-called public participation process based on scientific expert opinion and scientific peer-reviewed publications only, thus excluding the views and values of South Africa’s wider citizenry, and preventing critical ethical considerations from being taken into account. In addition, such scientific expert opinions are often sponsored or financially reliant on the very same industries, who benefit from such research.

View the full submission here: https://conservationaction.co.za/resources/reports/captive-lion-breeding-coalition-submission-to-deff/


Read More: https://greengirlsinafrica.com/2019/06/17/objections-to-the-setting-of-a-lion-bone-export-quota/

Back to Media

The NSPCA has huge animal welfare concerns for the animals exploited in the captive predator and canned hunting industry in South Africa. This industry is unregulated, uncontrolled and is responsible for untold cruelty. It is a tragedy that our wild animals are reduced to profit making machines. Coupled with this members of public are unwittingly encouraging and supporting this cruelty, so it is vital that the public are aware of the truth behind the industry so they can make informed decisions and hopefully choose not to support such an unethical industry.

Sr.Ainsley Hay, Manager, NSPCA Wildlife Protection Unit

Breeding magnificent wild creatures like lions in camps so that they can be slaughtered for ego and money is unconscionable and should be outlawed.  Lions have the right to live in the wild and to continue playing their unique role within the ecological communities of Africa.  The continued existence of the canned hunting industry is a moral outrage that diminishes us all.  This important film shines a light into the dark corners of this ugly business.

Cormac Cullinan, Cullinan & Associates Incorporated

Cruel, barbaric, macabre – all words used by Australian MPs about lion farming and the canned lion hunting industry in SA.  Our campaign was glad to be able to assist and participate in a full length documentary that aims to expose a brutal industry whose whole business model is routine, egregious cruelty to helpless animals – for fun.

Chris Mercer, Founder, CACH (Campaign Against Canned Hunting)

Captive lions have long been a blemish on South Africa’s wildlife and tourism landscape and their tragic story needed to be exposed before these practices negatively impacted on Brand South Africa. Congratulations to all involved in taking the time and making this happen.

Colin Bell, Tourism consultant and author of “Africa’s Finest”

“As a travel and conservation based organization, we find the “Blood Lions” documentary deeply disturbing. Despite being hard to watch, we urge people to get out there and see it. It is important to shed light on the dark and corrupt business of rearing lions for the purposes of hunting, in hopes of making a positive change. As we polled our membership, we found that individually each of our companies have chosen to stop booking all activities that contribute to this industry.”

The Safari Professionals – 30 Tour Operators based in the US and Canada

South Africa’s failure to address the canned hunting industry has emboldened those who make a living out of the death of lions bred, raised and slaughtered on a ‘no kill, no fee’ basis. The canned hunting industry is unnatural, unethical and unacceptable. It delivers compromised animal welfare and zero education. It undermines conservation and creates a moral vacuum now inhabited by the greed and grotesque self-importance of those who derive pleasure in the taking of life.

Blood Lions lays bare the truth behind the canned hunting industry that, far from contributing to the future survival of the species, may, in fact, accelerate extinction in the wild, leaving behind a trail  littered with rotting corpses of its helpless and hopeless victims.

Will Travers OBE, President Born Free Foundation

The Marchig Animal Welfare Trust, in providing support for the making of this Documentary, does so in the firm belief that it is important that the true facts behind captive lion breeding and canned lion hunting in South Africa, is brought to the attention of a global audience in order to create awareness which in turn will lead to much needed change.

Les Ward MBE, Chairman, The Marchig Animal Welfare Trust

This is a timely, courageous as well as a deeply disturbing documentary. It is at the same time, a voice for the wild and the voiceless … of saying “NO MORE!” to that terrible triad of financial opportunism, deceit and indifference to the non-human animal by those claiming to be conservationists.

Ian McCallum – Author, poet, psychiatrist and naturalist

With the constant pressure on wildlife, every effort must be made to keep our last vestiges of natural fauna and flora protected.    Canned hunting of any kind, along with the related consequences, must be condemned by humanity as not only a travesty of nature but also an utterly inhumane practise.   Taming lion cubs only to later hunt them is an utterly inhumane practice.   It is pseudo-hunting, a complete sham and does not even qualify as hunting on a sustainable use basis.   Wildlife conservation has to evolve into practices that are ethical, humanitarian and sustainable. This will not be achieved if there is not real and fair community involvement which has not been part of the hunting fraternity’s evolution.

Yvette Taylor, Executive Director, The Lawrence Anthony Earth Organisation

“Canned lion ‘hunting’ is nothing less than a bargain basement opportunity for foreign hunters to engage in one of South Africa’s most sordid practices. Hunting of captive bred lions entirely dependent on human fingerprints from cub to trophy is immoral, unethical and against all animal welfare concerns. The fact that it still continues as profitable commerce is a damning statement against all of us who have not properly engaged to snuff it out. Blood Lions is a good start to bring change.”

Dr Pieter Kat – Director: LionAid

Canned Lion