Certain hobbies are seemingly senseless, but some really are. Feel free to disagree but then, you’re dared to come up with an explanation to the leisure of hunting with the sole aim of killing a protected adult lion just to remove its head and take it home as a trophy that wouldn’t sum up to senseless.
According to theguardian, “from 2007 to 2012, Spain was the country that imported the most lion trophies from South Africa. During this period it imported 450 heads, compared to 100 in Germany. This avocation should be forbidden for as Luis Muñoz, a Chelui4lions spokesman inquired, “what hunter, what sort of demented person, would want to kill a magnificent adult lion, known to and photographed by all the park’s visitors?” it is really shameful that in Europe “there are rich madmen who pay for the pleasure of killing wild animals such as lions” Muñoz opined.
Just as baits in form of freshly killed animals are commonly used to legally kill lions protected in wild life parks, a US citizen Walter Palmer, from a small town near Minneapolis paid park guides $50,000, tricked Cecil, one of Africa’s most famous lion who happens to be a major attraction at the Hwange national park into leaving the park and shot it with a bow and arrow. He then tracked the dying animal for 40 hours before he killed it with a rifle, and apparently, skinned and removed its head for the creature was reportedly “found skinned and headless on the outskirts of the park”.
As uncovered, the 13-year-old lion was found as it was wearing a GPS collar as part of a research project that Oxford University has been running since 1999, making it possible to trace its last movements when it was tricked into leaving the park and subsequently killed.
Inquisitr narrates that Cecil, known as the most famous lion in Africa was famed because of its relaxed attitude towards humans and cameras. “He has been photographed and captured on video by many visitors”, and “was often seen close to the main roads in the park, making him a dream model for safari photographers”
Johnny Rodrigues, head of Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force lamented that “Cecil’s death is a tragedy, not only because he was a symbol of Zimbabwe but because now we have to give up for dead his six cubs, as a new male won’t allow them to live so as to encourage Cecil’s three females to mate.” He further revealed that two people who accompanied the hunter have been arrested while the hunter is being hunted by the authorities in Zimbabwe. And contrary to previous thoughts, the hunter now identified, is a US citizen and not a Spaniard.
Also, Bryan Orford, a professional wildlife guide who has worked in Hwange and filmed Cecil many times reportedly revealed to National Geographic that “with tourists from just one nearby lodge collectively paying €8,000 per day, Zimbabwe would have brought in more in just five days by having Cecil’s photograph taken rather than being shot by someone paying a one-off fee of €50,000”.
Regardless of claims by Zimbabwe Professional Hunters and Guides Association that it was a private safari and the killing thus, not illegal, the government insists that the lion lived on the reserve and came under its protection. As such, police are in search of the Cecil’s remains among taxidermists in Zimbabwe just as Chelui4lions has written to Cites de España, the body that oversees the import of endangered species, asking it to prevent the importing of Cecil’s head as a trophy believing the hunter was as Spaniard as previously reported.
Cecil wandered alone for a long time when he was kicked out of his pride. The lion eventually met Jericho, his mate, created a pride of six lioness and many young cubs who all still live in the park.