Dentist Off Hook: Killing of Cecil the Lion Fuels Rejection of Trophy Hunting
Wednesday, October 14, 2015
SALT LAKE CITY - Officials in Zimbabwe have decided that an American dentist did not break the law when he killed a lion known as Cecil, but a new poll indicates the lion's death is having strong repercussions among American voters.
The poll shows Americans are turning thumbs down on trophy hunting by a two-to-one margin. Sixty-four percent of U.S. voters polled told the Humane Society of the United States that they also oppose trophy hunting in the United States.
Kirk Robinson, executive director of the Western Wildlife Conservancy, said large carnivores such as mountain lions and bears are prime targets in Utah for trophy hunters.
"Killing animals primarily for their trophy value, I think, is an abhorrent practice," he said, "It's especially bad in the case of large carnivores; because if you kill a mountain lion, people aren't going to eat it. They will have it mounted and display it somewhere."
Robinson said he is not against hunting in general, and it is going to take a groundswell of public action for a prolonged period of time to rein in trophy hunting because regulators tend to back those hunters.
Teresa Teleky, director of wildlife for Humane Society International says the killing of Cecil the lion in Zimbabwe was a major factor in raising both awareness and concern about the trophy hunting issue in Utah and the nation.
"African lions, polar bears, African elephants -- every child in America knows and loves these animals, and to think that Americans are the number one hunters of these animals and are bringing in all these body parts and trophies, I think it really hit a note of disgust among Americans," she said, "and I do think that played into these findings."
Two-thirds of Americans in the poll support listing African lions under the Endangered Species Act and 64 percent support placing restrictions on trophy hunting of native animals such as bobcats and mountain lions.
The survey was conducted Sept. 23-24 by Remington Research Group on behalf of the HSUS. The sample size was 3,668 and the margin of error is plus or minus 2.2 percent.
get more stories like this via email
In her 2022 State of the State address, New York Gov. Kathy Hochul set new goals for electrifying the school bus fleets in the state. Clean-energy …
Finding and affording child care is no cakewalk for Oregon families right now. A new report details the pressures and some potential policy fixes…
Acknowledging the pandemic's toll on Kentucky students, teachers and families, Gov. Andy Beshear announced last night a state budget which would make …
Health and Wellness
This month, Minnesota has raised state reimbursement rates for dentists who accept patients enrolled in the state's Medicaid program. Groups working …
Mobile carriers are starting to decommission their 3G cellular networks this year, some as soon as next month. Pennsylvania officials are reminding …
Health and Wellness
A new report suggests discrimination in medical settings affects the quality of care for many Ohioans. In a survey of more than 800 people, …
One hundred years ago today, the Izaak Walton League of America was founded in Chicago, with a mission of local stewardship of wild places, citizen …
An alliance of environmental groups and lawmakers has released an ambitious, wide-ranging set of goals for the 2022 Arizona Legislature. The …