Blogging About Critters Since 2007

Thursday, May 1, 2008

South Africa Lifts Ban on Elephant Culls

The elephant population in South Africa has increased significantly. As a result, the South African Govt. lifted a 13 year moratorium on elephant culls.

The South African government earlier this year authorised the killing of elephants from May 1 as a last resort in limiting the numbers of the African elephant that have more than doubled since culling was halted in 1995.

Environment Minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk said the issue of population management of the animals had been "devilishly complex" after a long and emotive public debate over plans to reduce elephant numbers.

"Our department has recognised the need to maintain culling as a management option, but has taken steps to ensure that this will be the option of last resort that is acceptable only under strict conditions," he said at the time.

However animal rights activists who feel the new guidelines for elephant management are flawed, are taking the matter to court while rallying the international community to boycott tourism in South Africa.

Frankly, I don't think that's the right answer. SA has done a better job then most in both managing elephant and rhino populations, as well as combating the ivory trade. What other options are there? And for anyone that comes up with the tranquilize and move scenario, they have to come up with specific plans as to where they should go if they want to be credible.

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