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Thread: Zimbabwe’s Most Famous Lion Is Now a Hunting Trophy

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    Elite Member ConstanceSpry's Avatar
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    Default Zimbabwe’s Most Famous Lion Is Now a Hunting Trophy

    I fucking HATE trophy hunters!! Park Rangers should kill and disappear these murdering motherfuckers, the whole lot of them.


    Zimbabwe’s Most Famous Lion Is Now a Hunting Trophy


    The killing of Cecil the lion, a black-maned inhabitant of Zimbabwe’s Hwange National Park, has sparked outrage from conservationists.

    As one of the oldest and largest male lions in Zimbabwe, Cecil was known by park rangers and safari drivers alike—a popular tourist attraction for the thousands of visitors to the park each year.

    But last week, the lion crossed just outside the park’s border, and a bow hunter shot the 13-year-old big cat. The hunters reportedly tracked down the wounded lion two days later, killing him with a rifle. The Zimbabwe Professional Hunters and Guides Association confirmed that Cecil was killed outside the park on private land, meaning the killing wasn’t illegal.

    “There is an investigation ongoing at this time,” the group said in a statement. “We ask that members and non members refrain from speculating until all facts have been documented.”

    Beks Ndlovo, chief executive of the African Bush Camps—a locally owned private safari company—said the hunting has to stop.

    “I strongly object and vehemently disagree with the legalizing and practice of hunting lions in any given area,” Ndlovo said in a statement. “I will personally be encouraging Zimbabwe National Parks and engaging with government officials to stop the killing of lions and with immediate effect.”

    RELATED: What's Worse Than Shooting Fish in a Barrel? Hunting Lions the Same Way

    Bryan Orford, a longtime park visitor and former professional guide in Zimbabwe, had filmed and photographed Cecil on many occasions. The lion was an easy target for a camera, and probably not much skill went into the hunt, he said.

    “I used to drive down the railway line road following Cecil and had to wait for him to get off the road,” Orford said. “This walking in front of the vehicle would go on for ages. Other times he would lie in the road, and you had to drive off the road to go around him. That is why it also seems so wrong to hunt something that easy.”

    Orford said Cecil’s killing has brought lion hunting back into the spotlight, with pro- and anti-hunting advocates debating the ethics of killing an animal so close to the border of a protected national park.

    One source familiar with the situation told National Geographic that hunters have been known to lure big game out of park boundaries with bait. It “indicates to me a level of desperation by the hunting operators,” the source said. “No big male lions remain in their hunting concession areas, despite their claims of ‘sustainable’ hunting practices.”

    Despite Cecil’s importance to the region’s tourism—Orford said people would visit Hwange Lodges just to get a photo with him—the cat was also a walking example that old lions, which typically live between 10 and 14 years, can be useful ecologically.

    The legend of Cecil started about three and a half years ago, when the then-10-year-old lion was kicked out of his pride, beaten by younger, more powerful males. Hunters argue that as loners, prideless male lions aren’t as important to sustaining lion populations—as they no longer have control of the lionesses to mate.

    But Cecil wasn’t finished. He soon teamed up with another lone male named Jericho, and the lions regained control of the region’s two prides, one of which consists of three lionesses and seven cubs under seven months old.

    So, Why Should You Care? Oxford University professor Andrew Loveridge, a behavioral ecologist who focuses on the conservation and management of African carnivores, told National Geographic that the loss of Cecil most likely spells the end of Jericho’s reign—and the possible loss of the pride’s cubs.

    “Jericho as a single male will be unable to defend the two prides and cubs from new males that invade the territory,” Loveridge said. “This is what we most often see happening in these cases. Infanticide is the most likely outcome.”

    The fate of the hunters is yet to be determined, as Africa News 24 is reporting that there is no permitted quota to shoot lions in the Gwaai area—where Cecil was killed.

    “The tourism operators, as well as the majority of the Zimbabwean population, are extremely passionate about the wildlife that we have worked hard to protect,” Ndlovo said. “And we will continue to do so to ensure the long term conservation of not only our National Parks but their surrounding vulnerable wilderness areas.” Zimbabwe’s Most Famous Lion Is Now a Hunting Trophy
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    Elite Member Brookie's Avatar
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    Makes me sick to read this.
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    Elite Member Bellatheball's Avatar
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    I couldn't get past the picture. Assholes
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    Gold Member Froogy's Avatar
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    Why is it legal to do that?

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    Elite Member ConstanceSpry's Avatar
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    It was a dentist from Minnesota, called Walter Palmer. Piece of shit also shot a rhino, leopard, and many other animals. I am not including the photos in the pasted link, they are too sad. I hope someone in that state will start a petition to make people aware so he can lose lots of patients. I would never patronize a business owned by someone like him, and I bet many others feel the same.

    Cecil the lion's killer revealed as American dentist
    EXCLUSIVE: A Minnesota father of two is discovered to be the hunter who shot dead Cecil – one of Zimbabwe's most loved lions


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    Walt Palmer, left, and one of his many trophies
    Harriet Alexander

    By Harriet Alexander, Peta Thornycroft and Aislinn Laing in Johannesburg

    12:50PM BST 28 Jul 2015

    Comments486 Comments

    Cecil the lion – the most famous creature in one of Zimbabwe's national parks – was killed by an American hunter who has boasted about shooting a menagerie of animals with his bow and arrow, The Telegraph can reveal.

    Walter Palmer, a dentist from Minnesota, is believed to have paid £35,000 to shoot and kill the much-loved lion with a bow and arrow. The animal was shot on July 1 in Hwange National Park. Two independent sources have confirmed the hunter's identity to the paper, which has also seen a copy of the relevant hunting permit.

    Conservation groups in Zimbabwe reacted angrily to the news that the 13-year-old animal had been killed: partly because the lion was known to visitors and seemingly enjoyed human contact, and partly because of the way in which he was killed. He was lured out of the national park and shot.

    "He never bothered anybody," said Johnny Rodrigues, the head of Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force. "He was one of the most beautiful animals to look at."

    A spokesman for Mr Palmer told the Guardian that the hunter believed he may have shot the lion.

    “As far as I understand, Walter believes that he might have shot that lion that has been referred to as Cecil,” a spokesman for Mr Palmer said.


    Cecil was a popular attraction among visitors to the Hwange National Park (AFP)

    “What he’ll tell you is that he had the proper legal permits and he had hired several professional guides, so he’s not denying that he may be the person who shot this lion. He is a big-game hunter; he hunts the world over.”

    During the hunt – which the organisers later admitted was badly carried out – Cecil was lured at night about half a mile out of the national park using bait, and then shot with a bow and arrow. The next day he was found wounded by the hunters and killed, before being beheaded and skinned.

    Animals cannot be killed within the confines of the park. The hunters then removed his collar – further contravening park rules.

    The professional hunter, Theo Bronkhorst, said he reported the "mistake" to the Parks and Wildlife Management Authority the following day, and it is now being investigated. The landowner bordering the national park has been charged - along with Mr Bronkhorst. Both are due to appear in court on August 6.

    On Tuesday, Zimbabwe National Parks issued a statement confirming the charges.

    "Theo Bronkhorst, a professional hunter with Bushman Safaris, is facing criminal charges for allegedly killing a collared lion on Antoinette farm in Gwayi Conservancy, Hwange district on 1 July 2015," the statement said.


    Cecil the lion in Hwange, Zimbabwe

    "All persons implicated in this case are due to appear in court facing poaching charges.

    "Both the professional hunter and land owner had no permit or quota to justify the offtake of the lion and therefore are liable for the illegal hunt."

    Mr Bronkhorst, who will appear at Hwange magistrates court on Wednesday, said he was unaware of Cecil's fame.

    "It was a magnificent, mature lion. We did not know it was well-known lion. I had a licence for my client to shoot a lion with a bow and arrow in the area where it was shot," he said.

    Mr Rodrigues said the authorities in Zimbabwe were troubled by events.

    "There's considerable embarrassment about this - the Americans have banned the import of elephant trophies," he said. "We believe the head and pelt are still in Bulawayo.

    "They should be charged with poaching," he said. "If you're a local and you kill an animal without a licence you get between two and five years in prison."

    Mr Palmer, the client, describes himself as coming from North Dakota and having "a unique talent for creating dazzling smiles that complement each individuals tooth structure, skin tone, and facial attributes." A request for comment left with his office had not yet been returned on Tuesday.

    His website states that: "Anything allowing him to stay active and observe and photograph wildlife is where you will find Dr Palmer when he not in the office."

    He also has a well-documented fondness for shooting wild animals around the globe.


    Mr Palmer with a leopard, shot in Zimbabwe in 2010

    "He came to Spain to hunt with us four or five years ago," said Guiseppe Carrizosa, a professional hunter based in Madrid. Mr Carrizosa told The Telegraph that Mr Palmer and his wife travelled to Europe to shoot chamois, fallow deer and ibex, among other animals. Mr Palmer's reputation is such that he was listed as a client on Mr Carrizosa's website, to publicise the tours.

    "He was a real expert shot," Mr Carrizosa said. "Bow hunting attracts people because there is much more stalking involved; you have to get very close. With a gun you can kill an animal from hundreds of metres."

    Hunting blogs feature images of him proudly showing off a 175lb leopard, which he killed with an arrow in Zimbabwe in the summer of 2010.

    Walt Palmer poses with a dead elk

    Other images show him posing with elk, and even with a huge endangered sheep – the Nevada Bighorn.

    California Desert Bighorn Sheep are one of the most coveted animals for hunters. Each year more than $200,000 is raised by the auction of the permits to shoot dead three Desert Bighorn Sheep.

    A New York Times report detailing one of Mr Palmer's hunts, in 2009, described him as "capable of skewering a playing card from 100 yards with his compound bow." He jokingly told the reporter that his life revolved around shooting, and that he "doesn't have a golf game".

    The paper said that, having learnt to shoot at the age of five, Mr Palmer paid $45,000 at an auction for the right to shoot an elk in 2009, in a sale promoted as financing preservation of the elk habitat.

    The father of two had, according to the paper, killed all but one of the animals listed in records produced by bow hunting group Pope and Young. The animals on the list include polar bears, bison, grizzly bears and cougars.

    "Of course, it is a personal achievement to harvest any big-game animal with a bow and arrow," said Glen Hisey, the curator of the Pope and Young records programme. "It is a way of honouring that animal for all time."

    Mr Palmer has also run into legal woes. In 2008, court records show, he pleaded guilty to making a false statement to federal wildlife officials concerning the exact location of the slaying of a black bear during a guided hunt in Wisconsin. He was sentenced to a year probation.

    Lion hunting using firearms is legal in South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Tanzania – and bow and arrow hunting is legal in all the same countries but Tanzania.


    Walt Palmer, middle, with the "world record" white rhino killed by bow in South Africa. Mr Palmer is pictured with Pierre Vorster, a professional hunter

    Individual hunting outfits are given a certain number of permits each year to hunt individual species, but in countries like Zimbabwe the system is also open to corruption.

    According to the Zimbabwe Professional Hunter and Guides Association, bow hunting is only permissible in private hunting concessions or communal hunting areas - never in a national park or government-controlled safari area.

    Lions are hunted either statically, by hanging bait from a tree then hiding nearby, or by stalking. According to Zimbabwean conservationists, hunting by bow and arrow is on the increase because is it silent and therefore those hunting illegally or unethically are not detected by the authorities.

    The Wildlife Conservation Research Unit at Oxford University has tracked the Hwange lions since 1999 to measure the impact of sport hunting beyond the park on the lion population within the park, using radar and direct observation.

    According to figures published by National Geographic, 34 of their 62 tagged lions died during the study period – 24 were shot by sport hunters.

    Dr Andrew Loveridge, one of the principal researchers on the project, told the publication that Cecil and another male lion named Jericho led two prides with six lionesses and a dozen young cubs, and he feared for the safety of the cubs now Cecil had been killed.

    "Jericho as a single male will be unable to defend the two prides and cubs from new males that invade the territory. This is what we most often see happening in these cases. Infanticide is the most likely outcome," he said.
    Cecil the lion's killer revealed as American dentist - Telegraph
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    Elite Member *DIVA!'s Avatar
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    That just breaks my heart. Poor Cecil!! Walter Palmer I hope you are mauled!!
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    Elite Member sputnik's Avatar
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    of course it was a dentist.

    kill him.
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    Elite Member ManxMouse's Avatar
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    Total piece of shit. I hope 4chan is on the warpath hunting his ass down.
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    Elite Member ConstanceSpry's Avatar
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    Here's the Yelp review page for this creep's dental practice. Yelp keeps removing the comments, and they keep on coming. River Bluff Dental - 76 Photos - General Dentistry - Bloomington, MN - Reviews - Yelp
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    Elite Member Flygirl's Avatar
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    It's really not fair to delete those comments, as long as the people are being honest about not being his patients. People deserve to know how their money is being spent in my opinion.
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    Elite Member ConstanceSpry's Avatar
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    ^^I totally agree, they should let people post their opinion. I always read reviews before patronizing a new doc or dentist and I would certainly want to know something like this.
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    Elite Member Honey's Avatar
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    This is heartbreaking, he was beautiful
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    Everyone Really Fucking Mad at Weenie American Dentist Who Killed Lion
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    Ellie Shechet
    Filed to: Assholes
    7/28/15 12:45pm



    Walter Palmer, a dentist and all-around piece of shit from Minnesota, is said to have paid $55,000 to kill a beloved 13-year-old Zimbabwean lion, nicknamed Cecil, who had been wearing a collar as a part of a long-running Oxford University research project.
    Since animals cannot legally be killed within the confines of Hwange National Park, where Cecil lived with his pride, he was lured out in the middle of the night by Palmer and professional hunter Theo Bronkhorst, who later reported the incident—Bronkhorst implied that the essential mistake made was that “we did not know it was well-known lion.” Palmer shot Cecil (pictured below) with a bow and arrow, and finished the job 40 hours later with a gun. The hunters attempted to remove the lion’s collar, and he was left skinned and headless outside the park. His cubs will likely die too, when Jericho, Cecil’s successor, takes his place at the head of the pride.



    Bow-and-arrow hunting is apparently on the rise in Zimbabwe, according to The Telegraph, because “it is silent and therefore those hunting illegally or unethically are not detected by the authorities.” Bronkhurst and the owner of the land on which Cecil was killed are facing criminal charges, according to a statement by Zimbabwe National Parks: “Theo Bronkhorst, a professional hunter with Bushman Safaris, is facing criminal charges for allegedly killing a collared lion on Antoinette farm in Gwayi Conservancy, Hwange district on 1 July 2015.”

    “He never bothered anybody,” Johnny Rodrigues, head of Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force, told The Telegraph of Cecil. “He was one of the most beautiful animals to look at.” It’s been reported that Cecil was an especially easy target because he was relatively friendly, and comfortable around humans. A spokesman for Palmer told The Guardian that his client was “obviously quite upset over everything.”

    “As far as I understand, Walter believes that he might have shot that lion that has been referred to as Cecil. What he’ll tell you is that he had the proper legal permits and he had hired several professional guides, so he’s not denying that he may be the person who shot this lion. He is a big-game hunter; he hunts the world over.”
    He certainly is. As The Telegraph points out, the internet is quite rich with photographs of Palmer, who has a wife and two children, grinning with the many, many beautiful (and often endangered) animals he has butchered for sport (including a white rhino). In fact, Palmer has made an appearance in the New York Times, where he receives an apparently glowing mention:

    As the 2009 season approached, Walter J. Palmer, a dentist in his late 40s from Eden Prairie, Minn., paid $45,000 for a tag at an auction to finance preservation of the elk habitat. Palmer, said to be capable of skewering a playing card from 100 yards with his compound bow, has cultivated a purist’s reputation for his disinclination to carry firearms as backup. Learning to shoot at age 5, he has slain all but one of the animals recognized by Pope and Young.
    In the same piece, written in 2009, the Times also mentioned Palmer’s willingness to skirt the laws restricting his hobby:

    As the season began, Palmer was completing a year of probation. In 2008, court records show, he pleaded guilty to making a false statement to federal wildlife officials concerning the exact location of the slaying of a black bear during a guided hunt in Wisconsin. In his sentencing order, prosecutors had specifically agreed that the “defendant shall be permitted to possess archery equipment for lawful sporting purposes.”
    Palmer is described on his website as having “a unique talent for creating dazzling smiles that complement each individuals tooth structure, skin tone, and facial attributes.” It continues: “Dr. Palmer is married with two children. He is a North Dakotan and enjoys all outdoor activities. Anything allowing him to stay active and observe and photograph wildlife is where you will find Dr. Palmer when he not in the office.”

    Since this story broke, Palmer’s Yelp page—which previously only featured four reviews—has exploded with angry posts.

    The Facebook page for his dentistry practice has been removed after thousands of comments proliferated. An ad on YouTube for River Bluff Dental, Palmer’s Bloomington, MN practice, has been taken down as well; here is a screenshot of the first few comments that appeared:

    A YouTube video of Palmer discussing his dental practice remains up, and has gone viral:

    It’s tough to feel much empathy for this terrible man’s dental career, which appears to be deservedly at risk. The sad fact is, while what he did was almost certainly illegal, big game hunting is big business, and often operates under the full protection of the law. Why are these animals perceived as more valuable dead than alive—when in fact, if we’re strictly talking monetary value, the lion that was killed for $55 grand would have brought millions of tourism dollars to the nature reserve?
    The killing of animals for sport is a hard thing to read about, and a hard thing to write about, as well. It is just so acutely depressing, because these beautiful, emotionally complex creatures are so utterly at the mercy of the worst of us—those idiots who, in an infinitely pathetic play at bravery and sportsmanship, continue to stubbornly assert dominance over mammals who lost the battle for this planet around the time when our ancestors learned to make tools. Aren’t we already doing enough to destroy their world? Must we pick them off one by one, too?

    Everyone Really Fucking Mad at Weenie American Dentist Who Killed Lion
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    Elite Member HWBL's Avatar
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    Ya gotta love his A-hole's excuse "I stuck to the rules for hunting and I paid the set fee for the license" proving that he has no clue that ego-hunting (so, not to prevent the population of a species from becoming a plague) is about the most cowardly and totally unnecessary activity ever invented.
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    I heard his dental practice is shut down, for the time being anyway. I hope for good. I hope his life and livelihood are irrevocably destroyed.

    I just don't understand the mindset of "sport" hunting at all. Especially killing an animal like this, who had no fear of humans. And I don't believe for a minute that he didn't know what he was doing, he's been convicted of poaching before. What a miserable excuse for a man.
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