Target: Edson Chidziya, Director-General of Zimbabwe Parks & Wildlife Management Authority
Goal: Ban all raffles that allow people to kill innocent lions in cold blood.
Innocent lions are often shot by hunters who win unethical raffle drawings. We need to take action to ensure such events do not take place in order to save the lives of many animals.
Recently, the Bubye Valley Conservancy canceled a raffle event where 100 people paid $1,500 for the chance to kill a lion. Money made from the event was apparently supposed to be used to help conservation efforts. Although the raffle and hunt were canceled, there is nothing stopping the group from holding similar events in the future.
While the leader of many such massive hunts—Martin Nel—claims that “trophy hunting has its place in conservation and on the continent,” there are alarmingly less than one-fourth the amount of lions left in the country than there were only 50 years ago. Therefore, hunting lions to help conservation efforts simply does not make sense.
In addition, conservation objectives will likely not be met if the lion population continues to dwindle below the current estimated count of 1,000-1,700 animals. While these numbers may seem high, they are better put into perspective when one considers 800 lions were recently killed during a 10 year time span and further that the population of these animals has never fully recovered.
Demand all senseless raffles and hunts of this nature be banned. If we want to preserve these majestic creatures for future generations, we have to take action now.
Dear Director-General Chidziya,
It is currently legal for hunters to buy raffle tickets in order to try and win the chance to kill a lion whenever such raffles are held. It is important that these events no longer take place in order to ensure lions will continue to thrive.
A raffle that was recently canceled by the Bubye Valley Conservancy planned to sell 100 tickets at $1,500 a piece and to allow one winner to kill and take home a lion. Despite the fact that this event was canceled, it is not guaranteed that such raffles will not be held in the future.
Although some people claim that hunting lions is important to maintain the lions’ conservation status, it is estimated that there are currently less than 2,000 of these beautiful animals left in the entire country. Sadly, this means that there are one-fourth less lions in Zimbabwe than there were just 50 years ago. In addition, 2,000 is not a large number when one considers that 800 lions were recently wiped out within a decade’s time period and when one also considers that the numbers of these animals has not risen back up to the population size that was once present in Zimbabwe just half a century ago.
It is for these reasons that I encourage you to support banning all raffle lion hunting events. We simply cannot improve the conservation status of the species if we continue to kill lions in cold blood.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Badeendjuh