Killing animals from helicopters. It’s not just for Sarah Palin’s Alaska.
It’s on the table as a justified means of wildlife management in South Africa.
Published under a low-profile link on their website, CapeNature says you have until June 5th, 2012 to comment on these hunting permits.
Submit your comments here & directly to CapeNature: firstname.lastname@example.org
The document states this is a “holistic approach” to support biodiversity but one would be hard pressed to agree with such descriptions when outlined in the methods agreed upon are:
• Hunting from Helicopter *
• Hunting dogs
• Soft traps (leghold devices)**
• Night hunting & the use of artifical lights (typically a prohibited method)
• Cage Traps
*Hunting from helicopters: “This management method may only take place on an experimental basis for the purpose of research” This ‘research’ is not defined.
** “Though they are punted as a kinder option than steel-toothed gin traps because they are rubberised, Smuts said the traps still fractured limbs, cut off blood supply, tore ligaments and caused the trapped animals painful, stressful deaths”. -
The document appears to allow for one year hunting permits without limits and outsources biodiversity management. The blanket approval for species assault in conjunction with extreme and typically prohibited methods of hunting is another cause for concern. What type of ‘research’ is hunting from helicopters serving? Can CapeNature define this statements found within the document?
The Mail & Guardian reported on this story in March before this new proposal was public: “The Democratic Alliance in the Western Cape has been accused of using hunting permits to win votes, and this has affected the predator numbers.”
Another article in Farmers Weekly from October 6, 2011: “In a statement issued by the provincial environmental affairs department and CapeNature, it was agreed that damage-causing animals would in future be managed in terms of a protocol that will be drafted between CapeNature and the industry.
This protocol would remain in place until the national norms and standards for the management of damage-causing animals is promulgated. It was determined at this meeting that a number of management methods will be incorporated into the protocol. “
This ‘protocol’ constitutes a severe undermining of the definition of conservation. Is this action truly necessary as a means of biodiversity management and has the Predator Management Forum implemented other predator-safe practices prior to coming up with this proposal?
Who is the Predator Management Forum that Cape Nature is working in conjunction with?
The PMF represents the following agricultural organizations, Agri Wes-Kaap, Red Meat Producers Organisation, National Wool Growers, and the Mohair Growers’ Association.
NOTE: CapeNature & PMF representatives are invited to comment on the nature of these comment / objection time frame limitations and reasoning for the proposed broad, long term hunting permits published on their site. At the time of this blog post and due to the constraints of the June 5th deadline for comment, I felt time was of the essence in regards to publication. – Marcy Mendelson
You may submit your comments to: email@example.com