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back to article Only a merciful BULLET can really save a RHINO, say Texas hunters

A US Safari Club has been offered a permit to shoot an endangered black rhinoceros to help save the rest of the species. Rhinoceros in late afternoon, Kruger National Park. Credit: Shutterstock One Allan Quatermain type will get the chance to track and kill the beast after stumping up what’s expected to be a hefty price at …

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Good idea!

Black rhinos generally tend to fight to the death, with around half the males and 30 per cent of the females dying from combat-related injuries.

But why are we trying to safe a species that is fostering its die out itself?

On a side note, I could offer a rare chance to shoot a ginger rhino. Auction? I don't care, just shoot it. It was my former boss ;-)

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Re: Good idea!

The species isn't trying to wipe itself out. It's aggressive mating habbits are perfectly sustainable, and have sustained the species for millions of years. Then we come along and reduce the population

To less than 3k globally within a century.

The black think here doesn't know they are endangered, he's following instinct that, without

Ashole socies like us, generally work well at keeping species alive and in healthy numbers.

I can't help but think he could be better utilised in a breeding program or something, If only a bit of thought and effort were to be applied here

But no, no, people decde that the beat way to help a species WE have brought to the

Verge of extinction, is to make it legal to shoot another one.

Bravo human species, bravo...

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Re: Good idea!

I'm definitely not an advocate for hunting - quite the contrary. And yes, I think the species are better off without any human intervention. The problem is, that is not happening in our world. So animals, endangered or not, are killed for all kinds of reasons, e.g. food, fun, staying power, profit in general.

Already a few places (at least, only a few I know of) have implemented controlled hunting for (wealthy) tourists. The tourists get their game, the guides get a job and ensure that only the allowed animals are shot, and the tenancy brings in the money to pay rangers to protect the wildlife from poaching.

Now our black rhino here poses - from a human point of view - a problem because it puts its fellows at risk. To me the illustrated solution seems quite sensible.

(Btw, my earlier comment about rhinos wiping themselves out should not be taken too seriously. Thought that was obvious...)

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Re: Good idea!

Pretty much sums it up. Seems to me a breeding program and protection efforts would be a lot more effective. Round him up and breed him, then he'll not only not be killing other Rhinos, but producing more as well.

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080

Re: Good idea!

A touch of the gun lobby logic here I think.

He's probably grumpy and aggressive because he's not doing enough breeding, just find him some more females and leave him alone.

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FAIL

Re: Good idea!

Shooting for conservation is like fucking for virginity.

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Re: Good idea!

"He's probably grumpy and aggressive because he's not doing enough breeding, just find him some more females and leave him alone."

Find him females where? If we could clone them, we wouldn't need him to breed

In the wild, males fight and the strong survive to breed. If you have a reduced population, removing excess males allows the remaining males spend more time breeding and less time fighting thus increasing the number of females.

Shooting one male isn't going to affect the species any great amount as there is a big chance one will die in the next fight anyway. What shooting one will do is inject $250K to $1M into the preservation of the species which will allow rangers to be better armed and equipped to fight poachers who shoot young and old, male and female and actually do threaten the species.

If you don't like the idea, save your money, bid against the hunters, use a dart gun and take him home with you that way you can be sure he lives.

Just sitting around saying you shouldn't shoot the rhino means that the people trying to save them doesn't have the money to fight poachers and more than one rhino will die because of your actions

Really, some so called conservationists are just plain stupid.....

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Re: Good idea!

There are better ways that worked in South African reserves before. This hunting move is purely due to greed. To solve similar problem, a mature elephant herd was introduced to the area. The experienced elephant matriarchs somehow put the aggressive rhinos in their place.

Hunting is usually what caused the problem in rhino herds in the first place. When hunters or poachers kill a rhino, it can fragment a stable rhino population, putting well-established social orders into chaos. The same when elephants are killed. The older the elephant, the more important is the elephant in the eco system. But these elephants with big tusks are usually the ones poached first. To prevent the poaching and hunting of elephants and rihinos is the KEY to saving the species.

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Gav

Conclusion

You can understand the reasons, you can appreciate the money, but you can't help concluding that the winning bidder will be an enormous shit of an individual.

Seriously, who wants to spend that kind of money to have those kind of bragging rights? And it's not something you'd do just to keep quiet about. You're going to have to tell people.

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Re: Conclusion

I dunno. Let the hunter use nowt but an air rifle and he'll be entitled to brag. If he survives.

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Roo
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Re: Conclusion

"You can understand the reasons, you can appreciate the money, but you can't help concluding that the winning bidder will be an enormous shit of an individual."

If they are willing to splash that amount of cash to destroy something animate, rare, violent, sociopathic and unique then they may as well kill each other. The money raised could be used for paying skilled professionals to manage the Rhino herds and we wouldn't have to listen to some chinless wonder bragging about it.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Conclusion

" bragging rights?"

How can you brag about killing a rino?

You may as well have "I'm a selfish bastard" tattooed to your forehead.

Wankers, human beings get lower and lower as each day goes by.

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Re: Conclusion

'If they are willing to splash that amount of cash to destroy something animate, rare, violent, sociopathic and unique then they may as well kill each other.'

Except something unique is one of a kind. So killing 'each other' is hard to arrange without parallel universes or something.

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Re: Conclusion

Let the hunter use nowt but an air rifle and he'll be entitled to brag.

Only if limited to the UK's license free requirement of 12 ft/lb or less. Air rifles can be more powerful than firearms.

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Roo
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Headmaster

Re: Conclusion @ Maty

"Except something unique is one of a kind. So killing 'each other' is hard to arrange without parallel universes or something."

Have an upvote for a superb piece of critique. No idea why you got a downvote, seemed like fair play to me. :)

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Re: Conclusion

"Air rifles can be more powerful than firearms."

Depends on where you are. Here in Midwest U.S.A., they most certainly are not. There is a user by the name "FPSRussia" on YouTube who demonstrates weapons he acquired through Kentucky, U.S.A. (Lexington specifically, or at least that is their origin). Obviously what could be used isn't going to matter. The regulation will probably be similar to bear hunting.

As far as killing the rhino... Well, if that is what the actual care takers of the rhinos see best, then so be it. Could I really have a better opinion than someone who spends their life protecting and raising these animals? A blogger would think so, but I'm no blogger.

Just because it isn't human, doesn't mean it doesn't have a soul. If it has a soul, then it can be an asshole of one. Assholes are not human exclusive, many lifeforms have them.

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Re: Conclusion

There is really no reason to do this. There are better ways that were proven to work in South African reserves. They Introduced a mature elephant herd to the area. The experienced elephant matriarch somehow exerted the authority and the bucking rhino males were put in their place.

Hunting is usually what caused the problem in rhino herds in the first place. When hunters or poachers kill a rhino, it can fragment a stable rhino population, putting well-established social orders into chaos. The same when elephants are killed. The older the elephant, the more important is the elephant in the eco system. But these elephants with big tusks are usually the ones poached first. To prevent the poaching and hunting of elephants and rihinos is the KEY to saving the species.

To conclude, the reserve is greedy for the money. And the hunter wants to play with his gun. But it is no game for the rhino to be killed, nor the entire rhino population. We humans need to stop being greedy and stop playing infantile hunting games. There are true victims here.

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Seems a little brutal, but it does make sense if they're going to have to kill this animal to protect other black rhinos from it then they should raise some money in the process

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Killing the rhino is not the only choice, so no, it doesn't make sense. Conservation would keep the animal alive but well away from the others.

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>keep the animal alive but well away from the others.

That would benefit the individual but not the species. Better the resources (land and park wardens) be used for a female.

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If his sperm count is still valid then he will remain usefull...The torro no longer has to be in the same field....

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Okay Khaptain:

If he's not in the same field as a female he can't breed naturally.

If you're going to use artificial insemination (good luck with that... at either stage of the operation) then you can freeze it for later use.

Park Warden: Well, animals are not like people, Mrs. Simpson. Some of them act badly because they've had a hard life, or have been mistreated. But, like people, some of them are just jerks

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Anonymous Coward

twilight zone

why don't we just defang sharks? or drug them so they just swim around like this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uvbKmyp9WI0

rhinos have evolved to be baddasses for a freakin' reason you neutered freaks! if this rhino is so deadly, restrict his interaction during non breeding times or whatever but don't weaken the whole species because it fits in better with your controlling world view.

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Re: twilight zone

>rhinos have evolved to be baddasses for a freakin' reason you neutered freaks!

This is an example of sexual selection [of randomly occurring mutations] driving evolution. Male rhinos have become 'baddasses' because if they didn't they would lose out on the mating game to males that have. It's an arms race of sorts. Before humans caused the number of rhinos to drop, the level of collateral damage in the mating game was sustainable... after all, they are not as vulnerable to predation as some herbivores. In fact, counter-intuitively, deaths amongst females and young helped secure long term survival of rhinos, because it reduces the chance of population spikes (which tend to lead to population crashes by means of exhausting resources, a weak point at which a slight change in their environment can then be catastrophic for the species). For similar reasons, creatures that find themselves on remote islands without predators tend to breed slowly (see the Kakadu parrot). However, rhinos' current situation is one in which they are preyed upon upon- by us - and limiting a population spike is not currently a concern.

Taking this male out of the game probably won't affect the species too much; if he's that old and tough, he's probably already contributed plenty to the gene pool. It might be distasteful to shoot him for money, but that doesn't change the nature of the game.

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There were similar cases of rhino problems in South African reserves, and Introducing a mature elephant herd to the area had fixed the problem. Aged and experienced elephant matriarchs were shown to have the authority to not only fix problems in elephant herds, but in neighboring rhino herds as well. This was proven to work. To go the hunting route seems to be purely due to greed for the hunting license money.

Hunting is usually what caused the problem in rhino herds in the first place. When hunters or poachers kill a rhino, it can fragment a stable rhino population, putting well-established social orders into chaos. The same when elephants are killed. The older the elephant, the more important is the elephant in the eco system. But these elephants with big tusks are usually the ones poached first. To prevent the poaching and hunting of elephants and rihinos is the KEY to saving the species.

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In a similar vein, can we shoot George Osborne to save ourselves?

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Strange Logic

The rich b*****d could simply help fund without the kill and use some of the money to take that Black Rhino and put it somewhere else, away from the others and out of harms way. it's not like the national parcs have a lack of space.......

This appears to be a pathetic excuse for a rich man to go hunting endagered species. What's the betting that he keeps the head/horn as a trophy....

There are times where hunting can be justified but this is not one of them.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Strange Logic

Some King of Spain springs to mind with this story ...

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Re: Strange Logic

Jaun Carlos indeed has a very poor track record with hunting/guns/killing. I just read that he actually killed his own brother in a shooting accident and also some other strange story about hunting drunk bears....

And apparently the Elephant kills can also be bought at auction......

The Guardian's story

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Re: Strange Logic

>it's not like the national parcs have a lack of space

Because this is an IT website, it is compulsory to spell 'parks' 'parcs'. More correctly PARCs.

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Re: Strange Logic

You kind of miss the point that there are plenty of Rich B*****ds that are simply not going to contribute otherwise. If you are going to be more than an armchair critic - try understanding the world flaws and all - then try to change it. If you dont fully understand why something is the way it is you aint gonna get very far.

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Re: Strange Logic

What you fail to understand is that killing animals that are already endangered it not going to increase the odds of their survival.

I presented an alternative idea to killing the black rhino and you come back spouting some nonsense about being an "armchair critic". ..... What exactly was your suggestion/solution to the problem - criticising on an El Reg forum..

Learn to heed your own advice before giving it out to others..

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Childcatcher

Re: Strange Logic

There are times where hunting can be justified but this is not one of them.

When would those be? I would hope the game wardens at the park know their jobs well enough to have made an informed decision on this (assuming some bureaucrat did not push this for purely political reasons), so I would not presume to second guess them on this. There is nothing to indicate in this article that capturing this animal and moving it to greener pastures would have a better outcome unless one argues that there is no case in which it should be killed.

In general, I do not support trophy hunting as I feel that every bit of an animal that is killed should be used. However there are times when a herd should be culled. Perhaps the person spending the money is doing so "for all the wrong reasons." So what? That person will end up supporting the conservation effort as a whole and is not in a position to decide anything more than to pay the money.

It seems counterintuitive that managed hunting leads to better outcomes for the hunted species, but it is a model that has been shown to work. For one good example, check out Ducks Unlimited.

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Re: Strange Logic

(assuming some bureaucrat did not push this for purely political reasons),

What about the most common reason of all, corruption

This is Africa we're talking about, make no assumptions about decisions being made for the good of all.

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Re: Strange Logic

Americans love their hunting, and in Africa... life of all kinds is cheap, and bartered every day. The bottom line is they want that particular rhino shot anyway. Unless you go there and volunteer, I doubt there's anyone that wants to collect that rhino's sperm :-)

But if expressing your outrage over this makes you feel better that's fine, it's just that those you are admonishing wouldn't be moved by it, even a little.

I mostly agree with what you're saying (and this does seem ludicrous at first thought) but I understand it and it doesn't incense me. I don't personally hunt animals (I have in the past but I choose not to), but in North America it's prevalent and ingrained in people's culture.

On a farm, a serious one that is a business, not a hobby, if you get an animal that's aggressive and doing harm to the others (or it's dangerous to its handlers), you ship it off for slaughter (or just kill it if it has no market value) rather than keep it for breeding.

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Re: Strange Logic

"The rich b*****d could simply help fund without the kill and use some of the money to take that Black Rhino and put it somewhere else, away from the others and out of harms way. it's not like the national parcs have a lack of space......."

Yeah he could, so could you......

Save your money and out bid those rich hunters and you can save the rhino. If your not going to bid then STFU and leaving saving the species to the specialists who's job it is.

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Trollface

Alternatively...

... get the winning bidder, stick him, unarmed, in the middle of the savannah and then give everyone else the chance to shoot at him...!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Alternatively...

Or, only give the arsehole a hunting knife and keep him in there until only one of them is left. (I'm putting my money on the Rhino). I'd even PAY to see that!

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Pic

Can I be the first pedant to point out that the picture you have is of a white rhino. Too rare I guess for you to find a decent library picture? I demand you send one of your Reg photographers out to get a proper picture and I volunteer to go along.

White rhinos graze and black rhinos eat from bushes and trees so have a more head up posture. They have a pointier mouth too but it's in profile...

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Bronze badge

Im sure if they asked for collections worldwide they would raise more money from people to pay for the Rhino to be taken to a zoo rather than shot. It is slightly sickening really and ultimately sends out the wrong message, promoting the shooting of one that you want dead is not going to help stop people shooting all the others you want alive illegally, others will want the bragging rights too, they might just obtain those rights illegally.

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lol

Yeah lets lock it in a cage for the rest of its life instead of a quick death for the continuation of its species. And to save you from potential death from one of your aggressive species we can lock you up (for your own good) for the rest of your life.

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I believe taking an animal out of the wild and putting it in a zoo is worse than killing it. I am working with wildlife for the past 20 years and found that people are never shy of made up reasons and excuses to fulfill their blood lust. It's sickening!

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Double hunt

We double hunt, we set up an auction to hunt the whomever wants to shoot the Rhino so much that they pays the astronomical fee.

After all

1. "There is no hunting like the hunting of man"

2. If they care about conservation enough to pay all that money, I'm sure they'll understand when we tell them how much extra we raised on the price of their head.

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Anonymous Coward

What next?

Death row safari anyone?

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I am against the idea, but...

If that poor rhino really has to be shot ( I would argue with that ), can't they write "evolution" on both sides? That would certainly attract higher bids from the sort of Texans who would consider bidding in the first place. Apologies to the "normal" Texans out there if they feel offended, this was not aimed at you at all.

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future of the species..

Human driven evolution of the species towards a more docile nature.

As I suppose we have done to some extent with dogs, cats and cattle.

So what will they do with the remains? Boots and gloves from the hide? What does Rhino taste like?

Does the permit include rights to the spoils or can they raise further funds through the sale of these ultra exclusive items?

Imagine that, a once in a lifetime meal of black rhino steak.

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Re: future of the species..

"Imagine that, a once in a lifetime meal of black rhino steak."

Actually that's a great idea. $20K a plate would add another couple of million towards saving the species.

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Re: future of the species..

I just figure.. if you're going to kill it, why waste it?

The hide will no doubt make excellent leather, the horn can be used for whatever Chinese medicine (I'm sure the black rhino stuff is extra magical!), the meat can be used for meat and all the rest, Tesco's shepard's pie.

I always wonder if our regular food animals are also skinned for our animal based clothing or if the two industries operate separate supply streams. Trouble is, if you google this, the first 50 pages are emotive bullshit.

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