Trophy hunting is utterly cruel, utterly unnecessary and utterly disastrous from a conservation perspective. It inflicts pain and suffering on animals for no other reason other than to boast of some ephemeral ‘prowess’. There is no material human need met by it: it is a hobby, pure and simple, and a deeply wrong one at that.
Trophy hunters are shooting some of the world’s most vulnerable wildlife. Virtually all animals targeted by the industry are seeing dramatic falls in numbers. Banning trophy imports and exports would be a legacy this government could be rightly proud of.
I hope the government acts against all forms of trophy and canned hunting. It’s a disgraceful activity and needs to be banned now. Canned hunting is the lowest of the low.
“As a conservationist, and as someone directly involved in working to save persecuted species, I can say from first-hand experience that hunting for ‘sport’ is putting tremendous pressure on our wildlife. Trophy hunting is simply inexplicable and inexcusable, and those who practice it need to take a long, hard look at themselves and what they’re doing. Frankly, they are absolutely despicable in my view.”
“Trophy hunters are not conservationists. They are people who kill animals for fun. They then make up excuses to try and justify their so-called ‘sport’.
If trophy hunting was good for conservation, why have lion populations fallen from 450,000 in the 1950s to just 20,000 today? Why have elephant numbers fallen from over 1 million in the 1980s to just 400,000 today? Why are rhinos, cheetahs, leopards, hippos and giraffes ALL in serious trouble?”
“I’m appalled and disgusted by this so-called ‘sport’. I have been lucky enough to visit Africa many times and see these beautiful wild animals. I would like my grandchildren to be able to do the same some day.”
The numbers don’t lie: trophy hunters are slaughtering thousands of animals every year, and wildlife populations are plummeting. It doesn’t take a genius to work out that the hunters’ claims that it’s good for ‘conservation’ are illogical. We need action by the government to stop this terrible trade, and to help bring a worldwide end to all trophy hunting.
“I simply cannot understand what pleasure someone can get from killing an animal for kicks. It seems we are condemning wildlife to not just a cruel death but also to a needless and senseless extinction. We must halt the slide while there is still time.
We should do everything we can to persuade the government to act swiftly.”
“What century are we living in? How can we call ourselves a civilisation if we think murdering animals for a laugh is OK? Trophy hunters are spoilt little brats; haven’t they got enough toys to play with. They’re wiping out wildlife. Soon there will be nothing left for them to kill. How are we going to explain that to future generations? Let’s get it banned.”
“I feel very strongly about this, as does the British public. There is no justification for trophy hunting. There is even less justification for killing endangered wildlife for entertainment. I am totally and utterly against trophy hunting. We must ban this vile practice from the UK. We should all do everything we can to rid ourselves of this disgusting so-called sport.”
“Wildlife faces many serious threats. Unregulated trophy hunting adds extra pressure to vulnerable species. It is unethical and unnecessary. It is right that Britain stops the trade in trophies.”
“I’m appalled by all forms of hunting, but trophy hunting really is the lowest of the low. These people, these wealthy sadists, get on a plane and pay huge sums of money with the sole intention of killing as many animals as they can and then they get a prize for it. I find it staggering that the government allows trophy hunters to bring these sick souvenirs into the country. I find it equally staggering that it allows foreign hunters to come to the UK to shoot animals here and take their trophies away with them. We need a blanket ban. We need to put an end to this grotesque barbarism.”
“I have always considered trophy hunting the lowest of the low: contemptible, hollow triumphalism which we would laugh to scorn if the consequences weren’t so utterly grim and cruel. Weasel words and twisted evidence will try to show the benefits of this hateful past-time; but the truth is as plain as can be: killing animals for fun is just disgusting.”
“If trophy hunting elephants in Botswana is made legal again, we might as well say goodbye to them now. It will be the end for African elephants and all because some rich psychopath enjoys murdering a magnificent animal.”
Sir Ranulph Fiennes:
“Trophy hunting is just vanity and stupidity. It’s a ‘sport’ for morons, cowards and bullies. The people who take part should all be in jail. They’re committing crimes against the planet. How dare they think they can kill off our wildlife just to entertain themselves! “We should hang our heads in shame at what’s going on. We need a global ban, and tough jail terms for all trophy hunting and poaching.”
“Some of the world’s most extraordinary wildlife has been decimated by persecution and habitat loss. Elephants, lions, leopards, cheetahs and rhinos are all fighting for their lives. We could see all of them go extinct within a generation.
Letting people kill them because they think it’s entertaining is just insane, especially when you’re talking about wildlife with such a vulnerable status. Trophy hunting has always been senseless cruelty.”
“The government has allowed British trophy hunters to kill hundreds of elephants for their tusks. It’s given hunters more permits to bring back lion trophies after the killing of Cecil than ever before.
“We’re supposed to be a nation of animal lovers, yet the government’s policies on trophy hunting are contributing to extreme cruelty being inflicted on animals.
“Trophy hunting is driving endangered wildlife to extinction. The government should hang its head in shame.”
“It is a fallacy propagated by advocates of trophy and canned hunting that they are acting altruistically for conservation and indigenous communities, when the truth is, that the majority of fees go to line the pockets of governments and the local capitalists involved., and the continued poverty of the inhabitants is mainly due to Government corruption.
“Trophy hunting has had its ugly day in the sun . It’s not a sport, in sport there is fair competition , here the animals die and the humans sit on their corpses for a selfie. Trophy hunting is about killing wildlife and when more and more species are heading towards the brink of extinction its no longer ethically or morally acceptable.
We still hear those involved in trophy hunting trot out the tired old lie that its about conservation. But killing wildlife for fun is a dying business and this is just another way for them to try to justify their desire to kill for pleasure”.
“These are remarkable, intelligent, sentient beings and are a lot nicer than us. They mourn, and killing one of them disrupts the herd, and the only person happy is the wealthy American hunter posing on his kill. The argument of money for conservation is a myth. Elephants have been going to Botswana from other countries because they know it is safe. We must keep it that way!”
“Born Free actively campaigns against this despicable situation. How dare we , here in the UK, condone the senseless killing of these unique and wonderful animals, for” fun”, by allowing their bodies to be brought here?. Trophy hunting is beyond the pale, as are the people who carry it out”
Jeremy Cooper (ex-CEO, RSPCA):
“It is beyond me that people can get satisfaction from such an unnecessary, senseless and brutal activity. The cruelty endured by these poor animals, who suffer a slow and agonising death and which often affects their offspring, is completely irrational. Yet again humanity inflicts its anti-social attitudes and behaviours on the animal kingdom and the world at large.”
TIM BERNERS-LEE (inventor of the internet)
THE BISHOP OF SALFORD (Catholic Church Environment spokesperson)
SIR CHARLES DUNSTONE
Jeremy Corbyn MP:
“I’m totally opposed to trophy hunting and to the importing of animals that have been killed for trophy hunting. CITES needs to include trophy hunting because we have to protect those very rare animals that are often facing extinction.“
Caroline Lucas MP (Green):
“I’m against trophy hunting because our planet’s wildlife faces unprecedented threats through habitat destruction, from climate change, and crucially from trophy hunting. You’ve got bears, cheetahs, elephants and hippopotamuses who are killed for so-called sport. There’s nothing sporting about animal cruelty, suffering and death. Our government is supposed to be doing something about this. They pledged to make a start by banning the imports of lion trophies. But even on this they haven’t implemented it, and every year there’s an average of 242 animal trophies coming back into the U.K. We’re calling on the government to step up to follow the lead from many other countries who have banned all trophy hunting imports. We want them to take a role on the global stage as well to make sure that we bring an absolute end to all all trophy hunting”.
Alistair Carmichael MP (Lib Dem):
“I’m giving my support to the Campaign to Ban Trophy Hunting. This is something that came home to me pretty strongly recently when I saw the picture of the American huntress hunting goats on Islay. I was born and brought up on Islay. Those goats were part of the scenery when I was growing up. To see that picture of that huntress with that goat killed only for the purpose of her having her picture taken just spoke to me in a way that was really powerful. I was frankly repelled to see what had been done there. And that’s what has brought me to this campaign and why I’m giving it my 100% support.”
Sir Ed Davey MP (Lib Dem):
“Trophy hunting should be banned across the world and that ban should be enforced very strongly. It’s completely wrong that we’re allowing people to kill animals, particularly endangered species. The argument that it’s good for local communities is completely bogus. The money goes to the rich people and we could actually help communities far better by promoting nature tourism. There’s an alternative to this slaughter. We need the ban.”
Tommy Sheppard MP (SNP):
“I think it’s disgraceful and disgusting in the current modern age that we allow people to indulge in the slaughter of wild animals purely for entertainment. It ought to be stopped.”
Ben Lake MP (Plaid Cymru):
“Frankly I find it abhorrent that anyone would consider killing animals for sport and then to mount them above their mantelpieces as some sort of trophy. That’s why I want to see it completely banned and I think the U.K. as a leading nation can make an important contribution to bringing a global ban.”
Hilary Benn MP (Labour):
“I’m backing this proposal to ban the import of hunting trophies into the U.K. Every year, hippopotamuses, elephants, lions, zebras and other really important species are being killed, sometimes in enclosures where the animals can’t escape to enable trophy hunters to say ‘look – I’ve bagged one of these animals’. It’s a despicable activity, it shouldn’t be allowed. These are endangered species, and one thing that we can do here in the U.K. to help bring this activity to an end is to say ‘you’re not bringing your hunting trophy back into the UK’.”
Sir Roger Gale (Con):
“I believe that the pastime of trophy hunting is one of the vilest and cruelest so-called sports that there is. The idea that a person can go out and for pleasure shoot and maim a proud wild animal is wholly unacceptable. To then allow the importation of the product of that slaughter is worse. “
Sir David Amess (Con):
“The idea that people get fun out of removing the heads from animals I find absolutely sickening. Yes perhaps in the last century you’d go into some of these stately homes and you’d see these animals’ heads above doors and windows but frankly I’m worried about the situation today and that it still goes on.”
Bob Blackman MP (Con):
“I’ve been a long standing supporter of the rights of animals. The very sad fact is that people who are hunting animals just literally for the trophies they bring are devastating our wildlife. We’ve got to stop it. “
Dame Eleanor Laing MP (Con):
“I support this campaign against trophy hunting. There is absolutely no need in the modern world for anyone to kill an animal for sport.”
Teresa Pearce MP (Labour):
“I think trophy hunting is a disgrace and I think any human being should be totally ashamed of this particular supposed sport.”
Wera Hobhouse MP (Lib Dem):
“Trophy hunting is such a vile practice. There’s a gap in the law that allows this to continue.”
Jonathan Reynolds MP (Lab):
“For me, killing animals for any sort of pleasure is wrong. I look on the internet and I see people celebrating the fact they’ve killed animals for pleasure. What sort of achievement is that? I can’t possibly see how they take any pride in that and it seems to me this is something that a civilised society should have evolved past, and I think the public share that concern. I think it’s something we should relegate to the past.”
Albert Owen MP (Lab):
“If there is one thing about this campaign is that it brings families together and it brings communities together because we all care. We’ve been guilty in the past as a country of doing things that we shouldn’t have been doing. Today we’re as one voice in supporting this campaign to put an end to trophy hunting.”
Emma Dent Coad MP (Lab):
“My predecessor in Kensington supported the ivory trade. A lot of people found that really repellant and I think to be honest that got me over the finishing line. I cannot imagine why any human being would want to kill a beautiful animal just for the pleasure of hanging a part of it on their wall. It is absolutely disgusting. What kind of people are these? Let’s be human about it. Let’s treat other mammals as we would our own. Let’s stop this hideous trophy hunting forever.”
Andy McDonald MP (Lab):
“I think we’re all absolutely repulsed by these visions we see of people boasting and bragging about having slaughtered a magnificent creature – be it a giraffe, a lion or whatever it may be. This is horrific and it must come to an end. It’s totally barbaric and completely unnecessary.”
Ruth George MP (Lab):
“I support the banning of trophy hunting because it’s atrocious that animals are treated as trophies, as decoration. It shouldn’t happen anywhere in the world. I’m here to take a stand against trophy hunting.”
Andrew Gwynne MP (Lab):
“Look, this is the year 2018. We shouldn’t really be having a discussion about trophy hunting. Wild animals are not there to be on somebody’s wall or in somebody’s cabinet. So let’s be clear, let’s end trophy hunting before we get to 2019.”
Tonia Antoniazzi MP (Lab):
“I find it bizarre that anyone would want to hunt these animals for “sport” or just for a so-called trophy to hang on their wall. I think it says a lot about the type of person that would want to do it.”
Anne Main MP (Con):
“An exotic trophy on your wall is a mark of shame, not a mark of pride.”
Kelvin Hopkins MP (Lab):
“I support the Campaign to Ban Trophy Hunting. Trophy hunting is cruel, immoral, archaic & unjustifiable. Hundreds of hunting trophies have been imported into the UK in recent years. They include species threatened with extinction such as elephants, lions, leopards, and rhinos. It’s time for a global ban, and to put a stop to trophy imports into the UK.”
Ian Lucas MP (Lab):
“Killing animals for sport or pleasure is barbaric. I find it deeply offensive and it simply has to stop. I had no hesitation in signing the EDM to stop UK trophy imports and would welcome a global ban on this cruel practice.”
Vernon Coaker MP (Lab):
“Trophy hunting is cruel, archaic and immoral, directly impacting the conservation status of some of the world’s most endangered wildlife. We all need to wake up and act or be found guilty by future generations. The UK should show global leadership in banning trophy hunting imports urgently. “
House of Lords
Shadow Attorney General Baroness Shami Chakrabarti:
“Trophy hunting isn’t just appalling for the beautiful creatures concerned; it also does something terrible to our common humanity”.
Baroness Angela Smith, Shadow Leader of the House of Lords:
Lord Chris Rennard