Health Editor’s Note: How about we not eliminate the elephants but use resources to supplement the farmers and relocating them. Or we could relocate the elephants who are not going to be renewable, but that would take a great deal more savvy.
What has happened in Botswana and has also happened in every area of the world where there are “conflicts” between animals and humans is that the humans, in their never-ending search for more, more, and more, have moved into areas that should have never been used for humans. How about we keep the humans out of these areas….find other homes for them?
There is no “ethical” concept behind lifting a suspension of hunting elephants. People do not eat the elephants they kill, but they DO seek profit from sale of the ivory teeth that these animals have and use. Ivory has no nutritional value that I know if.
Also, eliminating arming anti-poaching units with military-grade weapons and the practice of approving shooting poachers on sight have been eliminated. We all know where that is going to lead….African elephants have a gestational period (being pregnant) of 645 days (longest of any mammal) and with possibly having a baby every 1.76 years the elephants are not producing young nearly as often as humans. No danger of a drastic population increase in elephants, but because their enemy is human, and humans have all the rights (whatever those may be) in the world to take, take, and take some more they will suffer the consequences deemed fair to humans, those consequences made by the very humans that will profit. Isn’t there is Catch 22 in here somewhere? Certainly not in favor of the elephants of Botswana.
Bottom Line: Humans are supposed to have large brains, are supposed to know right from wrong, are supposed to figure things out, come up with fair plans for all, protect those who cannot protect themselves, those who have no vote…that would be the elephants in Botswana. Humans have been put in charge of something they should have no control over because it will always turn into how to make the almighty dollar. Despite the humans’ extremely high opinion of themselves and their vast sense of entitlement, they are not important in the scheme of any animal’s life, especially when they think that animal should be killed…..Carol
Five Things to Know About Botswana’s Decision to Lift Ban on Hunting Elephants
by Meilan Solly Smithsonian.com
Botswana, home to the world’s largest African elephant population, has lifted its five-year suspension of elephant hunting, attracting the ire of conservationists while placating those who argue that the land giants, known to kill livestock and destroy crops, are wreaking havoc on locals’ livelihoods.
In a statement detailing the reversal, Botswana’s Ministry of Environment, Natural Resources Conservation and Tourism cited the increasing prevalence of human-elephant conflict, the Department of Wildlife and National Parks’ inability to respond to animal control reports in a timely fashion, and the toll on communities ill-equipped to handle the unimpeded roaming of these roughly 12,000-pound creatures. The ministry further said that reinstatement will be performed “in an orderly and ethical manner.”
The exact nature of this “ethical” implementation remains unclear, as do the long-term ramifications of the decision for both Botswana’s human and pachyderm residents. But in the meantime, here’s what we do know: