Trophy hunting is the practice of killing animals in the wild or in “canned hunts” for the purpose of making a trophy out of them. Trophies include displaying a head on the wall, a rug by the fire or a photograph of the hunter with his “prize.” It is a despicable practice, regardless of the species, but is an even more egregious practice when it comes to big cats because of the damage done to the eco system.
Nature flourishes through survival of the fittest. The weak are culled in both predator and prey through natural selection and the survivors are those most likely to thrive even in desperate conditions. Hunters, however, want to bag the biggest, healthiest and most beautiful of the cats.
The result to the environment is devastating. When the top predators are removed, nature becomes imbalanced and the number of herbivores and omnivores grow beyond the habitat’s ability to provide sustenance. Seedlings cannot grow into trees if there are too many animals eating them before they can grow, which causes whole forests to die out.
In the U.S. each year, more than 100 people are killed and more than 8,000 injured as a result of collisions between cars and deer. The overabundance of deer is a direct result of the trophy hunting of cougars and jaguars. The damage to crops by rodents and other vermin is exacerbated by the “sport” hunting of bobcats and ocelots. Jaguars and ocelots have been almost entirely extirpated and the eastern cougar is swift on their heels.
If you like breathing air, eating food and living in a place other than a desert, just Say NO to trophy hunting.
Find out more at: BigCatRescue.org/blood-lions
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