Black Rhino permit sold to Dallas man could be revoked by Namibian Federal Agency.
In January, Texas resident, Corey Knowlton, paid $350,000 for a permit to hunt black rhino in Africa at an auction held by the Dallas Safari Club. Several months later he applied for a permit from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service that would allow him to bring the rhino’s body back to the U.S.
A federal agency in Namibia may deny the permit application due to recent poaching of rhinos in the country. If the permit to bring the body back to the U.S. is not approved, the Dallas Safari Club will cancel the hunt and refund the money to Knowlton originally intended to fund conservation of black rhinos.
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Every year the Namibian government sells five permits to hunt black rhinos and uses the money to protect the endangered species. Kenneth Uiseb, Namibia’s director of wildlife monitoring and research, told reporters,
The aim is to re-invest these financial resources back to conservation, protected area management and rural community development.
Opponents to the black rhino hunt, feel it is counterproductive to raise funds for an endangered species by selling permits to hunt them.
“Kill it to save it is not only cruel, it’s not conservation,” Jeff Flocken, the North American regional director for the International Fund for Animal Welfare, recently said to reporters.
If black rhinos and other dwindling species are to have a future, people must be encouraged to value animals for their inherent worth alive, not their price tag when they are dead.
The federal agency is expected to make a decision after Dec. 8, when the public comment period will end.