In Gaberone, Botswana, the government has revoked the hunting licenses of two trophy hunters who shot and killed a research elephant and destroyed its science collar in order to hid the evidence.
According to the Independent, the environment and tourism ministry identified Michael Lee Potter and Kevin Sharp as the professional hunters; both men have surrendered their hunting licenses after shooting the elephant at the end of last month. Sharp has been banned for three years; Potter has been banned for an indefinite amount of time. Both hunters will be required to replace the destroyed collar.
“The Ministry will work with the hunting industry to ensure that the necessary ethical standards are upheld,” stated Botswana’s ministry.
In May, the ban on elephant hunting was lifted in Botswana which had been issued five years earlier. Africa’s elephant population has declined due to poaching, however in Botswana the numbers of elephants have grown. Farmers have complained the elephants have been causing problems for raising crops.
The shooting of the elephant illegally reminds the world about Cecil the lion – killed by an American hunter in neighboring Zimbabwe. Cecil also wore an identifying collar as was supposed to have been protected. Supporters of a ban on trophy hunting, stated Cecil was lured out of the safety of the protected reserve by baiting him.
(Photo courtesy of Dan McBride)
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