Conservation & Ethics
CONSERVATION OF WILDLIFE
It is an indisputable truth that every living thing, sooner or later, dies as a consequence of some natural factor, be it predation, disease, starvation, etc. This is the way of nature. However, nature is seldom kind or efficient. Human intervention can forestall the often cruel hand of nature. In the modern world controlled, well-managed, sustainable hunting is the most effective tool humankind has to bring to bear to optimize the health and well-being of wild animal populations. In a world where humans have a longstanding propensity to occupy for themselves all the best places on the planet it is a predictable consequence that wildlife will have to do with less in both quantity and quality of habitat. Free, open, wild habitat of quality continues to shrink as humans occupy more and more of the globe. As wildlife is confined to ever shrinking reserves some means must be devised to protect that habitat from the ravages of over-population. The culling of excess animals from over-populated herds is the surest, most efficient and most practical means of producing the desired outcome. We are already facing this reality throughout the natural world. For this reason we support responsible hunting as a conservation ethic. The fact that we make our living from it is not something we shy away from.
Hunting laws and regulations, which are in themselves often reflective of a society’s views on ethics as pertains to hunting, vary widely across cultures. This is understandable. In our view, in addition to subscribing to PHASA ethical standards, we believe ethical hunting involves the sincere commitment to hunt animals in their natural environment under conditions where the species being hunted has a reasonably good chance of avoiding the hunter, or escaping the hunter’s immediate intention to harvest it, that the hunter takes only those shots that he is highly confident of resulting in a quick and humane death, and that when the animal is indeed harvested by the hunter that the animal is treated with the respect and dignity that it deserves.