Trophy hunting involves pursuing an animal, usually a rare species, in conditions which cause stress, fear and pain, with the hunters killing, not for food or pest control, but as a form of entertainment.
I believe action is needed to stop this sort of exploitation. I am therefore pleased that the Government decided to consult on options to restrict the imports and exports of hunting trophies to the UK – including a potential ban.
This consultation, alongside a call for evidence, will allow ministers to understand the public’s views on all sides of the debate and gather expert evidence to inform any next steps. The consultation closed in February and the responses are now being considered.
My own view is clear on this and I have already sponsored a House of Commons motion which states:
” That this House welcomes the Government’s public consultation on controls on the import and export of hunting trophies; notes the strong cross-party support for EDM 1829, Session 2017-19 and that 86 per cent of the British public support an end to trophy hunting; further notes that most UK trophy imports are of threatened species and that the number of trophy imports from captive-bred animals is growing; believes that trophy hunting has had devastating impacts on some wildlife populations and that the pursuit of animals with the largest tusks, horns, or antlers is resulting in artificial selection which imperils the survival of these species; further believes that trophy hunting fees rarely provide substantive funding for conservation or benefits to local communities; is strongly of the view that killing animals for trophies is indefensible and cruel and that it has no place in the modern world; urges policy-makers to work with stakeholders to support sustainable economic development that creates real prosperity for people through preserving our natural heritage; and calls on the Government to implement a comprehensive ban on trophy hunting imports and exports as quickly as possible, to consider an immediate moratorium, and to work with other Governments to help bring an end to trophy hunting.”