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Botswana Professionals Request Extension of Hunting Season

A leopard and a zebra observed during a safari in Botswana in October 2019. – CATERS / SIPA

The respite may be short-lived for Botswana wildlife. Professionals have asked the government to extend the first season of the hunt which was scheduled to start next month.

Although no case has yet been identified at Botswana, the appearance of the new
coronavirus has effects on local tourism. “The pandemic of
Covid-19 has severe consequences on hunting, “said the Botswana Wildlife Producers Association in a memo dated Friday, citing” many cancellations and many postponements “of reservations. “A lot of hunting customers,” who came mainly from Europe and the United States to kill elephants, leopards, buffaloes, ostriches or zebras, “cannot travel because of the travel restrictions in place,” she said. . “Getting to Botswana on a commercial flight from one of these countries is impossible,” she said.

“Limit the case”

“Extending the hunting season this year (..) would limit the damage” in financial terms, she said, stating that she had made an explicit request to this effect to the authorities. The risk of spread of Covid-19 by hunters is “low,” said the Botswana Wildlife Producers Association, saying that hunting essentially involves social distancing.

Last year, the government of this southern African country, popular with tourists for its wildlife, re-established hunting, provoking passionate reactions. Botswana, home to the world’s largest elephant population, held its first large-scale auction for hunting licenses in early February. The government has yet to formally respond to this request.



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