Monday, 10 August 2015

Air Canada bans African animal trophies as freight

Air Canada says it has a new policy, effective immediately, not to carry any shipment of lion, leopard, elephant, and rhinoceros or Cape buffalo trophies worldwide as freight.The airline made the statement today in response to a query from CBC News.

But you won't have trouble transporting some Canadian animal trophies, such as black bears or grizzly bears.

Several other airlines have banned air shipment of hunting trophies in the past few days, including Delta, United and American Airlines.

Air Canada said the ban goes over and above its long-standing policy to comply with the regulations that are in place to protect endangered wildlife in accordance with the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora.

The trophy hunting of exotic animals is in the spotlight after the shooting of Cecil the lion in Zimbabwe by an American dentist.

Historically the shipment of such trophies has been extremely rare on Air Canada as the airline does not operate flights to Africa.

Air Canada told CBC News the same ban does not extend to black or grizzly bears, among the trophy animals most likely to be hunted in Canada. However it would not transport polar bears, which do have protection.

The airline said it would allow transportation of those bear trophies which are legal to hunt in Canada under CITES and Canadian rules.

WestJet points out it does not serve destinations where hunters can take Big Five animals, including lions and elephants, but says it would not carry Big Five trophies.

It will however carry elk, deer, bears or any other animal that has been legally hunted, according to spokesman Robert Palmer.

There has been a public and internet outcry about the killing of Cecil, with Zimbabwe alleging that it was illegal.

A petition sent to Delta Airlines demanded the airline, which serves South Africa, stop transporting trophies of Africa's so-called Big Five animals — lions, elephants, rhinoceroses, leopards and Cape buffalos.

That is the same Big Five animals that Air Canada has banned.


Post a Comment