Fees of $150,000 to hunt a black rhino may save the species

By Brendan Borrell

Excerpted from "The Sacrifice

Evidence that the free market may be wildlife's best hope lies in the different approaches taken over the last decades in southern and East Africa, an particularly in South Africa and Kenya. In Kenya landowners have no right to use wildlife, which is controlled by the state. That has made wildlife a liability; anyone who wanted to make money legally from their land cleared it of native vegetation, chased away the antelope, rhino and elephant, and turned to cattle and agriculture.

In the 1960s and 1970s in southern Africa, Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe began managing wildlife populations through regulations and licensing fees, allowing profits to accrue directly to landowners. Fred Nelson, the founder of Maliasili initiatives in Tanzania and a member of the ICUN sustainable use specialist group, says southern Africa has become a model of the rest of the continent. "Although they may not say it publicly, among conservation organizations that work deeply in Africa, there is little doubt that hunting can be part of a successful conservation regime," he days.

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