Trophy hunters kill last endangered desert male lion – Namibia

Namibia has a unique breed of lions that has adapted to the desert environment. Over the years they have become rather popular to hunt especially the males. There are three lion prides with a total of 27 adult females and sub-adults/cubs without a single adult male. There was two males both collared who has been killed in a very small amount of time leaving the females without males and with no way of filling the void.

Last year November Adolf (Xpl-3) a large male lion was killed which left Leonardo (Xpl-44) the only adult male left in the Hoanib & Hoaruseb area’s in the northern section. 26 April 2010 Leonardo was shot by hunters while he was feeding in a small cave.

The person responsible has been named Keith Wright who is a owner of a professional game hunting business Didiamla Safaris Namibia. They specialise in trophy hunting. Keith Wright has said that it was a accident and he could not see the lions collar because his mane was so big. Showing little remorse in his actions and refusing to take responsibility for the harm he has caused the government is pressing charges. When he was approached for comment on it he admitted saying:

I am the guy. …. It was a lion out of a sustainable group of lions in the area. I work very closely with Flip Stander (conservation expert from Conservancy Safaris Namibia)

He claims this all was brought about by someone who has something against him rather than of any wrong  doing. He also claims he has a permit for that area and it was a perfectly legal hunt. Not so, according to the Deputy Director of Parks and Wildlife Management Colgar Sikopo confirmed that the police has opened a case of illegal hunting of a protected species. Claiming that Wright only has a permit to shoot a lioness in the Anabeb Conservancy Area while the male lion was killed in the Sestfontein Conservancy Area. Meaning that he had no right to be hunting there and even less to shoot a male. There is also the matter of the collar attached to Leonardo it was only placed on him March this year and cost of N$60 000 and that normally if a male lion is permitted to kill a percentage of that money would go to a foundation Purros Conservancy, that is the local African tribe Purros which mainly graze cattle they do hunt lions but mostly to protect their herds.

According to Flip Stander who works with the lions and track their movements, it is clear that Leonardo was also baited closer to the area where he was shot:

During the night of the 19th April 2010 (19/4 pm) Xpl-44 moved rapidly south, into the Sesfontein Conservancy, to a bait. The speed and directness of his movements suggests that he might have been called by sound playbacks. He remain at the bait until the morning of 21 April 2010. The mortality sensor inside his satellite GPS collar was activated later in the day, and it is estimated that he was shot between 07 – 09h00 (subject to error). By 14h00 the satellite collar was transmitting it’s position from a hunting camp 6 km north-east of Sesfontein.

The investigators are refusing to say more about the case, stating that it is a sensitive matter at the moment.

There has been a facebook group started Stop Keith Wright the KILLER of Leonardo the Lion to trade in Namibia. If you would like to support the dessert lions or learn more about them go to Flip Stander’s website: desertlion.info

Update:

Criminal charges has been laid against Keith Wright after a high-profile investigation by the Ministry of Environment and Tourism into the killing of Leonardo, a protected lion species.

The Deputy Director: Parks and Wildlife Management in the ministry, Colgar Sikopo, have confirmed that the Police had opened a case of illegal hunting of a protected species after Mr Wright admitted to shooting the collared lion.

The Ministry has said that Keith Wright only had a permit to shoot a lioness and only in the Anabeb Conservacy Area. He had no authorisation from them to hunt a lion in the Sesfontein Conservancy Area.
 

51 thoughts on “Trophy hunters kill last endangered desert male lion – Namibia

    1. Errr he is obviously NOT an “ethical hunter” if there is even such a thing & NOT such a good man, great father & husband if he sets this kind of example for his family. What planet do you live on????

  1. Fuck all this motherfucking stupid hunters! Please someone kill and torture these motherfuckers! They have no right to live! They’ll just destroy every fucking endangered animals just for FUN?! Fuck them!

  2. Poachers should be skinned slowly while alive, and be burned, and give their roasted corpses to these poor lions. If possible they deserve MUCH MUCH MUCH worse!

  3. This story is very upsetting. These trophy hunters are nothing but WHORES for the American dollar. This is typical for Africa. Trophy hunters have no problem with luring lactating female lions away from her cubs so some douchebag from Germany can shoot her for a trophy- Who does that? These guys are criminal poachers- we will see how many are convicted for the rhino poaching that many of them were involved in! There was a Mut of Omaha special on yesterday about the remaining lioness in a Park in Zambia that survived a massacre from trophy hunters who killed them all but her. They had to truck in 2 males to at least give these lions a chance at survival. Where was the government? These hunters offer a slice of the wild for their degenerate trophy hunting customers- the easiest kill possible- made possible with BAIT- how sporting!!!!!! Emotion aside- these people like Wright are clearly the worst our species has to offer. I hope they confiscate the trophy and throw this loser in jail. Mr I didn’t see the collar because his mane was so thick Wright. Someone should BAIT him with a pile of cash- he will go for it that’s for sure

  4. This is so very, VERY unnecessary! Why the **** would they do these?! These greedy bastards should be shot where they stand! We must create a law that severely punishes whomever hunts any endangered animals!

  5. Congratulations Mr Voerman!
    Your campaign, although based on very unreliable information, has been successful. Your very personal attack on Didimala Safaris and the Wright family has caused us some severe obstacles in the hunting fraternity. I cannot access your Facebook page but there are a few points I would like you to make public.
    Leonardo was not the last male lion left in the Sesfontein Conservancy. See Desert Lion Foundation Website.
    Leonardo was a free range male lion in the Sesfontein Anabeb Conservancy.
    He had been collared by Dr Flip Stander of The Desert Lion Foundation for research purposes. By Dr Standers own admission,he had spent many hours habituating this lion to vehicles and tourists in the area. The collar was a dark brown collar and not easily visible under the lions mane.
    We had an allocation and permit to shoot one male lion in this area.
    The Namibia Professional Hunters Association have completed an investigation into this case and found that we complied with all the legal requirements to hunt this lion.
    Mr Voerman, the people that you have most severely compromised in your campaign against my family and the hunting community, are the local community members.
    Their greatest income comes from hunting. ie trophy, own use or shoot and sell.
    Researchers and tour companies using this conservancy to generate income have no finacial obligation to the communities of these conservancies.
    Susan Wright

    1. And you are the whore married to Mr Wright I guess?
      What’s it like sleeping with a murderer?
      I hope he gets the same treatment he gave that defenceless lion.
      You and your family deserve the worst kind of retribution, and the most painful kind.
      I am ashamed to breathe the same air as you you whore!!!!

  6. Face it you people are FU&*^% Vampires who are WHORES for the American dollar. I hope you all rot in hell- douchebags!!!!!!!

  7. What’s so thrilling about killing an endangered, innocent animal? What kind of fucked up asshole would justify this fucked up shit? Fucking bastards!!

  8. For years I wanted to visit Africa. Tops on my list were SA, Zimbabwe, Namibia and Tanzania. Slowly but surely I’ve crossed them off my list because of their tolerance of big game hunting. After this, I will NEVER set foot in Namibia.

  9. What you believe to be the economic value of trophy hunting is no justification for the killing of an endangered species. You want to help those communities? How about you set up education programmes centred around small business enterprise? How about providing schooling and school materials for the children?

  10. I am directing my above reply to Ivan Troev. Well, have you written your book yet Ivan Troev? I have not heard anything about it. Ok, well then wait for this book coming out. “The Notorious Animal Killers”. You and Susan Wright will be the stars supported by all the notorious animal killers.

  11. I am directing my above reply to Ivan Troev. Well, have you written your book yet Ivan Troev? I have not heard anything about it. Ok, well then wait for this book coming out. “The Notorious Animal Killers”. You and Susan Wright will be the stars supported by all the notorious animal killers.

  12. This story isn’t the least bit surprising. Professional Hunters are disgusting, and so are trophy hunters. They want to kill an animal, pose for some tasteless pics, and brag to their friends. PHs want to make money. So, they’ll pull whatever dirty trick they can to get a trophy. Stories like this are commonplace. I hope the government of Namibia takes Keith Wright out into the desert, shoots him in both knees, and leaves him there.

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