Perspectives on trophy hunting in tourism; Namibia as a case study
TABLE OF CONTENTS
List of figures
List of appendices
Chapter 1: INTRODUCTION
STRUCTURE OF DISSERTATION
Chapter 2: LITERATURE REVIEW
Sustainability in Tourism
Trophy Hunting in Namibia
Conservancies in Namibia
Conservancies Association of Namibia
RELEVANCE OF TROPHY HUNTING IN NAMIBIAN TOURISM 11 Trophy Hunting and Social Aspects
Economic Arguments of Trophy Hunting
Trophy Hunting and the Environment
ORGANISATION FOR TROPHY HUNTING IN NAMIBIA
Namibian Professional Hunting Association
Classifications for Trophy Hunting Guides
Hunting Permits and Regulations
Chapter 3: METHODOLOGY
Statistical Reports, Magazines and Governmental Publications 20 Online Resources
Data collection tool development
Chapter 4: RESULTS AND ANALYSIS
Trophy Hunting as Conservation Tool
Forms of Trophy Hunting
Trophy Hunting and Species Protection
Trophy Hunting and Tourism
Trophy Hunting and other Organizations
Trophy Hunting and Conservancies
Trophy Hunting Industry in Namibia
Chapter 5: CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS
This dissertation was written to investigate the significance, impact and future development of the trophy hunting industry in Namibia, one of the least populated countries in the world. Secondary research identified trophy hunting, a micro-tourism niche, as a highly controlled consumptive form of wildlife utilisation, successfully applied for species protection and conservation of game in Namibia. The economic income of the industry has increased over the years partly due to the establishment of conservancies. Moreover a questionnaire with quantitative quality questions was developed and sent out to individual experts (hunting guides, farmers and game farmers) operating in the trophy hunting industry in Namibia. Findings of the primary research were grouped, compared and contrasted with the findings of the secondary research and represented as percentages, graphs, cross tabulations and the Likert scale. Results showed that trophy hunting contributes towards education, job creation, species protection and conservation of the natural habitat. It was also identified that trespassing, illegal activities, foreign hunting guides and lack of human recourses pose a threat to the industry. The trophy hunting industry of Namibia in the opinion of individual experts and the minister of environment and tourism of Namibia has great potential for a sustainable future development.
This dissertation could not have been realized without the support of a few people whom I want to thank. I want to acknowledge my tutor Mr. Theodore Benetatos for his great guidance, advice and expertise throughout the dissertation writing process.
I also would like to thank Dr. Michael Vieregge for his professional opinion on the design of my questionnaire and the analysis of my findings. My appreciation also goes out to Mrs. Almut Kronsbein who assisted me during my primary research.
Then I would like to thank all the participants of the survey for their effort, additional comments and for the time they took to fill out the questionnaire.
Last but definitely not least I want to extend special thanks to my parents who supported me throughout my education. Without them I would not have had the possibility to study at IMI and write this dissertation.
LIST OF FIGURES
Figure 4.1: Is trophy hunting negatively affecting wildlife populations?
Figure 4.2: Does trophy hunting stand in conflict with species protection?
Figure 4.3: Ways to remove problem animals
Figure 4.4: Does trophy hunting stand in conflict with normal tourism (e.g. photo safaris)?
Figure 4.5: The trophy hunting industry in Namibia
LIST OF APPENDICES
Appendix 2.1: Game Species that can be hunted in Namibia
Appendix 2.2: Regular trophy hunters year/country
Appendix 2.3: The area covered by registered Communal Conservancies/ number of people that live in the Conservancies
Appendix 2.4: Income (N$) generated by Conservancies through different activities including Community-based Tourism (1999-2007)
Appendix 2.5: Income (N$) generated by trophy hunting in (1999-2007)
Appendix 3.1: Questionnaire
Appendix 3.2: Email cover letter
CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION
In this chapter the author is aiming to introduce the overall topic of his research from different perspectives on trophy hunting in the tourism industry. Furthermore the different issues the author is planning to address during his study and showing the aims and objectives that are to be examined.
According to Blain (2005) hunting can be seen as one of the oldest activity practised by man. From pre - civilisation where humans hunted for pure survival up to the present day were it takes on the form of a sport, conservation tool or mere commercial income. Sport hunting, due to high tourist spending involved, has a substantial impact on rural communities and therefore may positively enhance their development (http://www.gunmuse.com). One example which can be referred to is the CAMPFIRE (Communal Areas Management Programme for Indigenous Resources) program of Zimbabwe that was launched when local citizens had problems with elephants destroying their crops. In this case licences, for these animals to be shot, were issued in order to control population. It is argued that, 'by 1993 eight districts had earned around 35000 Pounds from safari hunting, mostly catering for Americans wanting an elephant trophy' (Shackley, 1996:93, 94). Nature conservationists have always practised hunting as one of the cheapest and most effective ways to control exploding animal populations. In recent years the economic value of certain animal species has increased to a great extent, so that in our modern times, there is an ever growing demand for hunting destinations (Shackley, 1996).
Due to the rapid development of infrastructure in Namibia less accessible areas have become more accessible to the tourist or the hunter. According to Mendelsohn (2007) many commercial and communal conservancies and hunting lodges have been built in recent years. These hunting lodges buy exotic game ranging from antelopes to elephants. More wild game means more income through hunting for the county, but it also means more food for predators such as cheetah and leopard. Therefore the numbers of carnivores have increased in recent years in Namibia. This increase in numbers results in conflicts between game lodges and livestock farms. The more carnivores there are the more likely it will be that they will prey on livestock such as cattle, sheep and goats. As the areas in which these predators live are vast, it is most of the time not possible to catch these problem animals and hunting becomes the only option (Ministry of Environment and Tourism, 2004).
A publication in the Journal of International Wildlife Law and Policy (2005) reported that the sustainable use of a species is promoted by the protection of Biological Variety in being one of the main three pillars. It was this sustainable usage that helped white southern rhinos recover after they were legalised for trophy hunting and live sales only by CITES (the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) (http:/www.cites.org).
Referring to the Black Rhino, its numbers have dwindled in the past, but according to Leader-Williams, Milledge, Adcock, Brooks, Conway, Knight, Mainka, Martin and Teferi (2005) it recently had made a strong comeback. Due to an over surplus of male animals the African Rhino Specialist Group is expecting propositions on the hunt of black rhinos. If this species should not be legalised for hunting it would immediately lose its economic value and therefore the necessity to be protected.
Organisations like CITES, which consists of agreements between governments that proclaim the trade of plants and animals across international borders does not threaten the survival of a particular species (http://www.cites.org). NAPHA (Namibia Professional Hunting Association) improves and upholds, through effective management, an organisational infrastructure and moral behaviour towards a sustainable utilization to preserve the industry for present and future generations (http://www.natron.net). SCI (Safari Club International) is defending the liberty to hunt and encouraging wildlife protection worldwide (http://www.scifirstforhunters.org). Also MET (Ministry of Environment and Tourism of Namibia), which has the function of preserving the environment and at the same time promoting tourism. All the above mentioned organisations have contributed towards the protection of species. Through this study the author aims to show that there still is a great problem arising from vulnerable game species praying on livestock of commercial and communal farmers despite the organisations input.
This study highlights the importance of resolving the conflict between the tourist demand for trophy hunting and sustainable game management. It also aims to underline the significance of a sustainable utilisation of endangered and vulnerable game species for local communities and whether hunting tourism contributes towards the protection of endangered game species and sustainable tourism development.
- To review secondary literature about wildlife tourism, trophy hunting and species protection.
- To investigate diverse forms of sustainable utilisation of trophy hunting in Namibia.
- To provide an overview on different individual expert views, approaches, similarities and contradictions in managing trophy hunting.
- To recommend to the individual experts and the trophy hunting industry how to improve problems regarding trophy hunting and to provide recommendations for future research.
STRUCTURE OF DISSERTATION
This study consists of five chapters dividing the author work into a controllable and reasonable structure. In chapter two the author presents a critical review on the secondary literature regarding the main ideas of wildlife tourism, trophy hunting and species protection. Moreover the author assesses the sustainable exploitation of trophy hunting in Namibia and the different organisations involved. Also the importance of trophy hunting for the tourism industry will be underlined. In chapter three the proper research methods are selected, the appropriate research tool is chosen and the methodology is vindicated to carry out the primary research. Chapter four analyses the assembled data collected through primary research. The findings are presented in a coherent order and displayed by graphs and diagrams. In the final fifth chapter the results of the primary research are brought into relation with the findings of the secondary research. The veracity of the hypothesis is assessed and recommendations are brought forward for the industry and future studies.
CHAPTER TWO: LITERATURE REVIEW
To fully understand the tourism niche market of trophy hunting the following chapter discusses, by making use of secondary research analysis, the concept of sustainable development, sustainability in tourism as well as wildlife tourism. A definition for trophy hunting is also provided. Furthermore trophy hunting and conservancies in Namibia are assessed. The chapter also elaborates on the relevance of hunting in the Namibian tourism industry by having a closer look at the social, economic and environmental aspects of trophy hunting. Organisations that are concerned with trophy hunting in Namibia and the classification for trophy hunting guides are discussed. Furthermore permits and other regulations are assessed.
The World Commission on Environment and Development (1987: 8 cited in Connell and Page, 2006: 390) argues that ‘development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the needs of future generations’ is sustainable development. This is a relatively precise definition of sustainable development but the application of the theory is more challenging. This is especially true for trophy hunting within the tourism sector in Namibia.
A balance between first and third world countries should exist and the basic desires of persons should be given. Furthermore all persons specifically in the first world should adapt their mind-sets and way of life to support a sustainable economically modified development. It can be said that development is a procedure that can be guided in the direction of sustainability (Hägerhäll, 1988: 22-23 cited in Aronsson, 2000: 32).
Griffin, Harris and Williams (2002: 36) state that ‘the idea of sustainable development is that economic growth and environmental conservation are not only compatible, they are necessary partners. One cannot exist without the other’. The concept of sustainability can only work over a longer period if it incorporates the capability of upholding a high environmental class amid a comprehension of the environmental collisions and a cautiously reputable tourism carrying capability Shackley (1996).
Aronsson (2000) comments, that the expression sustainable development has two major aspects. One is the resource aspect that can be used in combination with the enduring utilization and advancement of the local way of life and the local rural area. The other aspect involves the magnitude concurrent with workplaces and material incentives. These rewards can be adequate to give a foundation for setting up family businesses and generation movements. The concept of sustainability plays an ever increasing role in most areas but especially in the tourism industry.
Sustainability in Tourism
Connell and Page (2006) argue that the idea of sustainable tourism emerged due to the awareness of the impacts of tourism. It is moreover a hard to define concept with a wide range of definitions. The WTO (World Tourism Organisation) established that sustainability aspects should relate to financially viable, socio cultural and ecological principals of tourism. There should be an appropriate balance between these principals in order to assure a lasting sustainability of tourism.
According to Swarbrooke (1999) sustainable tourism could be defined as different tourism forms which assemble the wants of tourist, the host communities and the tourism industry without jeopardizing the aptitude of further generations to rally their needs.
The WTO summarized that sustainable tourism should, ‘make optimal use of environmental resources’, Connell and Page (2006: 395), (whilst upholding the necessary environmental developments while serving to protect the natural tradition and biodiversity), ‘respect the socio cultural authenticity of host communities (helping to conserve the cultural heritage and traditional values as well as seeking to engender intercultural understanding and tolerance)’ and to ‘ensure viable, long-term economic operations, providing socioeconomic benefits to all stakeholders’ Connell and Page (2006: 395).
According to (Hunter, 1995 cited in Aronsson, 2000) sustainable tourism development should not be defined too narrowly. A broad definition should incorporate a connection between tourism and the social system. Tourism development should proceed if it does not negatively affect the environment with respect to the ecology. It is mainly comprised of minute sized development which has its origins in the local society. The development of sustainable tourism stresses the importance of the sustainability of culture, e.g. the development of a destination is done in such a way, that the natural atmosphere of the destinations cultural heritage and architecture stays the same according to (de Kadt and Pigram, 1992: 50, 78 cited in Aronsson, 2000).
In order for sustainable development to be ecologically and economically viable it is essential to understand that interpretation is fundamental in each. Interpretation can assist economic sustainability in one or two ways. Firstly there is the satisfaction of consumer demand and secondly the creation of local employment. For example wildlife tourism operators offer more than just the physical experience. They provide a moving and intellectual experience. This permutation is what creates pleased clients; due to the association which interpretation generates between people and those places they go to visit to see the wildlife (Griffin et al 2002).
Novelli (2005: 171) argues that, ‘the modern wildlife tourism context may be recognised in the known forms of tourism safaris, hunting tourism and conservation tourism’. Moreover a division can be made in comparison to the non-consumptive (i.e. Photo safaris) along with consumptive (i.e. trophy hunting) nature of wildlife tourism. Shackley (1996) suggests that the advance of wildlife tourism is mainly governed by factors such as general expansion and the diversification of products in tourism on a global perspective.
Also by the progression of a more cost efficient and faster entrance to innovative destination areas, the heightened ‘green’ attentiveness and the exploration for prolonging substitutes to mass tourism. Dowling, Newsome and Moore (2002: 14) continue by suggesting, ‘it is the quality of a natural areas living or biotic element, that is, the fauna and flora or wildlife that plays a primary role in attracting tourists to specific destinations’.
Swarbrooke (1999) comments that Wildlife can be harmed by tourism resulting in devastation of habitat, the interruption of feeding customs, disturbance of breeding patterns, bushfires and persons collecting rare plants. On the contrary tourism can be beneficial towards wildlife providing it with an economic value. This in return could drive the stimulus for its protection. According to Swarbooke (1999: 52), ‘there is little doubt that without tourists there would now be fewer lions or elephants in the world’.
The author of this study believes that without the presence of sustainable wildlife management sustainable trophy hunting cannot be performed. It is a criterion which is of great significance for the trophy hunting industry.
Having identified and developed a broader understanding of sustainability and the development of sustainability in a tourism context and having reviewed the main aspects of wildlife tourism one can now concentrate on the core idea of this study. Novelli (2005: 172) refers to ‘trophy hunting as a micro-tourism niche within the wildlife macro-tourism context’. This means that trophy hunting is a very specific form of tourism that caters to tourists who want to experience an outdoor activity, having the fundamentals of adventure, the excitement of the hunt, the art of shooting and the exclusivity of scenery of the country side.
According to Novelli (2005: 172) a trophy can be defined as ‘any part of an animal that can be displayed as a sign of the catch’. A trophy can be a set of horns from an antelope, its skin, or the tusks from an elephant. There are specific quality parameters regarding the trophies size and weight. The overall endeavour of the hunter aims at collecting a trophy from a fully grown, large or very old animal. These animals are no longer actively reproducing. Thus the hunter also aims to perform ethical hunting. An ethical hunting practise is an essential part for the success of trophy hunting in Namibia.
Trophy Hunting in Namibia
Turpie, Lange, Martin, Davies and Barnes (2004) state that Trophy hunting in Namibia was set in motion in the beginning of the 1970s. The commercialisation of hunting in the protected areas began in 1987. The season for trophy hunting commences from the 1st of February to 30th of November (http://www.natron.net).
Trophy hunting is a business controlled through the Namibian Tourism Board. A trophy-hunting operator is referred to as a person who is doing business through giving a service or supplies a facility to a tourist for the purpose of hunting game for their trophy (http://www.namibia-hunting-safaris.com).
Trophy-hunting operators can be classified into three different categories. There is the Game or Hunting Ranch which is a business operating full time. The main purpose of the operation is the stocking and breeding of game animals aiming for trophy hunting and/or resale. Another category are the Commercial Livestock Farms were game coexists with the domesticated animals. Roaming game frequently ends up on these farms and then also hunted. And then there are the Professional Hunters who hold a licence, who have an arrangement and the allowance enabling them to hunt on a specific concession area, the land of another person and also a particular game species (http://www.namibia-hunting-safaris.com). All game species that can be trophy hunted in Namibia are listed in the appendices (See Appendix 2.1).
According to Novelli (2005) trophy hunting plays an important role in the Namibian tourism business. It provides financial advantages by producing revenue, it generates precious foreign exchange and it creates employment.
It furthermore offers inducement for the conservation of wildlife. The significance of game hunting and the farming of game have heightened the consciousness of conservation. Ecological conservation is deeply rooted in the Namibian constitution. Namibia belongs to the few countries on the globe that has adopted this aspect Novelli (2005). Namibia is also one of the least populated countries in the world thus providing one of the most unique and untouched wilderness regions for hunting safaris worldwide (Huntinamibia, 2009). The main hunting clients visiting Namibia are from the Germany or the USA (See Appendix 2.2).
Trophy hunting is practised on private and on public land. Namibia is made up of 43% commercial lands which are privately owned farms. Then there is 40% of communal land which is owned by the government. The remaining 17% of the land is state land. Novelli (2005: 173) furthermore states:
Although communal areas belong to the state, recent legislation and policy allows the transfer of property rights, for management and use of wildlife and other natural resources, to communities.
In order to manage these natural resources in sustainable manner conservancies were developed.
Conse rvanci es in Namibia
A conservancy can be defined as ‘a group of officials who control the use of a port, a river, an area of land, etc.’ (http://www.cornelsen.de). Two categories of conservancies exist in Namibia. These are commercial and communal conservancies. Novelli (2005) states that, commercial conservancies are made up of assemblage of commercial farms that have the same ideas and objectives towards an integrated ecological management. In comparison to communal conservancies the wildlife does not have the possibility to roam free over a very large area of land. This is due to the fact that commercial farms are mostly fenced in.
Communal conservancies are operated on public territory by rural societies. They get the support from the government. These are the areas were the biggest trophies are taken by hunters (Novelli, 2005). Mendelsohn (2007: 11) notes that:
Conservancies on communal land are areas in which rural communities gain rights to use, manage and profit from a consumptive and nonconsumptive usage of wildlife within defined boundaries. By forming a conservancy, local communities are able to supplement their current sources of income and land usage by utilizing the wildlife and the tourism sector in sustainable manner. Conservancies are self-selecting social units or communities of people that choose to work together and become registered with MET.
Furthermore Mendelsohn (2007) says that the benefits of conservancies are that they provide a steady economic income for rural areas that would otherwise not benefit from the wildlife on their land. The utilisation of wildlife through trophy hunting accounted for an income of N$7.2 million in 2007. Non-financial advantages are the game meat which is provided through trophy and personal utilized hunting. The Minister of Environment and Tourism (Nandi-Ndaitwah, 2009 cited in Huntinambia, 2009:3) comments that:
Namibia’s conservancy movement is considered as the global benchmark in sustainable, community-based natural resource management. It is a clear demonstration of the strong linkages between effective conservation and well-managed trophy hunting and other forms of wildlife utilisation.
There has been a steep increase in registered communal conservancies (See Appendix 2.3).
Furthermore it can be said that wildlife that once posed a threat to rural communities has now become a form of income. Rural communities protect and live in symbiosis with the wildlife for their own advantage. Trophy hunting is a management performance that has developed into an established method for the elimination of idle game and generating revenue for the community (See Appendix 2.4).
Conservanci es Association of Namibia
The Conservancies Association of Namibia (CANAM) was founded in 1996 by with the help of MET, Mr. Hanekom and others. CANAM stands for all conservancies in Namibia and it has eight main objectives four of which are:
- To stand for all conservancies that been correctly recognized in Namibia and take over the role conservancy coordination.
- To assist and manage projects and research regarding the management of natural resources.
- To assist and organize growth of strategies in marketing and conservancies.
- To develop, control and protect the worth of the overall environment. Source: (http://www.canam.iway. na)
The author believes that CANAM plays a vital part in the communication between the various conservancies and therefore is very important in the context of trophy hunting.
RELEVANCE OF TROPHY HUNTING IN NAMIBIAN TOURISM
Trophy Hunting and Social Aspects
Trophy hunting was regarded to be a niche segment of the Namibian tourism that was considered to be a business owned and managed by a selective few. Since the implementation of empowerment of rural communities through conservancies this has changed. The conservancy strategy involving commercial as well as communal lands is becoming an increasingly important aspect of this sector (Kraft, 2003, Louis, 2003, Matthaei, 2001, Meier, 2003 cited in Novelli, 2005: 177).
Trophy hunting is responsible for job creation in rural areas especially for Namibians who are disadvantaged. Thus Opportunities are created for drivers, cleaners, skinners, trackers, cooks, etc. (Morris, 2001 cited in Novelli, 2005: 178). The author of this study agrees and finds that it becomes apparent that trophy hunting is an incentive for local Namibians to utilise their skills and improve their life style. Moreover (Meier, 2003 cited in Novelli, 2005: 178) remarks that:
Education is also being promoted at various levels, from the simple learning of English to communicate with the visitors to the more specific training for hunting guides and taxidermists.
The author finds the promotion of education very positive as Namibia is a young and developing nation were knowledge can mean the difference between destroying or protecting the unique wildlife it has to offer.
According to (Jones and Murphree, 2001, cited in Novelli, 2005: 178) in a stage of ‘Intra-communal institutional development’ a significant enhancement is the growing consciousness regarding the worth of game by rural communities. Communities embarked on looking at wildlife as a form of income. They have realised that they can sustainably utilise this natural resource through non-consumptive or consumptive forms of tourism.
The author believes that this newly developed awareness which was gained in a great extent because of trophy hunting activities can be the building block for a much wider reaching social responsibility.
Economic Arguments of Trophy Hunting
According to Metzger (2009) the president of NAPHA (Namibian Professional Hunting Association) trophy hunting generates 14% of the entire tourism input to the GDP (Gross Domestic Product) in Namibia. This is the sector with the largest contribution. It becomes apparent that the niche market of trophy hunting has its importance in the tourism industry of Namibia. It generates revenue for the country and is therefore also important as an economic factor.
Furthermore (Ashely and Barnes, 1996 cited in Novelli, 2005) gathered information from a variety of tourism studies and compiled a rough estimate for the national income which trophy hunting generates. In 1996 this accumulated to 20 million Namibian dollars (2.9 million US dollars).
In a study conducted by (Humavindu and Barnes, 2003 cited in Novelli, 2005) the financial significance of trophy hunting in the year 2000 was assessed. They found out that the gross output, in combination with all financial activities within the trophy hunting sector, summed up to 134 million Namibian dollars (19.6 million US dollars). There of 63 million Namibian dollars (9.2 million US dollars) in additional gross value. It is obvious that there is distinct increase in revenue generated in comparison to the figure of 1996. It was furthermore assessed that the Namibian tourism industry accounts for 2.3% of the total Namibian economy. According to estimation within this study trophy hunting comprises for 18% of the financial worth within the wildlife orientated section of the Namibian tourism business.
Also (Erb, 2003 cited in Novelli, 2005: 175) ‘estimates the trophy hunting income for the 2001 season at N$ 120 million (US$17.5 million). If the estimated direct trophy hunting related income is added (comprising 70% of N$120 million), the total becomes N$204 million (US$29.8 million) in gross output, an increase of 52%’. Moreover it can be said that the revenue generated in 1999 by trophy hunting augmented from N$448,486 to N$7,204,557 in 2007, according to the MET statistical report (2006&2007) (See Appendix 2.5).
It becomes apparent that the revenue generated by trophy hunting in Namibia is increasing. Economic aspects are not the only features which are of importance when considering a holistic approach towards trophy hunting. The ecological facets also have to be considered.
Trophy Hunting and the Environment
According to Emerton (2001: 208) ‘communities must benefit from wildlife if they are to be willing and able to conserve it’. Consumptive utilisation of wildlife in comparison to non-consumptive tourism is the fewer favoured form of tourism in the public sector as it gives rise to disagreeing argumentations and negotiations. When referring to Namibia, Noveli (2005: 178) states that ‘some of the consumptive tourism operations are planned and managed in a rather more ethical manner than the non consumptive ones.’ This statement is based on Novelis own experience who has visited and made trips throughout the northern and central Namibia. The author of this dissertation strongly agrees with this statement as he himself is Namibian and he experienced and had the opportunity to investigate non-consumptive forms of tourism (i.e. photo safaris and watching wildlife in the Etosha National Park) and consumptive forms of tourism such as (trophy hunting in the Dordabis Conservancy).
Environmentalists argue that the practise of trophy hunting is affecting the diversity of the gene pool of the largest and biggest bulls. They are concerned that only the fittest individuals of a certain species are hunted and that this would have a negative effect on their ability to reproduce effectively. Statistics provide evidence that animal numbers are increasing and that there is no negative impact on the populations of wildlife (Novelli 2005).The author agrees with this matter, as he himself grew up on a hunting and guest farm within the Dordabis Conservancy. Through personal experience he can say that the number of antelopes and carnivores such a leopard and cheetah have increased in recent years.