Oxford University Conservation Biologist Expelled from Reception
The CIC came to learn that the Campaign to Ban Trophy Hunting organised a House of Commons (HoC) Reception on 22 January, 2020, as a further means of advancing their cause in the run up to the deadline for the United Kingdom (UK) consultation on the import and export of hunting trophies.
The UK consultation and call for evidence, which are being conducted by the UK’s Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), are looking to examine the facts and opinions associated with the movement of trophies in and out of the country.
While the event was organised and attended specifically by those opposed to the practice of trophy hunting, DEFRA’s Minister of State, the Rt Hon Zac Goldsmith, decided to make an appearance as a speaker.
While Zac Goldsmith is well known for his views against trophy hunting, some have suggested that DEFRA’s Minister of State should remain neutral during the period of this consultation, which is intended to be an unbiased review the UK’s stance on the import and export of hunting trophies.
In another shocking event, Dr. Amy Dickman, conservation biologist at the University of Oxford, and a member of the Sustainable Use and Livelihoods Specialist Group (SULi) of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) was expelled from the event by founder of the Campaign to Ban Trophy Hunting, Eduardo Goncalves.
Dr. Dickman is known for her work as the Kaplan Senior Research Fellow in Wild Cat Conservation, Wildlife Conservation Research Unit (WildCRU) at the Department of Zoology and Pembroke College.
While she was only intending to attend the event as an observer, Dr. Dickman was still expelled specifically for her apparent views in support of trophy hunting. This despite having requested an invitation from Eduardo Goncalves prior to the reception, to which she did not receive any reply.
It must be noted that some of those in attendance were against the decision to expel the Oxford researcher.
As the hosts of the event, the Campaign to Ban Trophy Hunting had the right to ask those without an invitation to leave. However, this type of attitude can only be seen a bad for wildlife conservation.
The International Council for Game and Wildlife Conservation strongly believes that real progress can only be made by hearing the opinions of all stakeholders and parties on trophy hunting, even those that hold views that directly oppose our own.
As an example, at the most recent General Assembly in Windhoek, Namibia, the CIC reached out to representatives from all angles of the debate on trophy hunting, including those completely opposed to it.