Predator breeders win 'canned lion' appeal
Bloemfontein - The SA Predator Breeders' Association on Monday partly won a Supreme Court of Appeal case regarding the trophy hunting of captive lions - commonly called "canned hunting".
The SCA held the minister of environmental affairs at the time did not take a "rational decision" when he determined that captive-bred lions had to fend for themselves in an extensive wildlife system for 24 month before they could be hunted.
In the high court the predator breeders challenged the inclusion of lions as a listed large predator in the threatened or protected species regulations and the 24-month period in which captive-bred lions had to fend for themselves before they could be hunted.
The SCA said there was no doubt the minister was entitled to take into account "strong opposition" and "revulsion" in public opinion to the hunting of captive lions. Nevertheless, his 24-month decision should have been based on a rational foundation.
"The evidence proves that he did not do so."
The judgment also held that on the premise upon which the application and the appeal were argued, the association had achieved substantial success.
Relief sought by the predator breeders on other aspects of the regulations in their appeal were refused.
Department spokesperson Roopa Singh said they received the judgment and were in the process of studying it and discussing the matter internally before deciding on how to proceed.