A British trophy hunter has defended his organised shoots of wild animals in southern Africa, incredibly claiming he and wealthy foreign clients are “conservationists”.
Carl Knight, 45, who was born in Epsom, Surrey, insists criticism of big game trophy hunters is unjustified.
Knight protests he is helping to sustain animals by killing them.
He contacted the Mirror after we revealed he could be the only known British-born hunter to have killed the so-called Big Five – lions, elephants , rhinos leopards and buffalos.
His business, Take Aim Safaris, organises legal hunting trips in South Africa, Namibia and Zimbabwe.
The Mirror is calling for a ban of the sick so-called sport and import of hunting trophies into Britain.
But Knight claimed: “In South Africa, hunting forms part of a hugely successful conservation story that revolves around hunting.
“It is the commercial farming of wild animals for the benefit of the community, the land and the land owners who all enjoy the numerous fruits from foreign and local hunters.
“The difference is the animals that are farmed for hunting (with the exception of lion) in South Africa roam free all their lives with no human intervention other than living in large fenced areas often many thousand hectares in size.”
The dad-of-two, whose family moved from the UK when he was a child, insisted the “post-prime” animals “live free until the one minute it takes for them to be killed by a paying hunter”.
Referring to the hunts he organises in Zimbabwe, Knight said villages are given a hunting quota from National Parks to compensate for damage caused by roving animals. Knight said he buys this quota, which provides food, medicine and water.
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