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Monday, October 26, 2015


As a ZPHGA committee member, and with you not being a member, I do not believe you know just how much we are always doing that you are not privy to. (so many issues we are fighting continuously for the good of conservation throughout the country.) It is common knowledge that most of the unethical and illegal hunting practices are carried out by non-members, which unfortunately we cannot discipline accordingly as our association does not have that legislation. ) We do pass on information to the appropriate authorities where we can. The association does have a membership code of conduct and we do and will deal properly with perpetrators.

We work very closely with powerful organisations such as various embassies, Dallas Safari Club, SCI, Conservation Force, Osprey Filming Company etc. (to name just a few) to help stop the abuse of our wild life.

Unfortunately there are too many people like you that refuse to join us which is detrimental to fighting the cause we all believe in. Sadly our lack of funding (every membership helps) does not enable us to do as much as we would like and we are always looking for funding to help achieve this.

We have (for years) been trying to work more closely together with Parks, SOAZ, the photographic contingent etc. to unite and fight for the right cause. How sad that so many folks put us in the same boat as poachers and the unethical people, which results in the wildlife itself suffering even more. Worse still, many of these critics never do anything for conservation.


Having said all the above I do agree, there are major issues that the hunting fraternity needs to sort and I can assure you we are working hard on this. Please send me a list of the rogue elements you refer to so we can take this up (w/o hard evidence it is very difficult for us otherwise).


FYI information – ZPHGA association proposed last year to all the photographic folks to identify `iconic` animals throughout the country (such as big elephant bulls) to be collared etc. which will enable protection for such. I will guarantee none of these photographic people will do anything about it, instead they will cause irreparable damage for the country and our wildlife via social media, as hunters themselves also do.) I will never stick up for any unethical or illegal hunting (and condemn them more than most) but a PH/Operator must not be condemned for shooting a huge tusker when it’s all ethical and legal.


Regards Pete


From: Norman Monks []
Sent: Saturday, October 17, 2015 8:18 AM
To: 'Mark Brightman'; 'Mike Bromwich'; 'Alistair & Di Hull'; 'Andy & Nicky Pugh'; 'Charles & Jane Mackie'; 'Chris Packenham'; 'Colin Saunders'; 'Cynthia Osborne'; 'Dave Russell'; 'Derek Adams'; 'Derek Lenton'; 'Gordon & Debby Puttrill'; 'Graham Hall'; 'Ian & Carol van Heerden'; 'John and Nikki Stevens'; 'John English';; 'John Smith-Wright'; 'Ken & Sue Worsley'; 'Kevin & Fay Dunham'; 'Mark Butcher'; 'Mike La Grange'; 'Odette'; 'Pete Fick'; 'Rich & Liz Aylward'; 'Richard Peek'; 'Rob & Paddy Francis'; 'Roger Parry'; 'Rowan Martin'; 'Russell Tayllor'; 'Steve & Wendy Edwards'; 'Terry & Pan Fenn'; 'Tim & Jill Paulet'; 'Tony & Cynthia Osborne'; 'Vernon and Lynne Booth'; 'Blondie & Katrina Leatham'
Subject: RE: Public Media and Facebook


Hi Mark,

Thanks for your submission here and although it as addressed specifically to Mike, it was also sent on to all of us so I hope that you do not mind me responding. 


Much of what you say is correct and obviously as an ex Parks person and as a passionate conservationist I have to agree with you.  However maybe we are missing the point here.  We can sit and decry hunters, their ethics and their behavior until the last tree has fallen and been burned and will have achieved nothing apart from making ourselves feel self-righteous. 


The point is that there are many areas in Zimbabwe that will not and cannot be set aside for photographic tourism and the only option is hunting.  If we take that away, those areas will go to the land hungry around the Protected Areas.  The Chirisa scenario was a shock and an eye opener to me and I wish that I could take you and others on an aerial journey to see what is happening on the ground.  Much of what I saw remains confidential but the stark reality is that if that area is not utilized, it WILL be given over to the destructive purposes of communal farming.


Yes there are hunters who have become the antithesis of all that we hold dear and believe in.  However with them in the Safari Area, there will still be wildlife and there will still be wilderness,  Take them out because we feel so self-righteous, and we will lose that wilderness and the wildlife.  Let’s rather work slowly to re-educate both parks and unethical hunters of proper and ethical ways of utilizing the wildlife resource instead of decrying them and hoping that things will improve.  They will not.


One of the biggest mistakes that parks has made is to reduce the lease period for an operator.  If an operator has a 20 year lease the tendency will be to look after the wildlife and the environment for that period.  Give that same operator a five year lease and he will milk the area to recoup setting up camp, vehicles and so on.


I hope that this makes sense Mark.  Bottom line is to accept that hunting has a place in certain marginal areas and let’s work together to bring an ethical and responsible way to utilize the wildlife and conserve the environment.


Best wishes



From: Mark Brightman []
Sent: Friday, October 16, 2015 8:03 PM
To: 'Mike Bromwich'; 'Alistair & Di Hull'; 'Andy & Nicky Pugh'; 'Charles & Jane Mackie'; 'Chris Packenham'; 'Colin Saunders'; 'Cynthia Osborne'; 'Dave Russell'; 'Derek Adams'; 'Derek Lenton'; 'Gordon & Debby Puttrill'; 'Graham Hall'; 'Ian & Carol van Heerden'; 'John and Nikki Stevens'; 'John English';; 'John Smith-Wright'; 'Ken & Sue Worsley'; 'Kevin & Fay Dunham'; 'Mark Butcher'; 'Mike La Grange'; 'Norman & Nyasha Monks'; 'Odette'; 'Pete Fick'; 'Rich & Liz Aylward'; 'Richard Peek'; 'Rob & Paddy Francis'; 'Roger Parry'; 'Rowan Martin'; 'Russell Tayllor'; 'Steve & Wendy Edwards'; 'Terry & Pan Fenn'; 'Tim & Jill Paulet'; 'Tony & Cynthia Osborne'; 'Vernon and Lynne Booth'; 'Blondie & Katrina Leatham'
Subject: RE: Public Media and Facebook


Hello Mike


The issue here is not about hunting - everyone knows just how valuable it is (myself included) as a conservation tool, but run properly and sustainably! My Parks years were spent initially under Willem de Beer who taught many of us Cadet Rangers how to hunt, and how to hunt properly and ethically. He was the first to recognise the value of these exceptional trophies and went out of his way to prevent them from being shot by hunters - ‘Chipatani Joe’ is a prime example.


I was placed in charge of Matetsi (my last station), where even then I started to see the rot setting in - unauthorised quotas; government ‘VIP’ hunts; animals shot which were not even on quota! As a result, I took the very unpopular decision to make it mandatory for scouts to accompany all hunts, whereas before operators were given a huge burden of responsibility in trust by the Department, as you know. Astoundingly (but not unexpectedly, the wounding rate suddenly soared by 75%!) This gives some indication of just what was being shot and wounded and not declared! This decision was over-ruled when I received a hand written note (not even an official letter) from the Director, delivered in person by a very smug political appointee who had been ‘given’ one of the concession areas. I was totally disgusted, and this is one of the factors which led to my resignation.


Rhodesia and now Zimbabwe had a very proud record of hunting, with world class trophies being sustainably harvested. The problem is the very tarnished image which has now come about by greed and corruption throughout this country - not only in Parks. And how can one turn a blind eye to the notorious Parks ‘ration hunts’ for example? This was and still is a total disgrace. Hunting has become a ‘big bucks’ business - plain and simple. It is no longer the honourable sport it once was. Many (but NOT all - let me be very clear) PHs of today have no morals, no ethics and should really not be called ‘hunters’ but ‘collectors’ - shooting at night with a spotlight, shooting from a vehicle, shooting females carrying advanced foetuses, and so on. Believe you me - I have seen this up close and personal, so quite naturally has left a very bitter taste in my mouth. I could also go on about ‘canned’ hunting, but I won’t!


All this is brought to the attention of the Professional Hunters and Guides Association and NOTHING is done to bring those rogue elements to book. This is one reason I ceased renewing my subs as I could no longer see any reason for being part of it.


How are quotas established now? They are simply driven by commercial reasons and motives. The worst thing that could have happened is for the Department (now Authority) to have become a self-income generating business. Even on the non-consumptive side, look at how many new ‘lodges’ and ‘camps’ have been opened up in former pristine wilderness areas.


So Mike, the hunting industry needs to clean up its image a whole lot. The industry must also recognise that the world is a very different place from 30 - 40 years ago, and the anti-hunters/bunny huggers are a growing percentage of the world’s population and will simply not go away by simply being brushed aside. Photos posted on the internet showing their so-called prowess is also not the way to gain any respect either. These go viral, as you have rightly pointed out.


The capture and removal of elephant calves from their herds is another hugely damaging exercise for Zimbabwe’s reputation. Yes, sure, it was done in the past, but we have come a long way in understanding the social order of elephant and their behaviour since then. I would far rather see these animals euthanized than be live exported to a place like China - look at what they are doing in terms of the destruction of many of the world’s wildlife!


So I cannot remain quiet and turn a blind eye where I see a need, in the absence of any action being taken against these travesties. My few cents worth.





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