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Hunting critics slammed by associations

Associations say the west doesn't understand responsible hunting and its role in sustaining the environment.

Sabrina Corgatelli poses with her kill. Picture: Facebook

JOHANNESBURG - Local hunting associations have lashed out at critics of the industry saying they don't understand hunters' ethics when it comes to killing animals.

The shooting of Cecil the lion in Zimbabwe by American dentist Walter Palmer has sparked mixed reaction putting the spotlight on hunting regulations across the board.

Last week, authorities called on Palmer to be extradited to Zimbabwe following the court appearance of two men who assisted in poaching the lion.

Watch: Zim wants to extradite Cecil's killer

There has also been an increasing attack on individuals who have taken a liking to hunting and killing endangered animals.

This week, photos emerged on Facebook of yet another American, Sabrina Corgatelli, next to a giraffe and other animals she shot outside Phalaborwa last month.

'BLOWN OUT OF PROPORTION'

The Confederation of Hunting Associations says it's sad that only a few bad apples in the hunting industry are giving it a bad name.

Chairman Stephen Palos says the western world doesn't understand responsible hunting and its role in sustaining the environment.

"Social media is a wonderful thing for the world, but it's placed a lot of things in the public domain without the full context being there. I do think that hunters can be a lot more responsible with how they put it out there"

Palos says hunting is a gentleman's sport which is also teaching children from a young age the ethics of the industry.

"At least expose him to the choice of hunting, around the age of 10 or 12. The odds of bringing him back into it in his early 20's are slim, so you could land up losing the culture."

The Professional Hunters' Association's Hermann Meyeridricks says the incident of Cecil the lion has been blown out of proportion.

"It seems as if rational thought has been somewhat replaced by raw emotion in the moment"

Listen: Cecil the lion outshines Barack Obama

Meanwhile, the wildlife and environment society says legal hunters need to be held responsible and closely regulated.

Calls have been made for the country's hunting industry to be more closely regulated while others have defended it.

The wildlife and environment society's Chris Galliers says there are adequate laws in place to monitor the hunting industry but compliance must improve.

"To ensure that they do things according to best practice and what's best for conservation at the end of the day"

The professional hunters' association says there is a wrong perception about hunting, as it has nothing to do about being more superior.

Beside the continued controversy around his death, Cecil's brother Jericho who was presumed dead last week, has since adopted his cubs and has hooked up with a female lion called Ketty.

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