Trophy hunters spent an estimated 70 million dollars on 40,000 hunts in South Africa in 2013, with the majority of them conducted by Americans, according to the Professional Hunters’ Association of South Africa. 

Now the group, which represents hunters and guides in Africa’s main markets for trophy hunting has distanced itself from the practice of so-called “captive-bred lion-hunting.”

The practice involves breeding lions that are half-tame and held in confined spaces for the purposes of hunting. A majority of the trophy hunting group’s members said they preferred to “distance” themselves from the industry until breeders “could prove the conservation value,” according to a story by News24Wire.

The vast majority of the 800 lions hunted in 2013 were bred and hunted in this way. The practice of hunting African lions was brought into focus earlier this year with the killing of famed Cecil the lion and the documentary Blood Lions.

Attention was also recently brought toward African elephants with HBO Real Sports putting out a recent report, Arnold Schwarzenegger recorded a public service address and National Geographic channel has a piece on poaching in Zimbabwe.

Photo credit: Dreamstime