For Immediate Release:
August 20, 2021
Megan Wiltsie 202-483-7382
Atlanta – Following an international outcry over the gunning down of another beloved lion in Zimbabwe by an American trophy hunter, PETA plans to place ads near the headquarters of UPS, calling on the company to stop shipping animals’ heads and other body parts home to hunters, a practice that props up the trophy hunting industry and helps perverted hunters boast about their kills.
Philip Smith, a physical therapist from Missouri, is said to have paid $30,000 to kill the lion, known as Mopane—who, like Cecil the lion, was wounded and languished in severe pain for a day. Mopane had presided over two prides since his companion, Sidhule, was killed by another wretched trophy hunter in 2019. Smith and his guides reportedly used an elephant carcass to lure unsuspecting Mopane out of Hwange National Park, where hunting is illegal, and into the neighboring Antoinette game farm—evidently the same place where Cecil was killed by American dentist Walter Palmer in 2015. Smith reportedly shot Mopane with an arrow but was such a bad shot that he mortally wounded him, then failed to track him effectively, if at all, to finish him off quickly.
“A lion like Mopane is a leader, a father, and a beloved member of his community, but to a trophy hunter, he’s nothing but a head to display on the den wall back home,” says PETA President Ingrid Newkirk. “PETA is calling on UPS to stop enabling these perverted pleasure killers by shipping animals’ remains home to them.”
PETA notes that hunters kill millions of animals every year and have contributed to the extinction of species all over the world, including the Tasmanian tiger and the great auk. Unlike natural predators, who kill primarily sick and weak individuals, trophy hunters specifically seek out large, healthy animals who are needed to keep populations strong.
After Palmer killed Cecil, more than 40 airlines agreed to stop transporting wildlife trophies—and nearly 150,000 PETA supporters have called on UPS to follow suit.
PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment or abuse in any other way”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit PETA.org or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.