Cecil’s Law—which would ban the importation, possession, sale or transportation of African leopards, lions, elephants, and black and white rhinos and their body parts in Connecticut—is making its way through the legislature, and we need our CT members to help move it forward out of the Environment Committee.
Please contact state Sen. Ted Kennedy, and ask him to support Cecil’s Law, SB No. 942. Kennedy is co-chair of the Environment Committee, and his support his crucial. Kennedy represents Branford, North Branford, Durham, Guilford, Killingworth and Madison.
Calling is most effective. Sen. Kennedy can be reached at 860-240-0455. You can also send his aide an email at email@example.com, or send a hand-written letter to Senator Kennedy, Legislative Office Building, Room 3200, Hartford, CT 06106-1591.
Cecil’s Law is named after the beloved African lion who was killed in July of 2015 by an American dentist for fun. We would like to highlight that we are NOT trying to criminalize people who legally possess ivory. Ivory and ivory products that are otherwise legal to possess, transport, import, and sell under federal law are not subject to the prohibitions contained in this bill.
The importance of Cecil's law is that it recognizes legal trophy hunting as one of the main reasons that Africa’s Big Five face extinction. Cecil’s Law sends a strong message to Connecticut, Washington and the rest of the country that trophy hunting needs to be stopped, as these endangered species are already fighting for their lives because of poaching and habitat loss.
Trophy hunters claim that without their money, African governments would have no money for conservation. But the newest data reveals that trophy hunting is economically useless. So if the reason for trophy hunting is “conservation,” but it is not contributing to conservation, it’s time for a ban.
Plain and simple, we as a society know better.
Friends of Animals has uncovered that 65 trophy hunting permits were issued to Connecticut residents from 2004-2015. All except for six were provided so people could hunt and kill leopards for their trophies; the others allowed CT residents to kill African elephants in Botswana, Tanzania and Zimbabwe.
While we pursue this legislative effort, we anticipate even more detailed information from an FOIA submitted by our Wildlife Law Program to see what portion of the 1,541 documented lion trophies that have come in through the only nearby port in New York over the last decade actually then went to CT residents.
On a more macro scale, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service reports that 1.2 million animals were legally killed by American hunters and sent to the U.S. as trophies over the last 15 years. Alarmingly, American tourists account for the majority of lions killed for sport in Africa. Between 2005 and 2014, trophies of 5,605 African lions were imported in the U.S., an average of 560 per year. There was a steady increase in imports from 2011 onward, with imports peaking at 736 lions imported in 2014.
Please help Connecticut’s legislature become the first in the nation to ban trophy hunting of the Africa Big 5 species by supporting Cecil's Law this session!