PHASA Press Release


Wednesday, 13 November 2013 08:31




Polokwane, 13 November 2013 – The economic cost of rhino poached in South Africa between 2008 and 2013 is around R1.1 billion, says the Professional Hunting Association of South Africa (PHASA).

Speaking at the first ever Biodiversity Economy Indaba taking place in Polokwane, PHASA chief executive Adri Kitshoff says that this figure was based exclusively on the average species fee for rhino over the five year period and therefore the total economic loss to the country, had these rhinos been hunted legally, would be far more.

“The average price a rhino fetched during that time frame is R550 000 but this amount excludes the daily rates a foreign leisure hunter would have to pay a professional hunter, accommodation, taxidermy costs as well as many other travel and holiday expenses involved in coming to South Africa to hunt,” she says.

As a result of rhino poaching, some 400 000 hectares of game ranching land had been lost to wildlife conservation because of the risks of keeping rhino and expensive security measures needed to protect them.  “Poaching is proving to be a disincentive to own rhino, which is reversing a trend that started in the Sixties under the stewardship of Dr Ian Player and Operation Rhino. Thanks to this combination of private ownership of game and demand by big game hunters, rhino populations increased from a handful in a remote reserve in KwaZulu-Natal to some 32 000 today.”

The Biodiversity Economy Indaba was established to bring together stakeholders in the hunting, game farming and related industries, as well as the bioprospecting, natural product and biotrade sectors to consider and seek ways of maximising these industries’ contribution towards the fiscus.  Kitshoff said that local and foreign hunters contribute about R6.6 billion a year to the economy but that this figure is highly understated given the scarcity of up-to-date statistics.  “There is a study underway at the North West University to ascertain the exact number of foreign hunters who come to South Africa as well as the economic contribution of the industry as a whole.”

“We are very grateful to the Minister Edna Molewa for her continued recognition of hunting as a sustainable and responsible way of using the country’s abundant wildlife resources and its role as a highly effective conservation tool.  We look forward to working with her department as well as all other concerned stakeholders in improving and sustaining South Africa’s status as one of the world’s most bio-diverse countries,” she says.

For further information contact Adri Kitshoff, PHASA chief executive, on 083 650 0442.

Issued by du Plessis Associates on behalf of Professional Hunters' Association  of South Africa. 

dPA contact Frank du Plessis Tel: +27 11 728 4701,

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