Target: Bridget Fahey, Chief of the Division of Conservation and Classification, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Goal: Add Southern African leopards to the Endangered Species List.
After receiving a petition from four animal rights organizations, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is considering adding all Southern African leopards to the Endangered Species List. Currently, leopards in Northern Africa and Asia are considered endangered, but Sub-Saharan species are only listed as threatened, which does not give them as much protection. According to the Humane Society, Sub-Saharan leopard populations have declined 30 percent in the past 25 years, and they have lost 48 to 67 percent of their natural habitat. While commercial hunting of Sub-Saharan leopards is prohibited, trophy hunting is allowed. Between 2005 and 2014, at least 10,000 leopards were killed by trophy hunters.
The U.S. is the world’s top importer of trophy hunted leopard parts, taking in 45 percent of all leopards killed. The Fish and Wildlife Service says that it wants to decrease the amount of trophy hunted leopards being imported into the U.S., but the number has still remained over 300 every year since 1999.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s decision to review the Southern African leopards’ status is a step in the right direction, but there is still a chance that the leopards may not be listed as endangered. Sign this petition to show your support for adding all Sub-Saharan leopards to the Endangered Species List.
Dear Ms. Fahey,
All species of Southern African leopards should be added to the U.S.’s Endangered Species List. These animals are being trophy hunted into extinction – between 2005 and 2015, at least 10,000 leopards were killed by trophy hunters. The U.S. is the largest importer of these hunted animals, taking in over 300 leopards each year. Because of this, if your agency lists Sub-Saharan leopards as endangered, it could help greatly decrease the amount of leopards that are trophy hunted.
The Sub-Saharan leopard population has been on a severe decline due to hunting and habitat loss. If something is not done, these leopards could disappear entirely. To ensure the survival of the Sub-Saharan leopards, please add all Southern African leopards to the Endangered Species List.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Danh