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When it comes to what an airline will and won’t carry on their airplanes they have pretty much free reign to dictate the rules. The TSA and FAA both have a general set of rules for what can be carried on US flagged passenger (and even dedicated cargo) aircraft, but beyond those general guidelines the individual airlines are in charge. Even if an airline thinks the cargo is OK, the captain of that specific flight can still “line item veto” any passenger or parcel being loaded on their aircraft for any reason. The wonders of § 91.3. Anyway, in the wake of the Cecil the Lion issue Delta Air Lines and United Airlines has decided to ban the shipment of certain hunting trophies, and is examining their policies on other species as well . . .

From Delta’s website:

Effective immediately, Delta will officially ban shipment of all lion, leopard, elephant, rhinoceros and buffalo trophies worldwide as freight.  Prior to this ban, Delta’s strict acceptance policy called for absolute compliance with all government regulations regarding protected species. Delta will also review acceptance policies of other hunting trophies with appropriate government agencies and other organizations supporting legal shipments.

United followed suit shortly thereafter. And American got in on the game with a tweet last night.

The problem is that this is pretty much a blatant PR stunt. Lions, leopards, elephants, rhinos, and buffalo are legally hunted worldwide and the hunting industry does more to benefit wildlife conservation and protect endangered species than all the bake sales in Portland, Oregon combined. By prohibiting the law abiding hunters from bringing their legally procured trophies back to the States these airlines will be directly responsible for lost revenue for wildlife reserves and less funding for wildlife conservation.

In other words, their single PR stunt will do more to harm wildlife in Africa than all the dentists in the United States combined.

Delta is the largest airlines in the world when it comes to passengers carried, but it doesn’t even crack the top 10 when it comes to cargo. United and American are similarly #4 and #5 for passengers but way low on the cargo list. In fact, none of the three actually have a dedicated cargo fleet — they simply fill the empty space on their passenger flights with cargo. As such the actual impact that this new policy will have on the importation of hunting trophies will probably be negligible at best, but there’s a chance that this might catch on with the dedicated freight fleets like FedEx and UPS.

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    • just toss the noisy ones you don’t like into the arena with the lions, the rest will even cheer!

  1. Its always funny how quickly one incident leads to outrage that has widespread results in policy changes. One unethical act has unleashed a wave of hysteria so shrill that to placate the voices all sorts of institutions have to give a nod to caring. And once again our enemies across the sea have plenty of time to grow stronger because their societies do not have these distractions.

  2. Say it with me, “The freaks come out at night. . .The freaks come out at night”.

    M O U N T A I N ‘O C R A Z Y S H _ T B E F O R E T H E E L E C T I O N

    Beware the “next crazy thing” from OBama, Shumer(s), Hillary, ACRONYM Media, the EPA, the ATF, the IRS, the FCC, the UN, the evil blue house of (D).

    All of them have to get their agenda in before they get crushed in the next election or civil war.

  3. I liked the title track “Escape” much better, though both are better than “Friends”.

  4. Having been a passenger on both Delta and American, I can state without reservation that the trophies would be much better off utilizing a different airline. As would the passengers.

    After being shot and skinned, the animals then have to suffer the indignity of being transported in conditions that would rival a slave ship in 1800. And that’s if the poor dead things travel in First Class.

  5. lol PC idiocy at its finest.

    And they’ll quietly dump this thing when the heat dies down. Though, they probably will get a rate hike on “special cargo” outta the deal.

  6. Well, since their not transporting “Elephants” anymore, I guess that means my mother in law will just have to stay home, or take the train!

  7. This is what makes the US a corporatist, aka fascist, aka social democratic, country, rather than a socialist one. Despite the wishes of the left. “Regulate” the “market” until there are only a few, big players left in each sector, then impose burdens so high new entrants are effectively prohibited. Then apply pressure at those finite few points, and the effect is no different than if the dictats came directly from the center. Just another layer of easily (at least by those less susceptible to indoctrination) unveiled obfuscation.

    Upside is, all fascist societies are unstable, as they inevitably promote the worst of the worst, who will never be satisfied until they concentrate power to the point where there whole top heavy inverted pyramid unravels from being weakened by infighting. As such, America, too, will get to enjoy it’s Mogadishu moment; when people finally wake the heck up en masse, and decide to just throw the rabble out with no backpedaling nor mealy mouthed excuses. Unfortunately probably not in our lifetime, but at least we can rejoice for our children and/or grandchildren.

  8. I’ve already sent in a complaint.
    I’ve got some taxidermy being finished in South Africa.
    I’ll be using a ship this time. It may take a lot longer but it’s about half the cost.
    Idiots. Caving in to the peta crowd who do nothing to conserve wildlife but paint signs and protest.

  9. “Delta airlines announced that they will no longer accept hunting trophies to sit in the cargo holds of their planes, on the tarmac, for hours, while they f’ around trying to patch the jet up enough to get off the ground.”

  10. I’m sure the poor people of Zimbabwe are profoundly cheered by this news.

    Thank God the west has suddenly become so interested in our plight! Wait, you mean this is all about some dumb lion? Oh… Ok… never mind.

  11. While I see it as only a pathetic “we care” PR move… I still support their right to decide what to or what not to ship. Just like Wally-World and the rebel flag. Their store, their rules, fine by me.

    I show support or lack thereof with my wallet as much as possible.

  12. You get better flights and service to Southern Africa on South African Airways and British Airway. You can always route through Dubai for a fun action filled layover if you fly Emirates. Better yet, have the taxidermy done on South Africa and ship it home later via a freight handler. What’s another $1k when you’re paying $40k for a trophy fee and $15k for guide and lodging services?

  13. Perhaps an enterprising group can set up some Texas property to resemble a African big game hunt at a fraction of the cost. No passport. No visa. No shady bush guides. Now that would be ‘Merican.

  14. I’m against the banning of all legally, responsibly, and ethically taken trophies from flights, but I have to ask why the buffalo? The African buffalo is not threatened at all and is listed as Least Concern, the category for the most abundant animals, on the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List. What about the wording of the ban? Is it specifically apply only to the African game species relevant in the context of the other listen animals, the African buffalo? Can I travel with a domestic water buffalo hide? What about non-buffalo species called “buffalo”, like American bison and wisents? “Buffalo” includes abundant and domesticated species.

  15. We should have the freedom to kill what we want, when we want, how we want. Freedom in everything, or there is no freedom.

  16. Just, wow. Shamelessly tripping over themselves as they pander to the emotional baggage handlers union.

  17. Why wouldn’t you just use an international freight carrier like DHL in the first place?

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