Bush meat banned in Ghana
Filed Under: World | Posted: 08/06/2007 at 9:13AM
Comments | Region: Ghana
The Wildlife Division of the Forestry Commission in Ghana has banned bush meat hunting in the country. This year’s embargo on bush hunting takes effect from August 1 and would last on December 1, 2007.
In a statement signed by the Wild Life Division, it said there should be no hunting of wild animals with the exception of grass-cutter. Backed by the Wildlife Conservation Regulations L.I 685 of 1971, this was to allow all wild animals such as the royal antelopes, bush pigs, duikers to breed during the period due to the growth of fresh vegetation.
The statement continues that these animals together with the areas they are found, form the very basis for eco-tourism and “we cannot continue to destroy them if tourism should become the number one foreign exchange earner in Ghana”.
The Division noted that the non-observance of the Close Season undermined the sustainability and existence of wildlife which could deprive Ghanaians of a valuable source of socio economic development.
The statement said the Wildlife Division does not support a complete ban on bush meat. “We believe that if the principle of the close season is well understood and observed in the way that no one kills a pregnant goat,sheep,cow or brooding hen but waits for the mother to wean off the young, there would be continues supply of bush meat” it said.
It was grass cutter that was exempted and according to the Division, a sturdy had shown that it was a prolific breeder and its inclusion could lead to over population with a possible negative impact on agricultural production.
The statement, however, reminded the public that hunting of grass-cutters during the period required a license to ensure that chemical and other dangerous means are not applied in hunting.
The statement urged the public not to patronize the sale of bush meat, dead, alive or smoked with the exception of grass-cutters to discourage hunting during the period.
The statement called on the public especially the police to arrest offenders by notifying the nearest office of the Division or the Forestry Commission.