Rhino hunting license causes controversy

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The auction, in Dallas, United States, of a rhino hunting license in Namibia is controversial. This is because the permit authorizes the hunter to kill a black rhino, a species protected in Namibia.
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“A license to hunt a black rhino in Namibia was auctioned for $ 350,000 on Saturday January 11 in Dallas, United States. The proceeds of the sale must finance the protection of endangered animal species, but animal rights associations consider the operation immoral. "
Source: Radio-Canada
“There are only 20,000 black rhinos and 5,000 white rhinos left in the wild on the African continent. However, in recent years, poaching of a new, efficient and highly organized kind has fueled the horn trafficking, which is highly prized by Asians. "
Source: RFI
The following activities will provide a better understanding of the situation of African rhinos.


At the end of the activities, the student will be able to:
- Identify an animal by observing only a few parts of its body;
- Know general information about rhinos;
- Read a press article relating the sale of a rhino hunting license and answer comprehension questions;
- Write a text in which he expresses his opinion concerning this event;
- Search for information on rhino horn trafficking and summarize the information found in an informative text.

Suggested Activities

ACTIVITY 1: The rhino

First, have students identify what it is in the following picture:
Uncover only certain parts of the picture to make the students guess. If you are using an interactive whiteboard, use the feature to hide the screen such as the "Spot" tool of the ActivInspire tebeware.

Source: The world in pictures
Click on the image to enlarge.

You can give the following clues to students:
- It's an animal.
- This animal is among the oldest mammals on the planet.
- It is herbivorous.
- He lives in Africa, but also in Asia.
- This species is threatened with extinction.
- This animal is hunted, among other things, for its horn.
Then complete the following activity as a whole class. You can have students read the text before answering the questions, or you can use it as a correction.

Click on an image to enlarge.
Download the source file in ActivInspire format (.flipchart)
Download the source file in SMART Notebook (.notebook) format
Download the file in PDF format (.pdf)
No BIT? Download the SMART Notebook version and open it using
of the online application SMART Notebook Express.


ACTIVITY 2: A permit to kill a protected species at auction

Now tell the students that a hunting license has just been auctioned off to a hunter allowing him to kill a black rhino in Namibia. What do the students think of this auction? Isn't rhino hunting banned? Yet the rhinoceros is a protected species since it is endangered!
Then invite students to read the following article to understand why this sale took place.
350,000 $ to hunt rhinos in Namibia
Radio-Canada article, Sunday January 12, 2014.
Ask students the following questions to check their understanding of the text:
- Will the sale of the permit be used to finance only the protection of rhinos?
- Are citizens in Namibia protesting against the sale of this permit?
- Has the selling price of the permit been exceeded?
- Does the hunting license allow you to kill any rhino in Namibia?
- Are poachers very active in Namibia?
At the end of the activity, invite the students to write a short paragraph in which they express their opinion on this Dallas Safari Club practice.

For further

Invite students to research literature on trafficking in rhino horns. Invite them to read a few articles on the subject in order to fully understand the problem. They can also consult library resources. Finally, ask them to summarize the topic by composing an informative journalistic text.

More about the magazine

United States: Namibian rhino hunting is controversial
RFI article of January 12, 2014
Endangered species - The White Rhinoceros
TV5 Monde report
Wikipedia article
Protecting endangered species: the endangered rhinoceros
Geopolis article, December 28, 2013
From Africa to Asia, rhino horn trafficking is gaining ground
National Geographic article, July 4, 2013
Wildlife trade
WWF Annual Report 2013

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Designed to fill short periods or inspire larger projects, the activities offered in the SCOOP! allow the teacher to approach the subject matter in the program in addition to developing the information literacy and digital skills of the students.

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