BUSINESS

After Cecil The Lion's Death, Airlines Refuse To Ship Exotic Hunting Trophies

Delta, American and United are leading the charge.

Airlines this week began refusing to ship exotic animal-hunting trophies amid global revulsion to the killing of Cecil the lion.

Delta led the charge on Monday, announcing a ban on the freight shipment of all lion, leopard, elephant, rhinoceros and buffalo trophies worldwide. American Airlines soon followed suit, refusing to transport the same list of creatures.

The moves come in response to an international brouhaha over the death of a Zimbabwean lion, allegedly lured out of a national park -- where he was a widely loved attraction -- and slaughtered by Walter Palmer, a Minnesota dentist and hunter. Widely circulated images of Palmer standing behind the slain animal sparked outrage, prompting calls to extradite him to Zimbabwe to face potential charges. U.S. senators even drafted a bill, the Conserving Ecosystems by Ceasing the Importation of Large (CECIL) Animal Trophies Act, to further restrict the import of exotic kills.

Palmer's fate remains unclear. But, in the meantime, a growing number of airlines are taking a stand.

Here is a running list of airlines refusing to transport certain big-game trophies:

  • 1 American Airlines
    The airline wrote on <a href="https://twitter.com/AmericanAir/status/628397606989918208">Twitter</a>&nbsp;on Monday: "Effecti
    ASSOCIATED PRESS
    The airline wrote on Twitter on Monday: "Effective immediately, we will no longer transport buffalo, elephant, leopard, lion or rhino trophies."
  • 2 Delta
    "Effective immediately, Delta will officially ban shipment of all lion, leopard, elephant, rhinoceros and buffalo trophies wo
    ASSOCIATED PRESS
    "Effective immediately, Delta will officially ban shipment of all lion, leopard, elephant, rhinoceros and buffalo trophies worldwide as freight," the company said Aug. 3, "Prior to this ban, Delta's strict acceptance policy called for absolute compliance with all government regulations regarding protected species. Delta will therefore review acceptance policies of other hunting trophies with appropriate government agencies and other organisations supporting legal shipments. "
  • 3 United Airlines
    "We restrict the shipments of lion, leopard, elephant, rhinoceros and buffalo trophies on our aircraft and follow all US dome
    Spencer Platt via Getty Images
    "We restrict the shipments of lion, leopard, elephant, rhinoceros and buffalo trophies on our aircraft and follow all US domestic and international regulations, which prohibits the possession of trophies or other items associated with protected species," the company said Tuesday in a statement on its Facebook page. United spokesman Charlie Hobart told The Huffington Post that company's "records indicate that we have not shipped these types of trophies in the past." 
  • 4 Air Canada
    Air Canada spokesman Peter Fitzpatrick wrote the following in an email to HuffPost on Tuesday:
"Effective immediately, Air Ca
    ASSOCIATED PRESS
    Air Canada spokesman Peter Fitzpatrick wrote the following in an email to HuffPost on Tuesday: "Effective immediately, Air Canada will refuse to carry any shipment of lion, leopard, elephant, rhinoceros and water buffalo trophies worldwide as freight. It should be noted that historically the shipment of such trophies has been extremely rare as  Air Canada does not operate flights to Africa. This ban goes over and above Air Canada's long-standing policy to comply strictly with the regulations of the jurisdictions in which it operates that are in place to protect endangered wildlife in accordance with the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES)."
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