Idaho wildlife official resigns over uproar about killing baboon family

Rodiano Bonacci
Ottobre 16, 2018

Update: Idaho Fish and Game Commissioner Blake Fischer has resigned, effective immediately, after photos involving a dead baboon family surfaced from an African hunting trip.

It is this photo that has landed Fischer, one of Idaho's fish and game commissioners, in the middle of a firestorm of backlash, which includes an increasing number of calls for his resignation from a position he has held for four years, the Idaho Statesman first reported Friday, Oct. 12. He also included photos of him posing with the dead giraffe and leopard in the email that was sent to 100 people, according to the newspaper.

The grizzly photos show the Idaho man posing with an assortment of slain animals, including a giraffe, leopard, impala, sable antelope, waterbuck, kudu, warthog, gemsbok (oryx) and eland.

Among the pictures is one of Fischer smiling while propping up the heads of bloodied baboon carcasses, including that of a baby in its mother's embrace. Fischer killed them using a bow and arrows.

'So I shot a whole family of baboons, ' Fischer wrote below the photo in the emails he sent.

"My reaction to the photo and accompanying text of you smiling and holding a "family" of primates you killed, dismays and disappoints me", former Commissioner Fred Trevey wrote Fischer in an email.

Trevey encouraged Fischer to resign and "shield the Commission as an institution and hunting as a legitimate tool of wildlife management from the harm that is sure to come".

"They killed a whole family, including small baboons, and I think that's revolting", former commissioner Keith Stonebraker told the Statesman.

"The biggest thing is the baboon thing", Alder said.

"I have high expectations and standards for every appointee in state government", said Governor Otter.

Former commissioner Tony McDermott (2005-13) emailed a member of Gov.

Fischer apologized to Idaho's hunters and anglers in a resignation letter obtained by the paper.

"Slaughtering a family of baboons, including a baby baboon, and boasting of his conquest with photos is morally reprehensible", Kitty Block, acting president and CEO of the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) and president and CEO of Humane Society International (HSI), told The Dodo.

Steve Alder, executive director of Idaho For Wildlife, a pro-hunting group, told KBOI that Fischer's hunts were despicable. "I didn't do anything immoral", Fischer said. "You just don't do this". I didn't do anything unethical.

The commission Blake serves on makes policy decisions concerning Idaho's wildlife, and it often manages game populations through hunting and fishing regulations.

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