The scimitar horned oryx . . . the addax . . . the dama gazelle – endangered animals one would expect to encounter in Africa. Yet, as some Texas ranches are proving, helping to bring back large numbers of these endangered species can be a profitable pastime. As a 60 Minutes segment shows, by allowing a number of these animals to be hunted for a high price, exotic wildlife ranches have achieved a major feat in wildlife conservation. A billion dollar industry, supporting more than 14,000 jobs—exotic ranches have worked to bolster the populations of approximately 125 different endangered species.
The funds collected from hunting a small percentage of the endangered animals gives ranchers the money they need to continue to run their ranches. Thus, hunting endangered species in Texas has provided economic incentives for ranchers to continue to conserve and protect the species.
Read Terry Anderson and Shawn Regan’s article, “Shoot an Elephant, Save a Community,” to see how assigning economic value to animals in Africa is also working to conserve wildlife.