Can hunting endangered animals save the species?

Some exotic animal species that are endangered in Africa are thriving on ranches in Texas, where a limited number are hunted for a high price. Ranchers say they need the income to care for the rest of the herd. Animal rights activists want the hunting to end.

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For two days, Paul and his guide searched this 30,000 acre ranch just two hours outside San Antonio for an oryx, but they didn't find any. Animal rights groups accuse the ranchers of making the hunts too easy, but that's not what we witnessed in this case. Six months later, we met up with Paul when he came back to try his luck again on another ranch.

We were curious to know whether it bothered him that the animal he was hunting is officially extinct in the wild.

Logan: Do you care about this species? Do you care if this species goes extinct?

Paul: Oh yes I do.

Logan: Why do you want to kill them?

Paul: The money that I spend to hunt these animals keeps these animals alive on these ranches.

You may be surprised to learn that the U.S. government agrees with that. For years it's allowed the scimitar horned oryx and two other endangered antelope to be hunted on U.S. soil. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has concluded that "hunting...provides an economic incentive for...ranchers to continue to breed these species," and that "hunting...reduces the threat of the species' extinction."

On ranches like this, they say they don't allow more than 10 percent of a herd to be hunted per year. After six hours, Paul and his guide have finally spotted some oryx. They were about 150 yards away, and they thought they had found a suitable target. He got ready to take a shot.

[Paul: Okay, is that the one, Are you sure?]

Paul hit the target with one bullet.

Seale: Hunters are the, are the main conservationists in this whole equation.

Logan: Can you call yourselves conservationists when your purpose, your intent, the thing that's driving it is to hunt the animals and to kill them?

Seale: Absolutely. That's, that's why these animals thrive it's because of that, that value that they have to the hunting community.

Logan: You know, just because people are willing to pay large amounts of money for those trophies doesn't make it right.

Seale: I can't let these animals just freely roam around my ranch. I can't do it. I won't do it.

Logan: Do you love these animals?

Seale: Absolutely.

Logan: How can you kill something you love?

Seale: I can do that for the simple reason that I know it's for the welfare of every one of those animals, you sacrifice one so that many more are born and raised from calves all the way up to the big trophy male or the big trophy females that we have.

Priscilla Feral: I think that's ludicrous. I think it's immoral. And I don't think anybody's entitled to do that.

Priscilla Feral is president of Friends of Animals, an international animal rights organization. For the past seven years, she's been fighting in court to stop these rare African antelope from being hunted in Texas.