Hunting Show Host Under Fire for Posting Lion Trophy Photo on Facebook

Hunting Show Host Under Fire for Posting Lion Trophy Photo on Facebook

Melissa Bachmann, host of the Minnesota-based hunting show Winchester Deadly Passion managed to get a lot of people upset recently. After a South African expedition she posted several images from the hunt onto Facebook, including images of herself posing with a "beautiful male lion" she killed. Other members of the hunting community were of course supportive but, not so much the rest of the planet. Cape Town resident Elan Burman has already managed to obtain 15,000 signatures on a petition to ban Bachmann from ever returning to the country.

"She is an absolute contradiction to the culture of conservation, this country prides itself on," the petition reads. "As tax payers we demand she no longer be granted access to this country and its natural resources."

There is still no statement from Bachmann herself but, officials at the conservancy where the hunt took place say that it was part of a conservancy program. A program carefully monitored to maintain a sustainable population.

I would love to know how killing a vulnerable species could help sustain it.

Via PetaPixel

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Elliott Montello's picture

So this is on fstoppers...because it's a photo?

mmhmm. Next week keep an eye out for topics on Obamacare with a picture of the president.

What does this have to do with photography/videography? Okay she posted a PHOTO.. But I don't see what this has to do with anything FS related..

Ben .'s picture

WTF does this have to do with photography?
Seems more like this belongs on Nat Geo rather than here.

It's on Fstoppers because they want more and more clicks.. Fstoppers has turned into yet another content mill.

Antonio Carrasco's picture

Posts like these are pure click-bait. People get all fired up because it's so polarizing and then they write fiery comments and then check back several times to see if their comments got responses and then respond to those with more fire.

Sells lots of ad impressions

The irony is as angry people comment, fstoppers is seen as a discussion filled blog, which massively increases it's SEO, meaning more traffic is driven here. Your best response if you hate fstoppers is stopping coming and stop commenting. This is a piece seems to be about the power of a single photo posted on social media

Regan Shorter's picture

I also wondered this... I figured they would add something to the debate, but there was only a measly sentence at the end. Literally everything in this article and more could be pulled from another news source.

this is a topic everyone should know about and nobody should tolerate.. I say well done .. put it out there.. name and shame idiots like this.

something something feelings, therefore i'm right and everybody else is an idiot.

don't like trophy hunting? don't go on a safari. hunters are the only people willing to pay serious cash to keep big game viable. ban trophy hunting, and local governments lose millions of dollars of reasons a year to protect your precious lions from farmers. you know, the farmers whose cattle is frequently slaughtered by the wild game, and who'd just love to use the huge swaths of land currently designated as wildlife preserves to make a living.

Firstly the word "game".. I don't like.. I don't see how shooting something like this from a safe distance can be considered a sport. Jump in a ring with a lion then I might be interested.
Secondly.. I don't really think I get what your saying..I'm not sure if it's just your lack of english knowledge, I just hope your not feeling sorry for the farmers.. maybe you could clarify what your saying a little more clearer

game's the word for hunted animals. i've never been hunting, so i can't comment on how easy or hard or safe is to shoot a lion. i don't think you can either.

what i'm saying is that preserving wildlife costs money. for one, the opportunity lost by having to keep huge tracts of land unused, second, any cattle the predators kill. if you remove the millions of dollars hunters bring, what will justify these costs? if you care about wildlife, you should care about the ability of locals to profit from it. otherwise, they will kill all the lions and use the land to make a living.

and yeah, i care more about people than animals. anyone who doesn't has their priorities seriously out of whack.

Well I couldn't disagree more. I think it's really sad that people have those views.. with over 6 billion humans walking around and the lion population has been declared as endangered, I'm sticking up for the lions.. there are people like this Melissa Buchman going around shooting a lion just for a frikken picture.. something is definitely not right.. then people like yourself don't see a problem with that.. to me, that out of whack

and tell me where bears are killing the farmers stock?

To be honest I'd pay to hunt her down

You are jealous because she has bigger balls than you!! Frickin Libtard!

wow.. intelligent reply.. well done

The IQ is strong in this one... -_-

Chris clearly you have no idea what your talking about.

I am a avid Hunter. I have hunted most of the world due to hunting.

What Jachym Kouba wrote above is totally correct, Re Trophy hunters generate cash that goes back into Conservation.

Trophy hunters who hunt Africa, generate over US $200 Million per year. Approximately between 7% to 5% of that goes back into conservation of Wildlife.
For the sake of arguments lets go with the lower percentage of 5%,
that equates to a minimum of $10 Million per year from Trophy hunting in Africa alone which goes back into conservation.

The people that we need to be wary of are Poachers. These are the people who do not care about Conservation at ALL.

My second African hunt took place in 1999 where I hunted "African Dangerous Game"
My priority species for this hunt were Lion, Cape Buffalo and Hippo,in exactly that order and if I came across other plains game such as a variety of Antelope then I made sure I purchased the tags before the hunt started to make sure I had everything covered.

In the year of 1999 when I hunted in Zambia on a hunting concession of 1.2 Million acres, the quota for African Lion on this particular hunting concession was a total of 9 Lions.
In 1999 a total of 11 Trophy hunters booked to hunt Lion on this particular concession however only 6 lions were harvested by Trophy hunters.

Once the hunting season has closed, let's use the Lion quota as a example seeing this article is about Lion hunting.

If the quota of 9 Lions has not been met then the government will issue Cullers to make sure the quota is met, yet this does not generate any income, however it does look after game management which is the key so no particular species become over populated.

When booking a hunt of this nature Re: A wild African hunt, they
charge by the day, the minimum amount of days for a Lion hunt was 16 days. I chose to take a 18 day safari and paid $3,000 USD per day when the AUD was around .70 USD
So the daily rate in Australian dollars was almost $4,300 per day.

In order for me to lock in those 18 days I had to pay a 50% deposit straight away and the remaining 50% on arrival.
The total just to hunt on that concession for 18 days came to almost $80,000

Now that does not guarantee that you are successful to hunt any species.
It also makes NO difference if you are blessed and extremely lucky to shoot a Lion on day 1 or day 18, or if you don't shoot a Lion at all, you don't get a cent of that daily rate back.

Then each species has what is called a trophy fee, Meaning if you were successful to hunt a Lion for example the Lion Trophy fee was, US $6,000 on top of the day rate.

Trophy hunters contribute a great amount towards Conservation in the world, the money they spend on a yearly basis is phenomenal.
So that is basically the way Trophy hunting works. I hope that gives you a better understanding and perspective how it all unfolds.

P.s. For what its worth, the world population is slightly over 7 billion not 6 billion.


Firstly, thanks for the generous reply and I guess semi intelligent one at that..

And secondly I do understand where you are coming from and what people like yourself do in the "Game Reserves" around the world. Basically you are saying that you are saving the animals from the culling by buying your way to a license to "Harvest" the wildlife.

Your doing them justice by killing them.. So if you don't kill them.. then someone will kill them.. The only difference is your paying someone to do it and the government makes money from that which in turn put that money back into the breeding program.

So roughly 10 million dollars of your 200 million goes back to them.. wow... that's awesome.. pat yourself on the back.

In summary, to me and I'm sure to a lot of other people, shooting a lion for the sake of a photo is extremely primitive, If you were killing a deer because you had to eat, then fair enough. But you are killing an endangered species for fun. It is the last place on the earth where they can be who they are. People are encroaching on the animals lively hood. You may see that as being naive and to be honest I don't really care. I think it's extremely selfish of us as apparently the most intelligent species to behave like this. If you have seen this Melissa Bachmanns show you'll see how happy she is when she kills something. .. That really isn't normal.
And again, to me spending $3000 dollars a day to attempt to kill something is.. Well I had a word here but I'm trying to remain civil.. You spent $80,000 on trying to kill!!. I'm not sure that is some thing to be proud of or telling every one about.
I love how you say "which is the key so no particular species become over populated"
So it's OK to overpopulate our species.. just not theirs?..

You can talk about money spent all you like but it's also money that is driving the poachers to do what they do.

122 rhinos were killed in 2009
333 rhinos were killed in 2010
and at least 388 rhinos were killed n 2012
Why don't you look into making the poachers "game".. then the fight would be fair..
-you would both have guns
-you'd also be doing the animals a favour
-reducing the population of wasteful humans
Wouldn't that make more sense?
Shoot the poachers. why would that be such a bad thing, you love your guns so much, do something useful and shoot the poachers..It'd be cheaper...Or do you like the safe distance between yourself and your "game", so you can shoot it from 100 yards away in the back of a protective car.

you might call it game.. but it's certainly not a fair one.

Id like to see you doing that in the wilds of Africa where Lions have no interaction with human beings, they would soon be consuming that head and body of yours.

Clearly for those like myself who are either well traveled & educated enough can quite easily tell that those Lions are either in a National Park where hunting in NOT permitted.
Secondly you could have been on a photography game ranch where the Lions are partially fed by humans and are not scared of them.

One thing is for sure, there is no way in hell that a Lion/Lioness will let you get any where near them if they are free range and truly in the wild.

Some game farms which are fully fenced with high 8 to 10+ feet electric fences allow you to hunt Lions but as far as im concerned that's not hunting by any stretch of the imagination.
This is the main reason Melissa Bachman is under such scrutiny because rumors are going around saying the Lion she shot was in a game farm. Which is like catching a fish in a trout farm.


I just cannot understand why this kind of people still do exist on this world.
Most of us feel strongly disgusted about this kind of barbaric actions and feel that people as Melissa Bachman do get away taking lives of innocent animals.
Fortunately there is a signature petition on change,org to deny the future entry of Melissa Bachman to the Republic of South Africa.

To sign this petition or read more about it:

So far there is a total of 339,000 signatures.

for all the ppl who are commenting WTF this has to do with FS? YES! This is not about photography out of humanity and to spread awareness FS has posted this get it guy's... A beautiful lion roamin in it's environment and some ppl go kill it like a coward with a gun only for the next generation to see such magnificent creatures in PHOTS. You go kill the lion with yo bare hands and pose like that i agree but this is one stupid F#KIN coward B*&^TCH.

Less feelings, more brains please.. This post belongs on other (news) sites. It's wrong, I get it. but please keep FS a platform for creative professionals and not a platform for adressing what's wrong in the world today + a photo.

Thomas Chadwick's picture

If you actually read into the story this animal was on a private reserve. The lion was not roaming in the wild. This lions death has nothing to do with future generations seeing it because it was owned be an individual. Even though I am against trophy hunting reserves actually help an animals existence because they normally only let 15% of their population get hunted. Therefore, the population gets bigger and bigger. There was a great 60 minutes video about this showing how reserves actually (against common belief) help save animals from going extinct in Africa. Most of the reserves were in Texas where the rare animals were thriving.

Well, on the farm, we kill cows, pigs, chickens and the occasional wolf whom jumps the fence. But we don't brag about it. My dad tanned my hide for shooting birds with a pellet gun. He said living things aren't for target practice.

Even those of us whom hunted, were looking to fill freezers with food and make jerky, and you had a respect that nature was providing something. Of course, there were the "sports" hunters, whom take the head and leave food rotting. An issue simply beyond our comprehension.

The real issue here is taking pride in the death of another for the sake of one's own personal merit.

"Sports" hunters you say, I believe you mean Trophy Hunters?
Coming up with such absurd statements like "whom take the head and leave food rotting. A issue simply beyond our comprehension"

Just so you know while hunting in the wilds of Africa, Firstly 95% of what is hunted is totally consumed, only 5% of the animal spices isn't consumed.
In many cases a Trophy hunter will hunt a number of species.
These animals that are hunted, feed local villages sometimes for weeks on end on other occasions months on end, as jerky is the best way to preserve meat. My favorite Jerky is Zebra & Cape Buffalo.

Lion comes under the category as a non consumable.
Keep in mind that either way these animals will be shot either way, whether its by a Trophy hunter or by government cullers.

If your at all interested scroll above and read what I wrote which basically describes the way "Sports" Trophy hunting works.


Actually, conservation effort does cost money, and is largely financed by trophy hunting. What's that, sir? A lion ate your cattle? We'll send a constable over to dispatch it immediately. They're such a nuisance.

So. Some of you folks see a photo and story like this and the only complaints you have are what does this have to do with FS? Unreal. I hope this generates a ban on pointless killing.