Delta, United and American Ban Big Game Trophies From Their Flights

In the wake of the killing of Cecil the lion by a dentist from Minnesota and the worldwide outrage it has caused, Delta, United and American Airlines, the largest North American airlines, have all pledged that the transportation of big game “trophies” will no longer be allowed on their flights.

While they may continue to screw over customers with their outrageously expensive flights, at least their listening to the outrage from the public over the killing of exotic animals for no reason.

Delta posted on their website:

“Effective immediately, Delta will officially ban shipment of all lion, leopard, elephant, rhinoceros and buffalo trophies worldwide as freight.  Prior to this ban, Delta’s strict acceptance policy called for absolute compliance with all government regulations regarding protected species. Delta will also review acceptance policies of other hunting trophies with appropriate government agencies and other organizations supporting legal shipments.”

Not only is Delta banning the big game stuff, they’re going to make sure all the animals killed and sent as freight are on the up-and-up. This airline responded to the pressure due to a petition being started against them on

A spokesperson for United said:

“United does not ship lion, buffalo, elephant, leopard or rhinoceros trophies as freight, and we have not done so previously. United also follows all U.S. domestic and international regulations, which prohibits the possession of trophies or other items associated with protected species.”

American Airlines released their statement via Twitter, saying that “Effective immediately, we will no longer transport buffalo, elephant, leopard, lion or rhino trophies.”

Good for them. At least they’re doing something right. But not everyone is happy, of course. Just take a look at the comments on Fox News’ coverage of the matter. Filled with right-wing nut-jobs screaming “Hunter persecution!” and “overpopulation!” and “PC socialist left!”

Well, maybe conservatives can follow their own advice, and just fly a different airline provider. Considering Delta, United and American Airlines are the largest providers, it will be kind of fun seeing these people scramble to get flights on, say, Continental, JetBlue and Southwest. But it’s only a matter of time before those airline providers follow.

The airline fees may be outrageous, the seats may be too crammed, and peanuts may not necessarily be served. But I’m glad they have some respect or the plight of exotic animals.

Featured image via Global Jet