Recreational hunting and the concept of "fair chase" has been linked for as long as recreational hunting has existed. However, the terms and conditions of what constitutes "fair chase" when hunting is conducted within a high fenced area has never been fully or clearly defined.
SCI believes that the following conditions must be met, or exceeded, in order for the concept of "fair chase" to apply for hunting mammals within high fenced areas in North America:
* The animals hunted must have freely resided on the property on which they are being hunted for at least six months, or longer.
* The hunting property shall provide escape cover that allows the animals to elude hunters for extended periods of time and multiple occurrences. Escape cover, in the form of rugged terrain or topography, and/or dense thickets or stands of woods, shall collectively comprise at least 50% of the property.
* The animals hunted must be part of a breeding herd that is a resident on the hunted property.
* The operators of the preserve must provide freely available and ample amounts of cover, food and water at all times.
* Animals that are to be hunted must exhibit their natural flight/survival instincts.
* No zoo animals, exhibited animals or tame animals are to be hunted.
* No hunting or selling of hunting rights to a specified animal
* Hunting methods employed cannot include driving, herding or chasing animals to awaiting hunters.
* Every effort must be made to utilize all meat commonly consumed from a taken animal.
The minimum amount of land necessary to meet these requirements varies by region, terrain and habitat type. Setting a standard minimum area is unlikely to be realistic. However, SCI recommends that state/provincial wildlife management agencies work with the operators and the hunting community within their area to establish specific regulations to guide the operations of hunting preserves.
Credit: Safari Club Interantional http://www.safariclub.org/