An American dentist has his feet to the fire after being outed as the man who killed one of Africa's best known lions, Cecil.
Walter Palmer, a dentist from Minnesota, said he believed everything was legal about the hunt he paid for to go kill a lion in Zimbabwe earlier this month. Unfortunately, he was mistaken. The lion he and two African guides killed was not just any lion, he was one of the major tourist attractions of Hwange National Park.
After luring the animal out of the park, Palmer initially injured the animal with a bow and arrow despite having the intention to kill him outright. For 40 hours, Cecil survived as the hunt ensued. Eventually, Palmer and his guides tracked him and used a gun to mow the animal down.
After killing the animal, Palmer and his guides skinned him, beheaded him, discovered the research collar that belonged to Oxford University, took the head and left the body.
"I had no idea that the lion I took was a known, local favorite, was collared and part of a study until the end of the hunt," Palmer said in a statement on Tuesday. "I relied on the expertise of my local professional guides to ensure a legal hunt."
Here he is next to a bear he shot.
Another lion he killed in 2008.
"I also don't think the answer is to start a witch hunt for the guy," Kimmel said on his show. "Some people online are saying 'we should skin him' or 'feed him to the lions,' which, you know, it's crazy... in the meantime, I think it's important to have some good come out of this disgusting tragedy."
Kimmel then linked to wildcru.org, the Wildlife Conservation Research Unit at Oxford.
"If you want to make this into a positive you can, — uh," Kimmel said as he choked back tears. "Make a donation and support them. At the very least, maybe we can show the world that not all Americans are like this jackhole here."
Check out the video below and be sure to share Cecil's story — and, more importantly, donate.