Yes, the Ethiopian Wildlife Department out of the blue closed down Nile crocodile hunting on Lake Chamo as of July, 2007. This is not a big surprise to us because we knew from the start that the amount of hunting on Chamo would be limited. I just did not expect it to be limited to only three years.
The crocs on Lake Chamo are very special, and when you are shooting 80- to 100-year-old animals, very careful management has to be put in place to make sure that over-harvesting does not happen and that trophy quality does not drop. Chamo still has plenty of big crocs left, and the wildlife department has clearly stated that there is a very good chance they will let us start hunting the crocs there again on a limited basis once a complete crocodile management plan is put in place for the entire lake.
I have been in contact with the folks at the IUCN croc specialist group, who have said that they will be the ones who will aid the Ethiopian Wildlife Department in creating a croc management plan for the Lake. The people there are not anti-hunting, so a limited harvest of crocs by sport hunters is very possible in the future. Until the plan is complete, we intend to be supportive and cooperative, as all of us involved have the same goal: namely, the protection and conservation of the crocs in Lake Chamo.