Typically, when a species is listed as endangered, hunting is an automatic no-no. However, poaching often persists, especially if endangered species protection is lax or simply not enforced.

To preserve biodiversity and take species protection one step further, certain countries have instituted all-out bans on hunting.

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Kenya, for instance, has had a ban on hunting in place since the 1970s, with Costa Rica following more recently in 2012. Also, just last year, Botswana and Zambia announced hunting bans, with Botswana outlawing trophy hunting on public lands and Zambia prohibiting lion and leopard hunting.

Now, Albania, a popular hunting destination, is jumping on the no-hunting band wagon as well, announcing that it will ban all hunting for two years “to protect animals threatened with extinction,” as AFP reports via Phys.org.

Great news, indeed!

Albania’s environment ministry spoke with AFP, and reported that the country’s brown bears and eagles have become “seriously endangered” and that “the number of pheasant and wild quail have also fallen dramatically.”

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“We have been forced to adopt strict measures to protect endangered species from illegal hunting,” Environment Minister Lefter Koka told AFP.

The ban is set for introduction later this month, and while it will only remain in place for two years (unless revised later on), Albania’s move highlights the clear connection between overhunting and species loss, which so many other countries have yet to address, perhaps afraid of upsetting hunting lobbies or “tradition.”

But upset and “tradition” are rather meaningless in grand scheme of things since, as a new report hammers home, we need top predators and other species to keep ecosystems healthy as without them, we place ourselves in grave danger, too.

So how about it U.S.? Brave enough to step up to the plate?

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Image source: G. Frank Peterson / Flickr

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