Animal rights activists are up in arms over the Dallas Safari Club's auction; however, the club has said the planned hunt in South Africa was based on sound wildlife management practices.
"There is a biological reason for this hunt, and it's based on a fundamental premise of modern wildlife management: populations matter; individuals don't," club Executive Director Ben Carter said in a statement released in October. "By removing counterproductive individuals from a herd, rhino populations can actually grow."
It was unclear Saturday what benefit the taking of a single animal might provide for black rhinos in the wild, which ABC News said numbered around 5,055. The Safari Club said the winning bid, which could be as much as $1 million, would be donated to an African conservation organization.
The safari package is valued at $28,000 and includes a hunting permit.
Animal activists countered that hunting was not a particularly productive means of supporting an endangered species and vowed to protest the auction at the Safari Club's annual meeting this weekend.