Does “Taken” Mean “Killed” in Big Game Hunter Language?

Walter Palmer said he wouldn’t have “taken” Cecil the lion if he had known of Cecil’s special status. Even the first time I read this statement, I found it somehow inappropriate–strange, at least. Maybe it’s part of the big hunter jargon. I know many common meanings  of “take,” but “kill” isn’t one.  Some come close, such as “subtract” and “remove.”  Each time I read or hear Palmer’s statement I wonder what it means in the instance he’s referencing. My own limited take on the word in that context is that it means to take from that environment to another. The taken still exists but in the possession of the taker. Nothing has died but has only been carried somewhere and kept. Mounted?  I’m not attacking Palmer. I’m just interested in the subtleties of language.


About rmkinder

This entry was posted in Animal deaths, animal rights, animals, Language and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Does “Taken” Mean “Killed” in Big Game Hunter Language?

  1. B.F. Goff says:

    RM: “take” is a legal term of art in wildlife conservation, usually applied to endangered species or other protected wildlife. It means to kill, injure, harass, capture or otherwise do things that will adversely affect the protected animal’s well being. There can be legal (permitted) take and illegal take as determined by government statute and resource agency regulations. This week, I have a biologist monitoring a construction crew in the Mojave Desert to ensure there is no illegal take (i.e., squashing) of desert tortoise by the heavy equipment. Oddly, if you stopped along a highway in that same desert to move a desert tortoise off the road (to safety), you would also be committing a “take”.


  2. rmkinder says:

    Thank you so much for this information. It’s interesting in itself and especially timely.


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