Blood Lions – The Canned Hunting Industry Exposed

canned lion hunting

This film exposes the ugly truth behind South Africa’s canned lion hunting industry. It will premiere at the Durban International Film Festival on July 22, 2015.

In South Africa there are some 10,000 lions and the numbers are increasing all the time. But the lie behind this statistic is revealed in the fact that South Africa is the only lion range state that has three separate classifications for these great cats: captive, managed and wild. And so we find that only 3,000 – less than a third – are truly wild and living in designated conservation areas.


Read more at: http://www.dailymaverick.co.za/article/2015-07-14-blood-lions-the-film-that-blows-the-brutal-lid-off-the-canned-hunting-industry/#.VaUpKnzbK00

News Source:  Daily Maverick
Image Source: Daily Maverick

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Silver Lining for Lions of West Africa (Panthera)

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It was recently reported that there are less than 400 wild lions in West Africa. In this story, Panthera talks about a possible “silver lining” for this critically endangered species. The Silver Lining for the Lions of West Africa was originally published at Panthera.org on February 13, 2014.

PANTHERA: In a press release published last month, Panthera outlined the results of a new report confirming that lions are now Critically Endangered and face extinction across the entire region of West Africa.

Led by Panthera’s Lion Program Survey Coordinator, Dr. Philipp Henschel, the study required a massive survey effort extending across 21 parks and 11 countries over a six year period. The results, unfortunately, are somber: today fewer than 400 lions remain in four isolated populations in West Africa, with only 250 of these being breeding adult lions.

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New Study – West African Lion Population Under 400

West African Lion Facing Extinction

According to a new study funded by Panthera and National Geographic’s Big Cat Initiative, there are less than 400 lions in West Africa. Of the remaining lions, an estimated 250 are of breeding age.

“The situation is most critical for the geographically isolated populations in West Africa, where the species is considered regionally endangered.”

Field studies were conducted in 13 large areas where the lions are protected to establish the presence and size of any populations. Another eight areas were evaluated based on interviews and existing data.

Most of the data that was compiled came from track surveys, in which lions were tracked by following their footprints.

The report states that lions in West Africa have undergone a “catastrophic collapse.”  They have lost more that 99% of their historic range, with 88% of the current population (approximately 350 lions) living in one single population.

You can read the study here.

Photo Credit: Cubinnigeria Philipphenschel Panthera

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Lion Population Declining in Uganda

declining african lion population in uganda

In an article written in the Oryx journal, researchers are reporting that the African lion population in Uganda has decreased more than 30 percent over the past 10 years.  Reasons for the decline include

“…poisoning by local cattle herders, retaliation for livestock predation and other  human-related conflicts.”

Read more about the declining lion population at:  http://www.upi.com/Science_News/2013/10/24/Conservationists-warn-of-decline-in-lion-numbers-in-Uganda/UPI-62601382643564/#ixzz2iklxrZmw

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Rihanna Visits South African Lion Park

Rihanna Visits South African Lion Park

Rihanna visits Lion Park in South Africa before performing at the FNB Stadium in Johannesburg.

The Lion Park is a breeding ground and sanctuary for African wildlife, with a focus on the Wild Dog, white lion and cheetah. The lions in the park come from Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Northern Gauteng and Botswana. There are currently 80 lions in the park.

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New Article by Author David Quammen on African Lion Conservation

african lion conservation

According to a new article on African lion conservation by science and nature writer David Quammen, recent surveys and estimates indicate an 80% decline in lions throughout Africa, with the remaining lions currently living in approximately 70 different areas. “But the smallest contain only tiny populations, isolated, genetically limited, and lacking viability for the long term,” notes Quammen.

Quammen states various causes of the decline, including:

  • Habitat loss
  • Habitat fragmentation
  • Poaching of lion prey for bush meat
  • Poaching snares that catch lions instead
  • Displacement of lion prey by livestock
  • Disease
  • Spearing and killing of lions
  • Tribal ritual killings
  • Trophy hunting

He discusses possible solutions to the problem, such as the controversial fencing strategies suggested by ecologist Craig Packer, a professor at the University of Minnesota and director of the Lion Research Center.  Parker claims that “few African nations can invest adequately in the management of the parks,” and that while fencing could destroy some migratory ecosystems, it would protect and save a much higher percentage of lions due to significantly reduced management costs.

Quammen also talks about a reduction in lion killings following the 2007 implementation of the Maasai Lion Guardian program, a Living with Lions project. Lion killing has been a Maasai “rites of passage” tradition.  The Lion Guardian program recruits and trains Maasai warriors to protect the lions instead of killing them.

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