The death of Cecil the lion has enraged the world this week, and rightly so. Having spent a lifetime working to conserve this species, I am disgusted by the killing of this regal lion.
For eight years, Cecil and his family had been followed by Panthera's partners in Zimbabwe, Oxford University's WildCRU. He was 13 when he was killed and was an essential member of his pride, defending its females and siring many litters of cubs. Cecil was helping to grow Africa's fading lion populations when he was apparently lured outside of the protection of the magnificent Hwange National Park and killed horrifically.
Alleged Illegal Hunting of Lion in Zimbabwe Highlights Catastrophic Decline of Africa’s Lions
New York, NY – Earlier this month, a male lion studied through the Hwange Lion Project, operated by Panthera and Oxford University’s Wildlife Conservation Research Unit (WildCRU), was tragically killed outside Zimbabwe’s Hwange National Park.
Panthera Founder and Chairman Dr. Thomas Kaplan recently spoke at a conference hosted by the Milken Institute about his passion for conservation, what Panthera is doing to protect the world’s most threatened big cats, and how The Global Alliance for Wild Cats is changing the game for wildlife conservation.
In March, conservationists celebrated the sighting of a young male lion in Batéké Plateau National Park in south eastern Gabon, where lions were believed
to be locally extinct.
Two weeks ago, Panthera and our partners at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology's Pan African Programme: The Cultured Chimpanzee and The Aspinall Foundation issued a press release on the first videos of a lion taken in Gabon in 20 years, in a region where the species was believed by scientists to be “locally extinct.”
News is spreading quickly that lions may be making a comeback in Gabon after Reuters reported on a press release issued by Panthera, The Aspinall Foundation and the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology's Pan African Programme last week.
By Dr. Paul Funston, Panthera’s Senior Director of Lion and Cheetah Programs
Dispersal is a fascinating and largely understudied aspect of lion ecology. Among other behaviors, Panthera has been monitoring the dispersal patterns of the Horseshoe Pride in the Zambezi region of Namibia for just over a year now, as part of a lion conservation project carried out with the Namibian Ministry of the Environment and the Kwando Carnivore Project.
Read Panthera’s February newsletter to learn about the new commitment made by the government of Colombia and Panthera to protect the jaguars of Latin America and watch video coverage aired by Al Jazeera English on this new development.
Besides elephants, lions are the quintessential symbol of wild Africa, used as icons of strength and power in national flags, coats of arms, historical and contemporary art, and logos of sports teams and private enterprises around the globe. However, few people realize that this iconic animal is under serious threat.
A new Panthera co-authored publication released by Oryx, the International Journal of Conservation, reports on how predators, like jaguars, and people compete for wild meat in Belize.