“In the relentless war on our planet’s wildlife, the big cats are a critical battleground. Ecologically, culturally, economically, and politically, there is no other fight where we have as much to gain—or to lose.”—Dr. Fred Launay, Panthera President and CEO
This year’s World Wildlife Day spotlights the big cats—cheetahs, jaguars, leopards, lions, pumas, tigers, and snow leopards. Big cats are loved the world over for their beauty, grace, and strength. Yet despite their celebrated status in the animal kingdom as top predators, they are also among its most vulnerable. The UN and CITES have devoted this year’s World Wildlife Day to highlighting the threats big cats face, and why their survival is so important to our planet.
Panthera is proud to be a World Wildlife Day partner. We hope you will join us in celebrating big cats on Saturday, March 3.
Your Big Cat Tales Wowed!
More than 700 of you participated in our World Wildlife Day seven-word story challenge! There were so many strong entries, and our talented judges had their work cut out for them. The winning big cat tales painted a picture in the reader's mind and, for some judges, even induced chills. Here are the top stories:
Grand Prize: Sabre-toothed cat greets tiger. “Welcome to extinction.” -- Ashley Reynolds
Runners-up: Pacing. Caged. Back. Forth. My heart breaks. -- Danielle Sharp 30 jeeps, cameras clicking. One lone tiger. -- Tammy Halstead “Incredible,” she whispered into the history book. -- Mary Burak
Grand Prize: 2040. Emma Google searches tigers: 0 results. -- Mali Hoadley, 13
Runners-up: Tinned Spam Gross. Canned Lion even Worse. -- Oliver Stapelkamp, 9 Chirping cheetah cubs cuddle in a cave. -- Ollie Saunders, 10
From everyone at Panthera, we thank ALL of the creative writers out there for taking the time to support big cats this World Wildlife Day. You have made all the difference. Please enjoy this gallery of more story highlights!
And a special thanks to our thoughtful judges!
Jane Alexander, award-winning actress and Co-Chair of Panthera's Conservation Council
Karin Brulliard, Animalia Reporter and Editor, The Washington Post
Dr. Luke Hunter, Panthera Chief Conservation Officer
Sebastian Kennerknecht, Panthera partner photographer
Dr. George Schaller, renowned conservationist and Vice Chair of Panthera's Science Council
Karen Wood, Panthera Senior Director of Communications
Taegen Yardley, youth activist and filmmaker
Time to Stand With Big Cats
On March 3, join Panthera in celebrating big cats and raising awareness about their plight. Make a statement with a selfie!
Simply find a big cat icon--statue, painting, mascot, toy, etc.--near you, snap a picture, and post to Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter with the hashtag #IStandWithBigCats. Tag @pantheracats and use our custom-made photo frame on Facebook Camera and geofilter on Snapchat. Be sure to share!
We look forward to reposting your images all day long on World Wildlife Day and--together--standing for big cats.
How Panthera Protects Cats.
For us, every day is World Wildlife Day. Learn how Panthera is working to reduce the threats and preserve the vast landscapes that big cats have guarded since prehistoric times.