This is a collection of important news articles about lion conservation, lion legislation and lion science. We have summarized the essential points followed by a link to the full article for further reading.
African Lion Conservation Benin
Restoration of Pendjari National Park will help conserve West African Lions
The West African lion is listed as Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List (2015 assessment).
The remaining resident range countries include Benin, Burkina Faso, Niger, Nigeria and Senegal.
In January 2018 a partnership of the National Geographic Society, Wyss Foundation, African Parks and the Benin government announced $23 million in funding to secure and restore the Pendjari National Park in Benin, West Africa.
The 2755 square kilometer park is a remaining refuge for two of Africa’s Critically Endangered big cats, the West African lion (Panthera leo senegalensis) and the Saharan or Northwest African cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus hecki).
African Parks are mandated to manage Pendjari National Park for the next ten years.
Lion taxonomy note: Panthera leo senegalensis is now Panthera leo leo - West Africa subpopulation.
Original Article: https://news.mongabay.com/2018/02/23-5-million-funding-pledge-aims-to-protect-critical-west-african-national-park/
Author: Mongabay.com dd 1 February 2018
African Lion Research Kenya
Predator Conflict: Reinforcing Bomas cuts Livestock Predation by almost 75%
"Lions Panthera leo kill livestock in the pastoral steppe of East Africa. The subsequent lethal retaliation by livestock owners has helped reduce lion numbers by more than 80% and driven the species from most of its historic range. This conflict is especially intense along the western edge of the Maasai Mara National Reserve in Kenya, where some of the densest lion and livestock populations in Africa overlap.
We evaluated the effectiveness of implementation for one proposed solution – the Anne K. Taylor Fund’s subsidized construction of fortified, chain-link livestock fences (‘bomas’) – in reducing livestock loss to depredation. Between 2013 and 2015 we collected 343 predation reports, based on semi-structured interviews and predation records. We used these data to study the impact of subsidised boma fortification on the depredation of cattle, sheep and goats.
Of 179 fortified bomas, 67% suffered no losses over one year whereas only 15% of 60 unfortified bomas had no losses over one year. Furthermore, losses of greater than five animals per year occurred at only 17% of fortified bomas, compared to 57% of unfortified bomas. The overall reduction in losses to predation at fortified bomas equated to savings of more than 1,200 USD per household per year. "
Citation: A.E. Sutton et al (2017). Boma fortification is cost-effective at reducing predation of livestock in a high-predation zone in the Western Mara region, Kenya. Conservation Evidence, 14, 32-38.
Source: ResearchGate - Stuart L Pimm
Lion Legislation USA
United States lists all Lion subspecies under the Endangered Species Act
Lions have been reclassified into two subspecies by the IUCN Cat Specialist Group:
- Panthera leo leo - Central and West Africa and India (numbers estimated at 1400).
- Panthera leo melanochaita - Southern and Eastern Africa (numbers estimated at 17000 to 19000).
New protection status under the US Endangered Species Act as from January 2016:
- Panthera leo leo - Endangered: no imports, only under exceptional circumstances.
- Panthera leo melanochaita - Threatened: permits to import only from countries with approved management programs.
Original Article: https://news.mongabay.com/2015/12/u-s-adds-lions-to-endangered-species-list-makes-it-harder-to-import-lion-trophies/
Author: Shreya Dasgupta dd 23 December 2015