There is perhaps no more familiar or regal icon of the African wild than the lion. More than one generation of children raised on Disney has grown up recognizing The Lion King as supreme on the African savanna. Yet Africa’s lions are in trouble. South African Expedition Leader Russell Gerber, a safari guide since 2004, is with us to discuss why this is the case and how we can respond. You may be surprised to learn just how endangered the African lion is. Fewer than 25,000 remain on the African continent, occupying a mere 6% of their historic range. The International Union for the Conservation of Nature has listed the lion as vulnerable to extinction. There are more rhinos left than lions in Africa, and far more elephants and Western lowland gorillas. Russell takes a deep dive into the lion’s plight, identifying challenges to their conservation through impacts such as poaching, habitat loss and human-wildlife conflict.
Originally presented August 31, 2021
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