Navigation Links
New study reveals lions are rapidly losing ground in Africa
Date:12/4/2012

A new study released this week confirms that lions are rapidly and literally losing ground across Africa's once-thriving savannahs due to burgeoning human population growth and subsequent, massive land-use conversion. Representing the most comprehensive assessment of the state and vitality of African savannah habitat to date, the report maintains that the lion has lost 75% of its original natural habitat in Africa a reduction that has devastated lion populations across the continent.

Co-authored by Panthera's Lion Program Survey Coordinator, Dr. Philipp Henschel, and a team of researchers coordinated by Duke University's Nicholas School of the Environment, this report, entitled The size of savannah Africa: A lion's (Panthera leo) view, was published online this week in the journal 'Biodiversity and Conservation.'

Using Google Earth's high-resolution satellite imagery, the study examined savannah habitat across Africa, which comprises the majority of the lion's current range, and also analyzed human population density data to identify areas of suitable habitat currently occupied by lions. Incredibly, the analysis identified only 67 isolated regions across the continent where significant lion populations may persist. Of these areas, just 15 were estimated to maintain a population of at least 500 lions.

"The reality is that from an original area a third larger than the continental United States, only 25% remains," explained Stuart Pimm, co-author and Doris Duke Chair of Conservation at Duke University.

The study also confirms that in West Africa, where the species is classified as Regionally Endangered on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, fewer than 500 lions remain, scattered across eight isolated regions.

"Lions have been hit hardest in West Africa, where local governments often lack direct incentives to protect them," Dr. Henschel commented. "While lions generate billions of tourist dollars across Eastern and Southern Africa, spurring governments to invest in their protection, wildlife-based tourism is only slowly developing in West Africa. Currently lions still have little economic value in the region, and West African governments will require significant foreign assistance in stabilizing remaining populations until sustainable local conservation efforts can be developed."

Luke Dollar, co-author and Grants Program Director of National Geographic's Big Cats Initiative (BCI), which provided partial funding for this work, added, "This research is a major step in helping prioritize funding strategies for saving big cats."

Earlier this year, Panthera became a scientific and strategic collaborator on the National Geographic Society's Big Cats Initiative (BCI) to jointly address the most serious threats facing big cats in the wild and facilitate the direction of financial support to the most efficient and impactful conservation programs. Since then, with the support of the BCI, Panthera's Lion Program Survey Coordinator, Dr. Henschel, has conducted a survey of West Africa's last lion stronghold, the tri-national W-Arly-Pendjari Complex (located in Benin, Burkina Faso, and Niger), whose findings will be soon published.

Panthera also recently assessed the status of lion populations in all critical conservation areas of West Africa, and is currently involved in the development of a lion conservation strategy for the W-Arly-Pendjari Complex.

Read Panthera's recent report, Illegal Hunting and the Bush-Meat Trade in Savanna Africa: Drivers, Impacts and Solutions to Address the Problem.

Read Panthera's co-authored reports on the state of lions in West and Central Africa, Lion status updates from five range countries in West and Central Africa and 2011 Survey of Lion (Panthera leo) in Yankari Game Reserve and Kainji Lake National Park, Nigeria.


'/>"/>
Contact: Susie Weller
sweller@panthera.org
347-446-9904
Panthera
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Study by UC Santa Barbara researchers suggests that bacteria communicate by touch
2. Law that regulates shark fishery is too liberal: UBC study
3. New study will help protect vulnerable birds from impacts of climate change
4. Study jointly led by UCSB researcher supports theory of extraterrestrial impact
5. BYU study: Using a gun in bear encounters doesnt make you safer
6. 15-year study: When it comes to creating wetlands, Mother Nature is in charge
7. Pycnogenol (French maritime pine bark extract) shown to improve menopause symptoms in new study
8. Crystal structure of archael chromatin clarified in new study
9. EU-funded study underlines importance of Congo Basin for global climate and biodiversity
10. University of Houston study shows BP oil spill hurt marshes, but recovery possible
11. Study demonstrates cells can acquire new functions through transcriptional regulatory network
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
New study reveals lions are rapidly losing ground in Africa
(Date:1/26/2017)... , Jan. 26, 2017  Crossmatch, a leading ... a new solution aimed at combatting fraud, waste and ... was introduced at the Action on Disaster Relief conference ... meeting point for UN agencies and foreign assistance organizations ... Fraud, waste and abuse are a largely unacknowledged problem ...
(Date:1/23/2017)... , Jan. 23, 2017  The latest mobile ... smartphone prices have dropped dramatically. The quarterly average price ... 2013 to $276 in Q4 2016.  There are now ... price of $116, up from just 28 a year ... According to Maxine Most , Acuity Market ...
(Date:1/18/2017)... , Jan. 18, 2017 ... company that supports the entire spectrum of clinical ... been another record-breaking year for the organization in ... interest in MedNet,s eClinical products and services. The ... tremendous marketplace success of iMedNet ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/20/2017)... BioAmber Inc. (NYSE: BIOA ) announced today that Jean-Francois Huc ... company,s COO, has been named President, effective immediately.  ... has overseen the construction, start-up and operation of the manufacturing plant ... Mitsui JV.  Fabrice has also been extensively involved in the negotiations ... ...
(Date:2/20/2017)... ... 20, 2017 , ... Salford-based Mettler Toledo Safeline, which employs ... processing and packaging industries, was runner-up for the Environmental Achievement Award, sponsored by ... or taken the most innovative steps to improve its environmental performance. , ...
(Date:2/20/2017)... ... February 20, 2017 , ... ... patients, prevent chest wall collapses in pre-term infants with respiratory distress, and ... total of $600,000 in funding through the ninth round of the University ...
(Date:2/20/2017)... 20, 2017  At the 2017 Health Information ... Orlando , IBM (NYSE: IBM ) ... IBM Chairman, President and CEO Ginni Rometty ... today from 8:30-10 am ET, broadcast live on ... Her remarks examine the advent of the Cognitive ...
Breaking Biology Technology: