- Lions are persecuted and killed as retaliation when they come into conflict with humans. This happens when lions attack livestock (or occasionally people) or else just because of the perceived threat.
- Habitat loss is another of the huge threats the lions are facing. Not only do they have less where to live, but loss of habitat pushes them into more contact and conflict with humans – contributing to the problem described above.
- The wild prey on which lions feed is becoming more and more scarce as humans over hunt their prey species and destroy habitat to make way for settlements, agricultural land or grazing ground.
- Lions often get caught in snares meant for herbivores/bushmeat
- Trophy hunting is also threat, especially when not managed properly and when males in their prime with prides to protect are killed.
There has been a lot of hype lately about trophy hunting due to Cecil the Lion’s death. However as you can see by reading the above, banning trophy hunting is merely a small step in trying to save the species as there are so many other more serious threats to lions that also need to be tackled.
- Panthera : Panthera have the Project Leonardo that seeks to ensure long-term survival of the lion by targeting the areas where lions are most imperiled. The objective is to conserve the African Lion in key landscapes by mitigating human-lion conflict and building and restoring connectivity between landscapes that are critical to the lion’s survival.
- Big Cats Initiative : National Geographic in collaboration with Beverly and Dereck Joubert launched the Big Cats Initiative to raise awareness and implement change to the dire situation facing big cats. Their approach includes reducing threats, keeping the peace (between humans and lions) and community outreach.
- Walking for Lions : This is a small organisation which aims to compile vital information about lion populations so that effective actions can be taken.