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Move mooted to help save African lion from extinction


The African Lion [Courtesy]

International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) is reaching out to individuals to boost its efforts to conserve African lions that risk extinction. 

IFAW Regional Director, East Africa, James Isiche, said widespread habitat destruction and poaching had dramatically decreased lions’ population.

“Over the last 100 years, almost 90 per cent of the world’s lions have been killed,” he said, adding: “We must act now before wild lions are gone forever. That is why we have set a goal to welcome 3,500 members,” he said.

The IFAW members, he said, are instrumental in helping to protect lions and other vulnerable animals around the world.

“Your membership gift could help bolster our work to expand lion habitat, train wildlife rangers who protect lions from poachers and stop the illegal wildlife trade. When you join today, you will get access to exclusive IFAW membership benefits such as  Special members-only content, Invitations to members-only webinars, and events with IFAW leaders and programme officers,” he said.

Worldwide, lions are being poached for their bones and teeth, and killed by trophy hunters.

“They have lost 80 per cent of their natural habitat, which forces them out of wild areas and into conflict with farmers and villagers. These clashes lead to more lions being killed... wild lions could be gone in 30 years,” he said.

Isiche said those joining in would help IFAW provide equipment and training for rangers who work tirelessly to remove traps and snares hidden in bushes by poachers out to capture and kill wild lions. They can cause deep wounds, amputations and deadly infections to animals and are a major reason lions are endangered.

“Rangers remove snares set up by poachers from protected national parks daily, but there are always more the next day,” he said adding that to protect lions and other animals in Africa’s national parks, rangers needed more solid support. IFAW rescues, rehabilitates and releases animals, besides restoring and protecting their natural habitats in partnership with local communities.


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