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AnimalsEndangered Species

Lions Could Be Extinct in 10-15 Years!

Lions, these wonderful big cats — I think there isn’t anybody who has ever avoided their charm — could be extinct in just 15 years. Even though they are dangerous, they are lovable, too. But, unfortunately, there’s some really bad news: their numbers have been shrinking tremendously over the last 50 years! While, in 1960, there were a healthy 450,000 lions in wild, in 2010, were only 20,000! If that trend continued, lions would become extinct in just just over 10 years.

National Geographic’s Dereck and Beverly Loubert drew broader attention to this lion crisis by working on and promoting their documentary, “The Last Lions.” It helped, but the problem is far from solved.

What is causing lion populations to decline? Can you guess?

TreeHugger has a good, 3-point summary:

  1. Human encroachment carving into the wild terrain, which the lions need to dwell and hunt.
  2. Too high a permissible amount of male lions taken in safari hunts.
  3. The burgeoning and increasing demand for lion bones– as substitutes for the unsustainable and popular use of tiger bones– in Asian folk remedies.

As you can see here, some of the issues facing lions are the same facing rhinos.

The first problem above concerns all sorts of species all over the world, a leading reason we are on the brink or even in the midst of the world’s 6th mass extinction. The second issue is a complicated one — poor African nations catering to financially beneficially tourist trade. But these nations should really realize that if lions go extinct, they won’t get nearly as much money for any type of safari, and that could happen soon. Lastly, the significance of these ‘exotic remedies’ is important and is downright ridiculous — when are people going to wake up and get over these completely harmful (and not at all helpful) superstitions? This has been a tremendously difficult cultural problem to address, but people are working on it more and more.

Summarizing: there are fewer and fewer lions every year. Maybe we, humans, could stop this looming extinction from happening, but we have to ask ourselves: do we ALL really care? This is very sad, but a true life story. Lions, like tigers, are in trouble. It is possible, in the near future even, that they could be completely gone from the wild….

Related Stories on Planetsave:

  1. Earth on the Brink of Sixth Mass Extinction
  2. National Endangered Species Day is May 20 {VIDEO}
  3. Rhino Crisis Round Up: Busts Galore, Museum Heists & Groenewald Back in Business
  4. Amphibian ‘Blitz’ Project Uses Crowd Sourcing to Track Endangered Species
  5. Endangered Plant Species List — Saving Endangered Plants

Images via safari-partnersgsephotosafari-partners




3 comments
  1. Marci

    So what can we do to help save the lions? Think about a college students budget- giving money is not really an option. What else can be done?

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