To mark World Lion Day I thought I would share a few more of my photos from my trip last year to Hwange National Park in Zimbabwe. Lions are under threat and their numbers are declining rapidly – habitat loss, poaching, trophy hunting, human-wildlife conflict, the lion bone trade, cub petting, canned hunting, human population are all factors. Photo’s like these are a reminder of what a privilege and thrill it is to see them in the wild. Nothing beats shooting wildlife with a camera.
“If one should be a prey, how much the better
To fall before the lion than the wolf.” – Shakespeare, Twelfth Night
Wonderful to see. Thanks for sharing x
Wonderful pictures! Why is there a trade in lion’s bones?
Thank you & sorry for late reply. That is very good question. So essentially the lion bone trade is when lions are raised to be killed for their bones. They are raised & killed to supply the Asian lion bone trade – the bones are used for medicinal purposes just like Tiger bones. Tigers have become scarce nearly extinct in the wild (although they are also bred on horrific farms in China for their bones/body parts). You may have heard that South Africa recently made raising lions for their bones legal – here is an article https://www.iol.co.za/news/south-africa/sa-government-approves-lion-bones-sale-despite-outcry-10053149
Then there is the deplorable practice of canned hunting where lions are raised to be killed by trophy hunters – their bones are of no use to hunters & can then be ‘sold’ into the trade. Canned hunting, cub petting, walking with lions & other exploitative tourism practices like photo ops with lion cubs all go hand in hand. Volunteers are used to ‘raise’ the cub then when the cubs are too large or dangerous for human interactions they are sold to canned hunting facilities. Everything is connected on some level.
As an aside there is also an increasing threat to lions from local traditional medicine in Africa – called muti or witch craft – lions are being poached for their paws, bones…One of the most famous & heartbreaking cases was of the 2 circus lions that were rescued & brought to South Africa http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/pair-lions-rescued-circus-flown-10558569
It is a big topic, I often post more articles on facebook or twitter if you follow me there. I hope this helps & If you have any more questions let me know!
That’s awful. Thanks