The news on Bubye’s lion cull has concerned a lot of people because many thought that Cecil’s cubs were in that area. The Cecil’s Pride team has conducted our own research to verify the details and would like to assure everyone that Cecil’s Cubs are safe.
Here’s a report from the Facebook page of Cecil’s research, Brent Stapelkamp.
This story is getting everyone in a panic and there are some glaring misrepresentations of the truth (lets put it that way!) that I feel I need to correct. There are headlines that mention “Cecil’s reserve” and “Cecil’s park” and that is incorrect. Bubye valley conservancy is many hundreds of kilometers from Hwange national park so the wild lions of Hwange are not in danger of being culled.
On that note, yes Bubye says that they have too many lions but I don’t believe for a second that they would cull lions. We must understand the distinction here between a fenced reserve with no dispersal of excess lions, a high density of prey and no other source of human related mortality other than trophy hunting and an un-fenced area like Hwange. This is chalk and cheese!
Bubye is a hunting reserve and because lion hunting has recently been restricted there is a backlash against lions. To say that there is a population explosion because of the “Cecil factor” is non-sense. Lions breed fast but not that fast! To say that they are eating more prey because of the drought and the short grass means that the prey are in some way more vulnerable is non-sense. Lions need cover to ambush prey! If prey was easier to catch with less effort, the lions would be suffering from obesity. I will say though that this story highlights a very serious issue in Lion conservation and that is the lack of space for lions in today’s Africa. Lions need vast areas of territory with abundant prey, where they won’t come into conflict with man and his livestock and these are few and far between. We should all now be putting our innovative minds together and generating a
I will say though that this story highlights a very serious issue in Lion conservation and that is the lack of space for lions in today’s Africa. Lions need vast areas of territory with abundant prey, where they won’t come into conflict with man and his livestock and these are few and far between. We should all now be putting our innovative minds together and generating a ground-swell of support for lions. We need to secure their habitats and landscapes, not just for them but for the people who live with them, so that lions from a place like Bubye could be relocated as whole prides to repopulate suitable habitat or corridors between suitable areas are managed to allow dispersal to repopulate areas. It is going to be costly but can we afford to turn our backs when Lions need us most?
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Brent has brought up a few things that we may not be aware. Bubye is in fact a canned hunting facility where lions are bred for the bullet. Why would they fence off the reserve to keep the lions in… so they could not wander off (every lion that escapes Bubye = less profit for them). Bubye was also the host of a lion raffle mentioned earlier a few weeks ago. We have good reasons to believe that Bubye’s action is more of a retaliation response to our protest against their raffle. They are fearful. they are shaking in their boots. We need to continue to press on and make trophy hunting no longer acceptable. The Cecil movement is growing and we have the largest rally planned in July with over 20,000 attending to shake government and hunter groups.
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