Out of Africa: Journey to Save Lions

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Out of Africa: Journey to Save Lions


With the arrival of Blank Park Zoo’s new male lion Deuce, and in preparation for the grand opening of Jaama Kwa – Connection to Africa May 4, we hope you’ll join us for the second event in our conservation series that honors three majestic African animals. Next Thursday, March 28, we invite you to join us as we honor the lion, presented by Dr. Amy Dickman.

Dr. Dickman is a National Geographic explorer who has more than 15 years working on large carnivore conservation, especially big cats like the lion. Dr. Dickman established the Ruaha Carnivore Project, based in southern Tanzania, in 2009. In 2011, she was awarded the Rabinowitz-Kaplan Prize for the Next Generation in Wild Cat Conservation.

Dr. Amy Dickman, keynote for the Lion Conservation Series event Thursday, March 28

The Ruaha landscape is one of the most important areas in the world for lions, but has been largely ignored by researchers, making it hard to develop conservation and management plans. In addition, it has the highest rate of lion killing documented in East Africa, as lions pose huge social and economic costs to the local tribal people, especially regarding loss of livestock. Dr. Dickman and her Tanzanian team are working to reduce the pressing threat of human/wildlife conflict and preserve the lions in Ruaha.

This local tribe is called the Barabaig, and historically, they've been untrusting of outsiders (especially conservationists) and are very secretive. Amy lived in their village for over a year before any of the local people would even speak to her, as there was a lot of fear on both sides. In her talk next week, Amy will discuss the significance of this project, the difficulties of working in an area where witchcraft and mythology abound and the conservation successes that are already emerging from this important work.    

Please join us next Thursday night, March 28 at 6 pm, to hear how Amy forged a relationship with the Barabaig tribe and how now Amy and the locals work together to save the African lion!

African Lion populations:

1900:  1 million

1980s: 100,000

Today:  less than 30,000 

We’ll have a social with appetizers from 6 to 7 pm with the presentation beginning at 7 pm. Purchase your tickets today – seating is limited!

Deuce, Blank Park Zoo's newest lion, on exhibit

And, mark your calendars for the final conservation series event: Rhinos by Bill Konstant on Thursday, April 25. Tickets can be purchased for an individual event. The conservation series is discounted for Blank Park Zoo members - click here for more information and to register today.

Related post: Out of Africa: Journey to Save Okapi

03/21/2013 9:55 AM |Add a comment
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