I’m excited to share that after 20 years wild lions are roaming the plains and woodlands of Liwonde National Park in Malawi once again.
Did you know that only 20,000 lions remain across Africa?
Over a century ago more than 200,000 lions lived across the continent, but now Africa’s most iconic big cat is threatened by habitat loss and fragmentation, lack of wild prey and poaching for their skins, bones, claws and other parts for the lucrative illegal wildlife trade.
But today, lions are making a comeback in Malawi, and Liwonde has welcomed them home, thanks to the Malawian Government, the Dutch Government, the Lion Recovery Fund, and the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation.
Liwonde was on the verge of collapse before we assumed management of the park in 2015. There were more than three times the number of wire snares than large animals in the park and human-wildlife conflict was rampant with fatal results.
But in three short years, we’ve managed to:
- remove over 31,000 snares;
- drastically reduce human-wildlife conflict to where there has not been one human fatality in 2.5 years;
- reintroduce cheetahs last year after they went extinct 100 years ago, where now the population has doubled; and
- establish a healthy founder population of lions, following their reintroduction just this month, so they can breed and thrive.
And now with thriving wildlife, tourism revenue has increased by 70% in the past two years which supports the park and local communities living in the area.
We couldn’t have done this without the support of our key partners or from you.
Please consider donating today where 100% of your donation goes to the parks to support critical initiatives like these, where we are protecting endangered species, and restoring ecosystems for people and wildlife.