This is an excerpt from an article written by Nica Richards and published online by The Citizen on 08 December, 2020.
Government has been urged to phase out and eventually remove the industry entirely, which makes up less than 1% of the country’s gross domestic product.
Tourism and conservation authorities have for the first time come together in a united call to stop South Africa’s thriving captive-bred lion and big cat industry.
Government has been urged to phase out and eventually remove the industry entirely, a call which has been signed off and supported by 21 lion scientists, and endorsed by 41 scientists.
There are a number of reasons why the captive-bred industry is unsustainable. From the welfare of lion farm workers to the potential damage to the country’s tourism industry, experts are reiterating and substantiating their reasons to impose a zero lion bone quota, and to kick the entire sector to the curb.
Lion programme director at Panthera, Dr Paul Funston, emphasised in a webinar on Tuesday that there was no evidence to support the notion that captive lion breeding and hunting provided direct conservation benefits to wild lions.
There is also significant evidence to prove that there is a direct link between South Africa’s captive-bred lions and lion bone exports destined for Asia.