This is an excerpt from an article written by Sifiso Zulu and published online by Eyewitness News on 03 May, 2021

JOHANNESBURG – The Blood Lions campaign on Monday said private farmers keeping lions in captivity should stop using conservation as an excuse for breeding these animals.

South Africa has for years drawn global criticism for allowing these practices to continue and this has affected the country’s brand in the ecotourism sector.

The campaign, which has been pushing for an end to canned lion hunting, estimated that at least 10,000 lions are being kept in deplorable conditions in about 300 facilities across the country.

A high-level government panel has recommended that South Africa begins the process of banning breeding lions, leopards, and rhinos among others in captivity for hunting.

The Blood Lions campaign has welcomed recommendations to halt and reverse the domestication of lions through captive breeding and keeping as a step in the right direction.

The campaign’s manager Dr Louise de Waal said there was no outright justification that captive breeding practices resulted in the conservation of wild animals.