Potchefstroom – The South African Predator Breeding Association (SAPBA) has approached the North West University (NWU) to investigate the value of the lion industry in South Africa.

This follows the much publicised killing of Cecil the lion in Zimbabwe by American Walter James Palmer, and the recent release of the documentary “Blood Lions” which further put the industry under the spotlight.

The study, which will focus mainly on the main breeding areas of North West and the Free State, will also determine how many lions are part of the industry, as numbers vary between 4 000 and 6 000.

Prof Melville Saayman and his team at the Tourism Research in Economic Environs and Society division of the NWU will conduct the study. Saayman has praised the Association’s commitment to improving the industry.