Cage Breeding of Lions Should Not Be Priority – Animal Protection

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Uganda
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Uganda Wildlife Conservation Center (UWEC) should prioritise protection of lions in their natural habitats rather than breeding them in captivity, cautions World Animal Protection. This caution came as reports emerge that the UWEC is seeking close to 10 Billion Ugandan Shillings to set up lion breeding facilities in three National Game Parks.

While acknowledging the importance of increasing the country’s lion populations and preserving biodiversity, World Animal Protection cautions that cage lion breeding has failed terribly in other African countries such as South Africa who are currently implementing a phase-out process. The organization emphasizes that lions are wild animals that belong in their natural habitats, cautioning that breeding and hand-feeding them in a cages, leads to potential stress, health issues, and a compromised quality of life for the animals.

They also caution that cage breeding of lions could have unintended negative impacts on lion conservation by potentially driving an increase in human-wildlife conflicts, poaching and trafficking of wild lions leading to an irreversible imbalance in the ecosystem resulting to an eventual systematic biodiversity loss.

“We call upon UWEC to adopt conservation practices that prioritize the welfare of animals and their preservation in their natural habitat- the wild. The government should redirect its efforts and resources towards comprehensive wildlife protection strategies that address the root causes of the decline in lion populations, such as habitat loss, limited prey, poaching, and human-wildlife conflicts.” Says, Edith Kabesiime, Wildlife Campaign Manager at World Animal Protection.

“Breeding lions in captivity does not address the core issues threatening these majestic beings. It is imperative that the government invests in sustainable wildlife protection initiatives that prioritize the protection of lions in their natural habitats to ensure lions live and breed naturally in the wild, rather than pursuing potentially harmful cage breeding programs that are may not be sustainable in the long run.” She says.

World Animal Protection is committed to working collaboratively with governments, organizations, and communities across Africa to find humane and effective solutions for wildlife protection. The organization invites the Ugandan government to engage in a constructive dialogue to explore alternative and appropriate approaches aligned with international best practices and ethical standards.

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