African Parks is to translocate seven lions from South Africa as part of the reintroduction of the species into Akagera National Park in Rwanda in a ground-breaking conservation initiative for both the park and the country of Rwanda. Lions became extinct in Akagera 15 years ago when numbers of the species were poisoned by cattle herders in the years following the 1994 genocide when the park was unmanaged. The group of lions destined for Akagera includes five females that have been donated by &Beyond Phinda Private Game Reserve and two males that have been donated by Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife from Tembe Elephant Park. Located in the South African province of KwaZulu-Natal, both are relatively small, confined reserves where it is necessary to remove surplus lions, a situation that arises with good management.

Ambassador Yamina Karitanyi, the Chief Tourism Officer at the Rwanda Development Board said: “It is a breakthrough in the rehabilitation of the park under the public private partnership between the Rwanda Development Board and African Parks. Their return will encourage the natural balance of the ecosystem and enhance the tourism product to further contribute to Rwanda’s status as an all-in-one safari destination.”  Read More.

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