FUTURE KINGS PROJECT
We have grouped together our two collaring sponsorships with Kope Lion and the Mara Predator Conservation Programme to form our Future Kings Project. Working in line with our conservation strategy as part of our focus area to help monitor and protect young dispersing male lions. By combining both sponsorships this gives us the opportunity to grow the project in the future by potentially adding more collars through different organisations. This page will give you a brief overview on the project, for more details please read the strategy below.
WHY DO WE FOCUS ON YOUNG MALES?
When male lions reach sexual maturity they spend more time away from their birth pride. This is because their fathers will be less tolerant of their presence and other unrelated resident dominant males will be actively aggressive. This is of more concern if their birth pride has been taken over by new males and their fathers have been evicted. They will then become nomadic and will often follow the herds and will move many miles during this time. However at this time of life they will no be tolerated in the territories of the larger resident males and by trying to stay out of their way they often head into the community areas for their own safety. This however brings a completely different set of problems for them.
WHAT DOES THE PROJECT DO?
When these lions enter these community areas, natural prey species may be limited. The presence of cows and goats can become too tempting which can lead to regular killings and conflict with the local communities which can lead to repercussions with poison generally used. Livestock are a very important part of life to these communities and every loss is a loss of income. By putting collars on these young males, their movements can be tracked and communities warned if they are heading towards a particular area. It is hoped that by being proactive it can limit the number of livestock killings and reduce the number of lion fatalities. These lions are vital to the survival of these lion populations.