Zambia

Livingstone

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Lion Captured Near Livingstone

Lion Captured Near Livingstone

Dynamite, the wandering Lion, Hwange National Park
Dynamite, the wandering Lion, Hwange National Park

Residents of the wider Livingstone area were on alert in January when a wild lion was reported in the area, the first for over thirty years. It was initially feared that the animal had escaped from one of the two captive lion tourist interaction operations which operate locally, who were quick to confirm that none of their animals were missing and to offer assistance to local wildlife officials.
   
Zambia Wildlife Authority area warden Rodgers Nkhoma confirmed that the authority started tracking the lion immediately after it was first reported in the area on 22 January, and that the animal had killed three cattle in Songwe village area. He added that there was provision in the law for compensating the owners of the cattle for their losses.
   
In an area with virtually zero natural prey species to support lions, the Zambia Wildlife Authority, with the support of wildlife vet Dr Ian Parsons, and help from staff of the two local captive lion operations, decided to capture the lion to prevent any further loss of livestock. Often the last resort with lions which become livestock raiders is to shot them as problem animals.
   
The capture was successfully undertaken on 26 January, when the lion was darted and drugged and transported to a secure captive facility near Dambwa. Questions over his origins took a surprising turn when it was discovered that hidden underneath his dark shaggy mane was a GPS research collar.

Read more in this issue:
The Amazing Zambezi Traveller
Lion Captured Near Livingstone
Travelling Lion Turns a Spotlight on the Species

Read more articles from this issue:
Zambezi Traveller (Issue 08, March 2012)

Zambezi Traveller Directory:
Hwange Lione Research

Read more about the region in our destination guide:
Hwange
Livingstone
Victoria Falls