Lion status updates from five range countries in West and Central Africa.
Cat News Nr. 52: 34-39. ISSN 1027-2992.
The lion Panthera leo is listed as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species and the species’ current status raises increasing concern among lion specialists across its African range. The situation is particularly alarming in West and Central Africa, where as few as 1000-2850 lions might remain, and where it is considered regionally Endangered in West Africa. Here we present results from lion surveys conducted in 2006-2010, covering 12 Lion Conservation Units (LCUs) in West Africa and three LCUs in Central Africa. We were able to confirm lion presence in only two of the LCUs surveyed in West Africa, and in none of the LCUs surveyed in Central Africa. Our results raise the possibility that no resident lion populations exist in Congo, Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana.