Lions, a key species to the African ecosystem and important icons of human culture as symbols of courage, bravery, and august, are facing critical danger as their populations have decreased from 200,000 to just 20,000 in just ten years. Lions were once widespread throughout much of Africa, Asia, and Europe but, due to habitat loss, hunting, and disease, only exist in the wild today in parts of Africa and a small sub-species in India.
Conscientious people are taking notice of this dramatic decline of the species and are taking action. In the summer of 2007, I volunteered at African Lion & Environmental Trust, an organization that breeds lions with the objective of diversifying and strengthening the gene pool. The lions in these photographs will eventually join with other lions to create prides that will be released into protected reserves throughout Africa and will help to rebuild a strong lion population. Click on the image to the left to enter the gallery and view photographs of the whole pride!