Released Captive Bred Lions

The topic of Lions (Wild & Captive) is very sensitive across the internet and I am in no way choosing sides. I came across this article which I thought was very interest and wanted to share it with you all on Africa Ninja.

African lion facts

The truth of the matter is the African lion is in danger, their natural habitat is being destroyed which in turn is destroying the lion species. 

Almost 200,000 lions roamed Africa one century ago, but recent studies show that the species is extinct in 26 countries across the continent and occupies a fraction of its historical rangeland. With lion populations plummeting by a staggering 43 per cent in just the last two decades, the King of the Jungle is now a vulnerable species on the IUCN Red List.


Approximately 23,000 of this iconic big cat remain in the wild, although researchers warn that the estimate is optimistic — the actual figure being more likely between as low as 16,500 and not higher than 30,000.

Over the last century, the species has been a victim of poaching, trophy hunting, and human-wildlife conflict. 

More recently, lion bone trade for use in traditional medicine and wine, as well as climate change are growing threats to its survival.

African Lion

Are captive-bred lions able to be released into the wild?

This has been a question asked for more than two decades. Are captive lions able to survive in the wild? 

There are a number of Lion organisations around Africa that I know of who have spent many years researching and trying to release captive lions with the intention of increasing the population of wild lions. 

SAPA (South African Predator Association) has done what a lot of people said they could not do. 

They have released two young lions into a managed nature reserve where they will need to hunt survive and they are doing just that. 

You can read their full article on their website.

I have watched that video 3 times now and I will say that I am happy with what they are doing.

To be able to release captive lions is a massive win for Lions, Africa and the world. Who would be unhappy for increasing the populate of wild lions across Africa?

Male Lion Being Released

Zimbabwe Lion Research

In Zimbabwe, there are two main organisations who research lions.

They have spent years (Not 100% sure of the amount but know a lot) on the breeding of lions with the intention of releasing them and from what I can see online if they are very close.

Between the two organisations, the Ngamo pride is due to be released in Chizarira National Park

This is something we would love to see happen in Zimbabwe. 

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