Zambia bans lion, leopard hunting

A lion called Bruiser rests in its enclosure at the Taronga Zoo in Sydney on January 8, 2013
A lion called Bruiser rests in its enclosure at the Taronga Zoo in Sydney. Zambia's tourism minister on Thursday announced a ban on hunting lions and leopards, saying the feline numbers are decreasing too quickly.

Zambia's tourism minister on Thursday announced a ban on hunting lions and leopards, saying the feline numbers are decreasing too quickly.

"We do not have enough cats for hunting purposes, especially if we have to save our national resources," Sylvia Masebo told AFP.

"The cats are gone, and no amount of convincing from any sector or group will convince me otherwise," Masebo said.

Without giving the exact figures, she said that does not have adequate stocks of cats such as leopards and lions hence the decisions to ban the hunting of the species.

A leopard in Sri Lanka's Yala National Park southwest of Colombo on September 16, 2012
A leopard in Sri Lanka's Yala National Park southwest of Colombo. Without giving exact figures, tourism minister Sylvia Masebo says Zambia does not have adequate stocks of cats such as leopards and lions hence the decisions to ban the hunting of the species.

"Although there is evidence that hunting and wildlife record income for the country, there was need to weigh the benefits against the fast depleting species of some animals," she said.

Lions are found in all of Zambia's major parks, but their numbers are limited.

The total population is thought to be between and 2,501 and 4,649.

(c) 2013 AFP

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