Two years ago, Cecil the lion was killed by a Minnesota-based dentist in Hwange National Park in Zimbabwe, sparking international outrage. Earlier this month, Xanda, the son of Cecil the lion, suffered the same fate.
Officials have been following the movements of Xanda the lion via a GPS collar outfitted back in 2015. Lack of movement on July 7th indicated that the lion had died, and sources familiar with the hunt confirmed the kill.
Xanda strayed outside the boundaries of the National Park, where lions have essentially no protection from game hunters who can legally shoot the animals if the proper permit is obtained.
Researchers are mourning the animal’s death.
“He was shot two kilometers from the park boundary in the Ngamo Forest,” Dr. Andrew Loveridge, a project leader and research fellow with Oxford University’s Wildlife Conservation Research Unit said. “As researchers, we are saddened at the death of a well-known study animal we have monitored since birth.”
The circumstances surrounding Xanda’s death are still fuzzy. In 2015 when his father was killed, he was lured outside of the park’s boundary with food before being killed.
Humane Society International has condemned the killing.
“The killing of Xanda just goes to show that trophy hunters have learned nothing from the international outcry that followed Cecil’s death. They continue at a time when lions face a conservation crisis in Africa, with as few as 20,000 lions left in the wild. Xanda was a well-studied lion like this father and critical to conservation efforts in Zimbabwe,” Humane Society’s Masha Kalina said in a statement.
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