Road to Recovery

Photo: Susan McConnell

Our vision is to double the number of lions in Africa. 

In the past 25 years, lion numbers have been cut in half across Africa. The vision of the Lion Recovery Fund is to bring that half back, recovering lions continent-wide to ~40,000 individuals by 2050.

We work towards lion recovery using a three-pronged strategy that expands the conservation footprint, builds the public, political, and philanthropic will for lion and landscape recovery, and scales up the level of funding for conservation of lions and their habitat.

The Lion Recovery Fund is designed to be catalytic: it will work to stimulate new levels of financial commitment, create new conservation investments to expand the conservation footprint, scale up approaches proven to work, and convene organizations to explore ways to work together where collaboration has not been present before.

There is general consensus that recovering lions and restoring landscape across their range will require concerted efforts across three strategies: 

  • Expand Conservation Footprint

Expand the current footprint of lion conservation across Africa. Strengthen existing efforts and catalyze new conservation initiatives where there are gaps in lions’ range.

  • Build the Will

Build public, political and philanthropic will that is essential to recover lions and restore their landscapes.

  • Scale the Funding

Significantly increase the funding available for lion conservation through new private and public investment.

Success is Possible

Recent studies have revealed that if all protected areas within the existing lion range were adequately managed for lions, we could more than triple the number of lions we have today. The imperative to support these core areas and communal lands around them is clear.

Lions can be prolific. Lions will rapidly reproduce and their numbers will recover if their habitats are protected, if they have enough prey, if communities are incentivized to tolerate and co-exist with them and if poaching is minimized. 

If Africa’s landscapes were managed as lionscapes, i.e. lands where lions and their prey thrive to the benefit of local people, lion loss can be reversed and their populations—and that of many other critical species—will recover.