The Louisiana Wildlife Federation, which is coordinating a campaign to save Louisiana’s endangered lions, bears and leopards, is working with other conservation groups to reach out to lawmakers and the governor to help secure the lions’ future.
“The lion population is in dire straits,” said the group’s president, John Cavanagh.
“It is our duty as wildlife stewards to help make sure that the lions continue to thrive, thrive and thrive and the people who love them.”
Louisiana wildlife and habitat experts are working with state and federal officials to address the threat posed by the animals.
Louisiana’s Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (DWDF) and the Louisiana Department of Parks and Wildlife (LDPW) have been collaborating to protect the lion population since the early 1990s, when it was first listed as endangered in the U.S. in 1987.
Louisiana officials estimate that there are approximately 400 lions in the state.
John Bel Edwards, a Republican, has pledged to sign a law that would restore the lion’s population to an endangered level.
A bill approved by the state House of Representatives would allow for the sale of lions to individuals in Louisiana and allow the state to take in up to $1 million per year to help the lions.
Livestock owners in Louisiana have until June 1 to get their permits to sell lions.
The bill would also give the state $1.5 million to purchase lions from a local wildlife rehabilitation center, which can take in around 100 lions.
It also would give the department $1,500 per lion for rehabilitation and education programs.
“There’s a lot of people out there who love the lions,” Cavanag said.
“There’s people who are concerned about the lions, and there’s a whole lot of folks who love and care about the lion and want to do the right thing for them.
There’s a need for all of these people to come together.”
The lions are listed as “threatened” by the U,S.
Endangered Species Act (ESA).
The ESA lists all species with an endangered status as threatened by extinction.