At a recent press conference in Ethiopia plans were announced which will give Ethiopia’s three largest carnivores’ future conservation protection. Cheetahs, wild dogs and lions in Ethiopia face many threats to their future existence such as illegal trade and disease.
The plans were endorsed by the Ethiopian Wildlife Conservation Authority and announced at a press conference held by the Rescue, Conservation, and Education Centre in Addis Ababa on Friday.
Key NGOs worked alongside the Ethiopian Wildlife Conservation Authority as well as other wildlife organisations such as the Born Free Foundation and Wildlife Conservation Society. The plans were drawn up during workshops funded by the Wildlife Conservation Society, Howard G. Buffet Foundation, and Zoological Society of London; funding provided by the Columbus Zoo will aid in the plans implementation.
Dr. Sarah Durant, WCS Conservationist and Zoological Society of London Senior Research Fellow, said:
“These two strategies will serve as roadmaps to conserve Ethiopia’s cheetahs, wild dogs, and lions.”
“Ethiopia is an important area connecting East Africa to North Africa populations for these large carnivores. We are confident that the national action plans released today will go a long way in ensuring the conservation of these species for future generations.”
A national plan has been drawn up to protect the wild dogs and Cheetahs. The plan includes the strengthening of the capacity to conserve wild dogs and cheetahs and encouraging networking within Ethiopia and neighbouring countries.
A separate national plan has been drawn up for the conservation of the lions of Ethiopia. Plans include securing and restoring lion populations and preventing the illegal trade in lions and lion products.
Speaking on Friday, Netty Puchase, Lead Coordinator – Range Wide Conservation Planning for Cheetah for ZSL/WCS, said:
“This is a very exciting day for cheetah, wild dog, and lion conservation, as a national action plan provides the roadmap for all concerned to start working to ensure that cheetahs, wild dogs, and lions continue to survive, and populations are protected in Ethiopia.”
“The national action plan was developed under the umbrella of the regional strategic planning process of cheetah and wild dog in East Africa, and as a result Ethiopia is part of this larger network of committed governments – a network that is critical to ensure that cheetah and wild dog persist well into the future.”