Ethiopia to protect cheetahs, dogs, lions

April 20, 2012 at 7:14 PM
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ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, April 20 (UPI) -- Ethiopia will embark on a plan for conservation of three of the country's large carnivores, the cheetah, the wild dog and the lion, conservationists say.

The plans were announced Thursday at the Wildlife Rescue, Conservation and Education Center in Addis Ababa.

The plans -- a Cheetah and Wild Dog Action Plan and a Lion Action Plan -- were developed by the Ethiopian Wildlife Conservation Authority, with input from key NGOs including the Wildlife Conservation Society, Zoological Society of London, Frankfurt Zoological Society and the Born Free Foundation, a WCS release reported.

The cheetah and wild dog plan recognizes the two species have wide overlap in their conservation needs, and both require larger areas than many other carnivore species, areas under threat from agriculture and construction.

Under the plan, cheetah and wild dog conservation would be a factor in land-use planning and implementation.

The action plan for lions is to secure and, where possible, restore sustainable lion populations throughout Ethiopia, recognizing their potential to provide substantial social, cultural, ecological and cultural benefits.

Though African lions are the national symbol of Ethiopia, they are also the principle predator of domestic livestock, and present a risk to human life, so the plan will focus on mitigation of human-lion related conflict.

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