Cecil the lion,the leader of his pride and father to dozens of cubs, was recently killed, skinned, and beheaded by a Minnesota dentist for sport and a trophy. The dentist, Walter Palmer, tied a dead animal to a vehicle to lure Cecil out of Hwange National Park. He then shot Cecil with a bow and arrow and tracked him for 40 hours before finally killing him with a gun and cutting his head off.
Now it is rumored that Cecil's brother Jericho might have been killed as well. We must protect lions like Cecil and Jericho.
Even though African lion populations are rapidly declining in both western and eastern Africa, lions are not currently listed as a “Threatened” species under the United States’ Endangered Species Act. This allows for their heads and other body parts to be imported to the United States, encouraging cruel trophy-hunters like Palmer to travel to Africa and kill lions like Cecil for “trophies” to bring home.
Trophy-hunting is both devastating to the families it tears apart and devastating to the localities and species that rely on eco-tourism to thrive and conserve. It is senseless for the United States to continue supporting the cruel trophy-hunting trade by allowing lion imports into the United States. To protect lions like Cecil and Jericho, please urge Dan Ashe of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to issue a final rule listing lions as "threatened" and banning the importation of lion heads, tails, and skins in order to stop all trophy imports into the United States.