This week’s responsible tourism interview is with the amazing team behind the film Blood Lions. The film highlights the plight of captive Lions that are bred for canned hunting. Shockingly over 800 captive lions were shot in South Africa last year, mostly by wealthy international hunters under conditions that are anything but sporting or fare.
The film came about after Pippa Hankinson a member of the Blood Lions team visited a private lion breeding farm for the first time where she found approximately 80 lions in small enclosures, many visibly inbred and clearly stressed. She was deeply disturbed by her experience. As she investigated more she was shocked to discover that there are up to 8,000 lions in similar situations.
This is a multimillion dollar industry and most people don’t even know it exists. Most of the captive Lions are sold on to the Asian market for the “Tiger Bone” trade. How can we let this happen? If we can’t help protect one of our most majestic animals what hope does the not so photogenic ones have?
1. Congratulations on making the long list for the World Responsible Tourism Awards. What was your reaction when you found out?
It’s great news. Getting recognition from peers is important as it adds authenticity and prominence to the work.
2. What inspired you to start your business?
The idea to make Blood Lions belongs to the Producer Pippa Hankinson, but the film and campaign is driven by a team that wishes to see an end to the horrors of predator breeding and canned hunting, practices that have no conservation, educational or ethical value whatsoever.
3. Why did you choose to go down the responsible travel route?
Responsible travel is a vital component to protecting Africa’s wilderness and its biodiversity. It is simply the right thing to do.
4. What is your one tip for someone who wants to travel more responsibly?
Do your homework properly and seek out more than one reference or information source.
5. What has been your most rewarding outcome from choosing to practice responsible travel?
When you do the education and awareness properly, people do respond and this translates into behavioural change or demand reduction.
Thank you to all the people at Blood Lions for creating awareness on the plight of the captive Lions in South Africa. Keep up the great work.
To find out how the campaign is going please click this link – Blood Lions Campaign
Do you know of a responsible tourism business or charity that deserves be highlighted on our 5 minute series? Let us know by sending an e-mail to [email protected]
All photos by Blood Lions.