Return transfers between town and Masuwe estate or Mosi-oa-Tunya
take place at 6:30am, 10am and 3:30pm. You'll need 3 hours
for the activity. The early morning encounter includes breakfast,
drinks and snacks.
The "walk with lions" is available to anybody over 14 years of
age, "cub encounters" are available to anybody over 10 year of age.
You must stand taller than 1,5m for any of the interactions.
What happens to the cubs?
Lion Encounter operates the African Lion Rehabilitation &
Release into the Wild Program on behalf of ALERT (African Lion & Environmental
Research Trust) - www.lionalert.org.
Given the rapid decline of free-ranging lion populations
(between 80% and 90% in the last 50 years), ALERT supports assisted
lion reintroduction into specific sites where lion populations have
been eradicated. Whenever possible, reintroductions include the
release of young adult wild lions captured for the purpose of
translocation and release.
Where there is no available source population of suitable wild
lions, ALERT instigates a multi-stage program to reintroduce lions
originally bred from captive individuals. Captive lions that lack
hunting skills are bred in fenced areas. Their offspring is raised
around humans and take part in the lion walk program.
Because these cubs are used to humans, it is easier to study
their behaviour patterns and learn about the traits necessary to
form a successful pride, how they develop various hunting skills,
Once the 'lion encounter' cubs mature and learn to hunt, they're
used to form prides designed to maximize the breeding and survival
of offspring. These prides are released in large enclosures (10,000
acres plus) with natural game, and carefully shielded from human
contact. Their cubs are then released at an appropriate age into
For more go to the ALERT site.
The ALERT Communities Trust (ACT) works with all sectors of
society throughout Africa to promote the development of sustainable
conservation management plans. ALERT is proud to foster
partnerships with local communities that collaboratively develop
and implement African solutions to African challenges. ACT promotes
community action by raising awareness, motivating and empowering
people to protect and restore their environment and improve
Programs operated by Lion Encounter
Release Studies, Hunting success and hunting strategy in
The lion release program affords the opportunity to observe
lions hunting in a way that is very difficult with wild lions. Such
studies will assist in understanding the strategies that lions use
whilst hunting; what co-operation is present, and whether
individual lions learn techniques or hunting styles.
Assessment of character traits in African Lions
It is believed that lionesses can take any of three roles in a
pride; that of alpha, hunter or mother. Similarly, males can be
good hunters, pride defenders or fathers. Given the spectrum of
necessary individuals and skills that contribute towards a
successful pride, it is important that the prides released into
stages two and three of the African Lion Rehabilitation &
Release into the Wild Program are well-balanced.
Activity budgets in African lions, Zimbabwe and Zambia
An activity budget is based on a simple ethogram and is a way of
representing an animal's behaviour by recording the duration of
defined activities; such as resting, social behaviours and eating.
The primary objective of this study is to identify how age, gender,
enclosure size and complexity affect the activity budgets of
captive-bred African lions.
For more go to the ALERT site.
Do you question the ethics of "walking with lions"? Here's our position on
the lion debate.