Conservation plan for Ethiopia’s wild animals

Ethiopia has unveiled a conservation plan to protect three of its largest carnivores – the cheetah, wild dog and lion, whose natural environments are under increasing threat by development and human-related activities.

The conservation plans were developed by the Ethiopian Wildlife Conservation Authority in collaboration with the Wildlife Conservation Society, Zoological Society of London, Frankfurt Zoological Society and the Born Free Foundation.

The national action plan recognises the broadly-similar conservation needs of cheetahs and wild dogs, both of which require large tracts of land. In recent times rapid agricultural expansion and construction have infringed on the animals’ habitats, while other risk factors cited by the plan include livestock conflicts, prey loss, poorly-managed tourism, illegal trade and disease.

As some of Ethiopia’s significant wild dog and cheetah populations are found in border regions near Kenya and South Sudan, the plan encourages collaboration with the wildlife agencies in both neighbouring countries.

The action plan for Ethiopia’s lions seeks to secure, and where possible restore, sustainable populations across the lions’ existing and potential range.