Cecil’s brother’s fate?: Jericho The Lion Officials
Published: August 3, 2015
Cecil’s brother’s fate?: Jericho The Lion Officials, JERICHO the lion is alive and roaming his park habitat in Zimbabwe, the Oxford University researcher tracking the lion confirmed on Sunday.
Brent Stapelkamp dismissed reports that the lion had been killed, saying a GPS device on Jericho didn’t suggest anything out of the ordinary.
Furthermore, the Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force, which told world media that poachers killed Jericho, retracted its statements on Sunday.
The head of the conservation task force, Johnny Rodrigues, said in a new statement that the erroneous information was the result of mistaken identity. Rodrigues said that another lion had been killed.
As proof of life, Oxford University tweeted a photo of Jericho, taken by Stapelkamp early Sunday morning.
Conflicting reports emerged on whether Jericho, the brother of slain Cecil the lion, was also killed Saturday in an illegal hunt in Zimbabwe.
Johnny Rodrigues, head of the Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force, told CNN that a hunter illegally gunned down Jericho in Hwange National Park. The task force also reported on its Facebook page that Jericho was killed at 4 p.m. local time.
Later, however, an Oxford University researcher tracking Jericho told CNN that the lion was alive and moving as of 8 p.m. local time Saturday, based on the GPS data from the animal’s collar.
The GPS device didn’t suggest that Jericho was killed or that anything was out of the ordinary, said Brent Stapelkamp, a field researcher who is part of a team tracking Jericho in Zimbabwe.
“We are seeking to clarify conflicting reports,” an Oxford representative said.
At a minimum, the conflict over Jericho added to the angst in the wake of Cecil’s killing, which provoked an international outrage because he was a protected animal.
Zimbabwe is seeking the extradition of American dentist Walter Palmer on accusations that he and others illegally hunted the lion, authorities said.
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