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How far should we go to helping wild animals?

February 11th, 2010
01:20 PM ET

Kenyan wildlife officials are ferrying thousands of zebras and wildebeest to a park in the country's south to feed starving lions and hyenas, and prevent a conflict with humans.

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/02/11/zebra.blog.jpg caption ="Zebra's being rounded up to be shipped away."]

The animals will be hauled from four locations to restock Amboseli National Park's population, which lost 80 percent of its herbivores in a recent drought, said Kentice Tikolo, spokeswoman for the Kenya Wildlife Service.

About 4,000 zebras and 3,000 wildebeest will be transferred to Amboseli. The zebras will go first.

The wildebeest will follow, after calving season, Tikolo said.

Once at Amboseli, they're expected to breed and sustain the lions over the long term.

Shipping the animals from Soysambu Conservancy in the Rift Valley and three other nearby locations will cost about $ 1.4 million, according to Tikolo.

The animals are herded into a funnel-shape enclosure using helicopters and loaded into trucks to Amboseli. From there, they are released into the wild.

What do you think? Should we try and help these lions from starvation or should we leave them to find food on their own? How far should we go to helping wild animals?

soundoff (266 Responses)
  1. pistachio

    No, zebras or other animals should not be brought in to feed the lions. Kill the lions. Who cares about tourism. Zebras and other animals are not food for lions. That is ridiculous to bring them to Ambroseli for that purpose. The landowners SHOULD have the right to kill the lions or other animals that are killing their livestock. What a horrible country that would purposely take animals to be eaten by other animals.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:06 pm | Reply
  2. Beth

    Being torn up alive as food has to be one of the worst ways to die....extremely cruel and barbaric and painful. Can't they humanely kill them and put the meat out for the lions instead???

    This is a sad story.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:07 pm | Reply
  3. Clarke Tistadt

    Yes to this option. Without efforts like this, who knows how many more years will we have to enjoy lions in their natural habitat and not just zoos.
    More power to you folks. Wish you all the best!

    February 11, 2010 at 2:12 pm | Reply
  4. larryc

    This isn't my decision, but I wonder if PETA members who object should not be ferried in instead to save the zebras and wildebeest. Just a thought?

    February 11, 2010 at 2:13 pm | Reply
  5. rob

    "Kill the lions" until they too are gone?
    Lions eat herbivores. That's the law of nature.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:15 pm | Reply
  6. GR Maxwell

    considering man help mess up the ecosystem, yes we should replenish livestock for the lions so they will not attach humans and their livestock, which they need to also survive.

    lions have always lived off the land and what was provided to them in the natural(which is living off of other animals, they only hunt/kill when they are hungry).

    I agree that the zebra and wildebeasts should be shipped in to try to offset the lions way of life and natural way it has always been.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:16 pm | Reply
  7. Deek

    While it may seem barbaric, it is natural for lions to prey on other animals. I don't have an issue with this as had the drought not killed off lion food supplies, they would be eating them anyway.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:16 pm | Reply
  8. Cherie

    Yes, I believe you should help them out, they are already being poached. It's too bad it had to come to this but zebras are their natural prey and last I heard they weren't in endangered like the lions are by being poisoned. Is that a better way, I think not! It's also too bad that they would have to result in human conficts to eat to survive. Haven't we encroached on the animals of this world enough. Maybe it is time we helped them out!

    February 11, 2010 at 2:19 pm | Reply
  9. Mary

    This is a very sad story. So cruel. Who makes these decisions? Do they have no conscience?

    February 11, 2010 at 2:19 pm | Reply
  10. Ben

    pistachio and Beth,

    You are kidding aren't you??! Zebras are exactly that – eg. food for lions. Have been for thousands of years. Lions are going away and we can't afford to lose them. They don't procreate like zebras and wildebeest's do, whose numbers total in the hundred's of thousands annually.

    Please get off your pedestal and educate yourself before you come on here and talk about "killing all the lions".

    pistachio, especially you. You need to get off the video games and learn something about what goes on in other countries and how the real world is. It isn't on TMZ.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:19 pm | Reply
  11. Billy

    Well I have read the humanitarian (for the zebras) comments, and have to say; Well there is a point that this may be natures way of thinning the herd, however there are only some many acres of land available for wild lions to raise. If we don't help the ones we have to stay alive we may lose all of them. Lions could become another extinct species.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:20 pm | Reply
  12. Fred McLaughlin

    Who gave humans the monopoly on living space? Maybe throw a few thousand Masai out for the lions to eat.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:22 pm | Reply
  13. Tim

    Beth – Please tell me your post was satirical, I can't believe anybody would be that naive. What do you think happens in nature? Nature IS cruel. Predators eat other animals. It's an extremely brutal, bloody process.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:22 pm | Reply
  14. Jim

    You people are idiots!

    "Zebras and other animals are not food for lions." What? That is exactly what they are! Yes, this will help the tourism trade, but it is more about preserving the lions! The lion population in the world is numbered in the thousands, while zebra and wildebeast have populations of millions. A few thousand makes no difference to their population, but maintains an entire species of another.

    And if you read the article, it states that the drought killed 80% of the herbivore population in the area. So, not only does this provide food for the carnivores, it restocks the depleted population of the other species.

    The best thing about this is that it only cost $1.4 million. I can imagine if this were run by American companies, it would have cost over $10 million.


    February 11, 2010 at 2:23 pm | Reply
  15. Mama

    To you pistachio, in the real wild, Lions eat Zebras and other animals all the time so for you to say that it isn't right for animals to eat other animals well that is the way of nature. Sad as it may be, that is just the way it is. I absolutely do not agree with you saying that to kill the Lions because they are hungry. What would you do if you were starving???? I am an animal lover to the core but there is not much you can do about the natural way of life.

    I think to keep the lions from attacking people's livestock and also people, this sadly has to be done.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:24 pm | Reply
  16. xtinct2


    "Zebras and other animals are not food for lions."

    really???. . .then what is food for lions?!?!!!!
    it's quite apparent that you don't know what you're talking about

    February 11, 2010 at 2:24 pm | Reply
  17. Chris

    The Zebras will be let go into the wild. They will be given a fighting chance. It's not like they will release them into some sort of holding area where they release the lions!

    Pistachio: Who cares about tourism?? How about the people that live there? They rely on that income in many ways.

    Beth: Have you ever eaten meat that may have been sitting for weeks? It may take a lion that long to find the carcas. It's not as good as when it is fresh.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:25 pm | Reply
  18. Barbara Weiss

    NO to Zebras as food for Lions.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:25 pm | Reply
  19. bben

    Absolutely! Lets see... 2000 starving lions as compared to millions of remaining zebra? DUH.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:25 pm | Reply
  20. Ceylaan

    Beth and pistachio...what are you thinking? Of course lions eat zebras and other large game. You can't cut the lions food for them, they are wild. The people are only bringing the food in. Join PETA and follow larryc's idea.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:26 pm | Reply
  21. Sheridan Williams

    Whether we like it or not, this needs to be done.

    The life food chain must be preserved and is not to be interrupted. If a major link in this food chain, of which lions do play a part in, it can seriously affect the rest of the chain of which us humans are a part of.

    The heartbleeders are doing this preservation of our chain no favours at all whatsoever.

    Furthermore, lions need warm flesh, not chopped up flesh which will then be cold, this is not natural.

    Just let nature do it's job and you do yours, which is to let this natural procession take place.

    Pain is part of life and nothing will change that. Not even you.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:26 pm | Reply
  22. Nancy

    I hope the draught has been resolved, or else they're sacrificing the zebras for nothing. They'll just end up with the same problem as before.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:27 pm | Reply
  23. dee4005

    Unusual story....but I would rather the lions feast on a Zebra or Wildebeest than my wife, son or daughter. Tough call..hope it works.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:27 pm | Reply
  24. Shelby

    Yes, helping to feed the lions is the right thing to do.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:27 pm | Reply
  25. Kelly

    I love animals more than I like humans. I am active with my local SPCA, spend over $300 a month on food for animals, and advocate animal "rights" from pain and suffering. However, I have also lived in countries where nature is a way of life and a lot of Americans who have never been outside their California haciendas do not understand why nature is cruel but necessary. The lions will die without food – plain and simple. The zebras are put into the area alive so they can breed and make little zebras. This is a long term solution. Killing zebras and putting meat in an area is a great idea but a very short term solution. As for postachio, every country is horrible if it has a zoo, farm, country living, etc. It's call nature and the cycle of life.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:27 pm | Reply
  26. Doug

    I think it's a great idea. I applaud them for looking after their wildlife and trying to reach a balance.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:27 pm | Reply
  27. Hank

    You got to be kidding, of course repopulate the local wildlife if it was killed off by drought. Yes being torn to shreads is a horrible way to die, but that is nature. In the states we repopulate local wildlife that was erradicated by hunting, like wolfs and coyote, etc. They don't kill to eat? Come on get a life this is nature. The drought that caused this was probably caused by man anyhow.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:28 pm | Reply
  28. Sam

    wow...you people are ignorant when it comes to the nature ot things. Yes...ferrying animals to restock the depleted animals in one park does seem a little much...but if not done the lions will die...and they are the top of the food chain. You loose them...the balance goes out of wack.

    P.S. Beth...your an idiot. That's how lions and every other creature on the planet kills. I suggest you stand with a placard on the savannah protesting the way lion kill.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:28 pm | Reply
  29. stan english

    Pistachio, you are an ignoramus of the first order. Obviously you have no concept of the 'Natural Order'. What,prey tell do you think the lions ate before the drought? God!, what stupidity!

    February 11, 2010 at 2:28 pm | Reply
  30. Pro_lion

    Difficult decision, we should not interfere with the wild, then again, if we do not, we could lose the Lions. Then again, natural selection with take over and the strongest of the lions will survive and live to breed again.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:28 pm | Reply
  31. xboy


    February 11, 2010 at 2:30 pm | Reply
  32. Susan

    Helping to restore the ecosystem by adding zebras and wildebeests is a good solution to sustain the wild populations of predators. It is the only fair and responsible plan to support and maintain both the human and animal populations.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:30 pm | Reply
  33. jon

    Is this really our problem? This is what is wrong with this whole USA. We can not keep our nose out of anything! If they want our advise they would have asked for it. Take care of the problems in our own country and keep our thoughts too ourselve.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:31 pm | Reply
  34. Wayne

    Call Al Gore, I think he invented all of the animals and will have a multi-billion dollar solution.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:31 pm | Reply
  35. David

    No why take a life to fulfill a lions hunger survival has been the name of the game for all animals to include human will you kill a human to feed a human

    February 11, 2010 at 2:31 pm | Reply
  36. Gomez2

    Beth&Pistachio, I'm sure you think the zebras are all cute and cuddly, but WHAT PLANET DO YOU LIVE ON?! Lions have been hunting zebras, antelopes, etc. etc. etc. in Africa for hundreds of thousands of years! What, you think Purina makes Lion-Chow?

    February 11, 2010 at 2:33 pm | Reply
  37. harria

    NO! Let nature take its course. Humans 'interfere' in attempt to help all too frequently. The only reason for shipping in and killing thousands of animals is to help tourism?? I'm sad.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:33 pm | Reply
  38. James Marmite

    One commentator states:

    "Zebras and other animals are not food for lions"

    Yes they are, it's part of the natural food chain. Are you really advocating that we should allow all carnivores to starve to death in a quest to create a vegetarian animal world?

    February 11, 2010 at 2:34 pm | Reply
  39. Debra

    NO. It's supposed to be survival of the fittest, not helping them survive by bringing in innocent zebras. This is total disgust.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:35 pm | Reply
  40. Yogi

    Are the lions going to be happy with only zebras and wildebeest? I mean, won't they get sick of the taste and want more variety of meat? I guess since they are lions, they won't accept dead animals – they always kill and eat, isn't it? What happens to the lions if they don't get meat? Won't they ever touch veg food?

    Why can't they simply distribute the lions them all over to be kept in zoos or other jungles for some time till the ecology settles down? They are going to kill and eat everywhere anyway, why does man want to take on the sin of giving them live animals? let them live somewhere else and transport them there? Surely, the different countries can co-operate in this regard with Kenya? Maybe even exchange carnivores with herbivores from other countries...not sure what the nuances are here but isn't it worth a thought?

    February 11, 2010 at 2:36 pm | Reply
  41. Deanna

    I wonder what the other side of the economic story is here. Going back to the idea that the Zebras are coming from somewhere... were they going to be lion food in the firstplace anyways and the only thing that has changed is their geographic location? If so, this isn't cruel or irrational as long as the lions left behind still have enough food.
    On the otherhand, if they were not wild zebras that would have been lion food originally, where are they coming from and what types of losses or effects is the original "home" giving up? Perhaps there are other breaks in the food chain that are happening now as a result?

    February 11, 2010 at 2:37 pm | Reply
  42. Andrea

    Yes, the zebras and wildebeests should be transferred over because if they are not the lions will head towards human prey. end of story.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:37 pm | Reply
  43. Chris Brevoort

    Two questions are paramount in my mind:

    1. Why didn't they help the poor animals dying of drought in the first place? How stupid that they now have to replace them from elsewhere when they should have gone all-out to save the ones who died in the first place.

    2.The article says nothing about the number of ZEBRAS and WILDEBEEST. Are they just endangering two species to save a third? This is a glaring omission in coverage and the article's value and meaning are greatly reduced without this information.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:38 pm | Reply

    We have an abundant supply of wild horses in the US–we can't send them to the French to eat, so why don't we send them to the lions.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:39 pm | Reply
  45. Robert

    Don't send in zebras/etc, send in PETA as food. The lions will die of indigestion; the zebras will live; PETA will be gone, and everyone else will be happy.

    If PETA gave 1/2 as much energy to their own race as they did to non-humans then maybe, just maybe their 'voice' might have some relevance.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:41 pm | Reply
  46. L. Kinsey

    I think it is so funny how people get extremely defensive about letting the Zebra be eaten. It is nature. I think there is nothing wrong with trying to keep the lion population alive. We already have lost enough species due to extinction. This is what they eat, people! Geez. PETA is the worst type of group out there. Pretty soon, nobody will be allowed to own a pet, because that is inhumane to keep an animal captive! lol

    For the people who think that being torn apart by lions and eating is a horrible way to die, they have no rational thought and understanding of the way the world works. We have to have an ecosystem or we all die.

    Um, think Easter Island?

    February 11, 2010 at 2:42 pm | Reply
  47. Heather

    Some of these comments are the stupidest that I've ever read. The US isn't involved in anything but reporting this story, so don't fret that your precious tax dollars will go to waste on preserving wildlife.

    Re-population of wildlife happens. They do this in areas of the US when herbivores become too plentiful and require additional predators. This is the same thing. Anything that protects the farmer's lives and well-being is a good idea. This includes diverting predator attention away from their livestock and families, as well as ensuring that tourist dollars continue to aid the community and protected wildlife areas.

    Just consider that the food chain worked fine, until we came along. Human progress and development has created a strain on resources, such as water and land space, which has created problems for plants, animals and insects. As the caretakers of the earth, we are responsible for ensuring that animals don't become extinct as a result of our growth as a species. Extinction would only be beneficial if it were applied to the human race and the earth would flourish without our presences. Just think about that.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:42 pm | Reply
  48. PHaag

    Everyday we as human spread out into rural areas for "space" from the rat race. The problem is we are also encroaching on lands that animals have used for feeding, breeding and living for millions of years. Unfortunately this situation will only get worse and since an animal will forrage for food or migrate to where there is suitable food available and given that the open ranges are quickly being taken over for human inhabitation we have to balance this dilemna and make compromises. The lions & hyenas have to have sustanance from some food source. Better we provide them "wild" imported foods than have them feeding on livestock and humans. We have made this situation for the animal kingdom and we are supposed to be stewards of this planet. It is high time we do something to preserve these animals for future generations to come since the lions & hyenas both play integral parts of the ecosystem.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:42 pm | Reply
  49. Andrew

    You people are retarded what do zebras do normally in the wild? get eaten by predators...so why not use them to save the lions?

    February 11, 2010 at 2:42 pm | Reply
  50. MCS

    Yes. Since human overpopulation is responsible for the restricted environments of the carnivores (they are not free to move to greener pastures in times of disaster) humans must take responsibility for the animal's survival where they are.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:42 pm | Reply
  51. Joe

    Animals including humans eat animals! It is a fact of life!
    Life in the wild is cruel but that is nature. Lions are the apex predator and have been hunting, killing and eating antelope, zebra, wildebeest and any other animal that it can kill for thousands of years. In most cases, the sick, injured and old are taken. When a lion kills, it will either break its preys neck or suffocate it; live prey will continue to struggle and a zebra or wildebeest can kill a lion with its kick.
    Do I agree with animal relocation? No, droughts have been occurring since the beginning of time and the lions are still here. The few remaining will either die off or breed and the following generations will be stronger and better able to adapt to adverse conditions. These animals are being relocated to ensure continuing flow of the tourist dollar.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:43 pm | Reply
  52. Amato

    How ridiculous to both pistachio and Beth. That is the natural order of things. Yes, zebras ARE a normal part of the lions diet as they are natural prey. This is also to replenish the zebra population there, not just to make a buffet for lions. Now, about 'humanely killing zebras and preparing lion chow', that is absurd. Should we humanely kill mice to feed to the wild snakes of the world. How about humanely killing flies for frogs to eat. No, I got it, I got it - how about humanely killing fish so whales, sharks, dolphins, etc. have prepared meals too. Gimme a break.

    Go Kenya, it's about time we do more to help a dying species that we humans have almost wiped out single-handedly.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:43 pm | Reply
  53. John Fredericks

    Zebras are food so are wildebeest and yes they should feed them.Hum zebras or us

    February 11, 2010 at 2:43 pm | Reply
  54. Tonya

    What we think doesn't really matter because they are going to do it regardless. I say that we should not worry about this situation because it has already been etched in stone. Of course everybody and everything needs to eat but at what expense should this happen.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:44 pm | Reply
  55. Carolyn

    What happens when the zebras are gone?

    February 11, 2010 at 2:45 pm | Reply
  56. Matthew

    Yes it sucks being sent to slaughter..... but how much different is it than rounding up cattle here in the US. It is our responsibility to future generations to save the lions. Like the tigers, which are almost completely extinct by the way, lions are worth protecting. If they need food, we should feed them. If they need shelter, we should provide them with one. Simple as that.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:45 pm | Reply
  57. BigMike

    Lions eat more than 11 pounds of meat a day. Zebras unfortunately are a normal part of their diet. along with other wild animals. However, I don't think we should send thousands of Zebra's to their death in favor of the lions. I don't think this is exactly what they have in mind. Because of the drought, most of the Zebra population has been wiped out, and brining Zebras to this area and releasing them will also benefit the Zebras. There will be far more of them survive than get eaten. No matter what we do, we cannot change the natural order of nature when it comes to wild animals. Short of putting all of them in Zoos, which is impossible of course, we have to accept the laws of nature. I have no problem with what they are doing as long as the Zebras has the same chance to survive as they would anywhere else. If they are planning on just handing these Zebras to the lions by putting them at ground zero, then I do have a problem with it.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:46 pm | Reply
  58. Liz

    This is called conservation management for preservation. Not always a warm fuzzy story. But necessary.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:47 pm | Reply
  59. chris

    So let's get this straight. To assist an over[populated lion outbreak, they are going to import food, so that the Lions can survive, and breed more. This makes as much sense of the drive to ban toy guns, and kepe the real ones.

    Here's an idea, instead of bringing food to the Lions and others, how about thining out the ranks? Makes a ton of more sense then rounding up the zebras to be food.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:47 pm | Reply
  60. Anna, proud PETA Sponsor

    Why do lions have to be given meat in the first place? I have raised beautiful healthy cubs here in Sedona Arizona on a paste made from Worms, Larva and Tofu. It would be terrible to bring live animals into this area to be victimized by the lions. This problem was created by humans (deforestation, wasting of water resources) and must not be fixed by simply throwing animals into a situation where they are slaughtered in the most inhumane manner. Please, please, augment the lion's food resources with a vegan mix like I suggest and allow nature to respond over time.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:49 pm | Reply
  61. Ray

    There's a very simple solution – just teach the lions to be vegan, like all you folks complaining must surely be!

    If that sounds absurd, then realize how absurd you sound for complaining about this conservation effort. The drought in the area caused 80% of the local herbivores to die off – now, in the pre-human-development era, that wouldn't be a problem, since the zebras and wildebeest from neighboring areas would eventually just wander back into that territory and repopulate it.

    But we live in a human-dominated landscape. The wild animals are only free to roam in certain designated areas, even in the "wilds" of Africa. Letting the lion population be killed off by farmers who don't want them to eat their livestock in areas bordering this nature preserve is itself an intervention by humans, with weapons, into the lives of these animals.

    How anybody could argue *against* repopulating the species that inhabited this land before the drought is beyond me. The fact that the zebras are food for lions is simply part of the ecosystem of the area – the government isn't rounding the zebras up and slaughtering them to make mincemeat for lions, they are releasing them into the area to live, breed and die as zebras do everywhere, which also means occasionally becoming lion food.

    And the fact that we have to ferry in zebra to repopulate the area is more an artifact of the landscape we've created, with its disconnected regions of nature preserve and forest, than it is a rejection of survival of the "fittest".

    February 11, 2010 at 2:51 pm | Reply
  62. JB

    Yes. When Mankind interferes with the natural ecosystem it is our responsability to practice smart conservation and help rebuild a natural environment for these creatures.
    The idea that we should kill off all predators to save the vegans is just the type of tree hugging lunacy I expected to find here. Almost every creature on earth has a natural predator. What would be left if we slaughtered every animal on earth that didnt live a vegan lifestyle. Preach more about barbarism please.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:52 pm | Reply
  63. Jorge

    The lions are not being fed zebras. The zebras that died are being replenished in the area. The lions, in turn, are hunting the zebras, as it has happened daily for all of history.

    February 11, 2010 at 2:53 pm | Reply
  64. sante

    it looks like a bad idea. saving wild animals by destroying valuable wildlife at the risk of unbalancing another ecosystem . it would be more reasonable supplying the lions with some low grade cattle just to avoid total extinction instead of playing God .

    February 11, 2010 at 2:55 pm | Reply
  65. Tony

    If the land has not recovered then you are swimming upstream. If the problem that killed all the herbivores is still in play, then bringing more to eat all of the grasses and plants is not the answer. Having the lions learn to run down weak and starving prey will wreak hovoc with the balance of natural selection. I have never understood how do gooders want to leave nature aloe until it is in conflict with "their" sense of right and wrong.

    February 11, 2010 at 3:01 pm | Reply
  66. Steve

    I think this story is written with a biased tone and an excellent example of the "journalist" imprinting the story with their own spin. The story is about Kenya moving animals to balance out the animal populations that have been affected by drought. The lion good fortune, the poor luck of the individual zebras and the benefits to the live stock farmers are the relative pros and cons of the move. The lead should not be lambs to the slaughter but the move itself. Sorry for the high horse comment but you asked!

    February 11, 2010 at 3:06 pm | Reply
  67. Mark

    No, they should let nature take its course. If the drought killed off the food supply then you'll lose some lions to the lack of food and the killing of them from live stock owners. It's fine if zebras get eaten by lions in the natural habitat but aren't we messing with mother nature by replenishing a good source that it took away?

    February 11, 2010 at 3:08 pm | Reply
  68. Diane

    Absolutely. Lions and hyenas are predatorial animals, and zebras are part of their natural diet. This is absolutely the right solution, and I applaud these efforts.

    February 11, 2010 at 3:09 pm | Reply
  69. BarbieQ

    if you were starving and the only option was to provide food from another part of the country, would you want it? Of course! The lions and the hyenas have a right to survive too! It is the law of nature.

    February 11, 2010 at 3:09 pm | Reply
  70. Paul

    I don't mind it. However the hypocrisy of environmentalists etc amazes me. They continually harass the government and other people over "interfering with nature"......but what's this if it isn't interfering with nature? (look at the problems in Yellowstone)

    February 11, 2010 at 3:09 pm | Reply
  71. g. kuiper

    Actually, zebras ARE food for predators. Further, predators are carnivores and cannot digest a "vegan" diet. The zebras and wildebeest are being moved to a new range, where they will live as they are living now – grazing, reproducing and being hunted by predators. It's just nature, folks –

    February 11, 2010 at 3:10 pm | Reply
  72. diana

    I agree with larryc. The other option would be to teach the lions to be vegetarians...

    February 11, 2010 at 3:10 pm | Reply
  73. Kelli

    Hello....Zebras ARE food for the Lions. Have you NOT any nature shows?! How can the area be overpopulated if there are 2000 lions left in nature period?! If there were 200,000 then I would say that would be overpopulation! But there's only 2000 left period!!! Should we kill all the animals and only have the ones in Zoos left??

    My question is....is there enough grass and plant life to sustain the zebras after the drought? The whole "Cycle of Life" has been thrown off by the drought, so yes I believe the Zebras should be brought in to balance it out.
    God made all the animals and some were intended to be FOOD!!!!!

    February 11, 2010 at 3:11 pm | Reply
  74. pistachio eater

    Hey pistachio, Zebras ARE lion's food, just as cows and others ARE human food.
    P.S. You should be fed to the lions too.

    February 11, 2010 at 3:12 pm | Reply
  75. larryc

    One thing being overlooked is that lions are lazy. By nature, they go after the weakest prey – usually the sick or older zebras or widebeest, which actually ensures breeding of only the strong.

    However, I can't help but wonder if Farside would not have some great cartoons to sum up this whole matter?

    February 11, 2010 at 3:13 pm | Reply
  76. Spencer

    This all goes back to George Bush and his horrible global warming policies.

    February 11, 2010 at 3:14 pm | Reply
  77. scroo yoo

    Its not like we will know which zebras the lions eat.Its similar to restocking a manmade fishing lake.

    Also I believe the thumb and evolved brain(obvious not everyone has one of those) is what gives humans right to dominance. we can so we do.I didnt evolve this far to not have control over my direct environment, and with that power comes responsibility (Spiderman says it best,dont care if it is cliche)

    dont be a hippie

    February 11, 2010 at 3:14 pm | Reply
  78. Dr.Muhammad Huq

    Let the Zebra's live where they are now.
    If the herbivores like starving elephants can be culled periodically
    then why the starving Lions cannot be culled?

    February 11, 2010 at 3:16 pm | Reply
  79. Mark Jeroge

    Having lived in Kenya, I completely agree with this effort. Zebras and wildebeests are natural prey for lions in every area of Kenya. So what is the problem with relocating some of these animals to keep the ecosystem in balance?

    Furthermore, zebras are in abundance in most of Kenya. There are more than enough to go around.

    And to the proud PETA sponsor: Although I am most often in support of animal rights, you are doing more harm to lions by trying to change nature. Feeding lions vegan mix would require expensive and complicated tracking of lions and would greatly increase lion interaction and dependence on humans. I cannot emphasize enough how dangerous this would be for humans and lions. You cannot expect to 'play god' without it having severe ramifications that are well beyond the scope of human understanding.

    February 11, 2010 at 3:17 pm | Reply
  80. Shirley

    Why does the Human race feel they have to tinker with nature? All animals are important. Let things heal itself.

    February 11, 2010 at 3:19 pm | Reply
  81. MCS

    And god forbid if some of these arrogant anthropomorphic and uneducated repliers should ever discover what what exactly goes on in a bucket of pond, river or seawater or within their own bodies.
    @Anna. Since when are worms and larva not meat? Why are they somehow less worthy of life than Zebras? Sheez. Worms are one of the most important creatures on this planet.
    Why do people assume plants like to be eaten or that they are here for that express purpose? They do not and are not. The vast majority of plants do everything in their power to aviod being eaten or otherwise exploited. So the next time you're wolfing down that tofu-burger, keep in mind that that plant did not give you permission to eat its offspring.

    February 11, 2010 at 3:19 pm | Reply
  82. jazseven

    The comments from people who say kill the lions they must be VEGANS.
    Because we humans kill animals pigs, chicken, cows, fish, for food everyday so this the right thing to do to save a endangered species and for the Maasais.

    February 11, 2010 at 3:20 pm | Reply
  83. Conor

    One word, cloning.

    Bam, problem solved.

    *let the argument ensue*

    February 11, 2010 at 3:26 pm | Reply
  84. TAB

    Some of these comments are insane.

    1. Lions are carnivores by nature. Zebras and wildebeests are their natural prey. As others have pointed out, there are literally millions of zebras and wildebeests, they are hardly endangered. It's not as if they're shipping in endangered pandas.

    2. The drought might be natural, but a significant percentage of lions have been killed by poachers. Therefore, mankind is very much responsible for the drastic drop in the lion population.

    February 11, 2010 at 3:27 pm | Reply
  85. Pete

    Totally agree. There are millions of zebras and wildebeest located throughout Africa and only 2.000 lions. It’s just part of the food chain and has been for thousands of years. So, we either let the last remaining lions die from starvation, be speared to death (terrible ways to die), or try to maintain their population for future generations.

    February 11, 2010 at 3:27 pm | Reply
  86. Deborah

    I think it's a great idea. Humanely kill the zebras and put out the meat for the lions? Are you kidding me? The zebras might be a food source, but it's not an easy food source. The lions and hyenas still have to hunt to get the food. That's a more natural way to approach the situation.

    February 11, 2010 at 3:27 pm | Reply
  87. Nature is Cruel

    This is an excellent choice. Gives this region a little jump start to get back to normal. Besides, Zebra are tasty. If you have any extra lions, please ship them to Ohio. We have plenty of delicious deer.

    February 11, 2010 at 3:28 pm | Reply
  88. Alice Bender

    Yes, definitely, there are thousands and thousands of zebra and wildebeast and few lions. They are just releasing them into the wild so their chances are almost as good as they would be up north. Humans have killed off a lot of the lions, we should give them a chance.

    February 11, 2010 at 3:30 pm | Reply
  89. callie

    No, to trucking in zebras (and others) to serve as food for lions. Are there other options? In our area carnivores like foxes have also adapted to eat fruit, nuts and seeds because that is what is most available. (Dogs also eat veggies.) Maybe one option is to try to redeem this area by irrigation and planting trees and bushes. Perhaps lions can alter their diet too and it will save the zebras from being imported to a drought area as temporary food for the lions- a very sad option. Temporarily, why not try trucking in processed vegetarian food or as another commentor suggested move the lions someplace else temporarily. Personally, several of us in our family have happily been vegetarians most of our lives.

    February 11, 2010 at 3:30 pm | Reply
  90. Michelle

    I have worked in a lion rehabilitation park in Zimbabwe and have witnessed many lions in hot pursuit of zebras. But just to clear this up real quick for the cry babies out there: the lions have a hard time getting the zebra. It's trial and error and many times, team work. AND the zebra has a cruel kick it delivers from its rear legs. Don't think these zebras stand around on the savannah and get "victimized" by the lions. Besides, humans have made and continue to make many mistakes to our Earth. At least some people are trying to fix those problems so that the lion (and yes, the zebra, and all the others) continues to thrive in Africa.

    February 11, 2010 at 3:32 pm | Reply
  91. Realist

    ...oh....omg...Anna you must be kidding...yes that has to be it, no one is that ignorant. Lets just import Worms, Larva and Tofu...man if you're telling the truth those cubs must HATE you and when they're old enough will plot against you.

    You're also a hypocrite. Lets save the Zebras by feeding them Worms and Larva???? What about the right of the WORMS and LARVA?????? You'll just sacrifice them to save the Zebra's and Lions? Where's your heart...they have as much right to live as any other living creatures.....

    You want to talk about cruel. What about starving a living thing of water, and then yanking it from it's home and cutting it up to eat...I am, of course, talking about the poor carrot....the vegan's Zebra 😛

    February 11, 2010 at 3:32 pm | Reply
  92. Dan

    Yes they should feed the lions

    February 11, 2010 at 3:36 pm | Reply
  93. Gilda

    Thanks for my morning laugh pistachio and Beth. Now go watch National Geographic and see what really happens in the wild. No knives and forks for the lions.

    February 11, 2010 at 3:36 pm | Reply
  94. Jack Keesler


    February 11, 2010 at 3:39 pm | Reply
  95. Debanjalee

    Truly Sad!
    In my opinion...things can be done in a more HUMANE manner...live baits are simply BARBARIC! They could be more civilized and used their brains to figure out another way. Isn't that why God made us different from animals...'Intelligence' is the key word...which is clearly lacking in this case. Very Sad Indeed.

    February 11, 2010 at 3:42 pm | Reply
  96. John

    As much as I hate to see this, it's the right decision. As man's impact on ecosystems continues to contribute to their breakdown, we must do what we can to maintain them for as long as we are able to.

    February 11, 2010 at 3:42 pm | Reply
  97. Wow

    To the first two posts in this long thread...... WOW, really?

    Maybe the best explanation for you two is to watch the Lion King. It's a disney movie and in it they cover what the circle of life is so that kids can understand. If you have any further questions ask your mommy or daddy.

    February 11, 2010 at 3:46 pm | Reply
  98. John

    I wish we could take some of the people here instead. LOL

    February 11, 2010 at 3:48 pm | Reply
  99. Peg

    Absolutely bring in the zebras. There shouldn't even be a debate here.

    February 11, 2010 at 3:51 pm | Reply
  100. Jean

    Some of the comments in this thread reveal an ignorance so profound that I find it difficult to believe their posters are serious. Or sane.

    First of all, one reason for the deaths of 80% of the herbivores during the drought is that human settlement has broken up their habitat, so they couldn't migrate to areas where there was water. The same is true of lions: they can't leave the area to follow the (now non-existent) herds, so they'll turn their attention to the herds that remain; the human-owned cattle (which, by the way, were probably given what water there was during the drought). The only way to prevent that would be to kill the lions.

    Zebras and wildebeests are not endangered. There are millions of them. They reproduce quickly. Moving some of them from areas where they are plentiful to areas where they are scarce is an excellent way to mitigate the effects of habitat fragmentation.

    Yes, lions are predators. Yes, zebras are prey. Predators and prey have been part of the cycle of life since one ancestral microbe discovered it could engulf some other ancestral microbe. Despite what people raised in urban Care-bear-land might think, nature is not soft, gentle, and kind. Life eats life. I have to hope that the person who spoke of providing "humanely" killed food for lions was joking. Unless you want to strip the world of all carnivores, right down to the ladybugs (yes, the dear little ladybugs eat other insects alive) you have to accept that the natural world is what it always has been: a cycle of life and death. Lions have eaten zebras as long as there have been lions and zebras.

    The root causes of the problem - the zebras being unable to move to seek water, the lions being unable to move to seek prey, and quite probably some aspect of the water shortage to begin with (remember those thirsty cattle) - are human-caused. So it makes sense that humans should help mitigate the problem, in this case by restocking the ecosystem with the large herbivores that were lost.

    People like Beth, Pistachio, and Mary should read a book by Gary Larson called "There's a Hair in My Dirt". It's funny, in a "Far Side" way, but very, very true.

    Oh, and Yogi, no, lions won't eat "veg food". They can't. Their intestines aren't able to digest anything but meat. Look at a cow's digestive system: Flat grinding teeth to chew plant matter to a pulp. Multiple stomachs to support a population of cellulose-digesting protozoa. Great lengths of intestines to slowly break down vegetable matter so that it can be absorbed. Plants are actually quite difficult to digest, and require an elaborate system to do so. Now look at a lion's digestive system: Sharp tearing teeth to rip meat apart. The digestive system proper is short, and stocked with the enzymes to break down protein and fat, not carbohydrates. Unlike herbivores, their bodies cannot create some of the amino acids they need, so they must get them from their food. A starving lion might indeed eat a plant, but he he can't chew it, and whatever he does manage to swallow, he won't get much if any nutrition from it. Lions are obligate carnivores. They don't have a choice.

    Lions eat zebras. Foxes eat mice. Robins eat worms. Ladybugs eat aphids. Big amoebas eat little amoebas. Our own white blood cells eat bacteria. That is what life is. We can pretend it doesn't happen, but only by wiping out a large part of the natural world can we prevent it. Exactly what we'll do with a world overrun by insects, rodents, and, yes, zebras, a world in which there are no lions, no hawks, no whales, no wolves, no penguins, not even a single cute little ladybug, I'm not sure, but I do know one thing: I don't want to live in that world.

    As for maintaining a healthy ecosystem (that is, one containing both predators and prey) for the benefit of tourists: First of all, ANY reason to keep an ecosystem healthy is a good one. Second, people need to live, and they have several choices of how they can use a particular area of land. They can profit from tourism, which allows other people to visit and experience the wonders of the natural world. Or they can put herds of cattle, or farms, or cities, on that land, killing the lions, the zebras, and everything else that makes it special. If they can't do the former, they will do the latter. It blows my mind that people in this thread are opposing eco-tourism because natural wonders require nature, and nature is icky.

    February 11, 2010 at 3:51 pm | Reply
  101. danimal

    Yes this is a good thing. They should also start feeding the lions and hyenas humans since there are about 6.5 billion of them. Plenty of lowlife humans to spare.

    February 11, 2010 at 3:54 pm | Reply
  102. ~G~

    Zebras and wildebeasts are yummy! Lucky lions!

    February 11, 2010 at 3:55 pm | Reply
  103. Melina

    I agree with this strategy. Last resource of course, but something needs to be done to save the top predators in Africa, their survival is crucial to the balance of that very weak ecosystem. Sorry but there is no other "humane" way to treat this conflict unless you can teach lions to become vegans and this goes for all of those that are calling on "use the brain strategy or intelligence is the key word." And for all of those that think this is ridiculous and they should just kill the lions, this is very sad, obviously their not using their brains to make sunck an unfounded comment, what happens to an ecosystem when you remove a top predator, all animals eventually starve becuase there is no enough food to go around.

    February 11, 2010 at 4:01 pm | Reply
  104. StarvingLion

    Let nature take its course and let the Kenyan lions become extinct if they are destined to.

    Selective killing doesn't cut it for me. Since there are millions of cows, our so-called educated and intellectual society can slaughter and gobble them up at will, and use their skin for our all sorts of purposes. But if some one kills and eats an animal that is smaller in number, all hell brakes loose. Same perverse logic applied here in gathering Zebras (because they are *less* threatened than the lions) and dropping them off where the lions are.

    If human crime laws were calibrated similarly, homicide of a Chinese or Indian would be a punished less severely than homicide of an Eskimo.

    February 11, 2010 at 4:01 pm | Reply
  105. Carl

    inhumane? Are you kidding me!!? It's a damn lion! That's what they do! Watch the Discovery Channel. It's called nature and it's been happening for hundreds of thousands of years. It's just humans who got the crazy notion that eating other animals is "inhumane" damn vegetarians..

    And no they can't give a WILD animal prepared meat. That would be called domesticating it which completely defeats the purpose. Why don't you just suggest locking them up in a zoo and teaching them to like veggie burgers?

    February 11, 2010 at 4:05 pm | Reply
  106. Joe

    Hey Pistachio, are you the same as your name... a nut? Lions eat Zebras! What did you think they eat, Tofu? Better idea, let's corrall all the nut jobs (pistachio included) and feed them to the Lions. This would improve the dummied down gene pool around here!

    February 11, 2010 at 4:05 pm | Reply
  107. DemoGuy

    The American government should immediately donate One billion stimulus dollars to this cause. Have Purina make Kibbles & Bits in the shape of Zebras and drop 50 pound bags in the lions territory. This way we can help the lions and create jobs too.

    (wondering how many readers will think I'm serious and follow up with hate comments).

    February 11, 2010 at 4:07 pm | Reply
  108. Keymover

    I have read a lot of good, and bad, points in all this... But I just want to point out the fact that the people organizing this move to help the lion population take care not to over-do it. The last thing that we want to do is upset the balance of other ecosystems.

    February 11, 2010 at 4:10 pm | Reply
  109. DaddyBigDawg

    When I read the comments on this blog it only clarifies&verifies this thought I have always&forever will have:The human being is the smartest creature ever...EVER created by Almighty God.People are dumb as s–t!!!

    "Can't the lions change their diet to eat fruits&veggies"? As soon as humans do not have to work to make money to survive&thrive then yes the big kitty cats can eat fruits&veggies to alter their diets umm LMAO!!

    "Who cares about tourism anyway they can do other things to survive"

    Tourism is a worldwide profession.From here the site of the XIX Winter Olympics Salt Lake City to all over the globe tourism is humanities way of helping out mankind&yes all animals domestic&wild.

    We dumbass Americans love...LOVE to go to go on what my Aussie mates call Safari which means we shell out thousands of dollars to see the wild kingdom up close&in my opinion way too personal.

    Kenya needs tourism&wildlife preservation as do ALL of us in the world.

    I very much want to see what Megalodon looks like or a Woolly Mammoth heck even Super Croc or the Dinosaurs even.

    Guess what folks? I cannot because they are EXTINCT!!!!!!! which is what will happen to the big African kitty cats IF we allow them to suffer&die without their natural prey.

    Humanity f'ed up major big time throughout the annals of time by the killing of millions of animals.Thankfully humanity such as Jack Hanna,The late great Steve Irwin&Joan Embry have taught us to save the animals especially the ones in the wild. My boy asks me "DBD why are humans the enemy of the Manatee,Elephant Seal,Walrus,etc"? I say to my 10yr old boy it is because we have killed&pillaged them to near or in some instances extinction boy that is why we need to make right with God&the remaining herds of beasts left or my great grandkids will only read about wild animals online or if they have them then books.

    It is RIGHT to bring the food supply to the big kitty cats.Yes I know nature is ugly,gross,brutal&harsh.But we have guns,missiles,lasers,grenades to protect ourselves/kill each other with.Grizzlies don't.Great Whites don't. Hippo's don't. So really ask yourselves this 1 question? What truly is the wild? Is it wild for the 4 legged kind or us the 2 legged kind?

    February 11, 2010 at 4:10 pm | Reply
  110. Phoenix2178

    These are zebra. Not schoolchildren. To restore the populations is to restore the natural order while simultaneously decreasing risk to the local farmers and villagers.

    To say it is cruel is to admit you do not understand how ecosystems work. Also, unless you are making the comment as a life-long vegan who lives off the grid...you are a hypocrite. It is your very human lifestyle of excess and consumption that has placed the lion on the endangered species list. The least you can do is protect those that still remain in the most natural way as possible. The zebra herd will continue as normal..with lions thinning the herd (and thus preventing a too large herd from overgrazing a region and then starving) and the strongest of zebras will pass on dna.

    Take a science class people.

    February 11, 2010 at 4:11 pm | Reply
  111. Lynda

    I am totally astonished at the ignorance of some of the comments on here....vegetarian lions????? what a load of self righteous bunkum!! Lions have always eaten meat, and always will, whether it be zebras wildebeest antelopes or, when pushed to the limits,even humans!
    Good for Kenya for having some common sense ...don't listen to the tofu eating ignoramuses

    February 11, 2010 at 4:12 pm | Reply
  112. Joe

    I think Beth and Anna should also be fed to the Lions. But I think we should process them into paste first (thanks for the idea Anna). Gene pool is starting to look better already!

    February 11, 2010 at 4:14 pm | Reply
  113. Andre

    Hey Pistachio, Beth, etc.

    You have been watching too many reruns of the Lion King. Contrary to your warped view of nature, animals DO NOT have human attributes. If you happen to run across a Lion at some time in your life, don't try to reason with it. It's smarter than you are.

    February 11, 2010 at 4:15 pm | Reply
  114. Blogix

    NO!!!!! ABSOLUTELY NOT!!!!! Let these lions fare for themselves, as nature has always done, even before humans stuck their noses in the business of wildlife. They obviously don't understand the balance of nature, and how it takes care of itself. I cannot believe this would even be an option!!!!

    February 11, 2010 at 4:16 pm | Reply
  115. Guest

    Humans shouldnt have to do anything. This is obviously natural cycle in the ecosystem. Artificially adding prey into the mix purely for human safety ruins the circle of life. This could just make the problem worse and the next time this happens. Lions could be more Bloodthirsty for humans.

    February 11, 2010 at 4:16 pm | Reply
  116. cameron

    Allow Peta members to sacrifice themselves and be shipped to Africa in place of the Zebras....

    February 11, 2010 at 4:17 pm | Reply
  117. Tasha

    It is sad, but come on people this is what is suppose to happen. Lyons are about extinct, yes we should do all we can to keep them alive!!

    February 11, 2010 at 4:18 pm | Reply
  118. Poppie D

    Bad Idea......treat all the remaining Lions to a Happy meal at Mickey D's instead......

    February 11, 2010 at 4:18 pm | Reply
  119. Joe

    I failed my science class. As it turns out, I was copying the answers off of some girls in my class, Beth and I can't remember the other nut job, but needless to say they failed too!

    February 11, 2010 at 4:19 pm | Reply
  120. TC

    I can't believe what some of you are saying. Anna: Why do lions have to eat meat? Seriously? Feed them a worm, tofu mixture. WOW! It's the Circle of Life. Then someone mentioned it's barbaric to use the zebras as live bait. Well, that's what zebras and wildebeest are...Live bait!

    I don't support anyone being cruel to animals but sometimes you PETA people are unbelievable. I wish as much attention would be paid to our homeless and children in abusive situations.

    February 11, 2010 at 4:20 pm | Reply
  121. Andre

    Too few lions. Too many Christians. We may have something here.

    February 11, 2010 at 4:27 pm | Reply
  122. Joe

    Mary, Fred, Barbara, David, Harria, Chris... I'm running out of space to type in the names of all the idiots posting their comments.

    February 11, 2010 at 4:27 pm | Reply
  123. magic

    Yes, its the absolute right thing to do, its nature. Should we ship Dasani water from LA to folks in Chicago to support a sales promotion....wasting all that fuel and polluting the ecosystem in the process?

    February 11, 2010 at 4:29 pm | Reply
  124. danimal

    We are trying to solve a problem that we created. I hope it works. The Zebras and wildebeest are not being led to their deaths, but to new homes to graze and reproduce. Unless they Herbivores starve to death like the last group did this could help. I still do not understand why we can't send murders, rapist, and pedophiles to be eaten. That would solve the problem for decades plus it would help all governments economically.

    February 11, 2010 at 4:30 pm | Reply
  125. mopanni

    Pistachio, Beth and all other advocates of not feeding the herbivores to the lions...........how did they manage to finish first in the great sperm race?

    February 11, 2010 at 4:31 pm | Reply
  126. cristine

    If they are really that worried about tourism, why not throw some politicians and big-oil owners in there and sell tickets?

    on another note, i do think it is appropriate to provide food for a species on the verge of being extinct. It's always sad, but didn't you kids learn about the food chain when you were in elementary school?

    February 11, 2010 at 4:32 pm | Reply
  127. Brenda

    Yes, the lions must be saved.

    February 11, 2010 at 4:36 pm | Reply
  128. William

    At first this seems quite shocking. But with a little thought, I can see it's the right thing to do.

    February 11, 2010 at 4:40 pm | Reply
  129. Anna

    Our human lifestyle of excess and wasted has endangered more than one species.

    While I abhor the idea, it is the right thing to do.

    Perhaps we should throw in the serial killers, rapist, drug dealers and pedophiles in with the Zebras and wildebeest.

    February 11, 2010 at 4:42 pm | Reply
  130. Edwin


    You wrote "...What a horrible country that would purposely take animals to be eaten by other animals."

    So... I assume you are a vegetarian and condemn those in america, too? Consider that in the U.S., we kill cows by zapping them *nearly* unconscious, then hanging them upside down while we drain their blood. Some wake up during this killing procedure and struggle as best they can.

    Next time you eat a steak or a hamburger, think about how much more civilized we are than the Kenyans.

    February 11, 2010 at 4:42 pm | Reply
  131. Rich

    I have never heard such ignorant comments. Without naming names, the facts are; 1) Lions are an endangered species. 2) Zebras and wildebeest are not, and were a natural part of the ecosystem they are to be released into. 3) Droughts are a part of nature, however this one was exacerbated by irresponsible irrigation. 4) If not for humanities unchecked encroachment into the ecosystem, the lions would still have sufficient prey, and this would be irrelevant. 5) Finally as to the ignorant comments about feeding "worm paste" to wild lions, why don't you try... At least the lions would have something to eat while they wait on the zebras, and it wouldn't be your paste.

    February 11, 2010 at 4:43 pm | Reply
  132. simon

    wow " Cant you humanely kill them first then put out the meat"
    get in the real world !!!!!! They are lions not pussy cats, the lion is a hunter not a pet.
    Although this is an unnatural solution to natures drought which would eventually fix itself over time this is a quick fix to ensure tourism and the economics of the locals is not destroyed.
    I have no problem at all supplying live animals to regain the balance.
    wasnt there a recent case where tourists pay to choose an animal to be placed in with lions and watch them eat it!! Cool

    February 11, 2010 at 4:45 pm | Reply
  133. Edwin

    @Fred McLaughlin,

    The Maasai are the ones who lived there for thousands of years, essentially in balance with their environment, until European peoples came in and told them they could not live that way anymore. So they adjusted as best they could.

    If you want to throw people to the lions as food, try throwing those who are actually guilty of creating the problems in the first place.

    February 11, 2010 at 4:45 pm | Reply
  134. simon

    The other thing id like to add is the Massai warriors are by nature lion hunters and throwng them out to feed the lions wouldnt work ....lol

    some of you need to wake up and smell the coffee as you yanks say.......................lol

    February 11, 2010 at 4:47 pm | Reply
  135. jws

    Jesus, Mary and Joseph! Is it possible that you ignorant infantiles are even capable of producing enough brain power to keep your legs moving?? "Kill the lions?" "The poor little zebras?" "Can't the lions eat veg?" What, did everybody audit their fourth grade science class? Jean, thanks for your clear response. You sound like a science teacher.

    February 11, 2010 at 4:54 pm | Reply
  136. Donna Sophia

    It sounds extremely cruel but that's what mother nature is all about. Kill some of the lions while you're at it and make more people happy.

    February 11, 2010 at 4:56 pm | Reply
  137. Blake O

    To: Anna, proud PETA Sponsor

    Q: "Why do lions have to be given meat in the first place? "
    A: Because it is their natural diet, the way that nature/god made them, which ever you believe in.

    Q: "I have raised beautiful healthy cubs here in Sedona Arizona on a paste made from Worms, Larva and Tofu. "
    A: You are a PETA follower but have Lion cubs in captivity. Do me a favor and look up the definition of "Irony".

    Q: "It would be terrible to bring live animals into this area to be victimized by the lions."
    A: Victimized? Oh that's right, I've heard about how lion's make fun of Zebras for their stripes. I totally agree with you...(WTF?)

    Q: " ...a situation where they are slaughtered in the most inhumane manner. "
    A: Yes, it'd be a terrible thing if a zebra was to cross a lion's path in the wild, and for the lion to kill and eat it for survival...oh wait (another WTF?)

    Q: Please, please, augment the lion's food resources with a vegan mix like I suggest and allow nature to respond over time.
    A: Anna – I'd be more than happy to watch you prepare a Vegan mix for 2,000 lions, 3 times a day. It'd be even funnier when they turn their noses up at the BS they've been given and eat you instead. But wait a few thousand years for nature to respond. By then lions will have figured out how to make tofu and eat grass.

    February 11, 2010 at 4:59 pm | Reply
  138. MS. JAY

    Ok the we learn by what's shown on television (i.e) Animal Planet. Mufasa said it best in Lion King when he was teaching Simba about the circle of life as horrid as it may be. Go back and watch to movie

    February 11, 2010 at 5:00 pm | Reply
  139. Michael

    Predators a valuable as they keep ecosystems healthy. Lions and other large cats are as valuable as the prey they feed on. What would Africa be without it's big5? What will Asia be without it's Tigers? The world loses when we lose any big cat. If any predator deserves demonization as a species it is man, not the big cats. Without them animal populations grow weak and diseases spread, and the grazers overpopulate and denude large areas of growth.

    February 11, 2010 at 5:03 pm | Reply
  140. Jean

    "Let nature take its course"? If Nature had taken its course, the zebra herds could have moved to where there was water, and the lions could have moved to where there was prey. Oh, and there would be a lot more lions in Africa, as there were even fifty years ago, so the loss of one population wouldn't be a crisis. Nature didn't cause this mess; humans did. Humans reduced the zebras' and lions' range from the whole continent to a few isolated reserves. Humans built obstacles to the animals' movement. Humans gave their domestic cattle what water remained during a drought. Humans, in short, prevented nature from taking its course, leading to thousands of zebras dying of thirst (this is more humane than being killed by a lion?) and leaving the situation as it is. Zebras and wildebeest are extremely plentiful. Moving a few thousand from one place to another won't make a dent in their original herd. Some of the relocated zebras will, yes, be eaten by lions (and all of the other predators and scavengers that depend on them) but most will go on to reproduce, restoring their numbers and the health of the ecosystem.

    What, you thought this was just about lions and zebras? It's about hyenas and jackals, vultures and marabou storks. It's about the grassland ecosystem, which needs both zebras and lions to keep it healthy - the zebras to keep the plants in balance (look at the vegetation changes in a cattle pasture that has not been grazed for 10 years or so to understand) and the lions to keep the zebras in balance, so there are neither to many nor too few. In the long run, it's about whether there will be a natural ecosystem at all, or just another place for humans to graze cattle, or plant farms, or build cities.

    Also, to the clueless people of this thread: If it's not killed by a lion, how does a zebra's life end? Do they die at home in their soft beds, with their loving families around them? Hell no. They die of disease, or starvation, or injury of some sort. Most of the ways a zebra could die in a land without predators are slow, lingering deaths. Being killed by a lion is harsh, but the alternatives, for a zebra, may in fact be even worse. And in the end, what does it matter? Do zebra spirits sit around zebra heaven comparing death stories? "Yeah, well, you think that's bad? I died of an infected bot-fly bite."

    We're the exceptions, not the rule. Our modern human civilization, so insulated from the realities of nature, has existed as such for only the blink of an eye, at most a few hundred years. Zebras kill plants, and lions kill zebras, and plants grow in the soil fertilized by dead lions. That is life, ordained as such by God or Mother Nature, take your pick. As horrible as it may sound to an off-the-grid fruitarian, that's life, and that's nature, and that's reality.

    February 11, 2010 at 5:05 pm | Reply
  141. J

    Absolutely, God said "let them (people) have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth. And again Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” If the lions are hungry they need something to eat and it should be zebras and wildebeasts instead of people or livestock, and they should be moved from abundant areas to a scarce area. If animals get too abundant often times disease sets in or there is a scarcity of food so the animals die anyway don't you think preserving one or two of God's species is a better result for them remember where they were there are or were lions they may have gotten eaten anyways

    February 11, 2010 at 5:10 pm | Reply
  142. SALLY


    February 11, 2010 at 5:14 pm | Reply
  143. Paul

    You have an option, import natural food for the carnivores, or have them hunt domestic cattle. This will lead to conflict with the herdsmen and the lions, and some herdsmen will meet their demise. Closely followed by tourism and 20% of the country's income. Either way, somethings going to get eaten, so let it be as close as possble to natural, otherwise the greater many will suffer much more. Think of it as the Masaai answer to a BigMac blow out.


    February 11, 2010 at 5:16 pm | Reply
  144. Joe

    Andre, what are you? A hermaphrodite?

    February 11, 2010 at 5:21 pm | Reply
  145. mig29

    lions came first before the massai's so they should not kill the lions who eats their livestock. instead massais should drive them out

    the extreme drought had pushed the lions to the limits since predators cant migrate. transporting prey to the lions will keep the balance and buy them some time until the herbivores comes back. this preventing conflict with people.

    killing the lions is not an option.

    February 11, 2010 at 5:22 pm | Reply
  146. Nick

    Hey folks, I am writing as one familiar with the area (Kenyan). Its not that the Zebras and Wilderbeast were any safer from where they are being relocated from. There are lions, cheetahs, hyenas, hunting dogs, leopards etc etc in those locations too. As a metter of fact some of these Zebras and Wilderbeast have better suviving chance in their new area than where they are comming from. If anyone has seen the documentary on the Wilderbeast migration knows what I am talking about. If you notice, the wilderbeast aren't being moved until after they give birth – that is when all animals of prey move in – to catch them at their weakest point. So their relocation may prove to be their only chance of living longer. After all we have only 2000 weak lions who may never run fast enough let alone endure a Zebra kick.

    Go Kenya and replenish Amboseli.

    February 11, 2010 at 5:31 pm | Reply
  147. Gulu

    NO ! Try anything but willingly kill other animals

    February 11, 2010 at 5:39 pm | Reply
  148. Self-serving vegan

    No animal should be allowed to viciously assault and kill another animal for its food. Why can't we teach animals to be vegetarians? This is the 21st century, it's time for the animal kingdom to become more civilized. Those animals who refuse to accept this reality and continue to victimize poor defenseless cute creatures will have to be separated, and if necessary, eliminated. We simply can't have mean animals hurting other animals.

    wink wink

    February 11, 2010 at 5:44 pm | Reply
  149. Katy Harmon

    Genesis 1:28 And God blessed them (Adam and Eve) and God said be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.

    Yes I think they ought to move the hoofed animals to help preserve the lion prides. We have an obligation to all animals on earth. It's is a horrible sight to watch any being starve to death. We are looking a thousands of hoofed animals to a few hundred lions. The hoofed animals will reproduce much faster for years to come, provided they have grass than the number of what the lions will kill. This was a good decision and I wish them well in their endeavor. If the animals were important enough for God to save them through Noah, then we ought to do the same.

    February 11, 2010 at 5:48 pm | Reply
  150. Matt

    To all the animal lovers, rest assured that all the animals would agree with this decision. Just think about what Mufasa– the great king and sage of the animal world– would say. Mufasa would undoubtedly argue that re-populating the zebras in this area is all part of restoring the Circle of Life. Now, that issue is settled.

    February 11, 2010 at 5:49 pm | Reply
  151. Wilfried Braun

    Why kill the Lions and not the Zebras? I think it is a good way of balancing the Wildlife. These people know what they are doing! Thumbs up! Long live the Lion!!!!

    February 11, 2010 at 5:49 pm | Reply
  152. Scotty

    I think it sounds like a reasonable attempt to restore balance and serve all the interests at hand.
    I am a bit surprised at the ignorance of so many commentators who apparently have little knowledge of ecosystems.
    Animals being eaten by other animals? Oh, the horror!
    I am curious as to what type of cubs were raised by Anna the proud PETA supporter? And the thinking behind this?
    I am also a proud supporter of PETA, that is...People Eating Tasty Animals:)

    February 11, 2010 at 5:54 pm | Reply
  153. Gloria

    Although this is a somewhat oogie & unthinkable venture, I'd have to say I agree with it. In order to save what few lions and hyenas remain in the wild. Hopefully the long term plan will be successful. We have done so much damage to this planet., can we ever recover? The drought that occured I'm sure had something to do with humans somewhere along the way. With all we know about overpopulation, contraception, limited resources, why do humans keep breeding as fast as they are. Maybe herd a few humans???

    February 11, 2010 at 5:55 pm | Reply
  154. King Zamunda

    Sometimes nature needs us to lend a helping hand in restoring balance. In this case, this country is helping the eco system restore balance. If they do not act, balance will eventually be restored but not without more loss of life for the animals and man.

    February 11, 2010 at 6:02 pm | Reply
  155. tapadance

    All these people who say being ripped to shreds is the worst way to die scare me. Do they know this for a fact, or are they just guessing? Frankly if I could choose between dieing slowly as lupus takes my life, or being ripped to shreds to feed a lion. I would take the second option.

    However I understand that lions don't really like the taste of humans. Something about our sweat making us smell like rancid meat. A lion will only go after humans if it is desperate or injured.

    Could there be a way to move water into the area so that the grass the zebras need to live on will grow again?

    February 11, 2010 at 6:20 pm | Reply
  156. James Gich

    The point here is to conserve biodiversity. The reason to move the herbivores is actually to restore an ecosystem devastated by CLIMATE CHANGE. The hunger of lions is just an indicator or the vengeance of nature. Look at it from this perspective and you will appreciate why humankind must take the stewardship for the helpless ecosystems. We must also work hard to ensure that other species of wildlife such as elephants in Africa survive by not purchasing ivory products or even encouraging the sale of such products. The whole world need to unite especially this Year of Biodiversity to conserve and ensure that future generation enjoy.

    February 11, 2010 at 6:22 pm | Reply
  157. Ron

    Killing for food in nature is not cruel. Lions and similar predators are not sadistic towards their prey, they know how to kill and fast and the suffering is an absolute minimum. Another little hint from nature as to how to behave versus the way people do.

    February 11, 2010 at 6:22 pm | Reply
  158. Fred

    I have a much better idea. Far more helpful to the global balance of
    nature. Round up the entire US Congress and distribute them in
    Amboseli for the lions to eat. They will leave a bad taste in the lions
    mouth but culling such a wasteful an useless species will be a great benefit to the balance of nature.

    February 11, 2010 at 6:26 pm | Reply
  159. B.O.

    NO! save the zebras. yes it is bad that the lions cant find food but you cant just round up zebras for them. Their going to have to struggle. you shouldnt risk the zebras.. SAVE THE ZEBRAS!!!

    February 11, 2010 at 6:27 pm | Reply
  160. Al

    Yes Beth let's cut up the meat for them and serve it. Maybe we should ask how they'd like it served. Medium rare, well done? With a side of potatoes or french fries? LOL it's natural for lions to eat other animals, it's the circle of life.

    February 11, 2010 at 6:40 pm | Reply
  161. David

    Pastatio, what are you, like 12 years old? I think you and Beth got all your knowledge of the animal world by watching Disney movies.

    Believe me, Zebras are not that cute.

    Carnivores eat Herbivores. It's the way it's always been.

    February 11, 2010 at 6:43 pm | Reply
  162. John


    But what about the poor worms and larvae? Don't they have the right to live too?

    How far are you willing to take this? Don't plants have the right to live as well? I mean who knows what that carrot feels when you rip it out of the ground and eat it?


    p.s. I like Freds idea

    February 11, 2010 at 6:54 pm | Reply
  163. Monika

    I'm a vegetarian, but this situation is obviously more about sustaining an ecosystem. This is obviously the best choice, and lions are clearly carnivores and can't just be given worms and tofu, and all will be dandy. So this, to me, is a clear "yes". Although, after reading some of the posts, I certainly disagree with many of you who say that lions eat zebras for the same reasons people eat cows, pigs, and other "livestock." It's really a terrible way to look at things. I think everyone who eats meat should maybe read a book by Peter Singer, or even a new book called Eating Animals (this discusses more about the evolution of factory farms and how it's just an unhealthy way to live, basically advocating eating less meat and meat that comes from a farm). Just a suggestion. I think it's always good to question the norm and read books, articles by people who have done their research.

    February 11, 2010 at 6:56 pm | Reply
  164. wYATT52

    What ridiculous comments, "Zebras and other animals are not food for lions." and "Can't they humanely kill them and put the meat out for the lions instead???"! How hard is it to understand that there is a food chain? That God, or evolution, has established a hierarchy in the animal kingdom and the strong will eat the weaker to survive? There is no morality...there is no cruelty or barbarism...there is only the natural of things. I applaud the Kenyan government for a creative and innovative solution to try and preserve this iconic species for future generations to enjoy and marvel at.

    February 11, 2010 at 7:11 pm | Reply
  165. gjuarez@alexanderautomotive.net

    Zebras should be brought in to feed the lions. Dont let the lions die. Who cares about zebras and other vegeterians who are food for lions. That is great to bring them to Ambroseli for that purpose. The landowners SHOULD leave the lions or other animals that are killing their livestock alone. What a great country that purposely take animals to be eaten by other animals.

    February 11, 2010 at 7:23 pm | Reply
  166. Becky

    Wow. The comments in this thread are either idiotic or well stated, and not much inbetween. If nothing else, this article, and the ensuing stated opinions, REALLY show how uneducated, ill-informed, or deluded a lot people in this country are about anything outside their little "civilized safe zones".

    February 11, 2010 at 7:28 pm | Reply
  167. ruffian

    The balance of nature has been disrupted due to human overpopulation and farming and loss of habitat. Cruel to bring in live animals for lion food? No. Its necessary due to human involvement and disruption of the natural chain of events. To kill for food is instinct. Lions kill things to eat and keep down the population of zebras, gazelles, etc. if people think it is so horrid for a predator to kill, they are sadly out of touch with reality. This is LIFE. Get used to it!

    February 11, 2010 at 7:44 pm | Reply
  168. JS

    Serve them NY sewer rats! Unless they are protected by PETA as well.

    February 11, 2010 at 7:47 pm | Reply
  169. M&M

    "zebras and other animals not food for lions"???? Did you not have The Discovery Channel/National Geographic where you grew up? Lions eat zebra, gazelle, wildebeast, etc. Sure we don't want to see it go down but it's the circle of life in their natural habitat. It's not like the zebra and wildebeast will be cornered and picked off unfairly one by one – they are going to live and breed in a new location and nature will take it's course.

    February 11, 2010 at 7:52 pm | Reply
  170. Nabillion

    OK I am here reading some comments on how this is a sad story, barbaric, and cruel to transport these zebras and wildebeast to Amboseli. You guys are so out of tune with reality it's unbelievable. They are transporting them to another region! I am from Kenya and believe it is the right thing to do. It's the cycle of nature for predators to feed on their prey, and without prey, the predators die .. which can result in a chainlink to death for other animals (ie. scavengers).

    So for those of you who are living in the 'western world' and know absolutely nothing on how nature works in Africa, please don't comment because you all are lacking the intelligence of how nature operates.

    February 11, 2010 at 7:56 pm | Reply
  171. Louise in CA

    Yes. And here are my reasons: 1. Humans have severely disrupted the natural balance with farming, relocation of tribes, and other incursions into what was once an open wilderness. Lions and herbivores can't migrate as they once did. If we can fence off the world, then we can manage what little of nature is left. 2. Lions and herbivores have existed in a balanced symbiotic relationship since long before humans came on the scene. If lions kill, then they kill those who are weakest, stupidest, and least able to supply intelligence and strength to the gene pools of their prey species. Too bad for sentimentalists, but this is the natural order we're talking about, not some philosophical discussion on quality of death. Feed them.

    February 11, 2010 at 8:03 pm | Reply
  172. Paul

    It seems the problem here is that some people have a very small view of what actually goes on. If you kill the Zebras to feed the lions that would be a waste since the meat is likely to go bad and end up rotting away as happened during the drought

    2. The Zebras introduced into this particular park will off course reproduce and be able to survive any lion attacks after all this is what they do, everyday they get attacked and everyday the survive so it isn't like they are sitting ducks

    3. The other fact is that lions and hyenas don't usually attack Humans or their livestock unless they have to , this is due to their inherit fear of humans and indeed the maasai, and so you know there is nothing more important to a maasai than his livestock and when that runs out guess who the lions are going to be preying on.

    4. Lastly to the ridiculous vergans Lions dont eat anything but meat and that is not about to change so stop spreading useless propaganda and let live.

    The people making this decisions did not just get up one day and decide to do this they are trained and know what to do so get of your high horses and respect and not fear what you do not understand

    February 11, 2010 at 8:06 pm | Reply
  173. Armando

    Sure, it's the circle of life. Lions have been eating Zebras and Wildebeest long before man stuck their nose in. It's all part of nature. There are hundreds of thousands of Zebras and Wildebeest's through Africa and Lions are few. If Lions don't eat these animals and keep the balance there will a population explosion of Zebras and Wildebeest, than man would have to step in.

    February 11, 2010 at 8:11 pm | Reply
  174. Mike

    I am totally amazed at the rampant ignorance exhibited here!!! These are an endangered species through no fault of their own. Would you rather sit back and watch them starve and get emanciated due to lack of their food supply or feed them what they would normally hunt??? Or would you like to see them eat some little village girl or boy because there is nothing for them to hunt? Wouldn't you also like to have the opportunity to share this worlds wildlife with your grand and great grandchldren??? If we don't start doing the right thing all will be lost. And how old are you Anna??? I'll give you the benefit of the doubt and say you are approx. 15-16 yrs old, at least that is what your knowledge level and thought processes appear to be. Worms, Larvae and Tofu, you have got to be kidding me. You should be put in jail for animal cruelty!!! You take away the animals diginity, they're carnivores for God's sake!!!! PETA has it's place in the world and it does do some good but I liken the majority of them to terrorists in the way they think. I sure hope the majority of the people in this world don't think this way as we will all go extinct!!!! Maybe that's what has got to happen to mankind so the rest of the animal world will survive and flourish.

    February 11, 2010 at 8:17 pm | Reply
  175. Michelle

    What a sad story. Why would they even consider doing this?

    February 11, 2010 at 8:36 pm | Reply
  176. Skyler

    Zebras are here to sustain lions and other predators. We do not need to be worrying about the inhumane part of the zebras dying because that is what they live for. If we put that many new species into a habitat that just had a drought we are destroying the ecosystem there. The land will be unsustainable for the zebras to survive and they will die again of drought. The best solution is to have is just have to lions face the effects of the drought too. We need to stop obssesing over zebras because if lions died so would the zebras, It is part of the cycle. If the ranchers could keep watch over their livestock and the lions population lowers for a couple seasons that would be the best solution. If we would let nature take its course and not interfer so much then everything would be perfectly fine.

    February 11, 2010 at 8:38 pm | Reply
  177. Annie

    Send tea baggers to the lions, they're useless anyway.......

    February 11, 2010 at 8:43 pm | Reply
  178. rodney

    F peta and there animal and zebra do nothing, and you people are stupid over these damn animalit crazy you care more about animal then human they should put you out there with the lion since you love animal so damn much see how much they love you.

    February 11, 2010 at 8:47 pm | Reply
  179. tom

    no, i think that the zebras should be left alone. amagine if you were in a cage with your familly and all of the sudden, you get mauled by a lion. having to see that or have that happen to you is the same thing. if your going to waste double the life that was needed, than you are surly stupid.

    February 11, 2010 at 8:55 pm | Reply
  180. Brian

    Lions eat other animals. That's nature and only stupid humans would say that this is horrible or talk about a "more humane" way to feed the lions. I think that Kenya is doing a great thing for the ecology by moving a food source to where it is needed to prevent the lions from eating livestock or worse another person. This is the balance of nature so if you don't like it then lock yourself in your nice safe and sanitary condo and play 2nd life on the computer because that's the only place you'll get what you are looking without messing up the world for the rest of us sane people who understand what the "food chain" truly means.

    February 11, 2010 at 9:01 pm | Reply
  181. Carol

    I think it is just TERRIBLE and HORRIBLE to feed the zebras to the lions. There has to be another solution to the problem and why are these lions running free to attack other innocent animals?
    This world is getting worse by the minute.

    February 11, 2010 at 9:27 pm | Reply
  182. Courtney

    NO!!!! Zebras should NOT be fed to the lions! That is inhumane and just cruel! Africa has suffered through droughts before without going through these kinds of measures. Besides that, zebras are close to being put on the endangered list, with some of the different types already on it. How can Kenya even think that this is right??

    February 11, 2010 at 9:48 pm | Reply
  183. justin

    I think they should because its not like zebras are endangered.Also, if the lions were free to roam they would eat the zebras.Its just forcing the circle of life to continue to occur

    February 11, 2010 at 9:58 pm | Reply
  184. justin

    i agree with the brian guy

    February 11, 2010 at 9:59 pm | Reply
  185. Trevor M. Millett

    It is difficult to understand why people are horrified at the thought that lions should be provided with a natural food supply. Is it horrible that human beings, whether vegetarians or meat-lovers, kill everything from plants to animals to survive? If it isn't horrible for human beings to do that, why is it horrible and terrible for lions to be fed with zebras and wildebeest? Who exactly are we kidding? Now, I would be deeply concerned if they were being slaughtered as safari trophies. That would be unconscionable.

    February 11, 2010 at 10:00 pm | Reply
  186. Mike

    The zebras should absolutetly not be brought in as fodder. I have a much better idea: First, let the lions die of starvation – who needs more cats around anyway? Then, take all that flat, undeveloped land and build huge malls and parking lots. All the locals could work there and live happily ever after. Problem solved! No zebras, no lions, no tourism dollars, no worries.

    February 11, 2010 at 10:10 pm | Reply
  187. Valerie

    I think what they're doing is acceptable. It's not as if the zebras are being rounded up for human benefit, with the exception of preventing attacks on humans... Which actually benefits the lions because if they start attacking humans, then people would begin hunting them and decrease their numbers even more.

    People will say "let nature take its course," but I think that in order to preserve these species for future generations, we NEED to step in and help. Zebras are a natural prey source in the first place, so they're only encouraging natural hunter/prey behavior.

    Honestly, what is the harm in doing this? And if you say "those poor zebras," ask yourself why you DON'T say "those poor cows" as you're digging into a nice juicy ribeye.

    February 11, 2010 at 10:14 pm | Reply
  188. lukas

    if the lions are no longer a problem, the villagers will kill the thriving zebra for destroying crops...

    February 11, 2010 at 10:15 pm | Reply
  189. Lisa

    It’s a sad circle we run in. Humans contribute to the lion’s endangerment, then we try to redeem ourselves by segregating them, then we cause drought and they cannot reach proper food in their segregated environments, then we import zebras in an attempt to simulate some sort of ‘natural’ occurrence. I don’t even know what to say about this. Maybe we should put some humans in too.

    February 11, 2010 at 10:32 pm | Reply
  190. Larry

    Even though its been said ad nauseum in this string I am compelled to add my voice to this "discussion". My personal opinion falls into the "are these people nuts" camp. This is a sad commentary on our education system that allows people to graduate from high school, or even kindergarten with some of the attitudes they have expressed here. The idea to bring in the prey animals is brilliant for all of the reasons stated above by those that have voiced some very cogent arguments for doing so. To have someone like Michelle, at such a late date ask her naive question is a case in point. Where did you go to school Michelle, or pistachio or any of the rest of you that have no concept of basic biological principles.

    This is one of those issues that will never bring the two groups together. Its why I never talk to friends about religion, abortion, gun control and now, basic ecology. Both sides have their nuts and they will never see eye-to-eye. Those on the one side will never see reason and come around to the other side. Its a fact of life. Anybody want to argue about that?

    February 11, 2010 at 10:32 pm | Reply
  191. jo

    lets feed rob and pistachio to the lions that sounds like a great idea

    February 11, 2010 at 10:36 pm | Reply
  192. janiece mcintosh

    yes/those poor lions are in a refuge and not in their own enviroment where they can kill and not starve.........they need all the help they can get.............

    February 11, 2010 at 10:41 pm | Reply
  193. dangercat

    Yes, transport the zebras to repopulate the food source for the lions.
    I agree with Valerie – all you people who think this is cruel should spend your energy lobbying against factory farming, not arguing about whether a lion in the wild should be allowed to hunt. Watch a video of an assembly line in a slaughterhouse, or of chicks being thrown live into a chipper if you this THIS is cruel.

    February 11, 2010 at 10:44 pm | Reply
  194. jo

    hey sally wake up zebras are lions natural prey what do you want the lions to do walk to mcdonalds and order a cheeseburger and fries. hey rodney animals are more civilized than humans its us who destroy this earth not the animals wake up and educate yourself pick up a newspaper and read about all the killings that occur everyday by human maggots.

    February 11, 2010 at 10:47 pm | Reply
  195. Heather

    It is a nice program but extinction is a part of evolution. Including our own. By keeping species alive we are suppressing the advancement of the ones that would benefit. If someone had been screwing with the life chain a million years ago, there may not have been any lions or maybe not us either. I don't see what the enjoyment of our children has to do with predetermining the course of nature. what kind of animals live on the land affects what kind of plants flourish with determines what kind of bugs flourish which affects plant and animal life all over the planet. If you really believed God had a plan then maybe the surviving life is designed to go with the changing climate. We should undo our own harm without trying to undo nature's. We have no idea what we are doing.

    February 11, 2010 at 10:48 pm | Reply
  196. Ben

    Would opinions have been different if the article had simply said that zebras and wildebeest were being brought into a region where their population was recently devastated by drought? Remove the notion that they are being sent as prey animals, and it seems to be a perfectly moral decision. Of course zebras and wildebeest ARE prey animals, but this is true in whatever environment they inhabit. Predation is a fact of life for zebras and wildebeest in natural environments, and there are almost certainly lions present in the locations they're being transported from. (If there weren't, the prey populations would be unsustainably high.) Wildlife managers are simply moving them from one environment in which they naturally encounter predators into another where they naturally encounter predators.

    February 11, 2010 at 10:50 pm | Reply
  197. DW

    Wow – PETA is gonna freak over this one. Yes – help the lions; better some of their natural prey than humans or livestock.

    February 11, 2010 at 10:55 pm | Reply
  198. Crokepark

    When I saw this, it turned my stomach.
    Herding these animals onto transport to their deaths?
    It will be a massacre.
    I understand the reasoning to save the lions, but seriously, can you not kil them first?
    If the lions are in the state that they are in, these Zebras and Wildebeast will not make it off of the transport before being eaten alive!

    February 11, 2010 at 10:58 pm | Reply
  199. Hashini Jayasinghe

    Must be the most hardest realistic slap, to have a wonderful helicopter ride just to be ripped by the lions later!

    February 11, 2010 at 11:01 pm | Reply
  200. Crokepark

    Factory Farming is brutality at its best.
    As a human, we can be really pathetic.

    February 11, 2010 at 11:06 pm | Reply
  201. honeyzz

    due to what i hav read, over three types of lions have already gone extinct and the south china tiger has not been seen in 25 years. i accept the consequence of losing the zebras and wildbeasts but only if they become endangered as well. save the tigers, save other animals, save yourself. three ways to make a difference to your life.

    February 11, 2010 at 11:17 pm | Reply
  202. honeyzz

    sorry of what i posted before. i ment that i accept the consequence, but not if the zebras and wildbeast become endangered too.

    February 11, 2010 at 11:21 pm | Reply
  203. Madison

    I definitely think they should move the zebras to the lions feeding grounds. Zebras aren't as endangered as much as lions are, and the lions play a very important part of the ecosystem. People should help the lions, and not feel sorry for "killing" the zebras. After all, we kill and mutilate cows, chickens, and many other livestocks everyday just to keep us alive.

    February 11, 2010 at 11:31 pm | Reply
  204. JB

    Looking at the volume of response to this article tells me that most Americans have misplaced priorities. First, I agree with the relocation of zebra and wildebeasts to replenish the population lost in the drought. But I'm sick of reading the words "so sad" and "massacre". Human beings are being murdered sadistically in the US every day. Our military personnel are being maimed and killed in our war against terrorism every day. Our government is sliding down the slippery slope to European socialism. Your concerns and sympathy should be re-directed to things that really matter.

    February 11, 2010 at 11:34 pm | Reply
  205. MD

    I'm an animal lover and as such I believe in the circle of life. Predator animals eat prey animals. That's the way God made them and as it was intended. I can't believe the morons on here making comments. The worst of which has got to be the idea of getting lions to become vegetarians! WTF?!? Lions are carnivores. It's biological! They have to eat meat. They're not omnivores that can switch back and forth, like us. Gawd..I really hate stupid people and there seems to be an overabundant supply of them. You people live in your little suburban houses and go to your corner grocery store for a nice prepackaged, sliced up pieces of chicken/beef/pork. Where do you think that crap comes from?

    February 11, 2010 at 11:36 pm | Reply
  206. Madison

    Well they are in the worst drought in 26 years, so some of the zebras (herbavores) would die of either starvation or dehydration. If they die from that it would be a waste, why not feed them to the lions?

    February 11, 2010 at 11:38 pm | Reply
  207. Josh

    Save The Lions But Not The Hyenas !!

    February 11, 2010 at 11:38 pm | Reply
  208. S

    I'm a Kenyan and I live in and love my country. I'm appalled at some of the comments I see from some clearly clueless morons.

    Feeding lions on slaughtered animals is not an option – these are not caged lions in a zoo and they will not eat what they don't hunt. Apart from providing live prey for the lions, the relocation will restock the Amboseli with zebras and return the balance of nature. Not all of them will fall prey to the lions, and some will fall prey to predators anyway, whether they're moved or not.

    This is not the first translocation of wildlife in Kenya – it happens all the time and helps us maintain some balance.

    It's sad the reporter chose to highlight only the fact that some of them will fall prey to lions, and ignore the other reasons for the translocation. Our local media covered the bigger picture. As usual, lopsided reporting, merely because it's about Africa.

    February 11, 2010 at 11:40 pm | Reply
  209. Jill Johnson

    It is the circle of life. Feed the lions.

    February 11, 2010 at 11:50 pm | Reply
  210. noway123

    How could anyone come up with the idea of human intervention with the circle of life? Bringing zebras to feed the lions would ultimately reduce the number of zebras and eventually the extinction of zebras, thus, both the lion and zebra population would be completely wiped out. Perhaps it is meant to be that lions are to be extinct?

    February 12, 2010 at 12:00 am | Reply
  211. Edd

    Save the Zebra and Wildebeest, send over the Republicans to serve as food for the Lions.

    February 12, 2010 at 12:01 am | Reply
  212. TexanDoc

    Do they have donkeys instead? Zebras are so beautiful 🙁 How about shipping some buffaloes from South Dakota to Kenya! That would help 😉

    February 12, 2010 at 12:16 am | Reply
  213. TexanDoc

    I would also ship some animals to the arctic to stop the polar bear eating their own cubs!

    February 12, 2010 at 12:19 am | Reply
  214. Chico

    Gotta hand it to those Kenyan's and all the anti-hunting groups out there on how to manage an ecosystem!

    Job well done!

    February 12, 2010 at 12:27 am | Reply
  215. Stuart

    This is so disgusting...
    Kill 1/2 of lions and all that wild animals..
    I have a better idea.. whoever suggest this cruel idea should first be shipped over and eaten alive.. see how they feel
    Just an awful way of killing innocent animals.
    Let nature takes care itself.. even though the lions are starving , I don't believe they will go extinct ! But human will if we keep inventing more powerful and deadly weapons.


    February 12, 2010 at 12:46 am | Reply
  216. Dan

    We should stop playing God

    February 12, 2010 at 1:04 am | Reply
  217. Jean

    Crokepark, just how many zebras do you think one lion can eat? Let's say there are lions present (which is fairly unlikely) when the zebras are unloaded. This would be one pride of lions, because lions are territorial, and rival prides would be driven off by the resident pride. So the pride of lions kills a zebra. *A* zebra. Singular. While they're eating that zebra, the thousands of other zebras are hightailing it out of there. Um, you do realize that zebras have legs, right? They're not like giant striped slugs or something; they can and will get out of Dodge when they smell lions.

    Heather, this is not a matter of a natural progression of species. It's not "part of evolution". It's the result of human interference in that natural progression. Since we've already interfered, we have a choice of what results we want from that interference. Do you really want a world that contains only those species which can successfully scavenge from humans? A world of nothing but cockroaches, starlings, bedbugs, sewer rats, and kudzu? If that's not what you want (and it's certainly not what I want) then we need to try to avoid human-caused extinctions. Personally, I'd rather have lions than cockroaches. Your mileage may vary.

    Tom, neither the zebras nor the lions are living in cages. You see, there's this place called "outdoors" - you may never have seen it, but it exists. Wild animals live there. They run around and do wild animal things - which, in some cases, involved eating other wild animals.

    As Nick pointed out in his excellent post, the zebras and wildebeests face more predators in the area they're being moved FROM than in the area they're being moved TO. Their chances of being eaten by a lion are actually lower in the region they're being relocated to.

    This, of course, increases their proportionate chances of dying from disease, starvation, injuries (including injuries caused by herd-mages), and various other, much slower deaths. They're all going to die sooner or later, every last one of them. The immortal zebra has not yet been born. Death for a wild animal is rarely a pleasant thing. There's no herd animal hospice, just a lingering death while the vultures circle.

    What would be your choice, were you a zebra: Dying in a matter of minutes from a lion attack, or slowly starving to death because another zebra kicked you in the jaw and you can't eat? Maybe you'd rather die of disease? How about infection? You have to pick one. All things considered, I think I'd take the lion. You wind up dead in the end anyway, and with the lion it's over faster.

    The real world is a harsh place. Lions eat zebras. Big fish eat little fish. Hell, a lot of species eat their own young if they can catch them. You cannot apply human morals to wild animals; that's as crazy as expecting them to wear clothes and work in offices.

    Lions don't have a choice of lifestyle; they're hardwired to be lions. Humans do. My fellow humans, if you are not a fruitarian, you kill to live. If you do not live naked in a cave somewhere, you consume resources that, in some form, cost other creatures their lives. The difference between eating organic tofu and eating factory-farmed pork is only a matter of degree; something still dies. Aside from those innocent soybeans, there are the animals whose habitat was destroyed to create the soybean farm, there are the insects who are killed by one means or another (synthetic pesticides aren't the only way to kill a bug), there's the pollution from the fossil fuel expended in moving those soybeans from the field to the tofu fermenter to your "natural" foods store to your kitchen ... you're still killing. Life eats life. You kill to live, unless the lifestyle of a dung-beetle appeals to you.

    We have choices. Lions don't.

    Furthermore, they are not being tethered to wait for lions or something; they're being released to re-establish a self-sustaining population. The biggest threat to both zebras and wildebeests is habitat destruction. That's one reason why it's essential to have them in that ecosystem.

    The plains zebra (the species in question) is not endangered (it's listed as "least concern"), and the wildebeest population numbers in the millions. Relocating a few thousand to replenish the herds in an area where they formerly thrived will not make a dent in the populations - and, as those initial animals reproduce over the next years, will actually increase it.

    By the way, for those of you who think zebras are cute, cuddly creatures that deserve to live safe from those mean ol' lions: Do you know what a zebra would do if you got up close and personal with it?

    If it couldn't run away (and maybe even if it could) it would kill you. You are not a four-legged ungulate; you are therefore a predator. Millions of years of evolution (or a provident deity, if you prefer) have programmed zebras to flee or attack anything that might be a threat to them. That sweet, innocent zebra will kick you into the middle of next week without half trying. And don't even get me started on wildebeests; they kill lions.

    Wild animals are not people in fur suits. They are lions, they are zebras, they are vultures ... they all have their roles. They eat each other. They always have, and unless we humans exterminate them, they always will.

    And remember, the next time you see that cute little ladybug walking on your rosebush: she's there to kill. She's hunting for other insects, and she will kill them by eating them alive. Life eats life.

    February 12, 2010 at 1:26 am | Reply
  218. Jean

    For "herd-mages" read "herd-mates". Though magic-using zebras do make an interesting mental image, I suppose.

    February 12, 2010 at 1:28 am | Reply
  219. Tim

    pistachio you are the biggest idiot I can imagine. Why shouldnt the herbivores be brought in to feed the lions? Thats what would happen in the wild anyway? Im sure that a pride of lions would be able to take down a zebra or two. Also there are 6000 animals being brought in to sustain 2000 lions. Do the math, thats three times as many herbivores than carnivores? Not to mention the fact there are only 2000 lions left. I mean come on. A few zebras that will be able to reproduce quickly compared to the lions who are facing extinction in the area. Why should the landowners get the right to kill them? You would think the landowners would kills the zebra before the lions? Think thoroughly before posting an ignorant comment like this. Lions eat zebras anyways.

    February 12, 2010 at 1:31 am | Reply
  220. Mohammad Ali

    I wish I could try Wildebeast. Hey why dont they transport wildebeast meat like that to starving African children, and leave the Lions all the Zebras

    February 12, 2010 at 1:36 am | Reply
  221. Jayster

    It doesn't sound right, if fact, it is cruel but Zebra's and other animals have always been the Loins prey. For millenia, the balance of nature has been kept in check by predator and prey. With the introduction of livestock by man, this has caused an imbalance in the ecosystem. It takes a natural disaster to bring it to the surface.

    February 12, 2010 at 1:51 am | Reply
  222. Ayla

    I think this is a great idea, these lions need all the help they can get and there are still lot's of herbivores, so don't worry, we will save these majestic animals!! Keep doing what your doing!!

    February 12, 2010 at 2:22 am | Reply
  223. Rebecca

    For those of you who disagree with this 'move', watch The Lion King... The Circle of Life is the part you should pay special attention to. What are the lions supposed to eat? Would you prefer that they start preying on children? The cattle are a source of food for people as well... we don't typically eat zebra! Let Pumba, Simba and their friends remind you of how life in the wild is supposed to be!

    February 12, 2010 at 2:42 am | Reply
  224. mig29

    some people here thinks lions should be handfed.

    lions or any big cats kills by sufocation so the prey is already dead before they are eaten.

    watch natgeo or discovery/animal planet first before commenting.

    February 12, 2010 at 4:05 am | Reply
  225. John DiNucci

    The moron below me has obviously never learned about how ecosystems are sustained.

    February 12, 2010 at 5:09 am | Reply
  226. Vincent.

    Yes! The lions are starving and too weak to hunt. Its a good thing man is coming to the rescue here.

    February 12, 2010 at 9:32 am | Reply
  227. Gavin

    It supprises me that people in a first world country have no idea of what lions eat! Most of the game parks through out Southern Africa are all well maintained and it is necessary to relocate species from one area to another for their survival. It is really stupid to think that lions don't eat zebra's, kill the lions.....please, do me a favour. Come to South Africa and visit the Kruger National Park for education!
    You'll leave a changed person!

    February 12, 2010 at 11:57 am | Reply
  228. Raj Kumar Bhardwaj

    I accept that nature has created the animal kingdom with a great deal of brutality and unfortunately that is life. But who gives us the right as humans to undertake such unethical practices under the guise of animal protection? One of the things that make us humans different from animals is our compassion. Please tell me what is so compassionate about putting an innocent animal in front of a savage creature only so that the poor thing can be ripped to pieces by the barbaric thing? This is a sad day in history that as humans we can do such things. Man has no right to try and control nature but nature must be left to take its own course. How many people in the world die every minute due to starvation, poverty and disease? Shouldn't we be worrying about saving dying humans before we start worrying about dying savage creatures who prey on the weak in the animal kingdom by ripping them to pieces? I have a pet dog and let me tell u one thing that animals also have emotions and feelings and it breaks my heart when I see these poor innocent zebras being rounded without having a clue where they are being taken to.

    February 12, 2010 at 1:39 pm | Reply
  229. Valerie

    Crokepark –

    Re: your comment about killing the zebras before serving them up to the lions, and about what a massacre would be... First, it would NOT be a "massacre" as these lions are not going to go out and kill each and every zebra and wildebeest the second they are released. Lions are different from other large cats, specifically leopards, who are known to kill for sport. Lions will kill for hunger, eat their fill, and then spend the rest of the day lolling around. If you don't believe me, look up lions' feeding behaviors. Secondly, killing the prey animals first would solve nothing. Lions are not natural scavengers, like hyenas. The act of chasing down and killing live prey is hardwired into their brains. If you kill the animals first, the lions would either ignore the dead carcasses, or if desperate for food, they might change their hunting and feeding behavior and start scavenging. Scavenging is not a natural behavior for them and I think it'd be pretty sad if we changed their behavior so drastically just to keep some bleeding-heart animal lovers happy.

    And for the record, I am a HUGE animal lover... But as such I respect the natural balance and the predator/prey relationship. It's a shame that more people don't.

    February 12, 2010 at 2:29 pm | Reply
  230. Leslie Gibbs

    It is the lion's food source. It is not inhumane to relocate these animals they are not human. They have a life span and need to live out the natural order the way they were intended too. If some were sick they would die in an open field somewhere else. That won't make the lions sick they clean the remains up. They would be eaten by crocs anyways and there is room for them to regenerate life back into the park the way it was suppose to be. At least the Lord can see the people trying to preserve life especially with all the problems Africa has been having. Who would ever try to help a baby elephant out of a mud hole that had a heart for malice. There is hope for Africa .

    February 12, 2010 at 3:14 pm | Reply
  231. Vinu

    I believe in the balance of nature..neither zebras should be more nor the lions...I dont think sending zebras(as a buffet) to the lions is a great idea.The should be allowed to mingle freely with each other so therefore the balance will be obtained..The people who are living in these area can take necessary steps in order to be safe from them like setting up boundary lines,clinics,warning systems and many more.

    February 12, 2010 at 4:18 pm | Reply
  232. Nderu

    I’m Kenyan and speaking for the Maasai people, what the Kenya Wildlife Service is doing is a good job.
    Most of the comments here are ignorant and un-informed bunch of people………. I bet you are not Africans to understand man and beast are our cousins….we depends on one another. For those who are concerned about lions eating Zebras
    ….they have done that since time in memorial, that’s not new.
    Please read the article again, it clearly states tourism is the second income earner for Kenya.
    Most of the tourist who comes to Kenya comes to see the lions; we can’t afford to lose the lion.
    There are thousands of zebras and wildebeest in the country and they are multiplying daily.
    The lively hood of the Maasai people in that region is livestock (cows) and lions.
    If the lions are not saved the Maasai people who act as guides to the tourist will have no income.
    If the government doesn’t take the steps to ease the tension between man verses beast, the lions will go after the community, who do you think will suffer more?

    February 12, 2010 at 5:26 pm | Reply
  233. bob

    i think they should send over the zebras for the hungrey lions

    February 12, 2010 at 5:51 pm | Reply
  234. Roffuss Delight

    WOW> you people are dumb. Ben is completly right. The zebras are made natural to be eatin by lions. How else do you think they have been surviving? they cant eat grass they are carnivores. they eat meat. the meat is the zebras and wildebest etc.... the lions should be able to eat these animals and we need to ship them off. i do feel bad but its ur fault they dont habve anyhting to eat so we need to fix it.


    February 12, 2010 at 5:54 pm | Reply
  235. Dorinne

    who cares about the lions, this is clearly cruel and should be stopped. Those poor zebras will be brought to this place just to die...who thinks up this crap? I hope these people can sleep at night knowing that they have brought these innocent animals to death.

    February 12, 2010 at 7:48 pm | Reply
  236. Jean

    After my first post, I assumed that people simply hadn't read it while it was in moderation. After my second, I started to wonder. Now, I'm pretty sure there are people here wearing blinders, talking about how "unnatural" it is to move zebras to a place where, had their habitat not been fragmented by man, they would have moved to on their own, or how "cruel" it is for the "innocent" zebras to be a part of the natural food chain.

    Let me try to explain this for the people who didn't read the article:

    First, the problem is man-made: had it not been for humans, the effects of the drought would have been less severe (no cattle competing for the available water) and both the zebras and the lions could have moved, as their ancestors did, to areas with more food. Because human habitation has reduced what remains of the animals' natural habitat into fragmented reserves, the animals cannot cope with drought in the ways that they previously could. For those saying "let nature take its course" ... it' can't. We broke that. In short, humans caused the problem, so it's humans' responsibility to fix it.

    Second, there are not 2,000 lions in Amboseli. There are 2,000 lions IN ALL OF KENYA. Probably only a few hundred in Amboseli. It's pretty small, as Kenyan national parks go. The lion population in Africa has been plummeting. Do you really want a world without lions?

    Third, plains zebras and wildebeests are not endangered species, nor anywhere close to even being threatened. Lions are. Further, by moving some zebras from a place where they are plentiful to an area with good zebra habitat but not enough zebras, the total population of zebras will INCREASE.

    Fourth, zebras are not "innocent animals"; they are wild animals, just like lions, not My Little Stripey Pony. Wild animals. Given half a reason to, they will hurt you, and they will kill you. Wildebeests are even fiercer. They kill lions that get near their calves.

    Fifth, the zebras are not being tethered or penned somewhere for the convenience of the lions. They're being released to live free, and replenish the existing herds. The majority of them will not, in fact, be eaten by lions. They'll be out there being zebras, and making more zebras.

    And finally, the zebras are not coming from some idyllic, predator-free Eden. They're coming from a similar area where they also were hunted by lions and other big predators. That part - the part about them being prey - isn't changing. The only difference is in where on the map it's happening.

    What really disgusts me are the people who want to let the lions starve to death. They're so horrified by the fact that there are carnivores in the world that they want to see them die a torturous, lingering death as punishment for the crime of having been born as lions instead of zebras. And they call themselves animal lovers. They don't even know what animals ARE, beyond pictures in their coloring books and colorful plastic toys.

    Reality is a cold, harsh place. Life eats life. Lions eat zebras and wildebeests. As I said in my first post, that's how it's been since one primordial amoeba discovered it could engulf another primordial amoeba, and so grow stronger. And in the end, all zebras die; the only question is how.

    Oh, and lions don't eat their prey alive; they kill it first. Ever look at what a lion has for hunting equipment? I can certainly think of worse ways of dying than being killed by a hungry lion. Just about every disease in existence, for starters.

    February 12, 2010 at 10:17 pm | Reply
  237. Cathy

    It a natural way of the wildlife. If we can save the lions
    then we should. We are merely transferring
    many many zebras and wildlife to the Lions Home.
    All of them will live as nature intended.
    We are just using a little money to help wildlife.....

    I love animals, lions and zebra's but I understand..

    February 12, 2010 at 10:27 pm | Reply
  238. Jean

    I'm going to answer one post in detail here:

    "who cares about the lions, this is clearly cruel and should be stopped. Those poor zebras will be brought to this place just to die...who thinks up this crap? I hope these people can sleep at night knowing that they have brought these innocent animals to death."

    Who cares about the lions? One would hope the same people who care about the zebras. Why is a zebra better than a lion? When you come right down to it, lions are more intelligent than zebras, too. Which do you care about more, your cat or the mice (or moths, if that's all it has) it eats? Why should a lion starve to death because you think it's bad that lions are predators?

    Do you exterminate ladybugs to protect the innocent aphids? Why not? Aphids are insects too. Shouldn't they have as much right to live as a ladybug? And what about the horrible practice of breeding millions of ladybugs and selling them in garden centers for people to unleash on gardens full of innocent insects? They can wipe out millions of aphids in a summer (in fact, that's the whole point). Shouldn't that be stopped to protect those innocent, herbivorous aphids?

    Those "poor zebras" are being brought to a place that is great zebra habitat, but currently short on zebras. They're being brought there to live their lives, to make more zebras, and to re-establish the population of zebras that is necessary to the ecosystem of the area. Yes, some will be eaten by lions, just as they would have in the area they're coming from, which has its own population of predators. Most won't. I notice, by the way, that nobody seems to be concerned about the "poor wildebeests" ... why not? Is it that even a mother wildebeest probably can't find one cute and appealing?

    Zebras are neither more nor less "innocent" than lions. They're both wild animals. Life eats life.

    And I'm sure the people who thought this up are sleeping very soundly in their beds, knowing that they have done something to restore a human-damaged ecosystem, and return the Amboseli to the condition it was in before the drought. They are doing a very good thing, and I commend them.

    A bit of math: Some research on zoo websites tells me that a lion eats about 12 pounds of meat a day, and a zebra weighs about 600 pounds. That's live weight, not dressed weight, of course, so let's subtract 100 pounds for the bones (though lions do crack them for the marrow) and anything else a lion might find inedible, and whatever the vultures, jackals, etc., make off with. By that measure, one zebra provides roughly 42 lion-days of food. So a lion needs about eight and a half average-sized zebras per year. Let's round that to 9. If we assume it takes 4 zebras to produce one replacement zebra (4 to allow for males, non-breeding females, early deaths, etc.) then it takes 36 zebras to keep up with the predation of a single lion. I'm just pulling numbers out of the air with regard to zebra reproductive success, by the way. But I think any attentive reader can see what I'm getting at: A herd of 36 zebras could keep one lion fed in perpetuity. The number being relocated (plus the 20% of the original population remaining) will be able to support several hundred lions. Which, given what a small percentage of the total remaining lion habitat is represented by the Ambosteli reserve, that's almost certainly far more than are there; remember, Kenya only has about 2,000 lions left in the whole country.

    By the way, lions do scavenge. With their hunting success as low as it is (somewhere around 25%) they can't pass up any meat they can find. In particular, they bully hyenas off their kills and steal the hyenas' lunches.

    It's ridiculous that there is even a controversy here. This is the result of the people who have grown up with cuddly plush toys and talking-animal cartoons, but no exposure to the world outside their sheltered urban environment, thinking that bears are kuje Care Bears, horses are like My Little Pony, and the eternal cycle of life is a crime. The real world isn't Care-A-Lot. I'll keep saying it: life eats life.

    There are two things I recommend reading:

    "There's a Hair in My Dirt" by Gary Larson. (book)

    "Last Rights" by Mercedes Lackey (short story, I think it's in Dinosaur Fantastic)

    They're both short, both good stories, both fun to read ... and they both contain some truths that the creators of cutesy toys and children's stories leave out. Besides, Gary Larson and Mercedes Lackey are worth reading anyway.

    And remember: unless you're an off-the-grid fruitarian, you, too, are participating in one of the oldest truths there is: life eats life.

    February 12, 2010 at 10:53 pm | Reply
  239. Mike

    Yes, they are food!! I

    February 13, 2010 at 4:20 pm | Reply
  240. Stan

    Everyone needs to eat.

    February 13, 2010 at 7:45 pm | Reply
  241. Marto

    There is a case for the Zebra and the Wildebeest. There is also a case for the Lion and the Maasai's cows.

    But I think humans have a lot to answer:
    •We are breeding like rabbits yet no one eats us.
    •We are taking up more and more land.
    •Life expectancy is gradually increasing and we are conquering disease.
    •This circus would not be happening if there were no tourist dollars.
    •The Kenya Wildlife Service is tinkering with nature, just like companies that genetic modify food. They should let nature take its course.

    February 13, 2010 at 10:45 pm | Reply
  242. Haruhiko Mohri

    Human being is also a kind of animals. We have to save and help ourselves before wild animals. For example, in Haiti many people need help now.

    But some human being like wild animals, such as destroyers of nature, terorists and nihilists should be helped to change their lives. And somehow I myself is to be part of them.

    February 14, 2010 at 9:44 am | Reply
  243. hugh

    No, let nature take its course. Is there food for the zebras and wilderbeest ? In a drought like this the animals that the lions feed on have all died because they have no food. You cannot place more animals into this area as they will also weaken and die before the lions get them. Relocate the lions and hyenas to areas that have animals to eat. Once the drought has broken nature will take care of things and then relocate the animals back to the area so you have a new start with a balanced ecosystem from the get go. Do not introduce animals into an area that has no food for them. Relocate the animals to areas that have food

    February 14, 2010 at 12:17 pm | Reply
  244. richie

    zebras can feel pain as much as we humans can. if you think zebras should be the scapegoat for lions to feed on, put yourself in the same situation. imagine yourself being eaten alive by a den of lions. Or, imagine that the zebra is you in the flesh being torn apart by lions' claw. How would you feel as your flesh is torn open in split seconds? Zebras have feelings too. So watch what you say.

    February 14, 2010 at 12:41 pm | Reply
  245. Sherry

    Oh, phoeey!!!

    If there was ever an animal lover, it's me. We have 16 beloved pets at the moment. In my lifetime I've fed and saved everything from cats and dogs, to robins, pigeons, kestrels, 'possums, raccoons, slugs, rats, mice, moles, horses, mules, donkeys, fish, ducks, turtles, spiders, ants, FLIES, deer, and more. I love them all – even the sorts of animals that most people think of as vermin, pests, and nuisances.

    Is it wrong to round up zebras for those starving lions? ABSOLUTELY NOT! Big predators are losing the battle between man and nature. They live at the top of the food chain and are essential to the balance of the ecosystems in which they exist. Without the lions, everything else will fall. There was a time when what happened, happened – and nature would regain the balance eventually. But since the rise of man in modern times (technology and population), this balance has been subverted and the predators are going by the wayside. You really DON'T want to see what happens in the natural world without them. So yes – ship those zebras in! (It's about time someone thought "outside the box.") Let the lions hunt and eat and SURVIVE.

    February 15, 2010 at 12:19 am | Reply
  246. amanda

    I think its a sad thing for the zebras but what about the steak we eat ,and all the poultry & fish etc. I don't like lions at all they could go extent for all I care but lets face it, its dog eat dog world let the lions eat lion. And since they won't eat lions they will sooner or later start to eat the humans well its only logical to bring them some zebras if they are millions there, this is life its never fair. lions eat zebras humans kill each other no one wins but only the strong survive

    February 15, 2010 at 5:16 am | Reply
  247. Vel

    Thanks alot Jean, thats a amazing explanation.

    and people.... enough!

    The lions are tired and just ordered for a home delivery, which are delivered to the Lion's doors, just like your favorite pepperoni Pizza...

    February 15, 2010 at 10:03 am | Reply
  248. Naeem Butt

    Most of the commentators seem to have no idea how Evolution has worked on this planet since billions of years. Most of the commentators are totally ignorant or writing from a religious point of view.

    February 15, 2010 at 11:15 am | Reply
  249. Justin B.

    I understand that the lions are hungry and that they are carnivores, but can't we ship in some animals that are less cute. I think zebras are just too cute.

    February 15, 2010 at 3:50 pm | Reply
  250. barrett

    lions eat zebras. circle of life

    February 16, 2010 at 12:26 am | Reply
  251. coffeeman

    To those who comment on cruelty to animals, give me a break. For thousands of years wild animals kill other wild animals as food sources. That is life cycle at its purest. For shipping some Zebras is humane in its own way, giving food to a starving creature. The death of wildlife in that area by the drought is questionable if its humans fault, it maybe or may not be. As most people know when wild predators run out of a food source their first instinct is to move to an area of abundance. Thus moving them closer and closer to human population. By "feeding" them zebras only delays that

    February 16, 2010 at 5:58 am | Reply
  252. mik3

    lions gotta eat

    February 16, 2010 at 6:23 am | Reply
  253. mik3

    Why dont we just feed the lions all the vegans and uneducated people we have in america and kill two birds with one stone

    February 16, 2010 at 6:30 am | Reply
  254. Arthur

    It is a vary good idea, herbivores need to be reintroduced, lions need food and villagers need their livestock left alone. Yes some of the zebras will be eaten but guess what folks, thats the way it works in the real world. This is not a Disney movie!

    February 17, 2010 at 8:06 pm | Reply
  255. Tim Adorni

    It really sounds cruel and disturbing, but survival of the fitists is the natural order. Yes lions eat zebras and wilderbeests and all other living animals throughout the world. Yes we humans are pushing the carnivois envelope, fourcing these animals to be killed to help the lions survive. I say bring it on home, we breed cattle, chickens,pigs,ducks etc. etc. etc..to eat everyday of our lives. well in the food establishments the meat is not alive and surtainly doesn't look anything like an animal. BUT IT IS THE SAME THING.... We all eat animals, Face it that's the survival of life!!!!!!!!!

    February 18, 2010 at 2:44 am | Reply
  256. Celeste

    This is wrong and sad. I understand that you need to feed lions, but don't take the life of innocent zebras. I would take meat of animals that have died of natural causes, not killed by human or led into a cage of lions. That is what I would call a cruel and unusual punishment. I am a 15 year old and I think that leading zebras into a cage of lions is wrong. I say NO to leading zebras to a cage of what will son be death!!!

    February 18, 2010 at 7:38 pm | Reply
  257. adrian

    reading this comments from Kenya makes me laugh on how ignorant some people are (read pistachio & beth) ,zebras and other herbivores are all over the place here, most that will be taken to amboseli will never even see a carnivore. we cant all be vegans .
    lions a few and far between as are all other carnivores ,i bet u think the burger u just ate, typing ur feel good message came off a tree! a cow had to die to feed u. and the fries u super sized with that are probably GMO alot of animals were tested and died on that before it was fit for human consumption. get off ur pedestals.

    February 20, 2010 at 2:49 pm | Reply
  258. Jeanne Sommerfield

    I'm not really sure how I feel about this, part of me says yes, help the lions, but part of me says let nature takes its course. The Bible says there will be famines in Mathew 24 in the end times and I think this is just another fulfillment of prophecy, God created, and God is destroying. Just like in Noahs day, He is slowly destroying the earth He created, only to make a new earth some day.

    February 20, 2010 at 3:50 pm | Reply
  259. cindy

    Like others have said, the zebras and wildebeest won't be led to slaughter. They are just being shipped in to replenish the zebra and wildebeest populations that were devastated by drought. I don't see anything wrong with this, this will restore the natural order and ensure that the lions will return to their natural prey, instead of livestock. This will hopefully bring the interests of lion-preservationists (which should hopefully include all of mankind) and subsistence-level farmers back into alignment and minimize conflict. Every animal species is precious and should be preserved by all reasonable ecological means possible.

    February 20, 2010 at 9:22 pm | Reply
  260. cindy

    @Celeste – the zebras and wildebeest will not be led into lion cages. The lions don't live in cages. Ambroseli National park is a protected nature park that preserves the natural ecosystem of the area.

    February 20, 2010 at 9:28 pm | Reply
  261. Sibelius313

    It's more like Man Created, and Man is Destroying... We will never let nature take it's course. No money to be made... Trying to restore a habitat to it's natural CYCLE is a good thing. Unfortunately, these types of conflicts will become more frequent in our lives as mankind has imposed it's unsustainable lifestyle upon a previously sustainable planet.


    February 20, 2010 at 11:30 pm | Reply
  262. rianna

    so i agree with sending in these animals to help recover what happened in the drought, as well as feeding the lions. from what ive read there is an abundance of zebras and such, so why not move a few into a new area for the greater good?

    p.s. for all the weirdos that posted comments about the "poor zebras and fuits and veggies" seriously??? im a vegetarian and i wouldnt dream for one minute that i could give my dog a fruits and veggie diet. i know better, its not how their bodies work. lions eat zebras. the end.

    February 21, 2010 at 11:45 pm | Reply
  263. tabitha

    if they dont have any animals there the will end up eating eachother but it depends on how much or how many animals they are taking because they would have to "restock" the zebra or wildabeasts.....

    February 22, 2010 at 6:45 pm | Reply
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