LION GUARDIANS NEWSLETTER: ISSUE 10/NOVEMBER 2017
Karibu
Sopa, Hujambo, Hello!

Over the last ten years, Lion Guardians has always maintained that the sharing and receiving of knowledge is central to growth and impact in the conservation sphere. We have armed ourselves with data that has informed our conservation actions on the ground. Very early on we also begin to share with others what we were finding to be successful. More recently, we have adopted a structured approach to sharing knowledge that involves reaching out across various spheres - academia, communities, individuals, and projects. And this year has been a flag-ship year for our knowledge sharing services. From pre-designed programs and customized coaching to keynote speeches and community visits, our knowledge sharing has had far reaching impact. All of this has been in addition to our continued successful operations on the ground.
 
You can read about the key highlights that your support has made possible below. Thank you for walking this journey with us.
 
It takes a community to conserve lions and preserve cultures, we are grateful that you are a part of ours. 
 
Ashe Oleng, Asante, Thank You!
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On October 11th and 12th, the Halcyon Gallery hosted an exhibition showcasing stunning portraits of some of our Guardians by eminent photographer Jack Brockway and 36 retired hunting spears decorated by Maasai women from the communities where we operate in the Amboseli-Tsavo Ecosystem.   These amazing spears are   available for purchase with all proceeds donated to Lion Guardians and Elephant Family. 

Featured Photo: Intensity
COMING SOON: A stunning coffee-table photo book by   Philip J. Briggs
that narrates the story of a warrior and a Guardian! Follow Philip on instagram for updates!
News from the Field & Beyond
Photo credit: John Kisimir.
Hosting and Marching with the Mara

In June, we hosted a three-day community visit for 18 members from the Maasai Mara area of Kenya. These participants were thrilled to learn about the success of our community-based conservation programs. Following their invitation, our Guardians and Amboseli community members then visited the Mara to participate in the Global March for Elephants, Rhinos, and Lions that took place on September 23rd. 

International Symposium on Society and Resource Management (ISSRM 2017)
In late June, Leela was honored to be a keynote speaker at the ISSRM. Many attendees have since written to us expressing how inspirational they found the Lion Guardians story. During her trip she also had an opportunity to travel to northern Sweden where she spoke to reindeer herders about the high rates of reindeer depredation by carnivores.
Conflict Mitigation Training for Honeyguide Foundation Rangers

In August, Lion Guardians conducted skills training to enable rangers to better handle human wildlife related issues with communities. When surveyed after the training, the rangers reported feeling confident about how to approach and manage any conflict incident in their areas.

"Now I understand that there are several approaches to dealing with conflicts between local communities, wildlife and conservation authorities that involves changing the attitude of the affected communities to wildlife and the conservation institutions".  
-Abraham Lerumbe Kaaya (Randilen WMA)
Photo credit: Jessie Davies (Maliasili)
African Conservation Leaders Network (ACLN) in Namibia
In early September, Leela and Salisha attended the ACLN conference. This was the third in a series of conferences aimed at developing the capacity of conservation organizations from across Africa. Several new collaborations have spawned from this network such as the trainings discussed above.
Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festival (JHWFF)
At the end of September, Leela and Stephanie attended JHWFF where our Lion Guardians film, "Why the Lion Calls" was selected as finalist and screened at the event. In addition, they participated in a panel discussion about innovative collaboration in conservation with PRIDE Lion Conservation Alliance.
Lion Guardians Games in Tanzania
This year the Lion Guardians Games were hosted by Kope Lion and Ndutu Safari Lodge in Ngorongoro/Serengeti. A team of 12 representatives from Lion Guardians joined our extended family, the Ilchokuti of Kope Lion and the Lion Defenders of Ruaha Carnivore Project to celebrate another successful year of conserving lions and helping communities. Within minutes of meeting, the sounds of laughter emanated through the air as we excitedly exchanged greetings and news. Over three days, the Guardians, Ilchokuti, and Lion Defenders visited the Ngorongoro Crater, toured the greater Ngorongoro Conservation Area and left nothing to spare on the playing field. Congratulations to the warriors on their hard work and much success! Thank you to the entire Kope Lion team and the Ndutu Safari Lodge; it was an unforgettable experience.
Feature Story:  The Rise of Loolaimutiak 

Even after a decade in conservation, our lions still find ways of surprising us. Our feature story is about one such lion. He is called Loolaimutiak because of an area his Amboseli Park pride frequented while he was a cub.  When he and his brother dispersed out of the park and took up residence in the community lands a few years ago, we never thought he would grow to be a dominant male. But we were wrong! Read all about the "Rise of Loolaimutiak" in our latest blog.

Photo credit: Jack Brockway
Meet a Guardian: Lekutuk Ole Kimiti

Lekutuk joined Lion Guardians in 2015. Since then, he has been a stellar Guardian covering the 100 kmĀ² zone of Olchurai in Eselenkei Group Ranch. In 2017, Lekutuk stopped three hunts, found 102 lost livestock and reinforced four bomas. In addition he covered more than 5,500 kms on foot monitoring lions and protecting communities. Most recently, he was chosen as part of the select team of Guardians who represented us at the Lion Guardians Games in Tanzania. This is what Lekutuk had to say about his recent trip to Tanzania...

"The trip to Tanzania was an opportunity of a lifetime and I could not be gladder that it knocked on my door. Today, I can say I have travelled to areas where I could never have imagined going. The Ngorongoro Crater was a sight to behold. I saw a lot of animals and was so happy to have seen a rhino for the first time. I was also excited to see buffaloes and wildebeest in such unusually large herds. I am thankful and happy that we were given ample opportunity to take photos as these photos enable me to keep the memories of the trip alive.

I would also like to take this opportunity to thank the management team at Lion Guardians for giving me this opportunity. I have realized that hard work truly pays off and I aspire to work even harder to protect the lions and the communities in my zone."
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All photographs credit Philip J. Briggs unless otherwise mentioned