World Wildlife Day: Heroic Efforts to Save Big Cats

Video: National Geographic Explorer helping save lions
“Capturing those precious moments – like the the joy of finding a new lion cub in the high grass – and sharing them with young people is so important.  Next generations of conservation leaders are out there, looking in and imagining their futures in these stories.  If with an image or an experience shared on film we can help forge their love for and connection to these wild spaces, then we will ensure lions will have their protectors long in to the future.”  – Paola Bouley, National Geographic Explorer.

In this video, Paola Bouley tells the story of her work in Gorongosa National Park, Mozambique.  It was a finalist in the March 2 International Big Cats Film Festival in New York City, just before World Wildlife Day.  National Geographic Society produced this video as part of a series for educators to help implement our Geo-Inquiry Process in their teaching practice. Using the five-step Geo-Inquiry Process, student rely on geographic perspective. The process offers a unique lens to analyze space, place, and the interconnections between both the human and natural world.  Through this method, students connect complex components, see patterns, and make connections with the end goal of taking action to make a positive impact in their communities. The video illustrates first-hand how a conservationist uses the Geo-Process in the field, and it is meant to inspire and move educators and their students into action.

National Geographic will sponsor professional learning institutes across all states, Canada and Washington, D.C.  A full online course will be available for educators interested in this instructional approach, in the fall of 2018.


Video: Shivani Bhalla and the Ewaso Lion Wildlife Warriors
“At such a challenging time for lions, this is a film of hope, and is something of a revolution. Very few films portray the people who live with predators as the heroes of the story, but here in Samburu, they are. This breathtaking film will remind those on the sharp edge of conservation that they are indeed heroes. We hope at some point in the future to translate this film, so that local people in Samburu can truly grasp its message and have new pride in the lions they have worked so hard to safeguard.”  – Resson Kantai Duff, Deputy Director, Ewaso Lions

To help Nat Geo’s Big Cats Initiative grantees create awareness of their work in local communities and with leaders in the regions, National Geographic Society is creating videos such as this one, featuring NG Explorer Shivani Bhalla, and the Ewaso Lions Wildlife Warriors.   The videos, documenting work by NG grantees, will be translated into the local language and distributed at Big Cats Initiative fieldwork locations.


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Meet the Author
Rolf recently joined National Geographic Society's Digital department, as Photo Editor/Digital. His career has been mostly in commercial photo art directing and re-focusing his work into conservation is fulfillment of a longtime goal.