NATURE Celebrates World Lion Day

In honor of World Lion Day, NATURE brings you two full episodes featuring the noblest creatures on the African savanna. Founded by Rae Kokeš, a researcher with the African Lion & Environmental Research Trust, World Lion Day is meant to bring attention to the plight of lions, whose population has declined by 30 percent in the last two decades. In order to help ensure their future, Kokeš asks that you donate to one of the many groups working to protect these majestic animals.

“The White Lions” follows the story of two remarkable and extremely rare white lion cubs on their journey to adulthood. Both are female, sisters born as white as snow in May 2009 in South Africa’s Kruger Park. Growing up on the savanna, they must overcome not only the same survival challenges that all young lion cubs face, they must also overcome the threats their high visibility brings.

In 1956, game warden George Adamson killed a lioness in self-defense, leaving him and his wife Joy to raise her cubs. The story inspired the book Born Free, which was later turned into feature film. “Elsa’s Legacy: The Born Free Story” tells the story of Elsa, the cub raised by the Adamsons to adulthood, and the impact she had on the people who cared for her.

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