A pledge to protect the Namib's icons
This non-profit organisation is dedicated to a mission that not only encompasses the survival of these majestic creatures but also serves as a model for harmonious coexistence between humans and wildlife.
Dr Philip Stander of the DLC said that at the heart of their work lies a commitment to understanding and safeguarding these remarkable desert lions. “Our primary focus centres on collecting essential baseline ecological data on the lion population, delving into their behaviour, biology, and adaptation to survive in the unforgiving Namib Desert. This commitment to science and knowledge is a foundation upon which we build a better future for both the lions and the people who share their territory.
“One of our fundamental goals is to address the pressing issue of human-lion conflict. As these unique lions continue to navigate their harsh environment, they often cross paths with the human population.”
He said that they are fully aware that the coexistence of humans and lions is essential to the conservation of these creatures and the preservation of the delicate ecosystem they call home. “Our work seeks to find common ground, forging a path towards mutual respect and sustainable cohabitation.”
Enter Beau’s Pride
A group of four passionate Namibian cyclists who call themselves “Beau’s Pride” - Johan Liebenberg, Dewald Nel, Fanie Britz and Bibi Cornelissen - has dedicated themselves to the mission of the DLC in honour of young Beau van der Westhuizen who had a deep love and admiration for the endangered desert lion. Beau passed away due to cancer just a few days before he would have celebrated his 16th birthday on 3 November 2022.
Beau’s Pride will partake in the gruelling annual Nedbank Desert Dash on 8 and 9 December.
“As Beau’s Pride dedicate themselves to the Desert Lion Conservation mission, we call on individuals, communities and organisations to join us in this crucial endeavour,” said Beau’s Pride spokesperson, Roux-ché Locke.
“The Namib Desert and its iconic lion population need our collective support. By contributing to the Desert Lion Project, we are all helping to continue the DLC team’s essential work in the field, gather crucial data, and foster community-driven conservation solutions.”
She added that the DLC is not just a project. “Like the character of Beau van der Westhuizen, it is a symbol of hope and a testament to the human spirit's capacity for compassion, understanding, and change. Their vision is a future where desert-adapted lions not only endure but thrive, where human-lion conflict is minimised, and where these magnificent creatures are celebrated as vital components of a unique and fragile ecosystem. Let us stand together in defence of the desert-adapted lions of Northern Namib.