Blood Lions (DVD)
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Aggressive farmers resent his questioning, but the highly profitable commercialization of lions is plain to see - cub petting, volunteer recruitment, lion walking, hunting, and the new lion bone trade are on the increase, and all are being justified under the guise of conservation and research.
In parallel we follow Rick Swazey, an American hunter, who volunteered his services after seeing footage of canned hunts. Rick purchases a lioness online from his home in Hawaii and then travels to South Africa to follow the path canned hunters do.
Annually, over 800 captive, hand-reared lions are shot in South Africa - mostly by international hunters - fuelling a multimillion dollar industry. In South Africa there are currently between 6 000 and 8 000 predators in captivity, the vast majority of them lions. Most live in appalling conditions with inadequate protocols in place to protect them or regulate either their welfare or the genetic integrity of their bloodlines. The breeders of these animals claim they are involved in conservation, educational and research initiatives and that the captive bred population will be the saviour of wild lions.
We then hear from recognized lion ecologists, conservationists and animal welfare experts that almost all these claims are in fact far from the truth. Cubs are taken away from their mothers just days after birth to force the lionesses into intensely repetitive reproductive cycles. And the cubs that get churned out are then used in a variety of income streams from petting and "walking with lions" facilities to luring unsuspecting volunteers, who pay large sums of money, as workers on the facilities.
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Region 2 - Europe (except Russia, Ukraine, and Belarus), Middle East, Egypt, Japan, South Africa, Swaziland, Lesotho, Greenland, French Overseas departments and territories.