“We no longer have the luxury of time when it comes to big cats. If there was ever a time to take action, it is now.”
—National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence Dereck Joubert, co-founder of the Big Cats Initiative
Photograph by Beverly Joubert
Working to Save Big Cats
Populations of lions, tigers, cheetahs, leopards, jaguars, and other top felines are declining at an alarming rate. They are victims of habitat loss and degradation as well as conflicts with humans. In response, National Geographic, with filmmakers, conservationists, and Explorers-in-Residence Dereck and Beverly Joubert, launched the Big Cats Initiative, a comprehensive program that supports on-the-ground conservation and education projects combined with our Cause an Uproar global public-awareness campaign.
Cause an Uproar and join us in working to ensure that our future is not without these majestic creatures.
Halting Decline of Big Cat Populations
Big cats worldwide are all under threat—for many populations, local extinctions are imminent. As few as 3,000 tigers, 7,500 snow leopards, 10,000 cheetahs and 30,000 lions likely remain in the wild. More humans populate the planet than ever before, encroaching further and further into previously natural areas. When human and big cat populations collide, the big cats typically lose. Dwindling big cat populations in the face of rapid human expansion have led us to a critical time in the history of these species. Before we can reach a natural balance and look to restoring lost wild lands for big cats, we must first stop the rapid decline of these ecologically important top predators from their natural habitats. The Big Cats Initiative seeks and funds programs to save these majestic animals in their natural habitats.
National Geographic collaborates with multiple local and international NGOs, corporations, local community groups, and individuals on this effort. Partners include the African People and Wildlife Fund, the Anne Kent Taylor Fund, Cheetah Conservation Fund, Duke University, Ewaso Lions Project, the Global Tiger Initiative, Great Plains Conservation, Oxford University’s WildCRU, Panthera Ruaha Carnivore Project, and Zambia Carnivores Program, among others.
Nat Geo WILD presents a week dedicated to nature’s fiercest felines—big cats—creatures of magnificent strength, ferocity, and beauty that are rapidly facing extinction. With visually stunning and powerful stories from around the world, get closer than ever before to lions, tigers, cheetahs, panthers, and more as you share in their triumphs, defeats, and epic struggles to survive.