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Can the Cape Lion be brought back?

Discussion in 'Wildlife & Nature Conservation' started by Thomas, 27 Dec 2019.

  1. Thomas

    Thomas Well-Known Member

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    From an episode from Animal Planet’s Extinct or Alive

    While shooting footage for Season 2 in Zimbabwe in 2019, the team collected DNA samples from an abnormally large lion that had recently been sighted in the area. Upon analyzing the DNA, the male was found to have 14% different DNA from a typical African lion, suggesting that it may have remanent genetics from the Cape lion population, which went extinct in the 1800s. The team theorizes that, through continued breeding, a pure Cape lion might one day be brought back.

    Could it be possible just like the Barbary Lions?
     
  2. TeaLovingDave

    TeaLovingDave Moderator Staff Member

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    It's pretty much exactly as possible as the Barbary Lion.

    Which is to say, it isn't possible at all :p
     
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  3. Zorro

    Zorro Well-Known Member

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    Were there any photos of this animal?
     
  4. Anniella

    Anniella Well-Known Member

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    The thing is, the Cape lion is not a separate species or even a separate subspecies, but merely a population. Surviving lions in southern Africa very well may have genes from that population, but I think there are more important conservation priorities than breeding back a phenotype from an extinct population.
     
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  5. TeaLovingDave

    TeaLovingDave Moderator Staff Member

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    Well, the validity of the research to which you refer is still under some debate :p but they are gone no matter what.

    Only a single photograph is known:

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Zorro

    Zorro Well-Known Member

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    I was referring to the Lion who had its DNA taken not a pic of an animal from the past!
     
  7. Chlidonias

    Chlidonias Moderator Staff Member

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    I'm not a geneticist, but if this lion's DNA was 14% different from a "typical" lion wouldn't it be dead?
     
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  8. Mr. Zootycoon

    Mr. Zootycoon Well-Known Member

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    Depending on the how you define genetic "difference," if the DNA differs 14% from a "typical lion" (whatever that may be!) is more likely to be from an antilope the lion ate!

    I hope it was oversimplification. They may have used a single gene or region or something, which makes it even more untrustworthy!

    What you'll end up with is an extremely inbred lion population, with all the problems associated with it.