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Wildlife Experts Say Southern Kenya Lions Face Extinction

Wildlife experts say the lion population of southern Kenya faces extinction unless steps are taken to protect the animals.

The assessment comes in a study by U.S. researchers at the University of California, Berkeley working with a Kenyan lion conservation project.

The researchers say many lions are poisoned by cattle herders trying to protect their livestock. It also accuses Maasai tribal warriors of killing lions in increasing numbers during traditional, coming-of-age spear hunts.

The French news agency, AFP, quotes a Maasai spokesman as denying the hunts take place.

The experts say unless Kenya increases law enforcement against such ritual hunts, Kenya will lose its most important tourist attraction.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP.