The Magic Number

One of Big Life Foundation’s most important conservation programs is focused on predator protection. Recent estimates suggest that African lion populations have declined by about 50% in the last 20 years resulting in roughly 35,000 lions left in all of Africa. Big Life’s area of operation – the Greater Amboseli ecosystem – is particularly important for lions, hosting some of the largest remaining free-ranging lion populations and home to over 40% of Kenya’s lions. Continue reading

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When Big Life Foundation (Big Life) co-founder photographer Nick Brandt, visited the Amboseli elephants in July 2010, it was unlike any of his prior trips.

He had been photographing these elephants since 2002 and knew many of them on a first-name basis, but something was different from his previous visits. Elephants who had once walked by his vehicle without a care in the world would not come within half a mile of him; in fact, they would run panicked in the opposite direction. Gunshots were later reported in the area from which they came. Nick reported his experience to local authorities, but nothing was done. The existing wildlife services and NGOs in Kenya simply did not have enough resources to enforce anti-poaching laws in such a widespread area. Continue reading