Cecil The Lion's Son Has Been Shot By Trophy Hunters In Zimbabwe
Trophy hunters have reportedly shot and killed the son of Cecil the Lion in Zimbabwe.
According to Lions of Hwange National Park, PH Richard Cooke killed Xanda, who was six years old.
In a statement on Facebook, the Park says: "Today we heard that a few days ago, Xanda, the son of #CecilTheLion has been shot on a trophy hunt by Zimbabwe PH Richard Cooke.
"Cooke also killed Xanda's brother in 2015, he was only about 4 years old then. Xanda is still a young father at 6.2 years old and has several young cubs. We can't believe that now, 2 years since Cecil was killed, that his oldest Cub #Xanda has met the same fate
"When will the Lions of Hwange National Park be left to live out their years as wild born free lions should?"
The killing of Cecil the Lion sparked international outcry in 2015. He was a major tourist attraction at the Park and was also a part of an ongoing study by the University of Oxford.
American dentist and big-game hunter Walter Palmer shot Cecil with an arrow, but it wasn't until 40 hours later that he eventually tracked him down and shot him dead with a rifle. Palmer denies it took that long and was not charged with any crime, but two other men were prosecuted in relation to the hunt
It's believed Palmer paid $50,000 (£38,000) to a professional hunter to help him kill the famed lion.
He flew home quickly after the hunt, but issued a statement saying: "I had no idea that the lion I took was a known, local favourite, was collared and part of a study until the end of the hunt. I relied on the expertise of my local professional guides to ensure a legal hunt.
"I have not been contacted by authorities in Zimbabwe or in the US about this situation, but will assist them in any inquiries they may have.
"Again, I deeply regret that my pursuit of an activity I love and practice responsibly and legally resulted in the taking of this lion."
South African President Jacob Zuma downplayed the incident in August 2015, saying: "What it sounds like from a distance [is] that the hunter did not know that Cecil was so popular, just saw a lion, and killed a lion, and it's Cecil.
"Cecil is very well loved and it caused a problem, because everyone wants to go and see Cecil. I think it's just an incident."
Cecil was 13 years old when he was killed.
Featured Image Credit: PA