Cecil the lion: Slain lion's cub is killed by rival male sparking fresh fears for the pride's remaining seven cubs' survival

The rival male is thought to have been attempting to take over Cecil’s pride and mate with the three lionesses

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One of Cecil the lion’s cubs has reportedly been killed by a rival lion looking to take over the pride and mate with the group’s three lionesses.

The Sunday Mirror reported the cub had been killed, and that the remaining seven cubs only have a five per cent chance of survival, according to wildlife guides at Zimbabwe’s Hwange National Park.

Cecil the lion was killed with an arrow after he was lured off of the national park’s land by professional hunters and an American dentist Walter Palmer, who had paid £35,000 for the opportunity. The arrow did not kill Cecil immediately and the lion took 40 hours to die.

 

Palmer, reportedly a regular trophy hunter, maintains that he believed the hunt was legal when he carried it out. But the death of the lion sparked public outrage and the dentist reportedly went into hiding after he was named as the killer of the protected animal.

Cecil’s pride now comprises of three lionesses and seven cubs, which have been attempting to hide after leaving their den following Cecil’s death.

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Walt Palmer (left), from Minnesota, who killed Cecil, the Zimbabwean lion

A source told the newspaper that the pride needs to keep moving to survive, but the cubs are too young to trek long distances.

“The females must become nomadic and keep running. The cubs only have a five per cent chance of survival. It is a disaster,” they told the Sunday Mirror.

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