Tracking Lion Recovery in Gorongosa National Park
This video describes how scientists in Gorongosa National Park are using GPS satellite collars and motion-sensitive cameras to gather data about the recovery of the park’s lion population.
Gorongosa National Park was once famous for its lion population, attracting tourists from all over the world. But during Mozambique’s struggle for independence and subsequent civil war, the park’s iconic wildlife was slaughtered. In 2008, a massive ecosystem restoration project began. Today, many animals are bouncing back in large numbers, but it’s unclear whether the lions are also making a strong recovery.
Ecologist Paola Bouley heads the Gorongosa Lion Project, an effort to document the lions’ response to the park’s restoration and identify any factors that may limit their recovery. Working with Mozambican scientists Celina Dias and Domingas Alexio, Bouley is using GPS satellite collars and trail cameras to identify new lions and gather data about their behavior. These tools are also proving invaluable in protecting lions against poachers.
The accompanying “Student Worksheet” incorporates concepts and information from the video.
An audio descriptive version of the film is available via our media player.
Student Learning Targets
- Learn about research practices.
- Develop scientific explanations and justify claims using evidence.
- Calculate the density of lions in an area of study, and estimate the total number in the park.
Africa, camera, GPS, poaching, restoration, scientific methodology, scientific process, technology
Accessibility Level (WCAG compliance)
HS-LS2-6; HS-LS2.C, HS-LS4.D; SEP4, SEP5
AP Biology (2019)
4.A.5, 4.B.3, 4.C.4; SP2, SP5
IB Biology (2016)
AP Environmental Science (2020)
IB Environmental Systems and Societies (2017)
3.1, 3.3, 3.4
Common Core (2010)
Math.A-REI.3, Math.S-IC.3; MP2, MP3, MP5
Vision and Change (2009)
CC5; DP1, DP2