A source population is a sustainable population of wildlife that serves as a dependable reservoir for ex situ (captive) and in situ (wild) conservation. Historically, efforts to protect species has focused on saving habitat in the species native environment. However, for many species, suitable habitat is in short supply. For these species, ex situ “source populations” can help ensure the species persists while habitat conservation and restoration are achieved.
In addition to being a Full Member of the Conservation Centers for Species Survival, African Lion Safari is a member of their Source Population Alliance (SPA) program. The SPA’s mission is to create and preserve sustainable wildlife populations through a combined private/public sector alliance. SPA is focused on some of the rarest ungulate species on earth. Starting with four species (Scimitar Horned Oryx, Addax, Dama/Addra Gazelle, and Sable), SPA has now increased to include six additional species (Bongo, Arabian Oryx, Roan Antelope, Banteng, Anoa and Grevy’s Zebra).
Through the combined efforts of Sahara Conservation Fund and SPA participants, the previously extinct Scimitar Horned Oryx has been successfully re-established in the wild in Tunisia and Chad. SPA is now working collaboratively to reproduce this effort for other target species. African Lion Safari has not only committed individuals of these species to the SPA’s efforts but is also participating in genetic and disease surveillance research that will assist in conservation efforts for these animals.