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Jungle lions filmed in the wild for the first time!

Filming in the Ethiopian Highlands for Altayfilm -together with Yann Sochaczewski (producer/owner of Altayfilm)- I just returned home from the field with first ever footage of extremely rare wild forest lions in the cloud forests of southern Ethiopia. The footage was shot exclusively for a wildlife documentary about the Ethiopian Highlands and will be published next year (see Filmography).

The African lion is usually found in savannas and dry forests. Ethiopia is home to one of only three forest lion populations and very little is known about these cats living in thick jungles. Scientists still aren’t sure whether forest lions should be listed as subspecies of the African lion. Although called “king of the jungle”, only recently, in 2012, the first photographs of a forest dwelling lion has been published. In the same year, scientists from Leipzig (Germany) and York (UK) have confirmed a genetically distinct lion population for Ethiopia after conducting DNA research on 15 lions in the Addis Ababa zoo. DNA studies are currently being conducted on hair and scat samples collected from the lions that have been filmed in Harenna forest. Further film and research expeditions are planned for next year and will hopefully deliver more data.

Here a few stills of the lion footage we filmed in Harenna Forest, Ethiopia:

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