ENVIRONMENT

Plight of African lions persists 1 year after Cecil killing

  • FILE - In this Sept. 2015 file photo, demonstrators gather outside the dental practice of Walter Palmer, identified as the hunter who killed Cecil the lionin Zimbabwe. A year ago Palmer killed the lion in what authorities said was an illegal hunt, infuriating people worldwide and invigorating an international campaign against trophy hunting in Africa. (AP Photo/Jim Mone-File)

    FILE - In this Sept. 2015 file photo, demonstrators gather outside the dental practice of Walter Palmer, identified as the hunter who killed Cecil the lionin Zimbabwe. A year ago Palmer killed the lion in what authorities said was an illegal hunt, infuriating people worldwide and invigorating an international campaign against trophy hunting in Africa. (AP Photo/Jim Mone-File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this Sept. 2015 file photo, demonstrators gather outside the dental practice of Walter Palmer, identified as the hunter who killed Cecil the lionin Zimbabwe. A year ago Palmer killed the lion in what authorities said was an illegal hunt, infuriating people worldwide and invigorating an international campaign against trophy hunting in Africa. (AP Photo/Jim Mone-File)

    FILE - In this Sept. 2015 file photo, demonstrators gather outside the dental practice of Walter Palmer, identified as the hunter who killed Cecil the lionin Zimbabwe. A year ago Palmer killed the lion in what authorities said was an illegal hunt, infuriating people worldwide and invigorating an international campaign against trophy hunting in Africa. (AP Photo/Jim Mone-File)  (The Associated Press)

  • In this photo taken Nov. 20, 2013, Cecil the Lion rests near Kennedy One Water Point in Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe. A year ago an American killed the well known Lion in Hwange in what authorities said was an illegal hunt, infuriating people worldwide and invigorating an international campaign against so called trophy hunting in Africa. (AP Photo/Sean Herbert)

    In this photo taken Nov. 20, 2013, Cecil the Lion rests near Kennedy One Water Point in Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe. A year ago an American killed the well known Lion in Hwange in what authorities said was an illegal hunt, infuriating people worldwide and invigorating an international campaign against so called trophy hunting in Africa. (AP Photo/Sean Herbert)  (The Associated Press)

Some call it the Cecil the lion effect.

A year ago, an American killed a lion in Zimbabwe in what authorities said was an illegal hunt, infuriating people worldwide and invigorating an international campaign against trophy hunting in Africa. Some conservationists, however, say there are greater threats to Africa's beleaguered lion populations, including human encroachment on their habitats and the poaching of antelopes and other animals for food, a custom that deprives lions of prey.

Luke Hunter, president of conservation group Panthera, says the death of Cecil raised lions' profile on the "conservation radar," but notes governments and other groups can do more to protect wildlife areas where they roam.

Cecil died July 1 in Zimbabwe's Hwange National Park after initially being wounded in a protracted hunt.