Why World Lion Day is especially meaningful this year

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Lion Cub Practices Roar, Gets Put In His Place

August 10 is World Lion Day, and this year the day has an especially important meaning and message.

The World Lion Day website states that the main goal of World Lion day is to "save the king of beasts to save ourselves" -- a message that is especially important to consider as we remember the life and tragic death of Cecil the Lion, one of Africa's most famous lions and the main attraction at the Hwange National Park.

Cecil's death raised a lot of eyebrows and caused international heartbreak. The 'Lion King' animator even created a beautiful artistic tribute in honor of the lion.

#WorldLionDay on Instagram:
World Lion Day Instagram posts
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Why World Lion Day is especially meaningful this year
#WorldLionDay Years back I had the pleasure of going to Africa with @Wildaid @therealpeterlindbergh @davidbabaii Bringing awareness to stop the illegal wildlife trade. I encourage you today to take a minute to scroll through all the amazing foundations that are tirelessly and admirably dedicating their lives to protect our wildlife and show your support🙏 @WildAid @NatGeo @wwf @worldanimalprotectionus @africanwildlifeprotection etc.... #EndTrophyHunting #EndIllegalWildlifeTrade #EndPoaching #ProtectOurWildlife
A proud male lion roams through the bush looking to reconnect with his pride. Today is World Lion Day, a time to celebrate the importance of the lion world wide and bring visibility to the decline of populations of big cats in the wild. National Geographic is asking you to help raise awareness of the the plight of big cats by posting a photo of yourself giving a "virtual high five" and tagging it #5forBigCats. You can also help save lions and other big cats by visiting the link in the @natgeotravel bio and donating $5 to the cause. Photo by @awc007 #worldlionday
Photo: @SteveWinterPhoto. Today August 10th is #WorldLionDay. The High Five, Give 5 campaign wants you to participate in their #worldwide High Five chain to raise awareness for endangered big cats. Take a photo of you highfiving your pet, a friend, a stranger, whoever! Then tag it with #5forBigCats. You can take it a step further and donate $5 to @NatGeo's Big Cats Initiative( link in my bio). #5forbigcats #bigcatsforever @bertiegregory @canonuk @zacuto @cameracorps @syrp_ @sachtler @leefilters @KEEN @pteclights @thephotosociety #NGcreative #onassignment #bebright #uneek #iamuneek #wildlifeconservation #inthefield #wildlfephotojournalism #BCI #bigcatsinitiative #kulusafaris #harithasl @mayakoba @beauty @cute @photofotheday #lions #Bitcats #SouthSouthAfrica #PhindaGameReserve #cubs #kitty @SouthAfricanTourismAU @cathaypacificAU #lifewelltravelled
Happy #WorldLionDay! Photo by Michael "Nick" Nichols
Happy world lion day! The winds of change are in the air. Lions need better protection both in captivity and the wild. My hat goes off to those trying to make a difference. #worldlionday
••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••• 🔸Happy World Lion Day! ✨ 🔸©Photo by: @Lionwhisperersa ••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••• Tag #AnimalAddicts to be featured!
Hey #Perth! You can help me save Big Cats tonight @STC_of_WA with just a high five! #5forBigCats #WorldLionDay http://animals.nationalgeographic.com/animals/big-cats-initiative/high-5-give-5/ Here is one brother giving "5" to his other bro! Give 5 for Big Cats on World Lion Day!!! @stevewinterphoto @natgeo #5forbigcats #bigcatsforever @bertiegregory @canonuk @zacuto @cameracorps @syrp_ @sachtler @leefilters @KEEN @pteclights @thephotosociety #NGcreative #onassignment #bebright #uneek #iamuneek#wildlifeconservation #inthefield #wildlfephotojournalism # BCI #bigcatsinitiative #kulusafaris #harithasl @mayakoba @beauty @cute @photofotheday @SouthAfricanTourismAU @cathaypacificAU #lifewell travelled http://animals.nationalgeographic.com/animals/big-cats-initiative/high-5-give-5/
#WorldLionDay My inner Lion (yes I'm a #Leo) is celebrating this masterful creature today! 🙌🏽✨✨✨
. Monday is World Lion Day. To celebrate. Lions aren’t the only species threatened by wildlife crimes, but they may well be the most charismatic . The recent killing of Cecil the Lion, just one of one of many illegally hunted big cats, has put new emphasis on the destructive force of wildlife crime. It has also inspired an increase in donations to wildlife conservation. By Becky Little, National Geographic. for @natgeo #lion #5forbigcats #WorldLionDay
"Do not try to fight a lion if you are not one yourself." Wise words from an #African proverb on #WorldLionDay. #MIAFW #Fashion #Style #Trend #Quote #QuoteOfTheDay #Proverb #Wise #CaraDelevingne #Lion #Nature #BigCatsForever #WildLife #Conservation #LionKing

See the map below for a glimpse into more information about other threatened and endangered mammal species:

While World Lion Day is the first global campaign to celebrate lions' importance worldwide, this year's campaign is filled with a heavier message: World Lion Day is focused on more than conservation this year. It's focused on honoring the animals and remembering that protecting and loving lions is more important than ever.

See more photos of the magestic king of the jungle:

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Why World Lion Day is especially meaningful this year
These two white lions explore their new environment at Stuckenbrock safari-parc near Bielefeld on Thursday, September 14, 1995. Together with another white lion they were brought to Germany from the U.S., to be the first white lions in Europe. They were born at Philadelphia zoo and are 18 months old. World wide there are only 11 living specimen. (AP-PHOTO/HEINZ DUCKLAU)
Lion brothers Tau, front, and Ngala, back, lick their lips while recovering from a tranquilizer after being transported to South Africa's first "lion haven", the Ibhubezi reserve, near Phalaborwa in the Northern Province Tuesday November 26, 1996. Tau and his brother Ngala and a lioness, Karata, were saved from the future bullet of a trophy hunter when they were abandoned by their mothers at birth and cared for at a rehabilitaion centre before being moved to Ibhubezi. A fourth cub was orphaned on a lion-breeding farm and faced being arbitrarily shot if a a safe home could not be found. (AP Photo / Richard Sobol)
Ndugu, left, a 375-pound male, and Binti Mafuta, a 300-pound female, eight-year-old lions, sun themselves on a rock at the Franklin Park Zoo in Boston, Thursday, Nov. 20, 1997. In addition to the lions, an exhibit of two young male cheetahs opened at the zoo Thursday. It is the first time the zoo has displayed cheetahs in an exhibit. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
Three-year-old lion Max, left, seems to enjoy the winter sun as he nuzzles up to his female companion Camilla, 3, in the Hanover, northern Germany, zoo Tuesday January 11, 2000. The next few days are expected to be sunny, but spring is still far off as temperatures keep declining in Germany. (AP Photo/Fabian BImmer)
An attendent at an orphanage operated by Kenya Wildlife Services holds Moyale, a three-month-old lion cub, Saturday, April 15, 2000. Moyale was rescued by the KWS rangers in the northeastern Kenyan town of Moyale. The fate of the cub's mother is unknown. (AP Photo/Sayyid Azim)
A lion cub is taken for a walk by its mother "Inka" in the Munich Zoo, Friday, Oct. 20, 2000. The cub is one of a litter of four born on Sept. 20, 2000. (AP Photo/Diether Endlicher)
Two new born white lion cubs on Friday, Oct. 5, 2001 playing on their first day out in the Safaripark in Stukenbrock, Germany. The very rare lions were born on Aug. 22, 2001 in the park, where they are number 10 and 11 in the only breeding programm for white lions in Europe, wich was founded in 1996 by the director Fritz Wurms and the illusionists Siegfried & Roy from Las Vegas. White lions were found for the first time in 1987 in South Africa. Today there are only 50 white lions in the world, because of their bright color, the animals don`t have the chance to survive in the wilderness. (AP Photo / Martin Meissner)
Boo-Boo, a lion, yawns at his retirement at the Valley of the Kings Sanctuary and Retreat in Sharon, Wis., Thursday, June 27, 2002. The retreat is home to about 200 misfit and normal animals on a 10-acre farm run by Jill Carnegie. (AP Photo/Andy Manis)
This undated handout photo of a male African lion is part of a study analyzing how the long collar of hair about the neck of male lions affects the love life of Africa's biggest cat. Peyton M. West, a researcher at the University of Minnesota, said it's the mane color, not the length, that matters most to the female lions of Tanzania. (AP Photo/Association for the Advancement of Science)
Jambo, an African lion, right, lies next to his new female partner Kuchani at Taronga Zoo in Sydney, Thursday, Dec. 12, 2002. The lion pairing is the result of a successful introduction program by the zoo's carnivore keepers which began in May when Kuchani arrived in Sydney from Auckland, New Zealand. (AP Photo/Dan Peled)
Three lion cubs sit together in the Serengeti park Hodenhagen, northern Germany, Wednesday, March 19, 2003. The lion cubs, two tiger cubs, two young giraffes, two rhinos and two chimpanzees were born during the winter. There's a 5.6 miles long safari drive to watch almost 1,000 animals living in a natural environment. (AP Photo/Joerg Sarbach)
Saba, the youngest lioness of the Nyiregyhaza Animal Park licks one of her new-born babies after she gave birth to quadruplets in her enclosure in the zoo in Nyiregyhaza, 245 kms east of Budapest, Hungary, on Friday, July 16, 2004. The four cubs are well. With their birth there are now seventeen members in the lion community of the park. (AP Photo/MTI)
Two one and half-month-old lion cubs play with their mother Merry in the state zoological park in Gauhati, India, Saturday, Dec. 18, 2004. Merry, who was rescued from a circus along with six others, gave birth to three babies on Oct. 27, but one died. (AP Photo/ Anupam Nath)
Ein Loewe zeigt sich den Besuchern des Berliner Zoos bei strahlendem Sonnenschein am Freitag, 20. Mai 2005. (AP Photo/Fritz Reiss) A lion the Berlin Zoo enjoys bright sunshine on Friday, May 20, 2005. (AP Photo/Fritz Reiss)
Eine Loewin liegt im Serengeti Nationalpark, Tansania, am 13. Aug. 2005. Tansania wartet mit faszinierenden Nationalparks auf. Je nach Ziel empfehlen sich verschiedene Zeiten. Wer den grossen Trek der Gnus und Zebras in der Serengeti erleben will, sollte die niederschlagsreichen Monate im europaeischen Winter und Fruehling nutzen. Im Tarangire-Park hingegen sind die meisten Tiere in der Trockenzeit zu sehen. (AP Photo/Silvia Vogt) --- A lion is seen in the Serengeti national park, Tanzania, in this Aug. 13, 2005 file picture. (AP Photo/Silvia Vogt)
Timbo, a white lion, right, nuzzles Magda at a zoo in Spata, near Athens, on Friday, Dec. 23, 2005. The rare lions' color which results from a genetic mutation means that in the wild they would have trouble hunting, being unable to blend into their surroundings. (AP Photo/Thanassis Stavrakis)
Ein fuenf Monate alter Loewe laeuft am Mittwoch, 12. April 2006, im Gehege des Basler Zoos an der Seite seines Vaters. (AP Photo/Keystone, Georgios Kefalas) ----A five-month-old lion walks past his father in their enclosure in the zoo in Basel, Switzerland, Wednesday, April 12, 2006. (AP Photo/Keystone, Georgios Kefalas)
A five-year-old white lion called Siam, is seen at the zoo in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Friday, July 14, 2006. Siam will join the Buenos Aires Zoo for three months and then will be returned to South Africa where he came from. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)
Lions are seen at the national zoo in San Salvador on July 2, 2015. AFP PHOTO / Marvin RECINOS (Photo credit should read Marvin RECINOS/AFP/Getty Images)
A lion named Tommy is seen Thursday, Aug. 6, 2015 in the Hwange National Park where Cecil the Lion was killed about 700 kilometres south west of Harare, Zimbabwe. Professional hunter Theodore Bronkhorst appeared in court Wednesday and was charged with failure to prevent the hunt by American dentist Walter James Palmer which resulted in the killing of Cecil the lion, had his case postponed to September 28 2015. (AP Photo/Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi)
Three week old white lions with their mother Azira relax at a private zoo in Borysew, Poland, Sunday, July 26, 2015. They are the third litter by Azira, fathered by Sahim, who has, however, been separated from them as a precaution. (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)
One of three weeks old lion twins is held by a zoo keeper at the Fuji Safari Park in Susono, at the foot of Mt. Fuji, southwest of Tokyo, Monday, July 13, 2015. Three days into the debut, the twin toddlers snarl, yawn, and sleep delighting the visitors. (AP Photo/Koji Ueda)
In this photo taken Tuesday, July 7, 2015, an old male lion raises his head above the long grass in the early morning, in the savannah of the Maasai Mara, south-western Kenya. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)
In this photo taken Tuesday, July 7, 2015, a lion sits with other members of the pride in the early morning, in the savannah of the Maasai Mara, south-western Kenya. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)
A general view of a lion in an enclosure of the Lion Park, in Johannesburg, South Africa, Tuesday, June 2, 2015. (AP Photo/Themba Hadebe)
FILE - In this May 10, 2015 file photo, an Asiatic lion rests at its enclosure at the Kamala Nehru Zoological Garden in Ahmadabad, India. Gujarat forest officials say in a report that the rains killed at least 10 of the country's 523 lions, the last members of the subspecies left anywhere in the wild. (AP Photo/Ajit Solanki)
This Feb. 9, 2015 photo released by the National Park Service shows a picture taken from a remote camera in the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area near the Los Angeles and Ventura county line, that captured a photo of a mountain lion identified as P-33 approaching an area to feed. The National Park Service says the mountain lion known as P-33 successfully crossed U.S. 101 in an important dispersal of the species from the hemmed-in range. The young female crossed the highway early on March 9 on the Conejo Grade in the Camarillo area. It's only the second successful crossing of the freeway to be documented since the National Park Service began studying lions in the Santa Monica Mountains in 2002. The last time was in 2009 when a cougar crossed U.S. 101 in the opposite direction. (AP Photo/National Park Service)
In this photo taken Saturday, Jan. 17, 2015, a lion cub yawns in Serengeti National Park, west of Arusha, northern Tanzania. The park is the oldest and most popular national park in Tanzania and is known for its annual migration of millions of wildebeests, zebras and gazelles. (AP Photo/Mosa'ab Elshamy)
African lion cubs sit in their enclosure during their debut at the Philadelphia Zoo Friday, Sept. 5, 2014, in Philadelphia. The four cubs were born to four-year-old Tajiri in late June at the zoo. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)
A lion cub nuzzles up to its mother, 4 ½-year-old Kashifa, rear, while she keeps an eye on her five cubs, Thursday, June 5, 2014, as Zoo Miami officially introduces the family to the public, in Miami. Kashifa gave birth to her second litter of cubs March 6, one female and three males. Kashifa’s sister, Asha, had given birth to a single cub named Kwasi, on Dec. 15, 2013. Asha later died from complications during a veterinary procedure and Kwasi was adopted by Kashifa. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)
White lioness Azira lies in their cage with one of her three white cubs that were born last week in a private zoo in Borysew, in central Poland, on Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2014. Zoo owner Andrzej Pabich says white lions often have defects the prevent giving birth, or the mother rejects her cubs, but two and a half-year-old Azira has been patiently feeding and caring for her little ones, as three and a half-year-old Sahim, who fathered them, watches from a neighboring cage. (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)
In this photo taken Saturday, Jan. 25, 2014, a male lion sits down shortly after being shot with tranquilizer darts, in order to fit a GPS-tracking collar, by a team led by the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) in Nairobi National Park in Kenya. Kenyan wildlife authorities are fitting livestock-raiding lions with a GPS collar that alerts rangers by text message when the predators venture out of Nairobi National Park, enabling the rangers to quickly move to the areas where the lions have encroached and return the animals to the park. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)

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