Despite fears a new pride leader would kill Cecil the lion's cubs, after the beast was hunted down and killed by American dentist Walter Palmer, it seems the seven little lions are still going strong.
Staff at African Bush Camps, a safari tour company operating in Zimbabwe, have been following Cecil's pride, which consists of three lionesses and seven cubs, and confirmed on Sunday they were alive and well, and still living on the borders of Hwange National Park.
It had been feared the young cubs would be killed after Cecil's death, but the 13-year-old lion's co-leader, Jericho, appears to have taken over the pride and adopted the cubs.
The safari company said: "We have all been working hard to work through the correct channels and bring about positive long term changes to ensure Cecil's death was not in vain and that the focus moving forward is working to protect the Lions and wildlife in and around Hwange National Park.
"We are hopeful that Cecil's death will not be in vain and that he will be the catalyst for long term positive change in the protection of Lions across Africa - hopefully deep down the pride will know and understand this."
Following Cecil's death, a lion conservation and wildlife fund has been set up to focus on the long-term conservation of wildlife in the Hwange park.
The campaign hopes to increase the boundaries of Zimbabwe's national parks, and stop the unsustainable killing of wildlife in and around Hwange, and create a habitat where lions and other key species can thrive.
Beks Ndlovu, a safari tour guide and one of the people behind the new wildlife fund, added: "We are happy to report that Jericho and the three lionesses of Cecil’s pride have to date done a great job at protecting the pride cubs."
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