While there has been a steady increase in the population of the rare Asiatic lions in the dense forests of Gir in the Saurashtra peninsula of Gujarat in the last fifteen years, there have also been many incidents of their untimely deaths, including by poachers until recently for their priceless claws and teeth.
Officially there were 309 lions in 1995, 321 in 2001 and 359 in 2005. In the last census, conducted in 2011, there were 526 lions in Gir forests.
This may not be a big figure, but considering the fact that Gir is spread in an area of only 1,412 sq km, it is an enormous number.
Usually a single adult lion requires grassland of about, say, 25 sq km to live and roam comfortably. Wildlife experts familiar with the geography of Gir believe its forests cannot provide shelter to more than 200 lions, all factors considered. (And one is not even talking about other big cats, particularly leopards, which are already there in a larger number to accompany the lions.)
Sources :– ‘http://goo.gl/0ex4t’