Three lionesses sterilised in Free State

Panthera Africa, the big cat sanctuary situated just outside Stanford, not only rescues and helps the big cats at its premises, but also assists other big cat institutions in need. On 12 January Panthera Africa arranged and funded successful sterilisation of three female lions at Kandirri Game Lodge. “This was a major win for the big cats and a great step towards the change in the captive breeding industry,” says Lizaene Cornwall who, with Cathrine Nyquist, founded Panthera Africa.

“Panthera Africa was contacted by Kandirri Game Lodge last year to help with a 7-month-old lioness, Lei-ah, which had vision problems and needed special care at a safe haven. Cathrine and I agreed to relocate Lei-ah to Panthera on the condition that the females at Kandirri Game Lodge were put on contraceptive to stop any further breeding.” Nyquist says Chanene Rossouw Vorster at Kandirri Game Lodge agreed to this. “She sees that breeding in captivity has little to no conservation value and that there are very few true animal welfare-based homes for hand-reared cubs.” This was a huge decision for Kandirri, and both Cornwall and Nyquist were grateful they were allowed to help with this transition.

Dr Peter Caldwell joined the two at Kandirri to sterilise the lionesses to ensure no future breeding can occur. “It was heart-warming to see there are people who are willing to do what is in the best interests of the big cats,” said Nyquist. When asked what they thought about thesterilisation, Cornwall said: “One of our dreams is to help facilities change into animal welfare projects and true sanctuaries where no breeding occurs.

As this initiation was one of our suggestions, we will cover sterilisationcosts. In doing so, we prove that we truly believe in no captive breeding and focus on animal welfare – physically, mentally and emotionally.” Three females were sterilised at Kandirri at a cost of R6 000 each. If you want to contribute towards Panthera Africa’s first big cat sterilisation, visit the facility’s website www.pantheraafrica.com.

Panthera Africa is a “true sanctuary” for big cats, caracals and jackals. The site is a #forever_home_to nine lions, two tigers, one black leopard, three caracals and three jackals. The founders have also arranged a number of rescue missions to relocate big cats from breeding facilities to a forever home.

 

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