They may have been a little grumpy after their long journey, but lioness sisters Maggie and Sonja – who were ill-treated by a German circus – now have a new home and a life of freedom ahead of them after being released at the Shamwari Game Reserve yesterday.
It took two days and two international flights across more than 10 000km to transport the nine-year-old lionesses from the Natuurhulpcentrum in Belgium to the Born Free Foundation’s enclosure at the game reserve situated midway between Port Elizabeth and Grahamstown.
But now they can for the first time live as close to a normal life in the wild as they could ever have hoped for.
Shamwari veterinarian and head of wildlife Johan Joubert said they were very happy to have the big cats with them and looked forward to seeing them adapt to their new environment.
– Riaan Marais
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