Over 30 lions flown by ADI from Colombia and Peru at the weekend are enjoying their new habitats, the bonding camps at Emoya Big Cat Sanctuary, South Africa.In the bonding camps, each lion has about six times the space they had previously and are living with their friends as before, but in connected rooms so that they can move from one room to another and enjoy each other’s space. This is where the bonds of family and friendships are reconnected, although males and females are still separated until the sterilisations are complete. We will also do the dental work that remains to be done, and any eye treatments and other ailments, before they officially move out of the bonding camps. When they go into their larger enclosures they will understand the routine of returning to their bonding camp each day to be fed. This will also allow Emoya staff to check for any injuries or illnesses.
Our aim is to build nine prides. The fence between their rooms in the bonding camps allows contact between the lions but any squabbles cannot do real harm. Lions asserting themselves is a natural part of finding the order in the pride and these bonding camps give the lions a real chance of forming a social group. Most of the lions have, tragically, been declawed, so contact through the fences doesn’t result in real injuries. Some people were concerned at the sight of a short squabble between two of the Colombian brothers, but this is simply part of a lion asserting himself in a new habitat, and now they are settled in their new homes.
If you would like to help care for the lions and help with construction of the Phase 2 habitats, please make a donation. Thank you.