Any time a country or region imposes any sort of visa stipulation - even if it’s a waiver - the travel industry sighs a collective groan, knowing the obstacles and headaches to come.
TORONTO — We love a feel-good story, especially ones starring animals.
A one-year-old lion cub has been rescued from a Paris apartment after French authorities discovered him living in a small cage. His owner, who was keeping the cub illegally, has been accused of abuse and neglect.
Bravo @BornFreeFDN! King the rescued lion cub has gone from a cage in Paris to a sanctuary in South Africa, living his life as close to wild as possible! Well done! Read Kings’ story in the link below. https://t.co/sxWC8OUeVH #CharityTuesday pic.twitter.com/LduUzmE7uI
— Kate on Conservation (@KateConsrvation) July 17, 2018
Affectionately named ‘King’, the lion was taken to Natuurhulpcentrum wildlife rescue centre in Belgium, which specializes in the rehabilitation of sick and injured wild animals, before making the long journey to his ancestral home of South Africa on July 5.
Lion World Travel, in partnership with the Born Free Foundation and Shamwari Game Reserve, sponsored King’s trip to South Africa, where he is now receiving lifetime care at the Big Cat Rescue Centre at Shamwari. The Born Free Foundation’s mission is to “keep wildlife in the wild” with a focus on taking in captive big cats living in poor conditions.
The multi-national effort to rescue King comes on the heels of the TreadRight Foundation’s recent ‘Big Cat Fund’ announcement that will help to ensure the planet’s most at-risk wildlife populations are protected. The TreadRight Foundation is Lion World Travel’s not-for-profit partner in sustainability.
King’s rescue has become a global rallying cry for conservationists. The African lion is considered one of the most endangered species on earth, with only 23,000 remaining. A total of 15 African countries has already declared it to be extinct. Coupled with reports of more lion hunting permits being issued under the current U.S. administration’s rollbacks on protections, King’s story is just one of millions about wild animals under threat.
“At Lion World Travel, we are proud to support King’s journey,” said Cris David, President of Lion World Travel. “With his fantastic start to his new life in South Africa, we are happy that King will finally be able to live the life he deserves: free and in a home fit for a king.”
More footage of King the lion cub who was found abused & starving in a #Paris apartment, released into @bornfreefoundation’s Big Cat Sanctuary @ShamwariSafari. He’s exploring his new forever home & was so brave! 🙏💛🦁 via: @ShamwariSafari 🌍👉@WorldAnimalNews pic.twitter.com/o1SyZR6m46
— World Animal News (@WorldAnimalNews) July 7, 2018