Male lion at TWAS
Male lion at TWAS

Published on March 17 2015
Written by: YAS

33 rescued lions coming to The Wild Animal Sanctuary


  • TWAS currently features over 400 lions, and will be adding another 33 from Peru this April
  • Getting the lions from Peru to Colorado is the largest airlift of African lions in history
  • TWAS was founded 35 years ago by Pat Craig

Life is very busy at The Wild Animal Sanctuary (TWAS) in northeastern Colorado. They are preparing for the arrival of 33 lions that were rescued from Peruvian circuses. Peru and Colombia have recently put bans on the use of wild animals in circuses, so TWAS can most likely expect to get requests for more wild animals in the near future. Many of these rescued lions have been declawed, rendering them defenseless in the wild. They're also malnourished and several have broken teeth, from being poked and jabbed by steel rods. These poor creatures have known a life consisting of cages and small enclosures, so they will be in for a treat once they arrive at the sanctuary and have literally acres to run around in.

The largest airlift of African lions in history

Getting the rescued lions from Peru to Colorado, USA is no easy feat. TWAS charters Boeing 767 cargo jets to collect the lions from Peru and fly them all the way to Colorado, which also isn't cheap. The crew at TWAS have been working tirelessly in preparation for the lions, which are slated to arrive in April 2015 and will require new enclosures to be created for a smooth introduction of the new lions. The sanctuary relies heavily on generous donations and has been successfully raising money for this project via sites such as their Facebook page and website. 

The sanctuary estimates that it costs around $8,000 per year to provide and care for each lion. If you would like to donate, or to know more about TWAS, you can visit their website

For those in the greater Denver area, founder Pat Craig will be recapping the events leading up to the rescue, and will share the unloading of 33 African lions and their transition to habitats at The wild Animal Sanctuary.

16 April 2015 at 19h00 at Lone Tree Arts Center. Tickets here

Sources and credits

About the author

Has been on: 15 safaris

Your African Safari (YAS) is a safari-planning resource for anyone planning an African safari. It features information on over 2600 tour operators including company and vehicle descriptions, user reviews, safari itineraries and photos. It also features detailed information on 14 countries and 84 parks and game reserves.

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African Queen

Said on 30 March 2015 18:08

TWAS is worth a visit...or several!

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