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City zoo seeks new home for donated lions

Cuenca’s Amaru Zoo is looking for a good home for 17 African lions. The lions, many of whom are in poor health from lack of food and poor living conditions, were part of a private collection of more than 200 wild animals near Cuenca that was recently disbanded.

One of 17 donated lions the Cuenca zoo is taking care of

Amaru veterinarian Paola Cañar says it is impossible for the lions to remain in Cuenca but says she and her staff’s immediate focus is bringing the pride back to good health. “Some of them have wounds that need to heal and most are underweight,” she says.

Cañar says that Amaru is contacting other zoos and bioparks in Ecuador and throughout South America hoping to find a suitable home for the lions. “Like us, most of the parks and zoos in the region concentrate on native species with a mission of reintroducing animals back into their native ecosystem,” she says. “African lions, obviously, do not fill this mission.”

She adds: “We already have seven lions at Amaru and are happy to provide space and care for them but we cannot accept more,” she says.

Amaru director Victoria Arbeláez says that offering temporarily care of the donated lions is difficult. “We do not received economic support from the government and depend heavily on private contribution to continue our work so it is important we find a suitable home for the lions as soon as possible.”

13 thoughts on “City zoo seeks new home for donated lions

  1. A “private collection” of non-native animals? 17 lions? 200 animals? wow. I’d love to know more about this – sounds so horrible. Wonder what happened to the other animals.

  2. Thank you for ALL that you do!! We appreciate the care, education and facility that you provide for ALL the animals at Amaru Park.

  3. To Dr. Paola Canar. Es urgente que haga contacto con la fundacion “BORN FREE” internacional. ….especialistas en asuntos de bienestar de Leones captivas. Hay pocos parques zoologicos en Sud America que tiene experiencia o condiciones adecuados para leones. Ellos pueden dar respaldo, consejo y la asistencia que necesitan estos pobres animales.

      1. I just saw this message. I run an animal rescue in a remote part of Ecuador. I have learned that to give information to those closely associated with a crisis is better than being the go between person. As it is we are working hard with international agencies to improve the treatment of working donkeys in our area as well as raising money for veterinary treatments and spay and neutering for people with low incomes. That is why I did not contact the Born Free Foundation myself. Dr Paola Canar is in a much better position to discuss the situation and a possible hand of help.

  4. I will pass this on to my friend that owns the Jacksonville zoo.
    Help will be coming !
    I just wish it was mentioned before they got that bad

  5. I have contacted the Adelaide Zoo in Australia with a copy of this story. I know their oldest male lion died in the last year or two. maybe gringos can reach out to the zoo in their home towns ?

  6. Hope these lions all find good zoos to care for them. I would take some, but my condo association does not permit lions.

      1. If one sits between 2 lions and reads, this is called “reading between the lions”.

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