Born Free Foundation - Keep Wildlife in the Wild

Nov/Dec Updates from Shamwari

from Glen Vena, Animal Care Manager

Julie Ward Centre

All has been going very well at the centre and the cats look great.

We have cleaned out a lot of the undergrowth in the camps. We can see the cats better now on our fence patrols and it is good to see them making use of the whole camp.

We are taking all the food we get donated from farmers; however we need to buy in more for this last quarter of the year.

The World Wide Experience students are now spending more time at our Centres, rather than just out on the reserve, and they help with our work such as cleaning out the camps and preparing food for our cats, and they really seem to enjoy it.

(See pictures below with Students in action)

  • Photo Glen Vena/BFF/Shamwari


Sinbad photo Glen Vena/BFF Shamwari

He looks good, on hot days he still looks a bit lethargic, other than that he is well. We have had a couple of very hot days, the other day it was 41 deg C, but on average it has been about 20 -25 deg C – cold for this time of year, with very strong winds.

Unfortunately we are in a serious drought situation again. Sinbad is as handsome as can be! I’m sure he would love to have a companion with him in there. Lately he is spending more time looking at Pitou and Sirius, the leopards from Monaco, in the camp on the other side of his enclosure. However he is not showing any aggression towards them, he would just be there minding his own business, his little tongue poking out as you often see on bottlereared lions.

Ma Juah and Achee:

They look ever so peaceful in the newly cleaned out enclosure and we see them more often now during our fence patrols. MJ is still very protective over Achee and always close to her side. Food, they still love it and never leave any behind.

See picture below of MJ and Achee, eating together - Achee in background playing with her food.

photo Glen Vena/BFF Shamwari

The Triplets:

They can be very mischievous most of the time; however they can be very sweet too. Guests love these cats maybe because they are out and about most of the time, only the worst weather keeps them away or a very full tummy!

After the camp was cleaned they are exploring it and move around in areas that we never seen them in, they are really at home.

Murray our vet has given me instructions on their food portions, never too much for them, as they seem to put on weight easily! Well they have adapted to this new arrangement, however we still have to separate Sami from the rest as he still loves to take the other cats’ food, so he goes in the hospital camp during feeding.

On warm days Sami has this new spot that he really loves by the water trough, very clever of him as the trough is cool and it cools him down too.

Photo Glen Vena / BFF Shamwari

Pitou and Sirius:

These are the leopards from Monaco Zoo and they are getting more relaxed every day; on the 11th November we had GMTV from England arrive to do a follow up on all the cats that they had helped Born Free rescue over the past years. It was so wonderful to see Pitou relaxed around the camera and after a few minutes Sirius came out of the thickets and he was so relaxed too, which is even more unusual. I think the Prince of Monaco will be really pleased to see them so at ease.

Pitou is coming in to season more often now. Sirius didn’t used to be very interested. This made Pitou very cross and on occasion we would see Pitou sitting on him, just to get his attention. Other than that we have not seen any aggression between them. However, now Sirius is interested in Pitou when she comes into season and they have been seen mating a lot.


Aslan and Stella:

For most of the time they are not out and about so the guests do not see them, but we do see them during our fence patrols and Aslan is usually Mister Grumpy and he will charge the fence. He still gives you a fright with that big roar of his and if he does it very loud, you can actually feel the ground vibrating, I think that is
so cool!!!

Here is a picture of Aslan and Stella in a really good mood:

Photo Glen Vena / BFF Shamwari
Born Free Foundation
Broadlands Business Campus, Langhurstwood Road
, Horsham, RH12 4QP, UK - Charity Reg. No. 1070906

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