Animal Defenders International


Animal Defenders International

The Great Survivors

Posted: 17 April 2007


In a dramatic rescue mission in 1996 ADI rescued 6 lions, 3 tigers, 1 African rock python, 3 horses and 7 dogs from a circus in Mozambique. Over 10 years later ADI are delighted to report that two of the tigers and two lions are still alive, well into their teens, and going strong.

In February 2007 whilst delivering our latest rescued lions and a tiger from Portugal we paid our dear old friends a visit. Shorty, a male lion in the care of Brian Jones at Moholoholo Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre, is now extremely old but is a real fighter and just keeps going. Blondie, who shares his bush enclosure, has hardly aged in a decade; we also hear on good authority that he is as feisty as ever and has no plans to live life at an easier pace.


The two tigers, Mowgli & ShereKhan, now reside at the ADI Rescue Centre at Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre and have earned themselves the affectionate nickname, ‘the grumpy old ladies’. These tigers were originally relocated from the circus to the Milimani Game Sanctuary in KwaZulu-Natal, however, a land claim meant that the animals had to vacate their home at the beginning of August 2005. ADI was once again on hand to relocate our old ladies to their new secure enclosure at the ADI Rescue Centre where they continue to enjoy the African sun in their natural bush enclosures.


Not only are these four animals very special to us but they are also extremely important in legal terms. After their rescue ADI began a campaign to tighten the rules for endangered animals with travelling circuses under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES). This resulted in new rules for travelling circuses in 2003 in the 160+ countries who are signatories to the CITES convention.

Seizing every animal from a travelling circus – the ADI Akef Egyptian Circus rescue

Still rescuing animals – February 2007 two lions and tiger rescued from a circus in Portugal

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