Who killed Mufasa? Lion named after Disney character has its FACE and paws hacked off

  • WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT
  • Five lions were killed at Akwaaba Predator Park near Rustenburg, South Africa
  • Poachers broke in to the park and poisoned lions with a yet-to-be-identified drug
  • Cut off face and front paws of a lion named after The Lion King’s Mufasa
  • The body parts of the lions are likely to be sold for black magic rituals

Poachers poisoned five lions and brutally mutilated one at a South African predator park this week.

The horrific incident occurred on Monday night at Akwaaba Predator Park near Rustenburg, some 80 miles west of Johannesburg in the northeast of the country.

The poachers broke into the park and had begun to mutilate a male lion called Mufasa, named after the famous Disney character, when they they were disturbed by staff and fled the scene.

Images show the remains of Mufasa, lying in his own blood, and the other four lions which the poachers had not yet mutilated. It is believed Mufasa’s body parts will be used for black magic rituals or sold to a trophy collector.

Heartbreaking: Mufasa the lion was poisoned along with four others, and later mutilated, after poachers broke into Akwaaba Predator Park near Rustenburg, South Africa

‘It’s heartbreaking,’ said park manager, Bronwyn Moss. ‘All the lions were hand reared from when they were cubs so it’s like losing five children.

‘They were close to our hearts. My only hope is that the lions were already dead by the time the poachers started chopping off parts.’

After breaching the park’s security, poachers poisoned the lions with a fast acting drug that is still being identified.

They then hacked off the front paws of one and part of its face before being disturbed and fleeing.

The carnage was discovered at around 11.30pm by patrolling security guards who contacted the farm manager. ‘

Help: The predator park has offered f 100,000 rand (about £5,550) to any person with information leading to the arrest and conviction of the poachers

When he arrived he discovered the dead lions,’ explained Ms Moss. ‘He saw a lot of blood in the one enclosure and found that the one lion’s two front feet and face were chopped off.

‘We suspect that the lions were all poisoned at the same time and that the poachers were disturbed by the security guards before they could hack parts off the other lions,’ said Ms Moss..

Police and wildlife authorities were alerted and an investigation is being conducted.

Akwaaba is also offering a reward of 100,000 rand (about £5,550) to any person with information leading to the arrest and conviction of the poachers.

‘We are devastated that this could happen on our doorstep and that our babies were killed for nothing. The poachers murdered five and only got parts from one. What an absolute waste of life.’

Ms Moss said that they could only speculate at this stage about motive.

 

Murdered: Two of the other lions who were killed using an unknown fast acting drug

‘The poachers could have been after the parts to make traditional medicine or they could have been harvesting them for a trophy collector. We hope to get to the bottom of it soon.’

Akwaaba is a 72-hectare game farm which is refuge to a variety of wild animals including big cats that have been abandoned or abused.

Because many of the animals have been hand reared from a very young age visiting tourists are allowed to pet them.

This comes three months after a similar attack at a park just miles away, where another six lions were killed and mutilated for black magic parts.

Two white lions and four brown lions were poisoned and mutilated at the Mystic Monkeys & Feathers Wildlife Park, just north of Pretoria, in July.

Poachers hacked the heads and paws off four fully grown lions and also killed two cubs.

 

Shocking moment teenage thugs coax beloved cat Sully from under car then watch their dog tear her

Both were slapped with a 12-month referral order to the youth offending team, were disqualified from keeping any animal for 10 years and ordered to pay £300 costs.

The dog involved in the case has also been subjected to a deprivation order and will be taken into RSPCA care until he’s ready for rehoming.

Sully’s owners became concerned after he had been missing from their home for a number of days.

They checked their CCTV camera for clues about where Sully may have gone – but they were confronted with images of their cat’s shocking plight.

One youth can be seen hitting the 13-year-old grey Bengal type cat from beneath a car with a stick, before the dog is set on him to catch and kill the defenceless pet.

They checked their CCTV camera for clues about where Sully may have gone – but they were confronted with images of their cat’s shocking plight

The dog is held by the collar behind the car, before being released to chase Sully.

The footage shows the dog duly chasing Sully up the street, and – after attacking the cat on a number of occasions – mauls him to death.

Sully’s dead body was found in the bushes – after one of the offenders had tossed his remains away.

RSPCA inspector Gemma Cooper said: ‘The shock and horror I felt when I first witnessed this CCTV footage has remained with me.

This was a disturbing, harrowing and deeply sinister attack which would have caused immense suffering to poor Sully.

‘It is frightening to think two children would set out to do something so deliberately cruel. It appears the dog had been trained to kill like this.

‘We know most people across Merthyr and beyond will be disgusted by the treatment of an innocent, defenceless cat in this way.

This was a premeditated attack, seemingly done for the boys’ fun and pleasure, for which the RSPCA had to seek justice.

The actions of these individuals has left a family broken and without their beloved pet cat and family member of 13 years.’

Sully’s owner – who wishes to remain anonymous – added: ‘We are absolutely heartbroken.

‘Sully was so happy, and was a member of our family. His killing by these cruel people brings shame to Merthyr Tydfil. This was a heinous act.

‘He was well-known and popular in the local area – always sitting on the path he’d get petted and fussed by people walking along the lane and regular dog walkers all knew him.

He’d regularly sneak into a neighboring dental practice, and make friends with patients in the waiting room. Sully was a real character and was loved by all who met him. He was harmless and had never hurt anyone.

We all miss him so, so much. It was so strange for Sully to be missing. He’d gone to follow family members to the local park and was out and about as usual – but didn’t come home that day.

We started to get worried, so I checked our CCTV cameras – and saw these boys walking with a dog and that’s when it all happened.

‘It was horrifying to watch. I was screaming at the screen for Sully to run for his life but the dog was just too fast for him.

‘What I witnessed that day will never leave me – it was like watching one of my children being attacked.

Sully was 13 years old and was one of our family members who spent every night curled up on our children’s beds and his senseless killing has affected them deeply.

‘Telling my wife and children he was dead was so, so hard. I will never forget watching the offenders revel in what they did, and will never forgive them for what they have done to us.

They threw poor Sully’s body into the bushes like a piece of junk; and I had to go and get the body, and get him cremated, to get some dignity for him.

It was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done.’

Manatees – They’re No Longer An Endangered Species

They may not be much to look at, but bless them, they’re lovable and even weirdly cute. They’re manatees and they’ve had a pretty tough time of it recently. But finally, these aquatic ‘sea cows’ have some good news to celebrate. They’re no longer an endangered species.

Manatees were actually one of the very first species of animals to be listed on the Endangered Species Protection Act of 1966. Alongside American alligators, whooping cranes, red wolves and grizzly bears. And it’s been a tough ride for them ever since.

One of their most famous people out there in the manatees’ corner and fighting for them is “Margaritaville” singer Jimmy Buffett. He co-founded the sea cow-friendly Save the Manatee Club way back in 1981. Buffett helped to bring some much-needed publicity for the manatee and their tale of woe.

Finally though, there’s excellent news. Manatees in Florida and the Caribbean are now just listed as ‘threatened’, instead of ‘endangered’.

Manatees are no longer an endangered species.

West Indian manatee numbers in Florida have been depleting for years, but now they’ve reached their highest figure in years at 6,620, which is being called “a dramatic turnaround from the 1970s, when just a few hundred individuals remained.” That’s what the US Fish and Wildlife Service said in a statement recently.

Jim Kurth, the US Fish and Wildlife Service’s acting director says this about the plight of the manatee:

“While there is still more work to be done to fully recover manatee populations, particularly in the Caribbean, manatee numbers are increasing and we are actively working with partners to address threats.”
“Today we both recognize the significant progress we have made in conserving manatee populations while reaffirming our commitment to continuing this species’ recovery and success throughout its range.”

They’re now just ‘threatened’

“The decision will not diminish any existing federal protections that will continue to play a vital role in the recovery of the species,” say the Fish and Wildlife Service. “The manatee will also continue to be protected under the Marine Mammal Protection Act.”

So it’s good news for environmentalists and fans of the humble manatee. But it’s not entirely smooth sailing for the sea cow. They are still very much at risk. Boat collisions, pollution, climate change, loss of habitat. These things can all still affect them…

 

Giant panda no longer Endangered

Animal lovers rejoice! The Giant Panda is no longer an endangered species.

The large Chinese bears have spent years as a dying breed, with many zoologists predicting their extinction to be imminent. Various environmental factors and their apparent unwillingness to procreate in captivity led many to assume that the end was near for the big cute beasts. But not so. There’s light at the end of the tunnel.

The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) were thrilled to announce the news that The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) had downgraded the threat level. Giant Pandas are no longer an ‘endangered’ species. They are, instead, now listed as only a ‘vulnerable’ breed.

Incessant deforestation had been a major player in their woes, but it seems as though the combined and concerted efforts of so many people and organizations is now paying off.

Giant Pandas have been reclassified as ‘vulnerable’.

WWF Director General Marco Lambertini was ecstatic when he told the media this:
“For over 50 years, the giant panda has been the globe’s most beloved conservation icon as well as the symbol of WWF. Knowing that the panda is now a step further from extinction is an exciting moment for everyone committed to conserving the world’s wildlife and their habitats.”
“The recovery of the panda shows that when science, political will and engagement of local communities come together, we can save wildlife and also improve biodiversity,” he went on.

There has been 17% charted rise in the population of Giant Pandas in the decade up to 2014. That was when a nationwide census in China found that there were 1,864 giant pandas living in the wild.

There are now 67 active panda reserves in China, which look after and monitor almost two thirds of all the wild pandas in the country.

“It is a significant conservation success following years of enormous efforts on the part of the Chinese Government, communities and non-governmental organisations,” said Glyn Davies, the Executive Director of Global Programmes at WWF-UK.
“This is a cause for celebration and proves that a united approach can bring a substantial difference to threatened species, even at a time of great economic growth in China.”

 

Provided the bamboo forests there stay intact, there’s no reason why the Giant Panda can’t be with us for some time…

Find out a little more about this brilliant news in this CNN report: