The extremely malnourished lions in a Sudanese zoo are doing a little better, spokesperson Lisette Keetmans of international animal welfare organization Vier Voeters tells NU.nl on Friday. For the most emaciated lion the coming days will still be "exciting and crucial", but Keetmans says that there is a "very small spark of hope".
Pictures of starving lions in a zoo in Sudan went around the world in recent days, after which a team of relief workers expressed. They offer food and medical care to the lions and will also examine the hyenas in the park.
The weakest lioness, Kandaka, had to infuse for a week for hours and "balanced on the verge of coma". She is now taking small steps forward, says Keetmans. Kandaka can walk again and she eats and drinks. However, the rescuers still have to see how the lioness will make it in the coming days.
Mansour, the weak male, appears to be in an early stage of a chronic kidney disease and needs intensive help. The other two lions are improving. One of the two does have intestinal problems, but because both animals have only been in the zoo for two months, they are doing better than with Kandaka and Mansour.
See also: Rescue operation lion zoo Sudan: 'I have never seen this before'
Zoo has no money for food
Because of the war in Sudan that has been going on for years, there is enormous poverty. The zoo therefore has no money to feed the animals. First the zoo had five lions, but one has already died from malnutrition.
Juno van Zon, the only Dutch person in the rescue team, informed NU.nl earlier that "absolutely everything about the housing of the animals is wrong". The lions, for example, sit in small concrete cages that hardly offer any shelter.
Keetmans says that Vier Voeters will stay on site as long as necessary.
"We don't know yet how long that will be exactly". The care providers look with local authorities for a long-term solution and have involved local veterinarians in the action to allow them to gain experience.
161emaciated lions in the Sudan zoo