A hungry lion has been discovered by a shocked visitor to a zoo in Nigeria alongside a number of other severely malnourished animals.
After the man was discovered, a wildlife charity began a horror zoo rescue mission in an effort to save the life of the severely malnourished male lion.
Its strength must first be restored before it can be transferred to a sanctuary, but it is questionable if the lion can survive long enough.
The man was visiting Gamji Gate Zoo in Kaduna, Nigeria, and was shocked to learn about the conditions the animals were kept.
After paying a dollar admission fee to the state-owned zoo, he came across a painfully thin lion – who looked like he was on the verge of death – locked in a cement cage.
Malnourished lion on the brink of famine had to be rescued from a state-owned zoo in Nigeria by an animal welfare charity after a visitor was horrified by the conditions at the zoo
The charity carried out a rescue operation at the zoo to save the male lion after he was found starving. His ribs and other bones were clearly visible under his skin
“ The first time I saw the animal I felt a shock, ” the man, who wishes to remain anonymous, told Jam Press. ‘I was so surprised. I felt so nervous and worried because it was the first time I had seen a lion live.
“Like it’s my first time in a zoo. I’ve practically seen them in movies, news, and magazines. In fact, most of the animals in the zoo are not well fed. They lack proper treatment or let me say malnutrition.
Disturbed by the scene, the man recorded his findings and quickly contacted the animal welfare charity WildatLife.eV to help rescue the lion.
Among the other animals in the zoo, the man found a skinny hyena living in appalling conditions. The coat of a healthy hyena should look fuller than the one that was found
The animals were held captive in neglected wire cages at the zoo, which charged a single dollar for entrance fees
His images and photos show the incredibly thin lion with his ribs visibly protruding from his stomach.
This contrasts sharply with a typical adult male lion, who weighs around 420 pounds, while female lions typically weigh around 280 pounds.
The lion, named Zaki by the charity, is in critical condition and has suffered beyond comprehension.
Monkeys were also found in cages at the zoo. Left: a baboon sits on a ledge and to the right, another nipple monkey on a small piece of food in a small cage
However, WildatLife.eV is working alongside the Nigerian Association of Zoological Parks which has helped them locate a wildlife vet and brief authorities, who are urgently investigating the matter.
A spokesperson said: ‘The vet has been dispatched and has given the lion medical assistance, but he will need additional treatment which the NGO WildatLife will pay for.
“We are awaiting the full diagnosis from the vet and explaining how and why this was authorized.
The zoo also had crocodiles, pictured left in murky, swampy waters. Right: Another monkey found in the zoo sitting in its small cage
The crocodiles were kept in a larger area of the zoo, but had shallow, swamp-colored waters full of debris
“Zaki is now receiving medical treatment and it will be an ongoing case.
“If Zaki survives this ordeal, our NGO has offered to relocate him to a shrine where he will prosper.
But in his now critical condition, it is not viable to relocate him, we must work closely with Nigerian officials to ensure this matter is dealt with internally.
A photo of an ostrich found at the zoo also shows some of the animals had signs outside their cages with information about the animal inside.
“We need to prevent the suffering in zoos around the wild that keep wildlife in captivity for profit.
Unfortunately, a number of other zoo animals appeared to be unhealthy and malnourished as well. The NGO said the conditions and enclosures were totally unsuitable.
However, the lion is the most urgent and shocking case the NGO has ever seen.
It was not clear whether the zoo would remain open after the discovery.
A typical adult male lion, which weighs around 420 pounds, while female lions typically weigh around 280 pounds. The lion found and filmed (pictured) at the zoo was not far from a healthy weight
The lion, named Zaki by the charity, is in critical condition after being left to suffer beyond comprehension. The lion is the most urgent and shocking case the NGO has ever seen, he said
The latest rescue mission comes shortly after the organization rescued 47 dying animals at Ziniare Zoo in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso.
The zoo, which housed wildlife ranging from lions and hippos to porcupines, monkeys, elks and hyenas, has been exposed for starving its animals and leaving them to suffer in appalling conditions.
The team were horrified to discover that dozens of endangered species had been left hungry and weak due to malnutrition – and that some animals died due to lack of food.
Fortunately, the NGO and the Foundation for the Protection of Fauna and Flora in Burkina Faso have now taken over the zoo after obtaining a power of attorney and closed it to the public.
They have also started an emergency feeding and nutrition program and the condition of the animals is improving dramatically.
Another small animal found at the zoo, photographed in a tiny cage by the man who discovered the lion and other animals living in dire conditions at the zoo
‘ This article may have been written with information from various sources.
Credit: Notigroup Newsroom. ‘