It’s the saddest conclusion to a story that could only ever end in tears. On Thursday afternoon, one the three lions – who had been on the loose since Saturday – were shot on a private farm.
The other two were in the nearby area, yet the search team were unable to merely tranquilise the lions and had ‘no choice’ but to shoot the escapees dead.
Rangers say tracks show there were only three lions, not four as has been reported.
SANParks spokesperson William Mabasa explained the situation and why he and his rangers had to take the course of action they did:
“Last night the lions killed cattle in one of the farm areas. The owner of the farm shot at the lions and killed one and wounded another. The terrain was difficult and we could not drug them so we were forced to shoot the remaining
The lion that was shot on the farm wasn’t killed instantly, but rather badly wounded. Rangers made the heartbreaking decision to end his suffering.
Though there has been no loss of human life thanks to the vigilant park workers, the death of these three magnificent animals has an air of tragedy about it.