Peru lion rescue completed, Wild Animal Sanctuary in Colorado gets ready for their arrival

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KEENESBURG, Colo. -- Thirty-three African lions are getting ready to make a long trip to Colorado. The lions were rescued from the Circus Monaco De Fieras in Peru on Thursday.

Crews are working hard getting their habitat ready as well.

The cats are being treated for injuries by Animal Defenders International vets, while being readied for what they are calling the largest African lion airlift of all-time.

“We expect these lions will ‘pride-up’ when they get to their new home at the Wild Animal Sanctuary in Keenesburg,” said ADI’s Tim Phillips.

“While they are pretty healthy, most have had their claws removed, which prohibits putting them back into the wild. But, for the most part, they are in good shape, except they haven’t had much out of cage time, so when they get in the ten-acre runs, they will be excited to run around and be big cats on the high plains of Colorado.”

Everyone expects the lions to adapt well here. Pat Craig of the Sanctuary says the lions rescued a few years ago from Bolivia are doing just fine in Colorado.  Some have even had cubs … helping grow the pride.