The South African Predator Association has called on lion farmers to contact the Association if they need help with the care and feeding of their animals. SAPA specifically reached out and offered support to a lion farmer from the Glen district, near Bloemfontein, whose lions had been injured in a veld fire two months ago.
Thirty of his lions were subsequently euthanised by the SPCA in Bloemfontein. Information of this incident only became public early in October.
According to SAPA, a voluntary membership organisation for predator farmers in South Africa, there are many allegations about this tragic incident that are still under investigation. “The farmer in question is not a SAPA member, but we offered our help anyway. He is devastated about the fire, the loss of his lions, and the subsequent negative media coverage. His side of the events also differs from what has been published in the news media. We offered to supply him with meat to feed the rest of his lions, but he reassured us that he had enough food for his animals but would not hesitate to ask for help if he needed it,” said SAPA President, André Mentz.
SAPA is committed to establish and maintain high standards among predator farmers in South Africa. The Association promotes responsible breeding practices and expects its members to adhere to the strict norms and standards for the ethical treatment of their animals “We despise cruelty to animals. Only once the investigation on this particular case has been concluded, will we know if this was indeed a case of animal cruelty.”
SAPA endeavours to maintain a healthy predator breeding industry according to national and international conservation principles and legislation. SAPA suggested to the Minister that it should be compulsory for all predator farmers to belong to a representative organisation such as SAPA to assist the government with proper management of the industry, inspection and accreditation of farms, and policing of farming activities. The Association has written several letters to the Minister of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment, Barbara Creecy, but the Minister has yet to respond.
Issued by the South African Predators Association