One of the greatest cruelties of captive wildlife is the isolation of the victims. Living without anyone of their own kind. Ending the loneliness is one of our missions and in 2022, we began Operation Lonely Hearts at the ADI Wildlife Sanctuary to bring together solitary animals. We saw the magic when Easy, a circus survivor from Colombia (who had lost her sister Shakira) and David, a circus survivor from Peru (who lost his sister Rapunzel) became best of friends. Lion brothers Tomas and Kimba were reunited after being separated as cubs in a circus in Guatemala.
This work continues with two older males, Iron and Bumba, to see if they will become a pair.
Who can forget Tanya insisting on being with Tarzan in veterinary hospital, or the huge greeting she gave him when he returned after his lip-lift. And the emotional reunion, cuddles, and games of brothers Rey Ayacucho and Simba after Rey returned from hospital.
For 2023, let’s ensure that Ruben, the lion in Armenia, gets to hear the voices of his own kind again and sees other lions. And just maybe we can find him a friend, too.