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Rescued Lions, Tigers & Bears, Oh My! The Wildlife Sanctuary in CO

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posted on Aug, 2 2015 @ 07:35 PM
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With all the stories of the killing of Cecil the Lion, I couldn't help but remember there are people who work tirelessly to rescue animals from zoos and illegal personal collections, where they are often neglected and suffering.

It is so good to know that sanctuaries like this one exists. I know Cecil was lured from a wildlife preserve and I have zero respect for those that did that. Every animal at The Wildlife Sanctuary in CO has a name, too. I can't imagine how horrible it would be for someone to make a trophy rug out of one of them.



Even though we are the direct cause of so much pain for increasingly rare wildlife, there are some humans who are fighting back and dedicating their lives to the healing, protection and safety of these incredible animals.

Sanctuary - VIRTUAL TOUR (photos, videos & commentary)

I visited the Wildlife Sanctuary of Keenesburg, CO in 2014 with family. This is a bare-bones operation, housing many species of rescue animals, and doing its best to heal them and provide a safe environment that lets them roam in relative freedom through huge fenced-in preserves. It's clear their money goes into the basics of feeding and caring for these animals, more so than tourism (though they do have a gift shop!) The Sanctuary is on 720 acres of stark Colorado prairie with a high bridge where you can look down onto many of the animals from above - this means you are not looking in their eyes, so they are not disturbed by your presence and can go about their business, though one lion did seem to want to come and watch the Humans as we were watching him. He was a beauty!


(please forgive the poor quality - he was pretty far away and I was using my phone!)

They have beautiful tigers - and tons of them - I have never seen so many huge cats in one place before!


And yes, just like in the land over the rainbow, they have bears! Big bears!!


For MUCH better pictures and some great videos, click here: PHOTOS VIDEO

This worthy organization has recently brought in lions from Bolivia that were in a circus (with the help of Animal Defenders International). Bolivia has made it illegal for any animal to be used in circus performances, so the lions were at risk. In addition, they had diseases and dehydration, which were causing them suffering. They are now happily living out wild lives on the preserve set out for them at The Wildlife Sanctuary.

Bolivia Rescue Video (long verson - 30 min)

During my own visit, I watched a video of a daring rescue from a South American Zoo - if I remember correctly, the animals were swept out of the zoo by stealth (they did it legally via the national government, but the locals were not notified due to potential conflict with local law enforcement and zoo owners who feared the loss of the cats as it was a small economic boon to have the zoo - but the animals were unhealthy and kept in horrible conditions...Quite tense!!)

The Wildlife Sanctuary Website


News Story about the Wildlife Sanctuary in 2015



What do you think, ATS? Have you had a great experience at a Wildlife Sanctuary? Have you been to this one?

- AB
edit on 2-8-2015 by AboveBoard because: (no reason given)

edit on 2-8-2015 by AboveBoard because: good gracious, grammar!!

edit on 2-8-2015 by AboveBoard because: video!




posted on Aug, 2 2015 @ 09:16 PM
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a reply to: AboveBoard

I cannot wait to move out there!! Moving day cannot come fast enough. Hope we get out there soon so we can enjoy the end of summer and all of fall in the Rockies!

WIll have to remember this thread and check this place out sometime when we get there!



posted on Aug, 2 2015 @ 10:14 PM
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a reply to: lovebeck


Wave to the Rockies for me!


It is absolutely gorgeous out there. Congratulations.

This place is not spectacular in regards to "buildings and facilities" = they have some visitor stuff that's cool, but mostly it was a wonderful experience to see the animals and support the sanctuary.

Great memory: Looking down and seeing about twenty or more tigers... Woah.

- AB



posted on Aug, 2 2015 @ 10:56 PM
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Well I've lived in the area for almost 5 years and have never heard of this ... I'd love to go but $50 per person seems a bit steep



posted on Aug, 3 2015 @ 12:50 AM
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originally posted by: eeyipes
Well I've lived in the area for almost 5 years and have never heard of this ... I'd love to go but $50 per person seems a bit steep


Why not consider it as a donation to help preserve the animals. They too need to eat and I would hate the butcher's bill when it comes in. Is it too steep now?

P



posted on Aug, 3 2015 @ 01:46 AM
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Soon enough tigers and lions will be extinct in the wild. One thing I've noticed that very few people are even aware of the Asian lion, which once roamed all throughout India and the Middle East, but now exists only as a single population in India. Most people think lions only come from Africa.

Keeping wildlife reserves like this one are the only hope for the continued survival of some species. Most endangered animals, however, simply die out, and were never even heard of by most people in the first place. We all know about lions and tigers, but how many people know of a gharial, a tamarin, a wrasse, a tenrec?

And these conservation efforts, how much funding will they get when there are wars to fight, technology to be improved, wealth to claim? This is why these places are essentially zoos with larger confines, they rely on the money they receive from the public who pays to see these animals. And this is little enough - they must keep their prices as low as they can, or a competitor will come along and send them into oblivion, or people's interest will wane - after all, we all want to get things cheaply. And who would pay money to see a small and unremarkable creature that looks like a funny looking shrew? People want big, exciting, fierce animals. And thus we decide which animals live or die.

It all comes down to money. My field is zoology - and I've come to know how little most people care. What's the life of an animal compared to a shiny new iphone? It's sad, but our wildlife is doomed.



posted on Aug, 3 2015 @ 09:01 AM
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originally posted by: eeyipes
Well I've lived in the area for almost 5 years and have never heard of this ... I'd love to go but $50 per person seems a bit steep


I agree that the $50 pass does seem pricey for a single visit. It looks like they want to cultivate "Active Supporters" who, with an annual (or just for one year) contribution of $200, can visit free WITH friends and family! So, if you have the ability, and some friends/family who could chip in towards it, you could all go together and have a grand time!

For example - two families = 8 people = $25 per person that day, or 12 people = $12.50 per person that day. You do have to buy the pass at least 10 days before the visit (so you can't show up that day with 20 people and have one person say "yeah, I'd like to be an active supporter!")

You wouldn't all have to go at the same time, either, just WITH the "active supporter" (someone who is really into it would go twice). They would rather you make the leap to "active supporter" status and bring friends and family than just show up once for $50.

Anyway - its a great organization and if I lived out there now I would be very tempted to do the active supporter status myself.



Peace,
AB



posted on Aug, 3 2015 @ 09:38 AM
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originally posted by: pheonix358

originally posted by: eeyipes
Well I've lived in the area for almost 5 years and have never heard of this ... I'd love to go but $50 per person seems a bit steep


Why not consider it as a donation to help preserve the animals. They too need to eat and I would hate the butcher's bill when it comes in. Is it too steep now?

P


It is REALLY expensive to keep all those big animals fed, happy, and healthy!

Link to their non-profit financial statement 2013: link

They brought in somewhat more than they expensed - their operating budget was over 8 million dollars that year, but really not by much. A lot of their "income" is in donated "feed" for the animals. (over half the expenses). Only 2% goes to administration costs. 7% goes to fundraising. So 91% of every dollar of income goes directly to their program expenses. Not bad!!!

- AB



posted on Aug, 3 2015 @ 09:41 AM
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originally posted by: DeepThoughtCriminal
Soon enough tigers and lions will be extinct in the wild. One thing I've noticed that very few people are even aware of the Asian lion, which once roamed all throughout India and the Middle East, but now exists only as a single population in India. Most people think lions only come from Africa.

Keeping wildlife reserves like this one are the only hope for the continued survival of some species. Most endangered animals, however, simply die out, and were never even heard of by most people in the first place. We all know about lions and tigers, but how many people know of a gharial, a tamarin, a wrasse, a tenrec?

And these conservation efforts, how much funding will they get when there are wars to fight, technology to be improved, wealth to claim? This is why these places are essentially zoos with larger confines, they rely on the money they receive from the public who pays to see these animals. And this is little enough - they must keep their prices as low as they can, or a competitor will come along and send them into oblivion, or people's interest will wane - after all, we all want to get things cheaply. And who would pay money to see a small and unremarkable creature that looks like a funny looking shrew? People want big, exciting, fierce animals. And thus we decide which animals live or die.

It all comes down to money. My field is zoology - and I've come to know how little most people care. What's the life of an animal compared to a shiny new iphone? It's sad, but our wildlife is doomed.


I agree it can look really grim. However, it makes supporting efforts like The Wildlife Sanctuary in CO and other places even more important. It would be great if we could take some of that massive amount of "defense" budget and use it in defense of our planetary resources in the form of the flora and fauna that make our little blue bubble in the universe such and awesome and unique place to be.

Thank you for your post! I'm going to go look up those animals you mentioned!!!

- AB




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