Sylvester The Lion Settles Down And Has Family
Sylvester the lion who twice escaped from his home in South Africa’s Karoo National Park has finally settled down to have a family at his new home. Sylvester mated with a lioness named Angel at Kuzuko Lodge in Eastern Caps and has fathered two cubs. So far photographs of the recently spotted cubs show them staying close by their mother who is one of two orphaned sisters living in Kuzuko.
Famous escape artist lion
Sylvester has an interesting story. He was provided with a new home on the 15,000-hectare Kuzuko Reserve which is part of Addo Elephant National Park about two years ago. Sylvester achieved notoriety after escaping Karoo Park not once but twice! His first escape took place in 2015 and he managed to avoid being captured for three weeks and travelled over 370 kilometres. Following his capture Sylvester was fitted with GPS collar which promptly alerted park rangers of his second escape attempt in 2016.
Moved to a new home
His second escape attempt only lasted three days and after he was recaptured he was moved along with a younger male named Fielies to Kuzuko in 2017 where both were allowed to roam freely throughout the reserve. One of the managers of the reserve said the two lions managed to catch a kudu on their first night confirming that both lions had the ability to successfully fend for themselves in the wild. Now it would appear that Sylvester has a place to call home, free from any threat and the fact that both he and the younger male have bonded means that park managers no longer worry that he will stray.
Lions have bonded
Angel and another lioness arrived at Kuzuko at about the same time and all four lions it would appear seem to be close. Sylvester and Angel were captured on film mating earlier in the year and whilst both lionesses had been receiving contraception, reserve managers started to suspect that Angel had given birth. Apparently, Angel presented with the signs that she was nursing cubs, but because lionesses keep their new-borns hidden for a substantial period of time, there was no confirmation.
Two males will keep the cubs protected
Eventually suspicions were confirmed as Angel began moving out in the open with her two cubs. Sylvester has visited Angel and the cubs a number of times and the reserve’s managers are quite sure Sylvester and Fielies will ensure the cubs are protected. It would seem the cubs seem to be fit, healthy and Sylvester’s good looks have been passed on to them.
Escape attempts were to survive
Apparently, the reason Sylvester left Karoo was because he felt intimidated by a couple of older male lions. Since he was never part of a pack he was in danger and he either had to escape or be killed. Sylvester’s story is incredible given he was almost euthanised during his escapes and as a result he is living proof the conservation, when done properly, is always the best option.