Amazing pictures of abandoned big cat and her heartwarming bond with men who saved her

Deep in the wilds of Botswana lives a 110 lb. lioness named Sirga. As a cub, Sirga was driven out of her pride and rescued. She would have died if it had not been for two men who came to her aid. German conservationist, Valentin Gruener, and Danish conservationist, Mikkel Legarth, could not just stand by and watch her die.

During that time she developed an incredible bond with the two men who have founded the Modisa Wildlife Project in Botswana where they are trying to save her species. Working from a base camp in the African bush the two men have been working with local farmers and Willie De Graaff, owner of Grassland Safari Lodge, to find a way long term solution.

Although Botswana is a large country with lots of wilderness, there has been increased farming which is bringing lions and man into conflict. The Modisa Wildlife Project's plan is to relocate the lions which are coming into contact with farmers to one large protected area where they have enough wild prey to feed on.

Sirga is now a wonderful example of the hoped for success of the Modisa Wildlife Project. She treats the two conservationists just like she would other lions and with their help she can now hunt for prey on her own. According to Legarth, "'We didn't want Sirga to become like other lions in captivity, constantly fed by streams of tourists. She only interacts with me and Valentin. She hunts her own food, taking antelopes and she will let us be near her when she eats it which is remarkable."

"Sirga doesn't mind people, but she doesn't pay them any attention. Wild lions are scared of people, the problem comes if you release a lion that is used to people in the wild, that can cause problems. With Sirga we want to release her to the wild eventually as a wild lion not as one that has met lots of people. That would be dangerous."

The pair's work and their incredible relationship with Sirga has been documented by photographer Nicolai Frederik Bonnin Rossen. Mikkel Legarth sums up their work by saying, "We are located on Willie De Graaff's 10,000-hectare farm with lions, wild dogs and leopards that has been saved from certain death. We are now looking for sponsors that can support us with a long-term solution for those animals."


Responses to "African lioness develops strong bond with 2 conservationists who have rescued her. (Video)"

  1. Anonymous says:


  2. Anonymous says:

    beautiful......how wonderful.

  3. Anonymous says:

    That's awesome to see such love and beauty between a wild cat and humans.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Incredible, absolutely fasinating! I love big cats, they are very intelligent, and can be very loving.

  5. *catzgomeow* says:

    I want that kind of friend :3 so amazing!

  6. Anonymous says:

    Big kitten. Caution is the catch word. Lions are devoted to a pride. They have become her pride. She needs a more suitable one before things get too complicated. My mother worked with lions. She only had one bad experience. It was during a game of hide and seek. She was lucky. She was just bruised . They get too big and don't know their own strength (or your weakness).

  7. Unknown says:

    that is true effection of love

  8. Anonymous says:

    thank you for sharing the pics and video.. so cool to see her and her interaction with them. she knows they saved her.

  9. Morgana says:


  10. Anonymous says:

    Very heart warming. :)

  11. manuela says:

    i love this ,its lovely

  12. pilvikki says:

    beautiful! ♥

  13. Anonymous says:

    canned lion hunting

  14. Unknown says:

    Any one and anything can be saved. Excellent video guys. Keep up the great work, she is beautiful. She looks like alot of fun too, I envy you.

  15. Unknown says:

    Animals were hear before us, we took their land. We need to respect the wild and the earth. Stop killing beautiful animals such as "the wolf" and instead learn from them. This world would be a much better place. Just sayin...

  16. Anonymous says:

    Thank you Darcy :)

  17. fred k says:

    Very noble work by noble white men !!! I hope their armed as those blackie's over there don't take to kindly to such work being done by white men. Just look at those before them,and their outcome !!! Can you say Jane Goodall and others i'm sure.

  18. fantastic! We need more people like this. Thank you, gentlemen! You are part of the solution.

  19. Cats are cats are cats are cats. Wonderful individuals. I take care of 6 (housecats), and I speak the language. I have also found raccoons might just as well be a big housecat. They almost speak the same language, like the same food, and a wild one used to use the litterbox outside, in addition to coming into the kitchen to eat and chill bit. Pain to clean said litterbox, though. They are a big animal.

  20. Anonymous says:

    Super beautiful and mind blowing however, there is way too much contact going on with humans for this lion. Also there are some people watching this video and thinking that they want this type of bond and love and end up getting these wild animals as pets which is very dangerous. as long as you are rescuing these animals in need with knowing your full responsibility to the society and to the animal itself, i am in full support. by the way, i think you are also putting this lion in danger by giving her too much human contact. for you it may be moving, fun, happy but for her, this is going to put her in a sticky situation in which one day can be matter of life and death for her. it's super nice and see the clips but please, also know the negative impact of posting this long clips. read some of the comment. someone already said they would like to have one of this lion as a pet! oh boy.

  21. Anonymous says:

    Thank you so very much!! This is such a beautiful thing to watch, however I have to think about this from Nov. 8th's perspective. I think this person had a point. There has been, for a long while now, people who actually do purchase wild cats when they are just cubs, thinking they will make great pets.
    Of course they're not going to be any such thing, ever! They are wild, they will Always be wild, and wild they should stay!! I do love them, and your love for them. Have you considered educating the public as well on this issue?? There are times when the baby lion's lose there parents to hunters, ( I would think this is the case most of the time, but I'm ignorant to this subject, so please allow me some time on what I am aware of, enough, certainly to put to you another suggestion. Have you at all considered where, how, & what it would take to start a sanctuary for big cats, or was the place you were at just that?? if so, can you then take on more big cats, in another area of this place. CATS that are BIG WILD & proven NOT to be great pets, but rather, great BIG WILD WONDERFUL CATS that now need a home, just like your lion you have shown us. Please, consider my words as well, you are young, and smart, smart enough to know that even your lovely lioness is capable of turning on you like a dime!!! If you want her to live a long, healthy life, as well as yourselves, again please think, on my words. You have the capacity to make a tremendous difference!!!!

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