Three lions from Ukrainian zoo evacuated to Denmark

Three female lions who were evacuated from a zoo in Ukraine have arrived at Knuthenborg Safari Park on Danish island Lolland.

Three lions from Ukrainian zoo evacuated to Denmark
Simba, one of three lionesses recently evacuated from Ukraine to Denmark. Photo: Dyrenes Beskyttelse press release

The lions, named Simba, Ploy and Vee, were rescued from a zoo inside a conflict zone in Ukraine in August, charity Animal Protection Denmark (Dyrenes Beskyttelse) said in a statement on Monday.

They were transported to the Danish animal park just before Christmas.

After being removed from Feldman Ecopark in Donetsk in Ukraine in August, the lions were kept in Poland for a while before being moved to Denmark.

The war in Ukraine was the reason for their evacuation.

“We are very pleased this was possible. The small zoo (in Ukraine) was in a warzone and the lions were at risk of malnutrition,” Animal Protection Denmark biologist Anne Sofie Meilvang said.

“Evacuation of large predatory animals like this is complicated and risky for those involved, local animal lovers and soldiers. After this, the task of coordination began to get them out of Ukraine and to new homes,” she said.

The three female lions are set to be given their own enclosure at the Danish safari park.

Knuthenborg has one of Europe’s largest tiger enclosures, Tigerskoven or “The Tiger Forest”.

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Danish family smuggled 69 dogs, 10 horses and 4 goats to Sweden

A Danish family of four have been found guilty of smuggling after they moved from Denmark to Sweden and brought their 83 animals without the proper paperwork.

Danish family smuggled 69 dogs, 10 horses and 4 goats to Sweden
File photo of goats not related to the story. Photo: Jurek Holzer/SvD/TT

It all started when the family moved from Denmark to Sweden in 2014, to rent a farm.

The father, the only one of the four with a driving licence, made several round trips to Sweden to transport the family's belongings and their animals to their new home, while the rest of the family made the journey by train.

But the animals were never reported to Swedish Customs Agency and the majority of them lacked the necessary documents such as passports and recent veterinary certificates.

The case was brought to Swedish authorities' attention when the county administrative board visited the farm for a routine check and, after contacting the Swedish Board of Agriculture, launched an investigation.

Malmö District Court on Tuesday found them guilty of smuggling, according to court documents seen by The Local, but emphasized it was not an aggravated smuggling offence, as the family had no previous convictions and it turned out there had been no risk of the animals spreading diseases.

The father was nevertheless handed a conditional sentence and a 5,000 kronor ($625) fine. The other three – his wife and her daughter and partner – were each fined 3,000 kronor.