Success: Sylvester the Lion Will Not Be Killed


Target: Karoo National Park management

Goal: Praise decision to spare the life of Sylvester the Lion.

According to a spokesperson for South African National Parks (SANParks), Sylvester the lion has been captured and will not be euthanized. Sylvester recently escaped from Karoo National Park for the second time in less than a year. Initially, South African authorities were planning to put him down. Despite  attempts to rationalize the planned slaughter, thousands of people organized to protest the decision and save Sylvester’s life. The #SaveSylvester campaign yielded a number of petitions, like this one on ForceChange, pleading with SANParks to reconsider. Without this heartfelt effort, Sylvester would probably be dead.

The recent killing of Mohawk the Lion, who escaped from Nairobi National Park in Kenya, no doubt contributed to the backlash against the plan to euthanize Sylvester. Mohawk’s wrongful death at the hands of park rangers caused massive public outrage, and people were not prepared to let the same thing happen to Sylvester.

Now that euthanasia is no longer an option for Syvester, he will either be brought back to Karoo National Park, where greater security measures will be taken to prevent another escape, or relocated to another park or conservation sanctuary. This is great news for everyone who understands the importance of protecting and conserving these endangered animals.

Please sign the petition below thanking park management for putting conservation and ethics before expediency.


Mr. Karoo National Park management,

I am writing to thank you for your decision to spare Sylvester the lion’s life. As you probably know, a similar incident recently took place in Kenya, which tragically concluded with the shooting and killing of a well-known 13-year-old lion named Mohawk. It is a relief to know that Sylvester will not meet the same fate.

The #SaveSylvester campaign on social media is a testament to how seriously the public takes the protection and conservation of lions and other animals threatened by human activity. It is encouraging to know that your organization was prepared to heed the groundswell of opposition to the idea of killing Sylvester. These animals are not menaces. By straying from the park, Sylvester was merely behaving as his nature dictates. To punish him for that would be cruel, and I’m happy to learn that you plan to take measures to prevent similar incidents from occurring in the future.

Whatever you decide for Sylvester, I hope that his well-being is the primary consideration. And again, thank you for saving his life.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Trisha M Shears

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  1. Lawren Rudley Lawren Rudley says:

    Thank you please keep him safe and protected

  2. Thank god! At this dismal point, it’s imperative to save every individual lion possible!

  3. Thankyou for sparing his life, all animals need to be protected worldwide

  4. Thank you for saving this precious animal’s life. Our beautiful lion population is dwindling down to nearly none left ….

  5. Lisa Zarafonetis Lisa Zarafonetis says:

    HOO freaking RAY!!! 😀
    Signed & Shared.

  6. Anita Culling says:

    The world needs to care more about animals
    Thank you

  7. It is inconceivable to me that this would even be considered !!! What are they thinking ? This lion or any other doesn’t know boundary lines, after all humans are encroaching on the lions roaming and home land !
    I am sick and tired of human deciding the fate of wild animals that don’t conform to their laws, or there is some gun toting idiot just waiting for the chance to catch one out of the protected area !
    If you travel to Africa today to see animals in the wild and in their natural habitat, sorry folks they are just about all gone ! Pathetic …… There are more tigers living in people’s back yards as pets or on display then there are left in the wild !

  8. Why should we thank them? For doing what’s right? Ellen Edwards-Thrasher is absolutely right.

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