By NewsLine Staff
mail@floridanewsline.com

This year, the St. Augustine Wild Reserve received a snow white lioness named Sahara. Since then, the Reserve has acquired four more white lions and lionesses — Zahra, Zuri, Pharaoh, and Aladdin. The white coloration is a rare color variant of the southern African lion. White lions are not albinos; they are leucistic, and vary in color from blonde to white. 

Ninja is the Reserve’s new baby black female jaguar. She currently lives with her best friend, Aladdin, the white lion. According to St. Augustine Wild Reserve founder Deborah Warwick, Ninja lives up to her name, jumping and biting every chance she gets. 

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The St. Augustine Wild Reserve has finished a gorgeous habitat for one of its cougars, Loki. The habitat is 16 feet high, with ramps and firehose hammocks. Loki loves it, and spends most of his time on the uppermost platform, overseeing his “kingdom.”

The Reserve’s next project is to build a similar cage for Loki’s father, who will be transported to the Reserve as soon as his 16 foot tall cage is finished in a week or two. After that, the plan is to build a new, enormous habitat for the little lioness, Hatari, who is only five months old. 

“Hatari is a sweetheart,” said Warwick. “She loves going for walks with her handlers, Sean and Britt.”

Staffed by a host of valuable volunteers, the St. Augustine Wild Reserve is always in need of new caging and animal supplies. Plans are to raise funds to construct an onsite veterinary clinic, and a barn for diet preparation. Additionally, the Reserve can always use the donation of supplies for its animals, including monetary donations. The Reserve’s tour operation has increased since COVID emerged, but is still not back up to full attendance. To protect staff and guests, everything is sanitized, including our guest chairs and our limo golf cart. This is an open-air compound and is always breezy. 

“We hope that more visitors will book a tour with us. Our tours are appropriate for children and adults. If you cannot visit, please help us through these slow times by sending a tax-deductible donation,” said Warwick.

The St. Augustine Wild Reserve offers tours on an appointment-only basis. Call (904) 940-0664 for reservations, or, preferably, email WildReserve@aol.com. Tours are on Monday, Wednesday and Saturday at 2 p.m. by appointment only, as well as an 11 a.m. tour on Saturday mornings and a special VIP tour on Friday from 12 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. for an additional fee. To book a tour online, log onto bookeo.com/tigertours. Donations may be sent to the St. Augustine Wild Reserve, 5190 Farm Creek Road, St. Augustine, FL 32092. To volunteer, contact wildreserve@aol.com. Visit www.staugustinewildreserve.org for more information. The Reserve is a 501©3 tax exempt organization. 

Photo courtesy Deborah Warwick
Hatari.

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