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The lioness that attacked zoo keeper Johannes Ramonetha is being assessed, but is said to be in good health by the zoo's veterinarian.
BEHAVIOURAL assessments have been done of Nyanga, the lioness that attacked a zoo keeper at the zoo’s conservation farm in Parys.

According to Letta Madlala, the Johannesburg Zoo’s brand and communications manager, a lot of progress has been made with the investigations. “However, we haven’t been informed on which dates these various investigations will be completed,” she says.

The attack occurred on 13 February. The victim, Joe Ramonetha, died on the way to the hospital. Dominic Moss, the zoo’s executive manager of conservation and research, has been temporarily appointed to look after the farm.

Moss says that since being seconded to the farm, he has attended to numerous management activities, including the husbandry and care of farm lions, including Nyanga. “She [Nyanga] is doing well and is an extremely active lion that enjoys roaming in her large bushveld camp. She likes to spend the warm summer afternoons in her night room where it’s cooler,” he says.

The zoo’s veterinarian, Brett Gardner, confirmed that Nyanga was in good health when it was examined after the accident.

According to Madlala, the accident has highlighted a number of concerns. “One of these is an understanding by the public about how zoos operate, the ethics that govern all accredited zoos and animal behaviour.”

The zoo’s website will set up a section for public discussion on animal behaviour.

She says Ramonetha’s family is still in shock and has been receiving support from the public. “We wish to thank everybody for their contributions and support during these trying times.”

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