The two lions that escaped from their container at a Singaporean airport over the weekend have both recovered from the effects of being shot with tranquiliser darts and are currently being monitored by vets.
The two lions, part of a pride of seven being transported out of Singapore, escaped from their containers at Changi Airport on 12th December.
There was a stand-off between the lions and a member of staff, but the animals were eventually shot with a tranquiliser gun.
The airport stated that the tranquilised lions were restrained by safety netting installed around the containers.
The shipment was reportedly being handled by Singapore Airlines, who had to call in a veterinary and carnivore expert team to deal with the situation.
Singapore Airlines (SIA) said: “While the incident is being investigated, the immediate priority is the lions’ well-being. SIA is working with Mandai Wildlife Group, which operates Singapore’s only wildlife facility that is equipped to look after large carnivores, on this.”
It is currently unclear where the big cats had flown in from and where they were going next.
The two lions are now safely at an animal quarantine facility managed by the Mandai Wildlife Group.
The Group said on Monday that the lions do not belong to them, and it remains unclear if the animals were being trafficked illegally.
Mandai Wildlife Group stated that the animals have recovered from the anaesthesia and are being closely monitored by vets.
Singapore Airlines has so far declined to comment on where the big cats were destined because of “commercial sensitivity and confidentiality reasons”, adding that the matter is still under investigation.
According to local reports, illegal wildlife trafficking, especially concerning African species, is widespread in the region.