A Florida man named Jim Jablon has pledged to live with two young lions in an enclosure for all of January as an attempt to raise money for his cash-strapped animal rescue center, Wildlife Rehabilitation of Hernando.
According to the info ticker on the streaming video of the lions in their pen, the larger lion is a two-year old female named Lea and the male is one year old named Ed. Lea was used as a cub for taking photographs, but was abandoned. (You can watch the streaming video here.)
On Tuesday morning, Jablon was onscreen saying there is no danger, and no viewers would see any aggression from the lions. He also explained his center has a Siberian tiger, many primates and other animals. The lions are not so active, because they sleep about 20 hours a day. If the lions get rough when they are playing, Jablon can retreat to a platform he built up in the trees inside their pen.
Jablon has said he isn’t using any of the $200,000 he hopes to raise online for himself. “We are just trying to help the animals. We are not driving Cadillacs, we are not wearing Nike. I shop at Walmart. Everything goes to these animals. Whatever the last dollar is, it goes to these animals.” (Source: RedOrbit.com) His annual operating expenses reportedly are about $50,000 to $75,000.
Jablon has already been in the lion pen for a few days, including sleeping nights there. He still has over three weeks to go. As to why he chose to do this, Jablon said, “I don’t know. I’m a nut…and I pick a month with 31 days–my daughter keeps reminding me.” (Source: 13wham.com)
Image Credit: Schuyler Shepherd