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Lizeanne Cornwall and Catherine Nyquist, PANTHERA AFRICA, South Africa

Founders Lizaenne Cornwall and Catherine Nyqvist have created a beautiful and unique Sanctuary for 26 Big Cats in South Africa:

PantheraAfrica is a non - profit founded in 2014. The name Panthera Africa is inspired by the passion Catherine and Lizeanne have for the four pantheras: panthera leo - the lion, panthera padres - the leopard, panthera once - the jaguar and Panthera tigiris - the tiger.

Panthera Africa is an environmentally friendly sanctuary for any captive bred big cats, where they will be protected and prosper for the rest of their lives.

One of Panthera Africas main purposes is to be an educational platform where we create awareness about the conditions big cats face in captivity. We are a true sanctuary where no-hands interaction, breeding or trading takes place.We are a blue-print of how a non-profit sanctuary, focusing on animal welfare, can become self-sufficient. Our aim is to become the first "green" big cat sanctuary in South Africa and run only on solar energy.

Watch my video interview with Lizeanne and Catherine here. Two truly amazing women who with a huge love for their animals and lots of courage and passion have created a unique paradise for not only their big cats, but also for the 10 local staff members and the more than 500 volunteers visiting since 2014.

I'm full of admiration for the wisdom of life, with which they run the Sanctuary. In the video, they talk about the way they communicate with the animals and as they say; We're good for the animals, but they're also good for us.

Don't forget to bring a Kleenex, because you will be laughing and crying...

South African Lizeanne explains how it all started for her:

While providing, managing and working closely with eight different species of predators in another sanctuary, I discovered that caring for big cats is my calling in life. My eagerness to educate myself led me to learn about the truth about captive breeding, exploitation of big cats and illegal wildlife trading Through my story and my amazing connection with my ambassador cats, I aim to reach the hearts of thousands so everyone can understand how incredible these animals are, and that they should be respected and protected.

Norwegain -born Catherine explains her path to founding the sanctuary:

I used to be one of those typical business ladies, with a degree in finance and marketing, climbing the ladder , enjoying the jet-set life and travelling around the world. Before starting a new dream job, I decided to volunteer in a breeding project in South Africa for two weeks and little should I know that this trip changed my life completely.

I moved to Sough Africa in 2012 and assisted Lizeanne with her tasks and in 2014 we decided to start Panthera Africa together.

The best thing we have ever done.


  • Leopards are very agile, and can run over 60 km / hour, and jump over 3 meter high!

  • There are only 3.500 tigers left in the wild and 5.000 kept in captivity in USA!

  • There are less than 20.000 lions left in the wild, yet, they're not official listed as Endangered!

  • Cheetahs have between 2.000 and 3.000 spots, which help them to camouflage themselves.

  • Caracals are known for their ability to capture birds by lifting themselves 2 m into the air from a standing start

Dear Cat and Liz,

Thank you so much for taking the time to share your incredible story with us. You're doing an amazing job with the Sanctuary and I urge everyone to go to your website for more information about your important work and not the least more knowledge of your beautiful pride.

I fully understand your love and passion for these wonderful animals and your engament flows through everybody working with you.

On behalf of the whole WFH community, I wish you all the best for your future projects and I hope that we will inspire a lot of people to support you in continuing your great work.

With love,


Please follow Panthera Africa on:



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