Only about 25% of the animals rescued by Harnas can be released back into the wild. First of all, there's not that much "wild" area left in Africa. Every place belongs to someone: owned, fenced off, ranched, farmed, mined. So the first thing that's needed is a place. Then you need an animal that can survive on its own.
Since lots of animals are brought to Harnas as babies, they lack the training wild animals get from their mothers. Others are pets that have grown to large or aggressive. Some are injured or maimed in some way that makes it impossible to release.
Such is the case of four of our caracals. Two of them are blind--lacking the right nutrients as babies. These two are Romeo and Juliet. They seem to be able to see light and shadow--a bit--but they would never survive alone. They'll live out their lives here at Harnas in the best way they possibly can.
Two others, who live in the same enclosure with Romeo (the one in the picture) and Juliet, have three legs each. Their mother, apparently, was really stressed out as a new mom and actually chewed one foot off each of her babies. (Hey, I understand. That probably would have been ME if I'd had kids, so I'm not blaming her.) Anyway, they get along okay, but of course they could never hunt in the wild.
So these four live together in an enclosure, are fed every day, and they have their various ailments looked after medically. Anywhere else, these four would be put down rather than have someone pay for the expense and put the time in to take care of them. But this is one thing that I love about Marieta. She isn't just interested in the survival of the SPECIES. She believes every INDIVIDUAL has a right to live, a right to exist.
Sure, if an animal is in pain, that's different. But these four seem to take their disabilities in stride. They have a good place to live and they even get to go out on bush walks with volunteers--they do as much as makes the animal comfortable and happy. And they're loved.