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#LionsEscape: Five spotted along N4

Mpumalanga
Johannesburg – Five escaped lions from the Kruger National Park, Mpumalanga have been spotted along the N4 near the South Africa and Swaziland border, SA National Parks (SANParks) said on Tuesday.

Police and rangers were in the area to capture the roaming lions. "A resident reported seeing about five lions on the N4/Mananga Road crossing in Komatipoort. The person alerted the officials who then went out to chase the lions back into the park ... however, it is believed that they had managed to find their way back to the area and had disappeared in the sugar cane farms about four kilometres away from the KNP," said SANparks spokesperson, Rey Thakhuli.

Mpumalanga police spokesperson Colonel Leonard Hlathi said a helicopter with a veterinarian, who will dart the animals, was hovering above the area.

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File picture: Etienne Rothbart/Independent Media

Read: #LionEscape has Twitter growling and laughing

"We are about 500 metres from where the animals are ... they have been located. The task now is to capture them and take them back to the park," Hlathi said.

The five lions escaped from the KNP on Monday evening, causing panic among residents.

Thakuli said an investigation to determine how the lions got out of the fenced park were under way.

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