Tiger Canyon John Varty

Tiger Canyon John Varty

Tiger Canyon and John Varty. Why are there tigers in South Africa? Although tigers are not native to South Africa, a large population resides there. At no point in history have tigers ever lived in Africa, although lions were once widespread across Africa, Europe, and Asia. Despite being bigger and heavier than lions, tigers never populated the continent, yet today they can be found in the wild in reserves near Philippolis in the Free State. John Varty introduced them since the late 1990th. John Varty is a controversial South African filmmaker, he established Tiger Canyons near the town of Philippolis on the Van der Kloof Lake in the Karoo of South Africa in the Freestate.

Tiger Canyon - John Varty - Film PosterAlthough the concept may seem unusual, the idea is not without purpose. In 2000, John Varty started a Bengal tiger “re-wilding” project in Tiger Canyons near Philippolis. His goal? To establish a wild population of Bengal tigers outside of Asia. Unfortunately, John Varty’s tigers are hybrid species, which are not endangered by any means, and the conservation value of his project has come under fire.

Tiger Canyon - John Varty - Tiger TourJohn Varty’s Tiger Experiment at Tiger Canyon

Within the reserve, the tigers reside on overgrazed and fenced-off land, and thus, they are “unable to negatively affect” the native South African ecosystem. But in our view, this experiment has only created an increase in other people breeding tigers and having tigers as pets.

Tiger Canyon LandscapeTiger Canyon is supposed to be an experiment to create a free-ranging, self-sustaining hybrid tiger population outside Asia. However, experts always felt, that this is a money-making venture in an attempt to earn money from the tourism industry.

White and Brown TigerCheetahs were/are as well-bred at Tiger Canyon.

John Varty Tiger Canyon CheetahJohn Varty has been accused to inbreed tigers. Most important, training the tigers to walk alongside humans is an ill-conceived plan which has failed. In March 2017, a 3-year-old boy was mauled to death by a cheetah on John Varty’s Tiger Canyon. John Varty did not take responsibility and rather blamed the parents.

Tiger Canyon, Philippolis, 9970

John Vary has started the project, but he mishandled its funds and subsequently lost his position of power.Today, the reserve is managed by Save China’s Tigers.

John Varty's Wikipedia
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Captive cheetah kills 3-year-old boy on filmmaker John Varty's farm - Africa Geographic


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