The Libassa Wildlife Sanctuary
The Libassa Wildlife Sanctuary is the first and only wildlife sanctuary in Liberia to rescue, rehabilitate and release different species of wild animals that are victims of the illegal bushmeat and pet trade. The sanctuary officially opened on May 7, 2017 taking in primates, antelopes, birds (of prey), reptiles, small carnivores and of course pangolins.
Liberia is home to 3 species of pangolin: the White-bellied pangolin, the Black-bellied pangolin and the Giant pangolin.
The first-ever pangolin came into the sanctuary on February 27, 2017. She was a juvenile White-bellied pangolin and weighed 360g. With no experience in how to take care of orphaned pangolins, the sanctuary reached out to the Tikki Hywood Foundation. 15 minutes after the orphaned pangolin arrived at the sanctuary, Lisa Hywood assisted and explained what was required for the rehabilitation of this special creature. This was the beginning of the partnership between Tikki Hywood Foundation and Libassa Wildlife Sanctuary.
As the sanctuary grew, and more pangolins arrived at the sanctuary, Tikki Hywood Foundation is there to help with advice, guidance and financial support. Through this support, the sanctuary has engaged additional pangolin walkers, improved the facility to meet the needs for pangolins, and has since built a dedicated “pangolin room” at the sanctuary.
Lisa Hywood visited the sanctuary in June 2017, for hands-on training on how to improve the care of the animals, and to exchange thoughts and experiences on working with different species of pangolins.
This collaboration brought pangolin conservation in Liberia to a higher level.