Above is the energy generated at Big Cat Rescue via solar panels from 6/28/12 until 3/16/16.

On 3/17/16 Big Cat Rescue joined Solar Coin in an effort to enable a new world economy that is based on everyone adopting clean, renewable energy. The fastest way to encourage people to change their behavior is to reward them for doing the right thing.  Solar Coin makes that possible.

In addition to these planet friendly measures, Big Cat Rescue took it one step further on Fab. 8, 2015 when we partnered with Arcadia Power to make sure that ALL of the electricity used at our sanctuary and in our own homes and rental properties comes from wind and solar.

Big Cat Rescue – Solar projects were sponsored by:

The Body Shop Foundation, TECO, C1 Bank and the Little Foundation.

The Body Shop Foundation Supports the Cats requires log in for update.




See Big Cats LIVE 24/7 on Launches Big Cat Rescue Live Cams

Philanthropic Media Organization Expands Community with Accredited Exotic Cat Sanctuary

Santa Monica, CA and Tampa, FL — December 3, 2015 —, the philanthropic media organization and media division of the Annenberg Foundation is welcoming a herd of big cats to its roster of live cams from around the world. Together with Big Cat Rescue, one of the largest accredited sanctuaries in the world and home to 90+ lions, tigers, leopards, cougars, bobcats, servals, caracals, ocelots and other wild cats, will broadcast the daily antics of big cats that have been rescued from poor conditions.

The cams were set up to serve as an educational tool for kids and adults alike, and will provide unprecedented access into the lives of some of the earth’s most revered and endangered animals. has installed six cameras throughout the sanctuary, placed in strategic locations to give a diverse look at different breeds as they go about their lives in expansive, natural habitats. From the “Vacation Rotation” where cats get to experience a change of pace on two-week vacations, to feeding stations to the on site “cat hospital” where exams and surgeries are performed, the Big Cat Live cams will allow viewers to experience different aspects of the sanctuary and follow the cast of characters the non-profit tends to on a daily basis. Cams can be viewed at

In addition to fixed cameras, has enabled mobile capabilities so caretakers can voyage through the sanctuary and teach viewers about different behaviors and procedures that make the rescue such a special place.

Big Cat Rescue, which has saved more than 250 exotic cats who were previously kept as pets, discarded from zoos, or used as performing acts since its inception in 1992, will expand its vibrant digital community to include 24/7 coverage from various living facilities on the Tampa-based property. “If not for Big Cat Rescue, a lot of these animals would be dead or in dire conditions,” said Tom Pollak, co-founder of

“We are so thankful to for working with us to showcase the daily routine at Big Cat Rescue,” said Carole Baskin, Founder and CEO of Big Cat Rescue said. “Our fans have told us they just can’t get enough of their favorite cats, even though we produce several videos a week. The live webcams will enable our supporters to have 24/7 access to our big cats, rehabilitation bobcats and fostered domestic kittens they have come to know and love. Even more exciting is that we will be able to reach out to’s nature lovers and begin conversations on the plight of big cats and what they can do to protect them.” is the largest producer of live nature content in the world, with over 100 cams installed in remote locations around the world. The big cat live cams join a roster of content that includes anything from wild Polar Bears, Brown Bears, Belugas, Orcas, Bison, Puffins and Osprey to an abundance of wildlife in African water holes to cams focused on service dogs being raised to help veterans in need.

“When people are inspired to fall in love with the world and its creatures, they are more likely to be better stewards of the planet,” said Charlie Annenberg, founder of and VP of the Annenberg Foundation

More on the Cats and Live Cams

Big Cat Rescue works with the local Humane Society of Tampa Bay to foster domestic kittens, from birth up to two pounds. These kittens have been rescued from the county shelters, and when they reach two pounds they are spayed, neutered and placed in permanent homes by the Humane Society of Tampa Bay. The Kitten Cabana Cam will give a closer look at the adopted kittens, as they’re bottle fed and cared for at night, and brought to the Kitten Cabana during the day for socialization with other cats. This camera is sure to provide a cuteness overload.

The Vacation Rotation Cam is fixated on a 2.5 acre enclosure called the Vacation Rotation where each lion and tiger gets a two-week vacation out in the big play area (most of the big cats’ home habitats are 1200 square feet to half an acre). Look for cats by the pond, the cave, and on the platforms. Tune in regularly to see different cats taking it easy out here.

There will also be a Feeding Station Cam that is attached to the Vacation Rotation. Each lion and tiger gets a two-week vacation out in the big play area and this cam shows where they’re fed. Tune in regularly to see different cats dining.

Most of the cat are in their late teens and early 20’s. Due to their advanced ages, Big Cat Rescue does between 70-90 medical procedures a year. One of the live cameras is positioned directly above the operating table in the onsite Windsong Memorial Hospital. Never before has the public been able to observe cats like tigers, lions and leopards receiving vet care live as it happens. Fans can now sign up for text alerts, so they are notified the moment something is happening in the Windsong Memorial Hospital.

Another mission of the Big Cat Rescue is to rehabilitate native bobcats, and give them a second chance at living free after they have been shot, hit by cars, poisoned or orphaned.  They get them ready for release back to the wild, help them learn, and regain the muscle strength necessary, to hunt, climb and run. One of the cameras will trained on the bobcat rehab area of the sanctuary, offering viewers never-before-seen views of these wild cats being prepared for release back into the wild.

The celebrity of the sanctuary is Nikita, the biggest lioness you will ever see! At close to 500 pounds, she is larger than most male lions. Nikita was seized in a drug raid, sent to a zoo, and then rescued by Big Cat Rescue. Her favorite spots are up on the platform and back in the bushes to the left of this enclosure. Viewers will be able to watch as Nikita is fed, given enrichment and has her enclosure cleaned by our dedicated keepers. Find out more about Nikita here.

More About is a philanthropic media organization and a multi-media division of the Annenberg Foundation. Created by filmmaker and philanthropist Charles Annenberg Weingarten to champion the selfless acts of others, inspire lifelong learning and help people fall in love with the world again, is home to more than 300 original films and a massive library of world-class photography from all over the globe. In addition, recently launched Pearls of the Planet, a growing collection of live HD cameras that provide people with an unprecedented view into the lives of amazing animals and beautiful places around the world. As an advertising-free philanthropic media organization, prides itself on purity and regularly provides grants to organizations focused on improving the human condition and the planet.

More About Big Cat Rescue

Big Cat Rescue, one of the world’s largest accredited sanctuaries for exotic cats, is a leading advocate in ending the abuse of captive big cats and saving wild cats from extinction. The sanctuary is situated on 67 acres in the Citrus Park area of north Tampa, and home to over 90 lions, tigers, bobcats, cougars, servals and other species most of whom have been abandoned, abused, orphaned, saved from being turned into fur coats, or retired from performing acts.

Check out the live webcams at

#bigcatweek #bigcatrescue #explore #startwith1thing


More About Big Cat Rescue on

Big Cat Rescue is the leading voice in the sanctuary community for the tens of thousands of lions, tigers, leopards and other exotic cats who are languishing in backyards, basements, circus wagons and shoddy tourist traps around the world. It is working to end the trade in big cats as pets, props and for their parts by reaching out through social channels to inspire action. With more than 1.7 million Facebook fans and more than 250,000 subscribers to their channel, their videos have had more than 120 million views.

Established in 1992 Big Cat Rescue has saved more than 250 exotic cats who were previously kept as pets, discarded from zoos and performing acts, or who came from the fur farming industry.

The Tampa based sanctuary currently houses 90+ lions, tigers, leopards, cougars, bobcats, servals, caracals, ocelots and other wild cats.

In addition to providing lifetime care for captive born exotic cats, Big Cat Rescue also rescues, rehabs and releases native bobcats.  Big Cat Rescue works with the local Humane Society of Tampa Bay and to date has fostered more than 275 domestic cats and kittens.  Big Cat Rescue works with field biologists, conservationists and wild cat experts around the world to protect these rare and endangered species.

Carole Baskin, Founder and CEO of Big Cat Rescue said, “We are so thankful to for partnering with us to showcase the daily routine at Big Cat Rescue. Our fans have told us they just can’t get enough of their favorite cats, even though we produce several videos a week. The live webcams will enable our supporters to have 24/7 access to the cats and kittens they have come to know and love. Even more exciting is that we will be able to reach out to’s nature lovers and begin conversations on the plight of big cats and what they can do to protect them.”

Check out the live webcams at

Big Cat Vacation Rotation

Big Cat Rescue sends their cats on vacation! This area is a 2.5 acre enclosure called the Vacation Rotation. Each lion and tiger gets a two week vacation out in the big play area. (Most of the big cats home cages are 1200 square feet to half an acre each.) Favorite places to look for cats in here are the pond, the cave out in the distance and on the platforms. Tune in regularly because every two weeks you will see different cats.

Big Cat Feeding Station

Big Cat Rescue sends their cats on vacation! This feeding station is attached to a 2.5 acre enclosure called the Vacation Rotation. Each lion and tiger gets a two week vacation out in the big play area and this station is where they are fed. Tune in regularly because every two weeks you will see different cats.

Kitten Cabana

Big Cat Rescue fosters domestic kittens from birth up to two pounds. These kittens have been rescued from the county shelters where they were turned in to be euthanized. When the kittens reach 2 pounds they are spayed, neutered and placed in permanent homes by the Humane Society of Tampa Bay. The kittens are bottle fed and cared for by our onsite Interns at night and then brought to the Kitten Cabana during the day for socialization with other cats and our other Volunteers. If you see a kitten that you would like to adopt, please contact



More Live Webcams Coming Soon!

Explore Ad

Animal Lover’s Dream Vacation

Animal Lover’s Dream Vacation

Animal Lover's Dream Vacation

Animal Lover’s Dream Vacation Giveaway

You and a guest could win 4 Days/ 3 Nights at the Sirata Beach Resort, one of the most popular St. Pete Beach waterfront hotels, Airfare, Big Cat Rescue Keeper Tour, Dolphin Watch Cruise, and more! Print flier HERE Your Keeper Tour includes walking the 67 acre sanctuary and meeting many of the 80 (appx) exotic cats who call Big Cat Rescue home. Most were formerly bred to be coats, seized by police, abandoned or abused. You will be allowed to help our Keepers make treats to hand out and will be witness to the feeding of the great cats. Spend time with the Founder on a private tour. See more species of cats all in one place than you probably even knew existed. Many species of wild cat currently have a forever home at the sanctuary.

Random drawing on March 15th of each year determines winner. Must book your vacation within one year of winning. Vacation dates good on week days only. Some substitutions may apply in case of venues being unavailable, but will be comparable. We want this to be the experience of your life so that you will be telling everyone about your Animal Lover’s Dream Vacation!

Enter To Win

Or mail your name and email address to Big Cat Rescue 12802 Easy Street Tampa, FL 33625 813.920.4130 fax 813.885.4457 Mark your entry:  Dream Vacation. Restrictions: Limit one entry per person. Void where prohibited. Must be 18 years old to win. Airfare limited to the continental U.S., no weekends and some black out dates apply.

 See what previous winners had to say about their Animal Lovers Dream Vacation and see photos, too:

Big Cat Fences

Big Cat Fences

Building Fences to Protect Big Cats

The Corbett Foundation is a charitable, non-profit and non-governmental organization solely committed to the conservation of wildlife. They work towards a harmonious coexistence between human beings and wildlife across some of the most important wildlife habitats in India, namely Corbett Tiger Reserve, Kanha and Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserves, Kaziranga Tiger Reserve and around the Greater Rann of Kutch. Local Communities and wildlife share natural ecosystems and this often raises conflict, so the health and wellbeing of these communities are often directly linked to their willingness to participate in wildlife conservation efforts. The Corbett foundation has implemented its programs in over 400 villages in the last decade.

tiger falls in well

One specific area the Corbett foundation is working on is the Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve. Open farm wells, dug by villagers, in the buffer zone of the Reserve, are proving to be a deathtrap for wild animals, with several cases having been reported of animals, including tigers and leopards, drowning by accidentally falling into the open wells. Currently around 2500 of these open farm wells exist, many in the core zone of the Tiger Reserve. The Corbett Foundation with the support of Exodus Travels Ltd UK, has initiated a project to install chain-link fencing around such open farm wells to prevent any further accidental drowning. In the first phase of the project, 200 fences have already been built around wells closest to the core of the reserve.

In March 2016, Big Cat Rescue donated $5,000 to assist with this initiative. The cost of one fence is 7500 Indian Rupees so approximately $111, meaning from the $5000 donated, between 40-45 fences can be built.

You can read more about the other great work done by Corbett Foundation here:

Building Fences to Save Big Cats with Corbett

Part of the problem in protecting big cats in range states is that they usually don’t even know what kind of animal they are.  This is a leopard in a well, not a tiger, but our fences would prohibit this from happening.

This is a lion, not a tiger, but you get the idea:

Find out more about in situ work being done by Big Cat Rescue at:

See more pictures of tigers, leopards and lions who have fallen in wells.

Leopard FallenInWell2016b




hear big catsBongo

Male Serval
DOB 3/1/91 – 3/4/16 Read tributes to Bongo at
Arrived at Big Cat Rescue  4/4/95
Bongo came to Big Cat Rescue from an auction on 4/4/95.

He had been raised as a house pet, but his owner could no longer afford to feed and care for him.

She warned us that he doesn’t like people in dark pants or uniforms.

He has the most beautiful, big brown eyes ever to grace a Serval face.

He gets very aggressive over food, but is otherwise gentle.

He is also a favorite of one of the Senior Keepers and will turn into a chirping little kitten vying for her attention whenever she is around.

Bongo’s 25th Birthday!

It’s the grrrreatest kind at Big Cat Rescue today as it marks Bongo’s 25th Birthday.  I think this may qualify him for the Guinness Book of World Records for serval longevity.

Bongo’s Second Dental




Bongo Hears a Lion Roar






February 15, 2016 – Bongo is sedated for treatment.

January 31, 2016 – Bongo was mentioned on this interesting page.

December 19, 2012 – Bongo is mentioned on this page

April 2012 – Bongo made the monthly Advocat newsletter.

November 12, 2011 – This walkabout page highlights a photo of Bongo POUTING.  Too Cute.

October 2011 – Bongo the serval loves special treats and when he refused them one night his keepers became worried.  His behavior had also taken a sudden shift.  Big Cat Rescuers made an appointment for him to visit the vet for an exam.  Wild cats have a natural instinct to hide their injuries or illnesses so they give very few clues as to when they are not feeling well. Bongo was taken to the vet where he was examined, had xrays taken and blood drawn. Bongo looked great for a 20-year-old cat! His coat was full and sleek, his teeth were in perfect condition, his initial blood work indicated his kidney values were within range and his x-rays showed only mild arthritis.  Internal parasites were found in his fecal results for which he was prescribed medication and then he was sent home.

All of the cats at the sanctuary are treated monthly as well as quarterly with specific de-wormers to combat internal parasites, however every now and again some of the cats catch a meal of their own that is not on the Big Cat Rescue menu. We have seen heavy rains during the last few months after which the lizards and frogs thrive.  Bongo being the cat that he is must have eaten one of these slimy visitors that visited his enclosure. While Bongo was at the vet, volunteers and interns took the opportunity to do some landscaping in his enclosure.  They trimmed up the palmetto bushes, gathered up sticks and raked the leaves.  Bongo has completed his course of medication and is doing just fine now, loving his special treats and all.

September 29, 2011 – Bongo went to the vet.

April 2011 – Bongo made The Big Cat Times newspaper

Want to know more about African Servals? Go to our species info page to fins some fun serval facts.

Want to see other cats the call Big Cat Rescue home? This page lists all of the cats by name and species.

Find ways that YOU can get involved saving big cats, and small ones, too.

Do you get our free monthly newsletter so you can stay up to date on the happenings here?



Cougar Facts

Cougar Facts

Cougar – Felis concolor


Common Names: Cougar, Puma, Panther,
Mountain Lion, Catamount
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata (Vertebrata)
Class: Mammalia
Order: Carnivora
Family: Felidae
Genus: Felinae (Puma)
Species: concolor
Eastern Texas to Florida – P.c.coryi –IUCN: Endangered, CITES:Appendix I Northeastern US and southeastern Canada Cougar – P.c. couguar – IUCN: Endangered, CITES: Appendix I Central American Cougar – P.c. costaricensis – CITES: Appendix I
Misc: The cougar has the greatest natural distribution of any mammal in the Western Hemisphere except for man.

The cougar is extremely agile and has great jumping power and may leap from the ground up to a height of 18 feet into a tree. It is a good swimmer but prefers not to enter the water. Sight is its most acute sense with a good sense of hearing, but is thought to have a poorly developed sense of smell.

Size and Appearance: The cougar is the largest cat in the genus “felis”, and is comparable in size as the leopard. They vary in length from 59 – 108 inches with a tail length of 21 – 36 inches, and height from 23 – 28 inches at the shoulder. Weight can vary greatly, between 75 and 250 pounds. They have a long body with a small head, short face, and a long neck and tail. They are powerfully built, and the hind legs are larger than the front. The ears are small, short and rounded.

Habitat: The cougar thrives in montane, coniferous forests, lowland tropical forests, swamps, grassland, dry brush country, or any other area with adequate cover and prey.

Distribution: Western North America from British Columbia and south Alberta south through west Wyoming to California and west Texas. Also south Texas, Louisiana, south Alabama, Tennessee, and peninsular Florida.

Reproduction and Offspring: There is no fixed mating season, but in North America, the majority of births occur between late winter and early spring. Females tend to reproduce every other year, and give birth to litters of 1 – 6 (usually 2-3) kittens after a gestation of 90-96 days. Mothers give birth to their young in dens that are lined with moss or vegetation, usually in rock shelters, crevices, piles of rocks, thickets, caves, or some other protected place. Kittens weigh approximately 7-16 ounces at birth, and have spotted coats until they are around 6 months old. They will continue to nurse for 3 or more months, but will begin to take meat at 6 weeks. The kittens will remain with their mothers until they are 1-2 years old, and after separating, siblings will remain together for another 2-3 months. Females reach sexual maturity around 2.5 and males around 3 years. They will not begin to reproduce until they have established themselves a permanent home area. The may remain reproductive until 12 years of age for females, and 20 years for males.

In captivity, cougars have lived over 20 years, as compared to 8 – 10 in the wild.  At Big Cat Rescue one cougar lived to one month shy of 30 years.

Social System and Communication: Cougars are solitary cats and will avoid other individuals except for during mating. They communicate by the use visual and olfactory signals, and the males regularly make scrapes in the soil or snow. Their vocalizations include growls, hisses, and bird-like whistles. They purr like the domestic cats, and during estrus, the females give off loud, hair-raising screams. Hear our purrs, hisses, snarls, calls, and growl sounds HERE

Hunting and Diet: Cougars primarily feed on large mammals, preferring deer, but they will also eat Coyotes, Porcupines, Beaver, mice marmots, hares, raccoons, birds and even grasshoppers. They kill by stalking to within 30 feet of their prey before pouncing from its hiding place. It leaps onto its victim’s back and bites into the neck and holds with its sharp claws.

Principal Threats: According to 2001 statistics provided from actual sales of hunting permits, almost 2100 cougars are still being killed each year. This figure does not include all the cougars killed by hunters who do not buy licenses nor report their kills. Less than 3% of our population are hunters but they kill over 100 million animals each year for sport.

Status: CITES: Appendix I, USDI: Endangered

2003 Felid TAG recommendation: Puma (Puma concolor). A widely held species, the Felid TAG is urging the elimination of this species from collections, whenever possible, in favor of similar-sized, but rarer SSP or PMP felid species. Only acquisition of pumas needed for education or zoogeographic exhibit themes is recommended. With the exception of the Florida panther, no breeding is recommended. The present zoo population of pumas is comprised of more than 200 individuals, and the studbook keeper is striving to reduce this number to 120 or less. In cases of exhibition need, new animals should be acquired from other AZA institutions or, alternatively, cubs from sanctuary or rescue programs.


How rare is this cat ? The International Species Information Service lists 334 in zoos worldwide, with 119 being in the U.S.



Meet our cougars friends:


Cougars of BCR