Horror moment elderly Brit zookeeper is dragged away and savaged by huge lion

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This is the petrifying footage that shows a Brit zookeeper being heaved away by a lion before he was mauled by the predator.

It shows the worker as he is dragged away from horrified onlookers towards bushes in the distance.

Screams can be heard from witnesses and one girl cries out whilst someone else desperately shouts for a rifle.

But brave Mike Hodge, who was 68-years-old at the time of the attack, miraculously survived the beast’s grim assault after he was airlifted to hospital from the Makarele Predator Centre in South Africa, which he runs with his family.

The 10-year-old lion, Shamba, was shot dead by rangers after refusing to move from warning shots.

Mike, who suffered severe bite and claw wounds to his neck and back and had a broken jaw, admitted he was “devastated” the big cat was killed.

A pal told The Sun he had gone into the cage to investigate an odd smell that had been upsetting the lion.

She said: "It had put the lion on edge but when Mike went in the lion turned and came for him and he ran but couldn't get through the gate quick enough and it had him.

“He is no fool around lions and knows how to interact with them but clearly something went wrong.”

The distressing clip of the incident, which took place in 2018, has resurfaced on Reddit this week with people fascinated the lucky Brit survived.

After the brutal attack, Mike was nursed back to health by step-daughter Emma, 32, and his wife Chrissy.

The family ran the lion reserve together at Thabazimbi to breed and keep lions in safe surroundings, after building it up from a sanctuary.

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It was originally founded in 2003 and expanded seven years later into a tourist attraction.

Visitors were able to see around 12 big cats at the premises, including cheetahs and Bengal tigers.

But since the attack, it has been permanently closed.

  • Lions

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