Lioness killed by other lion in front of New Year's Day visitors at Longleat Safari Park

Stock image of a lioness at Longleat Safari Park Credit: PA/Wires

A lioness has been killed by another lion at Longleat Safari Park in Wiltshire on New Year's Day.

The park confirmed despite their best efforts, keepers were unable to save the lioness from its injuries, in what they described as 'a rare but natural incident.'

Guests who were at the park in the early afternoon of 1 January, reported being diverted away from the lion enclosure due to an unknown major incident.

One guest posted on social media that they were held up in the enclosure and could see a lioness not moving on the floor, injured.

A spokesperson for Longleat has confirmed that the lioness was attacked by another of the animals in her enclosure.

They said: "This weekend (1st January 2023) saw one of the lionesses at Longleat sadly killed by another lion.

"This kind of incident is very rare but can naturally occur amongst apex predators.

"It happened incredibly quickly, with the lioness dying almost instantly. Our professional keepers were immediately on the scene, however the timescales involved meant there was no possibility of intervention.

"There was no risk to guests."