Rescued ‘Mini-Hyena’ Thanks Foster Mom Just Before Running Off Into the Wild

Here’s a heartwarming video about wild animal rescue that goes well and also shows the power of a “thank you,” even if it’s coming from another species.

Maple is a South African aardwolf cub that was rescued by Lauren, who goes by Johannesburg Wildlife Vet on Facebook and other social media platforms. An aardwolf is a species of hyena native to eastern and southern Africa. It’s also called a maanhaar-jackal and termite-eating hyena because of its insect diet.

Maple was found on a farm with no mom in sight, so Lauren fostered her in order to prepare her for a release in the wild.

Lauren’s progression with Maple is fascinating. She first feeds her with a bottle and gradually gets her used to the food, sight and sounds that Maple will see in the wild. She eventually moves her to an open pen, inviting Maple to leave whenever she’s ready.

In the end, Maple does leave but before going, she gives a look back–which Lauren interpreted as a “thank you”–to her adopted mama.

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