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Fla. man lives with lions to raise funds

January 4, 2011 12:00:00 AM PST
A wildlife rehab facility in Florida is running out of money. So to make sure the exotic animals are taken care of, the owner is taking drastic measures.Some call this dangerous, but Jim Jablon calls it devotion.

Jablon owns the animal refuge in Spring Hill, which cares for more than a hundred creatures.

With funds running low, Jablon came up with a wild idea to keep the Wildlife Rehabilitation of Hernando open.

For the next month, he's living inside a lion's den with two African lions.

"I don't know, I'm a nut, and I picked a month with 31 days, my daughter keeps reminding me," Jablon said.

"I didn't believe him. I didn't think he was going to follow through with it," Jablon's daughter said.

Jim Jablon says it takes between $50,000 and $75,000 a year to run the facility. He hopes the publicity that comes with his stunt will bring in donations.

He entered the lion's den on Saturday. He says he's going to sleep on hay near the lions, named "Lea" and "Ed," and eat when they eat.

He says he's also going to build a place to sleep and hide in the trees in the enclosure, in case the lions fight with each other.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.