Watch the moment a lion caged for 13 years feels grass under his paws for the first time

Brazilian zoo frees Will the lion who had been forced to tour the country in a metal cage for a travelling circus

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The Independent US

A Brazilian zoo has released footage of a circus lion feeling grass beneath his feet for the first time in 13 years.

Rancho dos Gnomos Santuário shows the moment the lion, named Will, finally gets to experiencea taste of the wild again, after being forced to perform for years in a travelling circus.

Within seconds of his release, Will can be seen scampering around his new enclosure, relishing the opportunity to tear up the soil.

Will had been confined to a cramped cage as a circus performer. The scene was in fact filmed in 2006, but only emerged this week.

Sadly, Will passed away from old age in 2011, but had five years of feeling the grass under his paws before he died.

Marco Pompeo, the zoo's founder, said: "Here he had the opportunity to interact with other lions. He loved to lie in grass and look at the sky. He was a very happy lion."