Mount Vernon’s D.E.W. Animal Kingdom & Sanctuary will be the subject of a new series set to premiere on Animal Planet next month.

“Yankee Jungle” was filmed earlier this year and tracks animal sanctuary owners Bob and Julie Miner as they get ready to open for the season, said executive producer Jed Rauscher, of Lone Wolf Media.

“It’s a look at a day in the life of Bob and Julie,” he said. “It’s our hope that people fall in love with Bob and Julie, and if it does well enough, we’ll be back this spring.”

In addition to the owners, the show features a few other people, including Karmo Sanders aka the Marden’s Lady, who is Julie’s friend, and Steve Jordan, who is Bob’s friend. Rauscher described the show as a “docu-series” because it’s closer to a documentary than a reality show. He said the animals at the sanctuary provided an unpredictable element, leading to high drama and comedic moments.

D.E.W., a non-profit business that provides a home to domestic, exotic and wild animals, made headlines earlier this year when tiger triplets were born in June. The cubs, born to a white Bengal mother and a part-Siberian father, went to out-of-state homes in July after dozens of people streamed through the sanctuary to visit them.

Miner, a disabled Vietnam veteran who owns the sanctuary with his wife, started it in 1980 as therapy. The 42-acre sanctuary on Pond Road is home to more than 200 animals, including exotic animals such as lemurs and panthers, along with species native to Maine and barnyard animals.

The sanctuary is closed for the season, and no one there returned a call seeking comment on Wednesday.

Lone Wolf, an independent television production company founded in 1997, sold three episodes of the show to Animal Planet. If it does well, they’ll be back to film more episodes next year. The first episode will air at 9 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 6.

“The work we do takes us all over the world,” Rauscher said. “We’re really excited to be doing a series right here in Maine.”


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