Bronx, NY – May 1, 2014 – The lion cubs are out and about at the Bronx Zoo!
They debuted last fall and were announced by Bronx Zoo Director Jim Breheny via Twitter (@jimbreheny).
Born on Aug. 16, the litter is comprised of three males, Thulani, Ime, and Bahati, and one female, Amara. Their mother is Sukari (9 years old) and father is M’wasi (11 years old). This is Sukari and M’wasi’s third litter.
Lions live in grasslands and open woodlands across much of sub-Saharan Africa, and the Bronx Zoo’s African Plains exhibit is a representation of the East African savannah. One of the most popular exhibits at the zoo, the African Plains opened in 1941 to record crowds and was the first zoo exhibit in North America to showcase African wildlife in a predator/prey setting, with the lions separated from their prey by a moat.
The Bronx Zoo breeds lions as part of the Species Survival Plan, a cooperative propagation program designed to enhance the genetic viability of animal populations in zoos accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.
In nature, lion populations are drastically declining and African lions are designated as Threatened by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
Info via Wildlife Conservation Society.