First African Lion Cub Born at Zoo in 20 Years

An African lion cub has been born at the Lincoln Park Zoo. This is the zoo’s very first lion cub over the past 20 years. Lioness mother Zari gave birth to her baby on March 15th 2022. The mother is three years old. Furthermore, the birth took place on behalf of the species survival program (SSP).

The species survival program (SSP) is an initiative launched by AZA. AZA stands for the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. Moreover, AZA is an accrediting body for zoos. Therefore, it decides which zoo meets the relevant standard or not. Of course, the Lincoln Park Zoo works hard to meet this impressive standard.

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African Lion
(Image Source: Pixabay/lynnea)

Zoo Borns reports that the lion cub is healthy. Currently, the African lion cub is yet to be named. Furthermore, the cub’s gender is unknown. The gestation period for a lion is about 3-4 months. Zari is a talented mother. She began nursing her cub within 24 hours. Curator of Mammals Mike Murray is highly optimistic in Zari’s mother instincts. He remarks that the first-time mother is “very attentive.” Moreover, he says the lioness has been displaying the necessary instincts for motherhood. Therefore, she will nourish her offspring well.

African lion born are Lincoln Park Zoo
(Image Source: Pixabay/yanceycurtis)

Jabari is the name of the cub’s father. He is a four year old lion. Moreover, he was specifically selected by the SSP to breed with. Much like Zari, Jabari is a first-time parent as well. Likewise, lion cubs open their eyes after a few days. Then, they start walking after some time. Furthermore, the cub is a welcome addition to the Pepper Family Wildlife Center. The baby has already joined his pride and will soon reign over the jungle!

Lions are the only (big) cats that tend to be social. All the other cats prefer to live a solitary lifestyle. On the other hand, lions form groups known as ‘prides’. Male cubs are kicked out of their pride by the fathers once they mature. While this might appear mean, it is an important survival instinct for older male lions.

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