Patience has paid off for fans at Zoo Antwerp! The Lion cub born there on August 29 made its public debut this week. The cub spent the first month of its life indoors with its mother, Maouli, but is now enjoying time in an outdoor pen where it can be seen by visitors. The youngster is getting more independent every day, but still stays close to mom.
The cub’s gender is not yet known. When the cub gets its first veterinary checkup, the sex will be determined and it will get its first set of vaccinations. Once the gender is known, the cub will be named. The name will start with N, like all of the babies born at Zoo Antwerp in 2012.
Though Lions are at the top of the food chain, they are still vulnerable to human-induced changes in their environment, especially in areas outside preserves and national parks. Wild Lion populations have shrunken by half in some areas of sub-Saharan Africa. Managed breeding in zoos is helping to ensure a strong genetic foundation for this magnificent species.
Photo Credit: Zoo Antwerp