Also know as the Indian Lion, the entire wild population of the Asian Lion can be found in the Gir National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary in Western Gujarat, India. Although, the lion was on the brink of extinction some 40 years ago, with wild population estimates at less than 200 individuals, the Asian Lion remains on the endangered list. There are only estimated to be between 300 and 400 individuals in India. The birth of this Asian Lion cub is very significant for Dublin Zoo and the international breeding programme for this critically endangered species.
According to the animal care team at Dublin Zoo, the lion cub is bonding well with his parents, first time mum Zuri and experienced dad Kumar.
Team leader Ciaran McMahon said, “We're thrilled about the arrival of the cub. He has a wonderfully playful and curious personality. It's lovely to see Zuri taking to her role as a new mum so well, and Kumar is as cool and calm as ever. At two months old, he now weighs an estimated 6.6kg (14.5 lbs).”
McMahon also said, “In the past, Dublin Zoo was very successful breeding African Lions. It is now of great conservation importance for zoos to maintain a viable population of critically endangered Asian Lions.”
See more photos below the fold.