Four Lion cubs born June 8 at Oregon’s Wildlife Safari are showing off their playful side!
The cubs, three male and one female, have already more than doubled their birth weight, a sign that they are being well cared for by their one-year-old mother, Serafina.
Zoo keepers expect the cubs to emerge from their den in a few weeks, and the public will get a chance to see them in person at that time.
Once widespread across much of Africa, the Middle East, and southwestern Asia, Lions now live in fragmented populations in eastern and southern Africa. Currently listed as Vulnerable by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, Lion populations are rapidly decreasing, with losses estimated at 30-50% every 20 years in the latter half of the 20th century.
Conservation organizations are using a variety of tactics to support the world’s wild Lions, including managed zoo breeding through the Species Survival Plan, protection of livestock to reduce retaliatory killings, and working with local people to protect lions through ecotourism.