Monarto Safari Park is thrilled to share the cub-tastic news, African Lion Makena has had a healthy cub.
The paw-fect cub was born on Saturday 12 August.
Senior Keeper of Carnivores, Rachel Hemming, says mum and cub are doing extremely well.
“As a first time mum we were monitoring Makena extremely closely for a few days via remote cameras with the vet team to make sure she was travelling alright after birth.
“We are happy to report they both are tracking along great, spending a lot of time grooming, suckling and bonding in the den.
“Makena from the very beginning has been an incredible mother. After birth, she immediately began cleaning and then grooming her cub. Quickly they figured out how to get in the right spot for the cub to suckle.
“She is a natural! Perhaps watching her half-sister Husani care for little cubs has helped this learning process.”
Of course the next question is when the public can see the new addition to the pride!
“Lion cubs begin walking at about 3 weeks and begin to follow mum at 5 weeks, so we usually start to see cubs emerge from the den around 3 to 4 weeks old.
“It isn’t until about 12 weeks old that this little one will be mobile enough to keep up with the rest of the pride, and it will be some time after this that the cub will begin to venture out onto exhibit,” finished Rachel.
It is a doubly exciting time at Monarto Safari Park with African Lion Husani also due to give birth within the next fortnight.
Husani is a seasoned mum and this will be her third litter of cubs.
African Lions are listed as vulnerable to extinction by the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, making Makena’s cub all the more special.
In the wild, African Lions have been impacted by habitat loss, human-wildlife conflict and the illegal wildlife trade.
Zoos SA supports these big cats in partnership with the Zambian Carnivore Program, which does amazing work in conservation research, habitat restoration and education.
As a conservation charity, each time you visit your favourite animal at Monarto Safari Park, purchase a membership or gift from the Zoo Shop, you are helping to save these incredible animals for future generations.