Monarto Zoo’s majestic African Lion pride has grown by three thanks to the arrival of new males Kashka, Kubwa and Kito!
Excited keepers welcomed the boys yesterday evening after they made the journey over from Melbourne Zoo.
The lively felines will now spend 30 days in quarantine before keepers begin introductions with our six female lions next year.
Monarto Zoo Carnivore Keeper Christy Tonkin said the new arrivals marked an exciting and important time for lion conservation.
“We are very happy to have welcomed these brothers to our gorgeous pride of African Lions,” Christy said.
‘They are young boys, all two and a half years old, so we are really looking forward to seeing how they go with our six girls.
“For now, the two groups will be able to see each other at a distance and we’ll begin to monitor behaviours, if all goes well we’ll look at starting introductions in the new year.”
Kashka, Kubwa and Kito’s arrival is an exciting prospect for both Monarto Zoo and the regional African Lion breeding program.
The males are quite young but once they mature, keepers look forward to watching the new pride develop and seeing the males explore their home.
“Sadly, lion populations are declining with only around 25,000 – 30,000 thought to be left in the wild,” Christy said.
“It would be incredible to hear the pitter-patter of little paws so we can contribute to the genetic diversity in the species.”
Like lion numbers, habitat for lions has declined as human population, land cultivation and numbers of livestock have steadily increased in areas lions call home.
The majestic species is often killed to protect livestock or as retaliation kills for livestock loss.
As a conservation charity existing to save species from extinction, Zoos South Australia works closely with the Zoo and Aquarium Association (ZAA) and breeding programs to ensure lions remain for generations to come.