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The Buffalo Zoo’s two African lion cubs – born to Lusaka and Tiberius on March 7 – finally have names. Members of the Buffalo Zoo community selected Khari for the boy and Zahra for the girl via an online poll. Both cubs and mother Lusaka were set to make their public debut Thursday.
After revealing their genders to be a boy and a girl, the animal care staff selected six names for community vote. Khari, which means "king-like" in Swahili, received 957 votes. Zahra, which means "flower" in Swahili, received 696 votes.
Each vote was $1, and people could cast as many votes as they liked. Proceeds generated will benefit the Buffalo Zoo and the Association of Zoos & Aquariums Lion SAFE (Saving Animals From Extinction) program to aid in African lion conservation efforts.
"We can't thank the community enough for helping name our two new lion cubs," Buffalo Zoo President and CEO Norah Fletchall said. "While I know our community will fall in love with Khari and Zahra, the money raised from this community poll will have a direct impact on lion conservation efforts in the wild."
Buffalo Zoo guests can visit Lusaka and the cubs daily from 10 am to 1 pm. Guests should know that visibility is not guaranteed as mom and cubs continue to become familiar with their outdoor habitat.
For more details and additional information on Buffalo Zoo operating hours, to purchase tickets, donate or enroll in an education program, visit www.buffalozoo.org.