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Photos courtesy of the Buffalo Zoo
Photos courtesy of the Buffalo Zoo

Buffalo Zoo: Lion cubs make debut


Fri, Aug 18th 2023 09:15 am

The Buffalo Zoo on Thursday announced the four lion cubs born June 2-3 are ready to make their public debut.

A press release stated, “These additions highlight our commitment to education, conservation, and the awe-inspiring world of wildlife.”

Since their birth, the cubs have spent their time behind-the-scenes growing and bonding with mom. After a series of veterinary checks, they are now ready to explore their habitat.

“The past several weeks have been quite exciting watching these cubs grow,” said Lisa Smith, zoo president and CEO. “They have hit all their important milestones and are really starting to develop their own unique personalities. We hope these cubs ignite a sense of wonder and appreciation for the natural world. These cubs offer a unique opportunity for visitors of all ages to learn about the fascinating behaviors, social structures and survival strategies of these incredible animals.”

Photos courtesy of the Buffalo Zoo


The cubs, two males and two females, were born to Lusaka (mother) and Tiberius (father), who were paired following a breeding recommendation from the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) Species Survival Plan for African Lions. This plan is designed to help maintain a healthy, genetically diverse assurance population of this species. This is the pair's third litter.

Buffalo Zoo guests can visit Lusaka and the cubs daily from 10 a.m. to noon. Guests should know that visibility is not guaranteed, as mom and cubs continue to become familiar with their outdoor habitat.

The press release added, “African lions have a long history of being an iconic species at the Buffalo Zoo, and welcoming these cubs into our exhibit underscores our ongoing commitment to wildlife conservation. Through collaborative partnerships with conservation organizations such as the AZA Lion SAFE program and informative displays, we strive to raise awareness about the challenges facing lions in the wild, and encourage action to protect their habitats and future generations. The zoo contributes to research, anti-poaching initiatives, and community engagement programs. By raising awareness and connecting the Buffalo community to African lions, the Buffalo Zoo plays a vital role in safeguarding lions and their natural habitats for future generations.

“The International Union for Conservation of Nature ‘Red List of Threatened Species’ lists the African lion as a vulnerable species, with a total population that is likely less than 40,000. IUCN estimates that there are only 23,000 to 39,000 mature individuals. African lion populations are declining largely due to habitat loss, issues that threaten human-wildlife coexistence, poaching, and wildlife trafficking (illegal wildlife trade).”

The Buffalo Zoo is open daily from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. Grounds remain open for one hour after admission gates close. For more information about the lion cubs viewing schedule, visit www.buffalozoo.org.  

More About the Buffalo Zoo

Founded in 1875, the Buffalo Zoo is the third-oldest zoo in the U.S. Each year, the venue welcomes nearly 500,000 visitors to 23.5 acres of Frederick Law Olmsted’s Delaware Park to observe a diverse collection of wild and exotic animals, and more than 320 different species of plants.

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