For Release: July 2, 2012
Photos by Jen Zoon and Devyn Murphy, Smithsonian's National Zoo
To download images, visit the Smithsonian National Zoo's Flickr page.
For nearly 2 years, the Washington, D.C. area has watched the Smithsonian's National Zoo's seven young African lions (Panthera leo) grow from playful cubs to majestic juveniles. Soon, Baruti and Aslan will start the next chapter of their lives at the Calgary Zoo, where they will eventually be paired with females for breeding. Since February, they have been on exhibit with their six-year-old father, Luke, and half-brother, John. Now, keepers have begun separating the four males into two bachelor groups. The females of the pride-eight-year-old Nababiep, six-year-old Shera, and juveniles Fahari, Zuri, Lelie and Lusaka-remain together.
Born Sept. 22, 2010 to Nababiep, Baruti and Aslan have celebrated many milestones at the Zoo, including a swim test, a naming ceremony (complete with actors from the film Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader) and their first birthday celebration. For a limited time, Zoo visitors will have the opportunity to enjoy watching Aslan and Baruti, wrestle, chase one another and swim in the moat.
To learn more about the pride's developments, read the latest keeper update on the Zoo's website: http://nationalzoo.si.edu/Animals/GreatCats/LionUpdates/default.cfm.
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