Four Lion Cubs Born at the National Zoo

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A litter of four lion cubs arrived over the weekend at the National Zoo. Shera, a 9-year-old African lion, gave birth over seven hours as staff from the zoo watched over a closed-circuit webcam. The zoo reports the cubs are all healthy and nursing, moving and vocalizing well.

Four Cute Lion Cubs Born in Washington National Zoo

The four cubs join two more born in January to Shera's sister Naba (you can see her cubs via the zoo's Lion Cam.)

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"Shera successfully raised her previous litter of four in 2010, so we're cautiously optimistic that these cubs will thrive," said Kristen Clark, an animal keeper at the Great Cats exhibit. "Like any new mom, she needs some peace and quiet to bond with her cubs, so we're giving her the solitude she needs. From what we've observed on the cam, her behaviors are right on point, and there's no need for us to intervene."

The cubs will be introduced to the 8-year-old father, Luke, and the rest of the pride after about six weeks, following a similar timetable to lions in the wild. The new cubs will won't be on exhibit until this summer, giving the animals keepers and veterinary staff time to examine them.

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Look out. That's a wild animal, and it will bite. When it does, you better hope it don't escalate it.

And he will.


March 05 2014 at 8:53 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Cute! Love the fact they are vocalizing. How adorable and much like their not so wild domestic cousins.

March 05 2014 at 6:16 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Thank goodness they weren't born at the Copenhagen Zoo...sorry for the rant, but I'm still angry about what they did to poor baby Marius.

These cubs are gorgeous. Photos never do wildlife justice. I hope they have good, long lives.

March 05 2014 at 3:44 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

As long as they're thriving and happy, I'm all for being kept in a zoo. God knows we need to repopulate these magnificent creations.

March 05 2014 at 3:43 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Perfect examples of the aw-w-w-w factor! I know zoos are controversial subjects but, IMO, a well-kept zoo in which the animals live in an environment that has been made as close as humanly possible to their environment in the wild is necessary to preserve wild animals that are in danger of becoming extinct. Too many have already become extinct in our lifetime and many more are on the verge of disappearing forever. We decimate their habitat and their food supply with our expansion of human habitat and factories and parking lots and malls... we clear their habitat in order to grow our food and we spread chemicals and build fences to keep them out because G-d forbid they adapt and learn to subsist on, say, soybeans instead of praire grass... hunters kill them for trophies to hang on their walls... poachers continue to kill endangered species for their hides or their horns or their livers and game preserves mean nothing to them except that they make it easier to kill more of them in a shorter length of time... Yes, we need well-kept zoos or future generations will know what these animals looked like only through old drawings, photos, and videos.

March 05 2014 at 1:55 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Absolutely precious! May the lion population keep flourishing with our help! It makes me sick to think about poachers etc. I am not a fan of the human race for so many reasons!!!

March 05 2014 at 12:18 PM Report abuse +5 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to's comment

I could not agree with you more.

March 05 2014 at 2:44 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
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