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Four Lion Cubs Added To National Zoo's Public Pride

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The four youngest members of the National Zoo lion pride were introduced to the public this week.
Abby Wood, Smithsonian’s National Zoo
The four youngest members of the National Zoo lion pride were introduced to the public this week.

Visitors can now see six lion cubs at the National Zoo.

As of this weekend, four new lion cubs will be out and about starting at 11 a.m. every morning, weather permitting. They were born to mother Shera and father Luke.

They're 14 weeks old and Craig Saffoe, the curator of lions and tigers, says they'll probably be in the exhibit for somewhere between half an hour to two hours most days.

"Especially as kids they sleep quite a bit and if they have all the energy pent up we need to let them outside so that they can burn it and boy do they burn it. They run, jump on and off of logs and rocks," Saffoe says.

The four cubs join two others from another litter who are about a month older.

"Lions are one of the only truly social cat species. It's very important to allow them to get used to each other and to each other's mothers because the mother's live together as well," Saffoe says.

Saffoe says getting used to dad is also an important part of their social development and eventually the whole pride will be out in the exhibit together.


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