Endangered Lions Arrive at Out of Africa Near Sedona, Arizona
Sedona, AZ: Three young African lions now call Out of Africa, a wildlife park near Sedona, Arizona, home. Ted, Kayla, and Lady are part of a breeding program to promote lion conservation.
African lion populations have drastically fallen in the last twenty years primarily due to habitat fragmentation, loss of prey, human-lion conflicts and poaching. Under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), the US Fish and Wildlife Service recently listed two subspecies of lions as endangered:
- Panthera leo leo located in India and western and central Africa numbering 523 and 900 respectively, and
- Panthera leo melanochaita located across southern and eastern Africa with numbers between 17,000 and 19,000.
The new arrivals—one male and two females of the Panthera leo melanochaita species—will provide the basis for a new pride and contribute to their kind as important genetic stock in the years ahead.
The lions were all born at Lion Habitat Ranch near Las Vegas, Nevada. They were transported via climate-controlled truck, arriving at the park Tuesday afternoon, June 26, just as the area’s first seasonal monsoon subsided. The male is 2 ½ years old and the female sisters are 3 ½ years old. The three lions will receive more African-friendly names to be introduced over time using variations of their exisiting names until they clearly recognize and respond to their new names solely.
They are adjusting to their spacious habitats. For a short while the male will be separate but viewable by the lionesses adjacent to him. When the time is right, one or both of the females will come into season. That will be the moment to introduce them so they can become a pride. Acceptance is a crucial part of the process.
About Out of Africa Wildlife Park
Since 1988 Out of Africa Wildlife Park has been dedicated to promoting the discovery and appreciation of wildlife for all ages and creating an experience steeped in fun, immersed in learning, and inspired by the living and colorful world of astonishing wildlife. Showcasing exotic animals from around the world, the 104-acre Park provides its visitors a unique and interactive way to see and experience beautiful creatures and their natural behavior up-close. The Park supports and promotes conservation awareness and action, practices exemplary animal care, provides education and learning experiences, and establishes broad community support—all through a peaceful and interactive relationship with our animal friends who touch all of our hearts.
Out of Africa Wildlife Park is located three miles west of I-17 on SR-260 at 3505 W. SR-260, Camp Verde, AZ 86322. Only 90 minutes north of Phoenix and 30 minutes south of Sedona, the Park is open year-round, seven days a week, 9:30 am to 5 pm, with the exceptions of Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day. Children two and under visit for free. Parking is also free. For more information, call 928-567-2842 (and mention Gateway To Sedona) or visit www.OutOfAfricaPark.com. Also find us on Facebook and Twitter.