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Calgary introduces its newest African Lions

Staff writers
January 4, 2013 — African lions Aslan and Baruti were introduced to the public Thursday after arriving to Calgary Zoo last summer.

Aslan and Baruti arrived in Calgary last July
Aslan and Baruti arrived in Calgary last July

Born at the Smithsonian National Zoo in Washington, D.C., the two young males arrived in Calgary in late July 2012.

Now, the lions are slowly being introduced to the public after completing the required quarantine period.

“We are excited for visitors to have an opportunity to finally meet our new additions to the African Savannah. These two boys have very high genetic value in the captive population,” said area curator, Jamie Dorgan in a press release. “They are of the lion subspecies krugeri (Panthera leo krugeri) and since their parents are directly from South Africa they are considered founders in the Species Survival Program and North American population.” 

Aslan and Baruti have joined two other female lions, Tisha and Mbira. 

Officials say there are no breeding plans at this time, but it is likely the Species Survival Plan will recommend transferring several appropriate breeding-age females, which will be paired with Aslan and Baruti in the future. 

With files from the Calgary Zoo

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