First photos of Zoo Miami's newest lion cubs - Local news, weather, sports Savannah | WSAV On Your Side

First photos of Zoo Miami's newest lion cubs

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MIAMI, FL (WFLA) -

Zoo Miami’s latest litter of lion cubs has been in seclusion with their mother since their birth on March 6th.

The majority of visual opportunities with these cubs have been through a closed circuit camera that allows the staff to observe the mother and cubs without disturbing them.

Just recently, zoo staff was able to temporarily separate the mother from her cubs to enable a closer examination. Senior Carnivore Keeper Ivy Brower was able to capture some wonderful images of the newest cubs which are now just over 5-weeks old.

The mother of the cubs is 4-year-old Kashifa who was born at the Bronx Zoo. This is Kashifa’s second litter.

Of the two males and one female that were born in her first litter in September of 2013, only the female, named “Zuri,” survived.

Following the death of the first two cubs and the subsequent rejection of Zuri by her mother, Zuri was pulled to be hand raised. After careful consideration, it was decided that she be sent to the Baltimore Zoo in Maryland to be introduced to a litter of other lion cubs close to her age so that she could be properly socialized. To date, that introduction has gone well and Zuri is thriving.

Unlike Kashifa’s fist litter, there have been no problems with this litter and all four cubs, 3 males and one female, appear to be in excellent health. Kashifa is now being an excellent mother and the hope is to introduce the mother and cubs to the public in the coming weeks.

Kashifa and her cubs may also be playing an additional role, that of adoptive family for K’wasi, the single male cub of “Asha,” the lioness that tragically died at Zoo Miami last month. Asha was Kashifa’s sister and initial indications are that Kashifa may accept K’wasi and let him join her litter. This would be the best outcome to a tragic situation but it must be stressed that there are still many steps to be taken before such an introduction could be attempted and be considered successful. You will certainly be kept updated regarding any progress in this matter.

Copyright 2014 WFLA. All rights reserved.

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