The little white lions that were born 3 months ago in the Skopje Zoo took the first steps outside the closed habitat. The Bela mother is very caring and constantly takes care of the little lions. More info: gorananastasovski.com
This is a continuation of the story posted on our website a few months ago. The title of the post is "Rare White Lion Cubs Born At Skopje Zoo Are A Surprise To Keepers." In our previous post, we shared the story of rare white lion cubs who were born on March 7 at Skopje zoo. Because the lion quintuplets are extremely rare for the endangered species, the arrival of these lions was a surprise to employees at the zoo.
Everyone couldn't hide their happiness and said that "this is one of the most beautiful things that happened in the Skopje Zoo." They have a "huge responsibility" in making sure the lions are safe and receive the best care possible. After three months, these little lions took the first steps outside the closed habitat. As you can see in these pics, their mom Bela is very caring, constantly watches, and takes care of them.
"White lions are also known as the Southeastern Lion. Some tribes in Southern Africa revered them as sacred beings because of their majestic appearance. However, they have been hunted to extinction in the wild and recently reintroduced in protected areas by the Global White Lion Protection Trust." "White lions were first discovered by Europeans in South Africa's Timbavati region in 1938, but until the 1970s, they were officially documented. There are now 13 white lions residing in their natural habitats in South Africa and 300 white lions in captivity."
White lions are part of the general classification of lions, Panthera leon. They are not albinos; they lack the tawny coloration due to a rare condition that results in reduced pigmentation. Because of their majestic appearance, they have been revered as sacred beings by tribes in southern Africa, but have also been hunted to extinction in the wild. They are now being reintroduced in protected areas by the Global White Lion Protection Trust.
White lions have a rare recessive trait that causes their white skin coloration. Unlike albino animals that lack pigmentation, white lions' rare gene produces lighter pigmentation. Whereas albinos have pink or red coloration to their eyes and noses, white lions have blue or gold eyes, black features on their noses, "eye-liner," and dark patches behind their ears. Male white lions may have white, blonde, or pale hair in their manes and on the ends of their tails. The natural habitat of a white lion includes savannas, woodlands, and desert areas. They are indigenous to the Greater Timbavati region in southern Africa and are currently protected at the Central Kruger Park in South Africa. After being hunted to extinction in the wild, white lions were reintroduced in 2004. With the ban on trophy hunting in the Timbavati region and surrounding nature preserves, the first white cubs were born in the area in 2006. Kruger Park had its first occurrence of white lion cub births in 2014.
White lions are carnivores, and they eat a variety of herbivorous animals. They hunt gazelles, zebras, buffaloes, wild hares, tortoises, and wildebeests. They have sharp teeth and claws that allow them to attack and kill their prey. They hunt by stalking their prey in packs, patiently waiting for the right time to strike. Lions typically kill their prey by strangulation and the pack consumes the carcass at the site of the kill.
Like tawny lions, white lions reach sexual maturity between ages three and four. Most white lions are bred and born in captivity, usually in zoos. Those in captivity may mate on a yearly basis, while those in the wild mate about every two years. Lion cubs are born blind and rely on their mother for the first two years of life. A lioness usually gives birth to two to four cubs in a litter.
In order for there to be a chance that some of the offspring will be white lions, the parents either need to be white lions or carry the rare white lion gene. Since the animal must bear two recessive alleles to exhibit the trait, there are three scenarios in which a white lion cub might be born. If both parents are tawny and carry the gene, there is a 25% chance the offspring will be a white cub; if one parent is a white lion and the other is tawny with the gene, there is a 50% chance the offspring will be a white cub; and if both parents are white lions, there is a 100% chance the offspring will be a white cub.