African Lion

Back to Exhibit List

At the Zoo: We have two lions here at Southwick’s Zoo named L.J. and Levanna. They were born here at the zoo in October of 2012, however their mother did not care for them. As a result, they had to be raised and cared for by the zoo’s staff. L.J. and Levanna quickly became favorites with both zoo staff and zoo visitors, and they can be found in the lion habitat across from our Bengal tigers.

Scientific Name
Panthera leo


Wild: 15 years
Captivity: 20 years

Females: 4.7-5.9 ft
Males: 5.7-8.2 ft

Average Weight
Females: 264-400
Males: 330-550 lbs

Group Name

Group Size

Name of Young

We Eat:
We Live:
We Are:Endangered
Lions were listed as endangered in 2013 due to habitat loss, hunting, and disease.

Did you know?

  • African lions are a species of African big cat. They are the second largest big cat, after tigers. The Swahili word for lion is “simba”. Simba also means “king”, “strong”, and “aggressive”.
  • Lions live in groups called prides and the majority of members are related females and their young with only a few adult males. When a male becomes an adult, he will leave to form his own pride.
  • Male lions are easily distinguished from females. Males hare larger and have bushy manes. As cubs, lions have spots called rosettes that mostly fade once they reach adulthood.
  • Not all lions live in prides. Some are nomadic and live either alone or in pairs. Nomads may join a pride, and a lion in a pride may become nomadic.

Back to Exhibit List