Lions having a World Cup ball
Wednesday 23 June 2010
They may have beaten Slovenia but England's football team in South Africa can probably learn a thing or two from an unlikely source - the lions at ZSL London Zoo.
The Zoo’s two Asian lions Lucifer, seven, and Abi, 11, and their young cubs, Rubi and Max, have been showcasing their football skills in their new improved paddock after being given patriotic footballs.
The lion terraces have been improved so that the Zoo’s visitors can now get extra close to the family of four whilst they have their own kick-about.
The England footballs, which are used as part of the lions’ enrichment, were filled with their favourite meat treats which they had to forage for, stimulating their natural curiosity.
Senior zookeeper, Raymond Charter, said: “We often give the lions enrichment which they have to use their own natural intelligence and curiosity to investigate.
“The keepers are all avid football fans so we thought we would make patriotic footballs to show our support for the England Team - hopefully they will play better football than our lions!”
ZSL's big cats
The Big Cat enclosure is one of the Zoo’s most popular attractions and now visitors can get even closer to the Zoo’s endangered lion pride after a £100,000 face-lift.
Visitors to the Zoo this summer can expect to see the Zoo’s “mane” attraction supporting their home team in their new look terraces.