Big Cats

Exhibit banner for big cats at ZSL London Zoo

Get closer than ever before to our family of Asian lions and serval.

Zoo visitors can discover more about these amazing fearsome predators whilst learning about the conservation work ZSL is doing to save the big cats before it's too late.

Lucifer the lion at ZSL London Zoo.

A serval at ZSL London Zoo

Melati, a Sumatran Tiger, at ZSL London Zoo.

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Lion facts

  • The Asian lion was the lion of the bible and Roman arenas
  • It used to range from Greece, across the Middle East to India, but persecution has virtually wiped it out
  • Fewer than 300 Asian lions remain in the wild and captive breeding is key to their survival

Lucifer the lion with a lioness at ZSL London Zoo.

Lucifer - what's in a name?

Lucifer the lion at ZSL London Zoo.

Lucifer got his fiendish name because he bears international zoo identity number 666!

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Sumatran tigers originate from Sumatra in Indonesia and are critically endangered in the wild with an estimated 300 wild tigers remaining.

Tigers, like domestic cats, love to sleep and it’s not uncommon for ZSL London Zoo's tigers to sleep up to 18 hours a day.

Jae Jae the Sumatran Tiger eating at ZSL London Zoo

Jae Jae

Melati, a Sumatran Tiger, at ZSL London Zoo.

Melati

Animal facts

A serval at ZSL London Zoo

Servals are medium sized cats which resemble cheetahs. The Serval has yellow fur with dark spots which camouflages it for hunting.

They have long legs, large ears and a small head. Servals have very keen eyesight and acute hearing, in fact, their hearing is so good, that they can hear animals moving under the ground.

The Serval usually hunts at dusk and leaps to strike the prey with its forepaws.

Servals are extinct in South Africa and very rare north of the Sahara, owing to the trade in their fur. It takes 13 adult Servals to make 1 fur coat.

Where they live

West and East Africa

Habitat

Savannah and Wetlands

What they eat

Servals prey on rodents, hares, small antelopes and birds

IUCN status

North African Serval: Endangered
All other Servals: Least concern

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