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African lion

Panthera Leo

PZ African Lions 03 23 LR 27
IUCN Conservation Status –
Least Concern
Extinct In The Wild
Class: Mammals
Order: Carnivora
Family: Felidae

We are home to African lions Boss, Semira and Amahle! The sibling group were born back in August 2012 at Longleat Safari Park, before moving to Newquay Zoo. The trio moved to Paignton Zoo in March 2023.

African lions are native to the sub-Saharan region of Africa, living in grasslands, scrub and open woodlands. During the day, lions are not very active at all – they can sleep for up to 20 hours per day and usually hunt for their food at night.

They are top predators with a carnivorous diet, preying on antelope, buffalo, zebra, rhinos and hippos to name a few!

Interesting facts!

  • Male and female lions have very different roles in the pride. Female lions are the primary hunters of the group as they are more agile and will work as a team bring their prey down, while male lions will guard their territory and protect the pride.
  • On average male African lions can weight up to 30 stone and lionesses up to 20 stone!
  • Lions have a very powerful roar which can be heard up to 8km (5 miles) away.


African lions are classified as Vulnerable, with the key threat they face being illegal poaching for trophy hunting, traditional medicine and by communities protecting their livestock. They are also threatened by habitat loss and prey base depletion (reduction in the population of their prey species which affects the lions’ food source).

Sponsor an African lion

By sponsoring a lion at the zoo, your money will go towards the care of our big cats and vital wildlife conservation projects across the world.

Our sponsorship packs make an amazing gift for animal lovers of any age. Prices start from as little as £35 per year (that’s less than £3 a month!) with three different packs to choose from.