African Lions

Zoo Knoxville is home to three African lions; male Upeppo and females Zarina and Amara.  Zoo Knoxville works in collaboration with other zoos across the country accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) as part of the African Lion Species Survival Plan (SSP) to ensure a healthy genetic population of lions in the Western Hemisphere.

Did You Know?

Lifespan in the Wild
10-14 Years
Conservation Status
Vulnerable Declining Population
265-420 Pounds


Sub-Saharan Africa

Lions have a broad habitat tolerance, absent only from tropical rainforest and the interior of the Sahara desert. Although Lions drink regularly when water is available, they are capable of obtaining their moisture requirements from prey and even plants (such as the tsama melon in the Kalahari desert), and therefore can survive in very arid environments.

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