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You smell like a Giraffe but look like a Lion

Monday, March 01, 2010 10:21am
yizi and amani 001.jpg yizi and amani 002.jpg

Hi everyone

In addition to the food that we feed our animals on the Big Cat round, we like to stimulate them with enrichment - these may be food, sense or physical based. The animals all react differently to enrichment, they can have positive, negative or neutral reactions.

Out of all the cats the two female African Lions, Amani and Yizi, have the best interactions with enrichment.

Recently, the girls have been given giraffe faeces (from our two lovely female giraffes, Dharba and Kimya) for enrichment. Now poo may sound disgusting to you and me but to the girls it is a sensory delight. African Lions in the wild, when roaming the savannah, come across other animals faeces all the time and they may even use it to their advantage. Just like our two girls, they roll in it (face and all!) to mask their own scent, so when they are hunting their prey would smell a Giraffe coming, not a Lion.

So not only do our girls get to be enriched but our visitors get to watch some “wild” instinct and sibling rivalry.

Amani and Yizi are sisters and do most things together but they never share enrichment. Even though there will be two piles of giraffe faeces in their enclosure they will always compete over the first one they find. They butt heads, growl and try and push each other out of the way but in the end one of them smells the other pile and all is quiet again, until they are given blood icles the next day.

Bye for now,




I've noticed that at lion feeding times for the public that the females are now fed before the male. Can you let me know why this is happening?
Posted By: Maureen Fenner on Tuesday, March 16, 2010 6:00pm
When Mujambi, our male Lion, was first brought here keepers were trying to establish his dominance with the females by feeding him first, getting them ready for introductions. As you may know Mujambi suffers from seizures and is permanently seperated from the females so we have no need to establish his dominance anymore. Sometimes he does get fed first, it all depends on which lions are in the main exhibit on the day. Thank you for your question. Arliah
Posted By: Arliah on Monday, March 29, 2010 4:33pm
How old are the zoos three lions??
Posted By: Lou on Saturday, April 24, 2010 4:51pm
The girls Amani and Yizi are 8 years old. Mujambi the male Lion is 5 years old.
Posted By: Arliah on Thursday, May 06, 2010 1:43pm

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