Lion (African)

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Animal File

Common Name:
Lion (African)
Scientific Name:
Panthera leo
Size: 1.2m (height to shoulder)
Weight: 120 - 191 kg
Native to Africa

Conservation Status


Lions are the only cats that live in groups, which are called prides. Prides are family units that may include up to three males, a dozen or so females, and their young. All of a pride's lionesses are related, and female cubs typically stay with the group as they age. Young males eventually leave and establish their own prides by taking over a group headed by another male.

Get unbelievably close to these awesome killers with only a pane of glass between you - you can almost smell the lions’ breath! These magnificent cats live between 10 and 14 years in the wild. Adult male lions are instantly recognisable by the thick growth of hair on the neck, the mane, and the thicker and darker the mane, the more attractive the lion becomes to the females as this is a sign of good health. Lions usually hunt after dark as they have excellent night vision.

African Lions at Blackpool Zoo

Our pride is made up of two males - Wallace, and his son, Khari.

Khari was born in 2015 but unfortunately lost his mother to a stroke when he was around 6 months old. Ever since, he has lived harmoniously with his father in what we believe to be the only father-son coalition in the UK. 


Several large and well-managed protected areas in Africa host large lion populations. Where an infrastructure for wildlife tourism has been developed, cash revenue for park management and local communities is a strong incentive for lion conservation. The only real threats to lions in the wild come from human poaching and disease.

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Visitor numbers will be limited each day and everyone, including members, will need to book online to guarantee entry. Please ensure your choose the correct date as tickets are non-refundable and dates can not be changed.

Groups of more than 6 visitors will not be permitted to enter the zoo unless all 6 are from the same household.

A face mask or face covering must be worn in all indoor areas of the zoo unless you declare that you have a government listed exemption or are under the age of 11. You may be refused admission if you attempt to visit the zoo without a face covering and don’t declare an exemption.

You can find out everything we're doing to keep our visitors, staff and animals safe here.