Lions are one of the deadliest predators in the world. They’re known to be strong and majestic. But this particular male lion was a surprise. He acted as a caring father when he met his cubs for the first time.
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Their first encounter was heartwarming as the three six-month-old cubs Kamali, Zalika, and Angalia, full of curiosity, slowly made their way towards their dad hoping he wanted to play. At first, 500-pound Zawadi Mungu looked indifferent, but he quickly got used to his younglings playing around him with their mother, Neka, watching nearby in the Predators of the Serengeti habitat in Oregon Zoo, USA.
Embracing his new role, Zawadi played with his triplets while letting them know who was the boss – giving them a mild roar or a light pat with his paw to calm them down if they overstepped the mark.
Laura Weiner, the zoo’s senior keeper for the Africa section said: “We were confident that Zawadi would be tolerant of his cubs right away, and we’re glad we were right because the cubs rushed him as soon as they saw him. At first, he was surprised but as time passed he grew more patient.”
“Within minutes, he had female lions swarming him. I think all the attention must have been overwhelming because he quickly jumped onto a boulder to escape for a bit.”