Gir sanctuary in India’s Gujarat state, home to Asiatic lions, has welcomed 11 cubs in the first piece of great news after floods ravaged the area last month (as many as 13 lions perished in the floods).
Three lionesses gave birth to three cubs each, while a fourth delivered two. The cubs may take another fortnight to open their eyes!
“Four Asiatic lionesses have given birth to 11 cubs in Gir National Park in Saurashtra region of Gujarat, officials said today.
“Deputy Conservator of Forest, Gir National Park, Sandeep Kumar told PTI that that four lionesses have given birth to 11 cubs in the park.
“Three lionesses gave birth to three cubs each while the fourth one gave birth to two, he added.
“It will take another 15 days for the cubs to open their eyes,” the officer said.
“A lioness can feed only three to four cubs at a time. The fact that 4 lioness gave birth to 11 cubs illustrates that Asiatic lions are genetically strong and competent.
The forest department continues to play a leading role in biodiversity conservation through dedicated management and support to nature with skill care,” Kumar said.
“Gir National Park is the last abode of Asiatic Lions in Asia. Ten Asiatic lions had died in recent floods.
“According to latest census report released in May, the number of Asiatic lions in the sanctuary and its surrounding areas had gone up to 523, an increase of 27 per cent since 2010.”