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El Paso Zoo & Botanical Gardens Introduces New Male Lion

The El Paso Zoo & Botanical Gardens is excited to welcome Hodari, a 4-year-old male African lion. 

WHO:         El Paso Zoo and Botanical Gardens and El Paso Downtown Lions Club

WHAT:        Introduction of a new male lion, Hodari, and donation presentation by El Paso Downtown Lions Club

WHEN:       11 a.m., Thursday, January 13, 2022

WHERE:     El Paso Zoo and Botanical Gardens, 4001 E. Paisano Dr. (Lion Exhibit, Africa Section)

Hodari was born on October 25, 2017, at the Pueblo Zoo in Pueblo, Colorado. He arrived in El Paso on November 8 and has since been behind the scenes for the regular 30-day quarantine, getting to know his new exhibit and bonding with his companions and keepers. Keepers learned quickly that Hodari is a well-mannered lion who is responsive to his caretakers.

His transfer was made possible by the El Paso Downtown Lions Club who hosted a pecan fundraiser to generate $5,000, supporting his transport to El Paso and required care.

“El Paso Downtown Lions Club is delighted to help bring a new handsome male lion to the El Paso Zoo. We believe he will bring much joy to zoo visitors,” said Susan Driscoll, President of the El Paso Downtown Lions Club.

Hodari joins fellow African lionesses, Zari and Malaika as part of a breeding recommendation from the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) Species Survival Plan (SSP). The SSP’s mission is to conserve species, including the African lion.

“The introduction and integration of these powerful animals is a slow process that takes time. One of the females is happy he is here while the other is still not quite sure about him,” said Joe Montisano, Zoo Director. “Our skilled and experienced animal keepers will monitor the process and we will have the entire new lion pride on display at the Zoo as soon as they are all ready.”

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