A forest team has been sent to Gir Forest in Gujarat for training and preparations are underway at Lion Safari to provide conducive environment for mating of two pairs of Asiatic Lions. The team will also learn ways to take care of cubs.
“Mating between Manan and Kumari, pair of Asiatic lions, has already taken place. Now, we are in the process of pairing other pairs, Kuber and Greeshma, and Gigo and Heer,” said the divisional forest officer of the Lion Safari in Etawah.
The news of pairing between Manan and Kumari has led to excitement in the state forest department, which had received a major jolt after the death of lion Vishnu and lioness Lakshmi in the safari due to a mysterious disease.
Mr K.K. Singh, director Lion Safari, said, “We have started monitoring these lions and have asked keepers and veterinarians to be extra vigilant. We are not taking any chances in protecting them from any infection. Only the keepers are permitted to go near the lioness and we are tracking her movements after the mating.”
Mr Singh said that if the pregnancy of the lioness is confirmed in the coming days, the safari would be ready to welcome the lion cubs by March next year.
The forest team sent to the Gir forests will take lessons in rearing the cubs since lionesses, at times, do not react positively to their own offspring. “We should be prepared to learn all the hand rearing skills so that they can properly nurture them and take good care of cubs,” the official said.