Rollings Hills Zoo is mourning the loss of one of its animal family.
According to the zoo, 9-year-old male African lion Safar died during the night.
On Thursday the animal care staff noticed a difference in Sahar’s behavior and a physical exam was conducted to see what might be the cause. Nothing abnormal was found and he seemed to be a little better after the exam.
This is all that is known at this point. Sahar has been transported to K-State for necropsy to determine the cause of death.
Sahar was born on January 27, 2010 at the Bronx Zoo/Wildlife Conservation Society and moved to Lincoln Park Zoo in February 2012. Arriving at 2 years of age, Sahar had become an icon at Lincoln Park Zoo along with his fellow pride members, Kamali and Zalika, 5-year-old female litter mates.
On the recommendation of the African Lion Species Survival Plan (SSP), a collaborative effort among Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA) – of which RHZ is an accredited institution, Sahar arrived the morning of June 5th from Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago with his pride, Kamali and Zalika.
Their move to a new home was needed in preparation for Lincoln Park Zoo’s renovation of their landmark lion house.
During his residency at Rolling Hills Zoo, Sahar could be seen out in the lion exhibit watching over the pride as well as visitors from a high spot on the rocks, lounging under the shade structure or napping in the yard. Typically, Zalika – his favorite, would be by his side wherever he was in the yard and Kamali would be nearby.