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2/22/2010 Vol. , Issue 1 Contact Us
MAJOR ISSUES

El Paso Zoo African Lion and Meerkat exhibits will open on March 13
 

The El Paso Zoo recently welcomed its first animals for the new African exhibits as preparations are made for the grand opening of phase one of the Zoo expansion on March 13.  Four African lions and seven meerkats are currently in quarantine while keepers acquaint them to their new homes in El Paso.The lion cubs were born in November of 2007 at the Oklahoma City Zoo to moms Tia and Bridget, within a three-day time span. The Zoo’s resident king of the jungle, male lion Asian, was proud papa of both litters.  Oklahoma City Zoo fans came up with their names in a naming contest. The female cubs were given the names Malaika (meaning “Angel”), Zari (meaning “Golden”) and Kalliope (meaning “Beautiful Voice”). The male cub was named Xerxes, a Persian name meaning “Monarch.”

The meerkats came to El Paso from the Gladys Porter and Santa Barbara zoos.
  They will be living in the new El Paso Electric Kalahari Research Station. The research station will be operated like a real location in Africa where researchers and wildlife managers work on conservation projects to protect the Kalahari ecosystem. Staff and volunteers are being trained to role play as researchers and interact with Zoo visitors as if they were on a real African safari. Visitors will be able to see the meerkats from indoor viewing areas where they will be encouraged to connect with these animals by reading research notes posted on the walls. To further encourage a connection they will be able to record their observations on a clip board when the building is unattended or on a computer when the building is attended by staff member or a volunteer.
 
Later this spring when the renewable energy exhibits at the research station are completed visitors will learn how the station is powered by wind and solar energy and how they too can explore alternative energy sources at home. 
 
Phase two will open this summer with the new exhibits for giraffes, zebras and antelope and wetlands exhibit for waterfowl.
 
The Zoo encourages people to think and act both locally and globally in helping wildlife. With the arrival of the lions the El Paso Zoo is now participating in exhibiting Africa lions under the North American Lion Species Survival Program. The Species Survival Plan program began in 1981 as a cooperative population management and conservation program for selected species in zoos and aquariums in North America. Each SSP manages the breeding of a species in order to maintain a healthy and self-sustaining population that is both genetically diverse and demographically stable.

Admission
Ages 2 & under .................................. Free
Ages 3 to 12 ...................................... $6.00
Ages 13 to 59..................................... $10.00
Active Duty Military & spouse with ID.... $7.50
Ages 60 & over ................................... $7.50
Zoological Society Members ................ Free



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