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© RomKri \ Zoo \ Asiatic Lion
The lion is the symbol of the modern city of Jerusalem, and until the 12th century, lions lived in the hills surrounding the city. The local inhabitants were both awed and intimidated by the power of this most spectacular of animals. In fact, the Bible uses seven different names to refer to the lion.

Lions have gradually disappeared from many regions of the world as a result of habitat destruction and reckless hunting, as well as exploitation for the purpose of public amusement; in the days of the Roman Empire for instance, lions would be imported to entertain the masses by doing battle with either human gladiators or other animals. Eventually they became extinct throughout much of their former ranges. But unlike many of the populations of African lions that continue to thrive today, the formerly vast population of the Asiatic lion (Panthera leo persica) has now been confined to the Gir Forest of northwest India, where only a few wild remnants still persist. The Asiatic lion is exceptionally rare, and is in extreme danger of extinction. Our Asiatic lions are part of the breeding project of the European Endangered Species Program (EEP).

http://www.jerusalemzoo.org.il/english/upload/tour/lion.html
Photographer: © RomKri Date: 26.10.2005 Photo number: 2644 Views: 105k
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