Abilene Zoo hopes to expand their lion pride


ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – The Abilene Zoo wants to expand their lion pride. 

“We do currently have a set of lions,” said Zoo Director Jesse Pottebaum.

The current lions at the Abilene Zoo are on loan from the Fort Worth Zoo while they redo their exhibit. 

“Our goal is to obviously bring back lions to the Abilene Zoo the minute that these guys leave,” said Pottebaum. 

Pottebaum says they are hoping the display will be more visually appealing. 

“Not behind paneling, maybe behind glass, maybe behind a moat system, something that puts the animals on display,” said Pottebaum. 

And one that will allow for more lions. 

“Two lion pride yards would be ideal,” said Pottebaum. 

Pottebaum says now that they have completed the Madagascar exhibit, it is time to put together the master plan for the next few years.

“Now we need to come up with another 10–15-year plan, and that hopefully will include this lion exhibit,” said Pottebaum. 

Modernizing the park will keep the Abilene Zoo highly accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). 

“We are actually an AZA accredited zoo, which means we got very high standards of the welfare, as well as exhibit design and enhancement for our animals,” said Pottebaum. 

It will take time to create the plan, raise funds, and build, but Pottebaum hopes in the next 4 years residents can expect to see some big changes.  

Pottebaum says the best way residents can support is simply by going to the zoo or buying season passes. 

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