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					For Immediate Release

MEDIA CONTACTS:

Keisha N. Hines – Director of Public Relations and Communications
404.624.5980 – office
404.309.2238 – cell
khines@zooatlanta.org

Simone Griffin – Public Relations Coordinator
404.624.2809
sgriffin@zooatlanta.org


                         ZOO ATLANTA LION CUBS DEPART FOR MEXICO
                             Domestic travels donated by Atlanta Peach Movers

ATLANTA – March 11, 2010 – Interstate travelers are accustomed to trucks and trailers, but on March 11,
2010, motorists are sharing the road with some very unusual moving cargo. Christos, Mikalos and Athanaisi,
three 21-month-old African lions born at Zoo Atlanta, left Thursday for a new home at Africam Safari in
Puebla, Mexico. The cubs were named through a generous donation from Zoo Atlanta Board of Directors
member Merry Carlos and her husband Chris. The Carlos family is of Greek descent, and all three names
are family names: Christos (translates to Chris); Mikalos (translates to Michael), named for Mr. Carlos’
father; and Athanaisi (translates to Thomas), named for his grandfather.

The first leg of the lions’ journey has been generously donated by Atlanta Peach Movers. The big cat
brothers, each weighing well over 300 pounds, have been crate-trained specifically for their road trip, which
began in Atlanta on a trailer truck supplied and driven by Atlanta Peach Movers. A veterinarian and a keeper
from Zoo Atlanta accompanied the lions, who are being monitored via video during the drive to Chicago
O’Hare International Airport. Christos, Mikalos and Athanaisi will then be boarded onto a cargo flight for
Mexico City.

A fellow accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), Africam Safari will house
Christos, Mikalos and Athanaisi together in a 10-acre habitat . These young males living together is a
scenario that closely mirrors the behavior of many of their wild counterparts. Lion cubs are generally
weaned by the age of 8 months and may remain with their mother until they are around 2 years old. Male
littermates like Christos, Mikalos and Athanaisi would likely stay together in the wild, where as a unified trio
they would have greater opportunities to take over and maintain control of a new pride of females.

“We are excited about this next chapter in the cubs’ lives and deeply grateful to Atlanta Peach Movers for
sponsoring their trip to Chicago,” said Dr. Rebecca Snyder, Curator of Mammals. “Christos, Mikalos and
Athanaisi are closely bonded with each other, so we’re delighted that they’ll be able to stay together in their
new home.”

Born May 31, 2008, Christos, Mikalos and Athanaisi are the first offspring of 7-year-old lioness Kiki and her
mate, 5-year-old male Kamau. The cubs’ move was recommended by the AZA Lion Species Survival Plan
(SSP), which has also recommended another mating for their parents. Zoo Atlanta is also home to a second
adult male, 19-year-old Farasi.


About Zoo Atlanta
An accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), Zoo Atlanta inspires value and preservation of wildlife
through a unique mix of education and outdoor family fun. From well-known native wildlife to critically endangered species on the
brink of extinction, the Zoo offers memorable close encounters with more than 1,000 animals from around the world. An all-new
carnivore complex, featuring the exciting debut of two new sun bears, is scheduled to open in summer 2010. Zoo Atlanta is also the
proud home of Xi Lan, the only giant panda cub born in the U.S. in 2008, and the popular Boundless Budgies: A Parakeet
Adventure, the largest interactive experience of its kind in the Southeast. Other highlights include the nation’s largest collection of
great apes and a global center of excellence for the care and reproduction of vanishing amphibians and reptiles. Zoo Atlanta is open
daily with the exceptions of Thanksgiving and Christmas Day. Keeper talks, interactive wildlife shows, education programs and
special events run year-round. For more information, call 404.624.WILD or visit zooatlanta.org.

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