A new lion exhibit is opening at the Audubon Zoo in New Orleans.
During a recent tour, the African lions were seen lounging in the shade of an enormous rock surrounded by open grass and tree limbs.
The scene is reminiscent of the African Savannah and is part of the new exhibit opening Saturday. Visitors will be able to see critically endangered lions — three females and a full-maned male — from the safety of a fictional train station.
Rail cars with glass-fronted openings to the “savanna” include informational displays about threats facing lions in the wild, such as poaching and habitat loss, as well as efforts being done to save them.
Zoo curator and vice president Joel Hamilton says there are only about 20,000 lions left in Africa.