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Name Mogo Zoo’s Rare White Lion Cubs


26th November, 2006



Mogo Zoo on the New South Wales south coast has made trans-Tasman history breeding not one but two litters of rare white lion cubs.

The latest additions to the growing pride of Peugeot sponsored white lions at Mogo Zoo are still unnamed and Australians are being asked to come up with names for the 9-week-old fluffy male and female cub as part of a national competition launched on Thursday by NSW Tourism Minister, the Honourable Sandra Nori MLA. The winner will enjoy flights for 4 from their nearest capital city to Sydney, weekend use of one of the latest new Peugeots to drive to Mogo and a personal tour of Mogo Zoo for a breakfast or evening feed plus the chance to meet the white lions up close.

White lions are rarely seen in the wild and the world-wide population is in the low double digits so the four new additions to Mogo Zoo’s pride represent a major step forward in global efforts to preserve these magnificent animals. The lions, which are white due to a recessive gene, hold a magical place in African folklore and are rarer than the legendary snow leopards of the Himalayas.

Peugeot, the world’s second oldest car manufacturer which is known around the globe as the ‘Lion brand’, has committed its support to Mogo Zoo’s campaign to keep the white lions alive with a four-year sponsorship and a national naming campaign to raise awareness of these magnificent animals and Mogo Zoo’s efforts to ensure their survival. To take part in the competition, which closes on 14th December, 2006, go to www.peugeot.com.au/whitelions.

“With a lion as Peugeot’s corporate logo, we felt a clear and immediate connection to the first white lion cubs, little Purr and Joe, so the opportunity to work with Mogo Zoo and contribute towards the survival of these beautiful yet endangered lions makes perfect sense,” Mr Mathew McAuley, National Public Relations Manager, Peugeot said.

“With our commitment to the breeding programme, we are really bringing our ‘logo to life’. Many Australians may be surprised to know that Peugeot have used a lion for their logo since 1850 and the Peugeot lion has adorned our cars since 1907. We’re thrilled to have the patter of an extra eight tiny white paws and we’re sure the “Name the Peugeot White Lions Competition” will generate some great suggestions to name the youngest white lion twins. In keeping with Purr and Joe, the first white lion cubs born in Australia, we’ve been playing with names but couldn’t get past Pride and Joy so I’m fairly confident someone out there will come up with the right names!”

In launching the competition, Minister Nori highlighted the importance of Mogo Zoo’s contribution to the South Coast’s growing attraction as a national and international tourism destination.

“Mogo Zoo, through the work of owners Bill and Sally Padey, has a fantastic reputation throughout Australia and particularly given the recent global promotion of the white lions, internationally. The NSW Government has been working to promote regional New South Wales as a tourism destination for domestic and international tourists and unique destinations like Mogo Zoo plus the natural beauty of the South Coast make that job a lot easier.”

“I’d also like to congratulate Peugeot on their initiative to make a difference through their support of Mogo Zoo’s white lions and their foresight in looking to regional Australia for projects to sponsor.”

It’s been a remarkably successful two years for Mogo Zoo which only took possession of two female and a male cub in 2004 to contribute to a global breeding programme to try to keep the white lions of Africa alive.

“Purr and Joe’s mum, Nkungwe, and Snow, the mum of these two little cubs first came to Mogo Zoo as cubs three years ago from the African home of the white lions, Timbavati, as part of our pledge to do what is necessary to ensure the survival of this threatened species,” Mogo Zoo’s Owner Sally Padey said.

“Mogo Zoo is already home to more than 100 animals of more than 38 rare and exotic species and we’ve put a lot of effort over the years into many breeding programmes. White lions have not been seen in the wild for over 12 years and the global population was down to just 10 white lions in 1995. Peugeot’s support is invaluable as it allows us to continue to develop our white lion breeding programme and work with other zoos around the world as part of a global effort to return the white lions to the wild.”

Mogo Zoo owner Bill Padey (left) 
and Minister for Tourism Sandra Nori 
(right) at the launch of the naming 
competition for the lion cub twins

About Mogo Zoo
Over 14 years ago Bill and Sally Padey, together with their small collection of buffalo, pheasants, peacocks, deer and kangaroo, began to welcome visitors to the then named 'Somerset Wildlife Sanctuary'. Their dream was to develop the Sanctuary into an animal park which made a difference to the conservation of threatened species and would maintain high standards of animal welfare. Bill and Sally’s determination led them to Sydney’s Taronga Zoo where they completed training in the husbandry and management of carnivores and primates. This helped to secure the trust of major zoos and eventually surplus animals including pumas, servals and crabeater macaque monkeys were on exhibit at Mogo Zoo. The Sanctuary was officially opened on 17th November, 1991, and in 1992 the ‘Zoo at Mogo’ was renamed Mogo Zoo.

Mogo Zoo has been recognised internationally through its conservation work with Resources Nepal regarding the red panda and has also supported Indonesian zoos which house sumatran tigers. In 1997, Mogo Zoo worked with the RSPCA to provide a magnificent new home for two jaguars and two tigers who had been acquired from a private collection. A further testament to the zoo’s work was seen when two snow leopard cubs were born at Mogo Zoo in 1999. Snow leopards are notoriously difficult to breed and these were the first to be born in the Australasian region for over a decade. In 2003 another two were born.

Mogo Zoo is recognised as a major tourist attraction on the south coast of New South Wales.

Mogo is a small town on the Princes Highway, situated between Batemans Bay and Moruya. The zoo is located in Tomakin Road, Mogo (NSW).

Read about Purr and Joe: here

Other Peugeot news is: here

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