Dallas Zoo officials search for answers after lion slays lioness - FOX 32 News Chicago

Dallas Zoo officials search for answers after lion slays lioness

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Officials with the Dallas Zoo may never know why a lioness was killed Sunday afternoon in a fight with two other male lions.

A representative for the zoo said that the female, Johari, was unable to breathe when a male lion bit her neck. The bite left little visible signs, but it was enough to suffocate the large cat.

Two male lions, Kamaia and Dinari, were involved, but it's unclear which one delivered the fatal bite. The zoo representative added it's a rare event for lions in captivity, and that it was not a mating ritual gone wrong.

Visitors were present viewing the lion exhibit when the attack happened, and some said that zoo staff hurried to move people away.

There were three vets on site at the zoo Monday, and they say lions often kill their prey by biting them on the neck, crushing the trachea, and causing suffocation, which is how Johari was killed.  

Animal experts kept the male lions out of the exhibit Monday while the two remaining lionesses were sunning themselves on a rock and demonstrations were cancelled.

The zoo tweeted Sunday, "Lioness Johari, 5, died quickly after being bitten in the neck by a male #lion. There was little damage visible. Tx 4 your support."

Following Johari's death, there haven't been any protests by animal rights groups, nor have there been calls for euthanasia.

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