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from Reuters


Lion Kills Potential Mate

March 12, 2002

BERLIN (Reuters) - When a German zoo introduced a lioness to a potential mate it was hardly a roaring success -- no sooner had the male entered the cage than he lashed out and killed her.

Leipzig zoo introduced the three-year-old lion and his brother to the two-year-old female at the weekend in the hope they would breed.

"It went fine with the first lion, but with the second, his brother, it was quite different," said a spokesman for the zoo in eastern Germany.

"He suddenly bit the lioness. A number of keepers used sticks and hoses to separate the pair, but it was all over in a matter of seconds.

Visitors to the zoo on Saturday were spared the attack, which happened in an area closed to the public.

"There's always a risk with these meetings," the spokesman added. "We're now looking for another lioness."

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