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New Buffalo Zoo lion cubs to make their debuts this weekend

Eileen Buckley/WBFO News

The Buffalo Zoo's four new lion cubs will make their highly-anticipated public debuts on Saturday. On Wednesday, members of the media had a chance to view the cubs and their parents as they played together. The cubs were born in two separate litters. The first, Tobias, arrived in March and three others were born in May. They had to receive their final vaccinations before they could appear publicly.

Zoo President Donna Fernandes says other precautions in the lions' play yard have been taken.

"We're cautious, at first. We've filled the moat with hay. But they do seem to have good depth perception and they've been good about walking gingerly over to the edge and looking down safely. The mothers are doing a good job corralling them to make sure they stay away from the moat," Fernandes said.

Fernandes says the three younger cubs are still nursing, but can start eating meat. Tobias has already been eating meat, along with supplemental milk feedings.

"Cubs do grow pretty quickly. By the time they're a year old, they're nearly full grown," she added. 

Credit WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley
One of the lion cubs with a mother.

Zookeepers and lion exhibit sponsor Roar Logistics have already named two cubs, but the naming of a female cub is being voting on by the public. There are three options: LuLu, Amirah and Lelia. The winning name will be announced Saturday at 11 a.m. Voting closes Friday at 5 p.m.  

Fernandes said the warm, dry weather has helped attract more visitors to the zoo this summer.

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