THE family at the Darling Downs Zoo has grown a little bigger, and cuter, with the addition of four tawny lioness cubs.

The four girls, born in October, were the offspring of two separate mothers and are the third generation of cubs bred by Mr Robinson and his wife Stephanie.

Mr Robinson said they were keeping tight-lipped throughout the pregnancy just in case things didn't work out.

"All of the cubs are doing well except one which wasn't able to be fed by its mother as she is a little bit mature," he said.

"But we are feeding her up and she should be fine.

"We use a specially designed formula which we mix with eggs and other ingredients to make sure they get all of the important things they need to grow."

All but one of the cubs, Sassy, will be sent to zoos in southern states for breeding programs.

As for Sassy who was named by the Robinson's daughter Madeline, she will become a permanent fixture at the Darling Downs Zoo.

"Sassy will stay here at the zoo and become part of our future breeding program," Mr Robinson said.

"There are only about 25,000 lions left in the wild, but as long as we maintain solid breeding programs they will always exist in zoos at least."

The cubs are the first born at the zoo in eight years and are sure to attract many visitors to the zoo which is now the home to 11 lions.

"We will have at least one of the cubs on display in the main entrance of the zoo each day from this Saturday (November 5)," Mr Robinson said.



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