Here are the first photos of Fota Wildlife Park's newest lion cubs

Four Asian lion cubs have been born at Fota Wildlife Park in Cork.

They were born on February 20 to second-time parents, Gira and Shanto.

The 8-week-old cubs join their parents first litter who are now one-and-a-half years old – Amira, Arya and Loki and aunt Gita.

Fota Wildlife Park is calling on the public to help name them and be in with a chance to win one of four year-long Conservation Annual Passes.

Asian lion cubs born in Fota Wildlife Park, 2019

Lead Ranger Kelly Lambe said: “We are thrilled with the arrival of this litter of four Asian lion cubs at Fota Wildlife Park.

This species is endangered and now inhabits only one remaining site in the world – the Gir Forest, in India, which means that wildlife parks and zoos play a crucial role in safeguarding the species and maintaining the genetic diversity outside of the pocket of the wild population.

"Unfortunately, one of the cubs was stillborn, however, five in a litter in extremely rare and we are delighted that there are four cubs thriving and they are all feeding and bonding well with Mum Gira.

"It’s Gira’s second litter with our male lion, Shanto, and she is a protective mum. We vaccinated and weighted them all yesterday and they all weight exactly the same – 7.15kg.”

There are now only 500 Asian lions living in the wild. Almost all the world’s population of wild lions live in sub-Sharan Africa except for the Asian lion which inhabits the Gir Forest in India.

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