Get ready to say ‘aww’.
These lion cubs are not only adorable but they are extremely rare white lions… who are also quadruplets.
The four cubs – all male – were born last month in Nantong Forest Safari Park in Jiangsu, China, last month.
On December 26, the brothers will be making their public debut and meeting people outside their caretakers for the first time.
The quads are the second set of quadruplet white lions at Nantong Forest Wildlife Park.
Zookeepers and veterinarians gave the tiny creatures a full bath and physical examination after one month.
The cute white lion babies grow up at a speed of about 50 grams per day.
Though you might think the cute quads are albino, they are in fact not. White colouration in lions is similar to blue eyes in humans, which is also due to a recessive gene.
According to the Global White Lion Protection Trust, white lions are not considered as endangered simply because they are not yet appropriately classified.
At the moment, white lions are listed as Panthera leo, which is classified as ‘vulnerable’, meaning they may become threatened with extinction in the future, unless trade is closely controlled.
The Chinese zoo also released photos of the brothers playing around and posing for the cameras.
With white lions being so rare, it’s even more unusual to have four cubs with the same recessive gene.
The yet to be named cubs form part of only 100 living in captivity while there are just 13 white lions in the wild.
Because their species isn’t recognised as endangered, it means that white lions are not protected by law.
This is why the Global White Lions Protection Trust was set up.
They are pushing for laws to protect the animals. Their mission statement reads: ‘The more knowledge we gain, the better chance of changing legislation and having lions protected. White lions need to be reclassified on the Schedule of Threatened & Protected Animals of National Importance.
‘The white lion gene needs to be researched, understood and protected, as a matter of urgency.’
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