Cutest thing ever

Cuteness overload! White lion triplets born in Poland

Feb. 5, 2014 at 11:38 AM ET

Newborn white lion cubs, which were born between Jan. 28 and 29, lie in a private zoo in Borysew near Lodz, Poland on Feb. 1.
KACPER PEMPEL / Reuters
Newborn white lion cubs, which were born between Jan. 28 and 29, lie in a private zoo in Borysew near Lodz, Poland on Feb. 1.

The owner of a private zoo in central Poland said Tuesday he feels three times lucky with the birth of white lion triplets who are getting loving care from their mother.

Andrzej Pabich, head of the zoo in Borysew, said white lions often have defects that prevent giving birth, or mothers may reject the cubs. Triplets are rare.

White lioness Azira lies in a cage with two of her three white cubs that were born last week in a private zoo in Poland.
Czarek Sokolowski / AP
White lioness Azira lies in a cage with two of her three white cubs that were born last week in a private zoo in Poland.

The white lion is a rare color mutation of the Kruger subspecies of African lion found in some wildlife reserves in South Africa and in zoos around the world. Pabich says about 90 of them are now in existence.

He told The Associated Press that his 2 ½ -year-old white lioness Azira has been patiently feeding and caring for the cubs, which were born Jan. 28. Their father, 3 ½-year old Sahim, who is also white, is kept in a neighboring cage and roars at anyone who comes too close to his family.

White lion Azira is pictured with her three new born cubs in their enclosure in a privately-owned zoo in Poland.
JANEK SKARZYNSKI / AFP - Getty Images
White lion Azira is pictured with her three new born cubs in their enclosure in a privately-owned zoo in Poland.

"Luckily the birth went all smoothly," Pabich said. "We had doubts whether it would be all OK: won't (she) reject them, will she have milk? But all went luckily well in the end. The mother accepted (the cubs), is feeding them and is very caring."

The zoo will name the cubs after they grow a little more and can be weighed and identified as either male or female, Pabich said. They will be allowed on an outdoor run in April.

White lioness Azira feeds two of her three white cubs that were born in January in a private zoo in Poland.
Czarek Sokolowski / AP
White lioness Azira feeds two of her three white cubs that were born in January in a private zoo in Poland.

Opened in 2008, the zoo has animals of 80 species, including white tigers and white camels, and drew 160,000 visitors last year.

Pabich is a machinery mechanic who loves animals and his son, Dariusz, and a team of veterinarians work at the zoo.

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