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Rare Cat Cubs Make Debut at French Zoo

Image: An Asiatic lion named Shiva, the mother of the three cubs, looks out over her domain in the Besancon zoo
Image: An Asiatic lion named Shiva, the mother of the three cubs, looks out over her domain in the Besancon zoo AP

An Asiatic lion named Shiva watches over her three unnamed cubs in the Besancon zoo in eastern France on Feb. 27. The Besancon zoo held off announcing the Dec. 31, 2013, births until this week, afraid the two females and a male might not survive.

There are about 300 Asiatic lions in the wild, all in an Indian reserve, according to the World Wildlife Federation. Asiatic lions are one of the world's rarest species.

Image: Asiatic lion Shiva, the mother of the three unnamed cubs, sits with her cubs in the Besancon zoo, eastern France
Asiatic lion Shiva, the mother of the three unnamed cubs, sits with her cubs in the Besancon zoo, eastern France, Thursday, Feb. 27, 2014. The Besancon zoo held off announcing the December 31, 2013 births until this week, afraid the two females and a male might not survive. There are about 300 Asiatic lions in the wild all, in an Indian reserve, according to the WWF. It's one of the world's rarest species. (AP Photo/Laurent Cipriani) Laurent Cipriani / AP
Image: Asiatic lion Shiva, the mother of the three unnamed cubs, feeds them in the Besancon zoo, eastern France
Shiva feeds her cubs. Laurent Cipriani / AP