A trio of adorable new arrivals at Dubbo zoo have been given the tick of approval to meet the rest of their family.
The three lion cubs were born on October 4 and have been spending time bonding with mum Marion behind the scenes at the Taronga Western Plains Zoo.
This is the second litter Marion has had with male lion Lwazi. The pair welcomed Mara, Amali and Imani in April 2022.
Now the family of eight is almost ready to be reunited.
"Our cubs have just had their first vaccinations and microchips, as well as a veterinary check and a weigh-in. This is all really important to make sure they're tracking along really well with their development," senior keeper Megan Lewis said.
"The cubs are tracking really well; their confidence is pretty crazy and it's just incredible to see how quickly they're gaining more independence!
"This means we can take the next big step of introducing the cubs to their older siblings and dad."
Ms Lewis said the new cubs are meeting all of their developmental milestones and becoming increasingly curious about the outside world.
"They're developing really quickly and their confidence is pretty crazy, they're already out of the nest when we go to check the cameras," she said.
"It's incredible to see how quickly they're gaining their independence."
At the moment the family can see and hear each other through a mesh wall, but the 'in-lion' introductions will happen slowly to ensure a great outcome for all.
"The older sisters are very excited and incredibly curious. The first few days they were right up close to that mesh really sussing out the young cubs because it's the first time they've ever seen youngsters... It's all very new and interesting for them," Ms Lewis said.
"[Lwazi] was also showing wonderful behaviour for a dad, he wasn't showing any kind of fear or worry and was quite submissive, lying on the ground. He knows from experience what he has to do when he's in with them and Marion because she knows how to keep him in line.
"Once they meet each other, and do some bonding in our back-of-house area, then we'll be putting them all out into our Lion Pride Lands habitat together as a lovely family of eight."
When the cubs are named and ready to go out on display the zoo will post an update on their social media channels.
In the meantime, guests can see the Zoo's three elder states-lions Kiamba, Zalika and Tiombe, as well as Lwazi and the three young lionesses.