Lion cubs debut to the public at French zoo

(REUTERS) - Three lion cubs made their first public appearance at the Vincennes Zoo near Paris last week.

Two males and a female, Atlas, Kibo and Shanti, are a rare breed that descend from the extinct Barbary lion in North Africa.  Born on April 22, they're the first recorded lion births at the zoo.

The cubs didn't stray too far from their mother and were seen nibbling on grass, but that's already changing, according to zoo veterinarian Alexis Lecu.

Mr Lecu said: "Physiologically, they're already switching from a milk-based diet from their mother, to a carnivorous diet, eating meat. They already have natural reflexes that come from the genetic code of carnivores, meaning when they see something running, whether it is a little brother, sister, mother or a bird, they start chasing it. This is the hunting behaviour." 

The cubs' names were chosen based on Facebook votes.