Kwanza the white lion just can’t wait to be king

Kwanza celebrates his second birthday.
Kwanza celebrates his second birthday. Picasa

ZOOKEEPERS Steve and Stephanie Robinson cannot believe how fast their boy is growing up.

The Darling Downs Zoo owners hand-reared Queensland's first white lion cub Kwanza during his early years and will celebrate his 2nd birthday this week.

Mrs Robinson said rearing the lion hadn't been smooth sailing.

"The problem with raising lions is it's not as scientific as dogs or cats," she said.

"It was a challenge, especially as we had a three-year-old in the house at the time.

"Kwanza was bottled fed, burped and bathed, played with our daughter's toys and had the family dog as his best friend."

Since leaving his parent's home Kwanza has become a YouTube sensation.

A video of him playing with the dog went viral around the world and has attracted over 1.75 million views.

His celebrity status clearly impressed the ladies because the lion has since moved in with "a trio of beautiful young female blonde lions".

Kwanza when he arrived at the Darling Downs Zoo.
Kwanza when he arrived at the Darling Downs Zoo. Contributed

Mrs Robinson said technically Kwanza was still a child.

"He is already larger than the girls he's with and they're fully grown," she said.

"He would be at least 100kg."

Kwanza has plenty of loyal subjects who met him as part of the zoo's up-close-and-personal cat encounters and have returned to "give him a high five through the mesh."

Mrs Robinson said the pride of the zoo had a bright future ahead.

"Lions are the laziest animals - they sleep about 20 hours a day.

"Kwanza lives a life of luxury."

The Darling Downs Zoo is continually expanding with baby monkeys, lizards, pythons, lorikeets, wallabies, llamas and macaws among the arrivals on site.


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