TWO 10-week-old lion cubs from the Darling Downs Zoo have caused a political stir in New South Wales after appearing at a party for Sydney entrepreneur Ian Malouf.
Earlier this month Mr Malouf, the managing director of Dial A Dump, threw a $500,000 party to celebrate the opening of his massive Sydney landfill site.
The party included alcohol, pyrotechnics, a performance by singer Vanessa Amorosi and an appearance from two of the Clifton zoo's lion cubs.
The NSW Department of Primary Industries has come under attack from Greens MP Cate Faehrmann for approving the cubs' appearance.
Departmental guidelines state that animals must be kept away from loud noises and not be led through crowds.
But Darling Downs Zoo owner Stephanie Robinson said the cubs were looked after at all times and only appeared for a short time, sleeping through most of it.
Mrs Robinson said the zoo's four lion cubs had reached a "playful" stage, but still slept about 20 hours a day.
"They're bigger than a housecat now and they're always wrestling and carrying on," she said.
Mrs Robinson said the zoo was preparing for the busy New Year holiday period and the growing cubs would attract plenty of attention.
"I don't know that many people know about them yet but word is slowly filtering out," she said.