More information on Lions

Lioness the Prowess

Females are the prime hunters and work together to prey. They do this by splitting into groups. One group chases the animals to a certain area whilst another group waits to ambush the victims. Their technique and skill is highly praised for its complexity and precision. Each lion begins to develop their own unique role that's specific to contributing to the success of killing the intended prey. Their diet consists of prey as large as elephants, hyenas, hippos, rhinos, etc to something as small as lizard and mice. A lot of the time their food is scavenged.

Kings of the Jungle

Males defend their territory, be it open woodland or scrub, through urinating to mark the area, roaring to promote fear and literally chasing off any intruders. Their main competition is spotted hyenas that often go for the same prey as lions. These animals will fight and steal each other's food. This warfare goes beyond food; it is also the problem of territorial boundaries being crossed. Lions can be extremely aggressive and have been seen hunting hyenas, killing them and not eating their prey. They dominate and promote fear in other animals, such as cheetahs and leopards, so that they do not prey the same time that lions do. Males eat the prey first despite the females usually catching it. It can take up to four hours to finish a meal and can drink for an extremely long time straight after.

Basically the male lions defend and protect their territory as females hunt. This is their part to keep their pride thriving and growing. Lions are affectionate and playful when resting, which can usually take up to 16 - 20 hours a day, and extremely defensive and nasty when food is on the scene. They show their affection by head rubbing and licking. These animals are mostly known for their ferocious roar but they do also make other noises including meowing, woofing, purring, coughing and hissing.

Lion Cubs

Cubs come in litters of between one to five babies and are either carefully nurtured or completely neglected. If this is the case, other lionesses will allow the cub to suckle despite it not being their own. Lionesses baby sit each other's cubs too, which demonstrates the amount of care and respect they have. They give birth once every two years with the cubs eating meat after three months and are continued to be nursed three months after. Most lionesses have cubs by the age of four.

Lions are quite possibly one of the most fascinating creatures in the world. With their stereotypical ferocious outer appearance yet a soft, community driven spirit, it is no wonder that lions are used as metaphors to represent sporting teams, community centres and countries alike.

Asiatic Lion

Asiatic Lion(ess), Panthera leo persica are rare. There are about 320-odd remaining in the Gir forest of Gujarat in Western India, and bureaucratic bumbling has prevented the establishment of alternative populations. So a single epidemic could wipe out these fine animals. Though often spoken of as the lion of the Bible, that was probably the extinct Barbary lion.

Differences between the African lion are the prominent belly fringe and the larger tuft at the end of the tail. Males have a smaller mane.

Interesting information:

  • The largest lion was recorded to be nearly 700 pounds and nearly 11 foot long.
  • The oldest lion on record was nearly 29 years old.
  • A lion's eyesight is five times better than a human being.
  • A lion can hear prey from a mile away.
  • Lions can smell nearby prey and estimate how long it was in the area.
  • A lion's roar can be heard from five miles away.
  • Tigers are so similar to lions that without their coats, their bodies look so similar only experts can tell them apart.
  • When males join a pride, they usually kill other cubs.
  • Lions can go four days without drinking.
  • There is less than 50 000 lions in the world today.
  • The gestation period is about 110 days.