Lions are the second largest naturally occurring cat in the world and are commonly referred to as “King of the Jungle” even though they mainly found in the African Savanah. the African Lion is actually a collection a sub-species. Male lions are easy to identified as they are large animals with long manes surrounding their head. Female lions do not have a mane and on average are smaller than their male counterparts. Lions can be solitary and live alone but are also known to live in groups consisting of a number of females or lionesses with their mates and cubs which is known as a pride.
HABITATS AND BEHAVIOR:
Lions are the only cats that live in large groups called prides. A pride of lions consists of male and female lions varying in age and family relation. Lions are mainly active at night and are considered nocturnal although sometimes exhibit crepuscular behavior by hunting and scavenging at early day and evening. Lions are, on average, inactive or resting up to 20 hours per day. Lions are always on alert and ready for activity but only spend around a total of 3 hours a day walking and eating.
Lions are known to live solitary lives and in large social groups called “prides”. On average, prides consist of 5-8 females with their cubs and 1-2 males. Some individuals have observed a lion pride grow up to 30 individuals in the wild. Females make up the social structure of the pride and normally do not accept lionesses not born into the pride. Females in the pride do the majority of the hunting while males protect the cubs and pride from invading males and other predators.
Southwest African Lion
West African Lion
Length (head & body): Males – 170 to 250cm (5ft 7in to 8ft 2in); Females – 140 to 175cm (4ft 7in to 5ft 9in)
Weight: Varies with environment – Males average 189.6kg (418lb) and Females average 126.9kg (280lb)
Habitat: savanna grasslands & dry deciduous scrub forest
Home Range: Eastern and Southern Africa, but one small population of Asian lions exists in India’s Gir Forest