The most interesting facts about lions
The most interesting characteristics of the lions are described below.
A Complex Social Structure
Lions live in large groups called prides, similar to wolves (but not most other cat species). A pride consists of multiple related females and their dependent offspring along with two or three unrelated males. A typical pride has about 15 members, although some prides as large as 40 members have been observed.
Second Largest Big Cat
A male lion weighs about 500 pounds and grows to eight feet in length. It sounds impressive, but tigers are actually larger, reaching 850 pounds and 11 feet long.
Lions Don’t Live in the Jungle
Even though lions are known as “King of the Jungle,” they live in grasslands and plains – not the jungle. Also unusual in the animal kingdom, female lions do the hunting (usually in groups) while male lions stay home and watch over the pride. The males, however, are first to eat when the female lions come home with their kill.
Lion Babies Aren’t Only Called Cubs
Baby lions may be referred to as cubs, whelps, or lionets. A “whelp” actually refers to any young member of a carnivorous species, while “lionet” means “small lion” in Middle French.
Females Live Together for Life
Female lions, sisters, live together for life. Their female cubs also stay with the pride, even after they’re grown, but male cubs must venture out on their own once they reach maturity.
The Only Big Cats with Manes
Male lions have majestic manes that make them appear larger and more intimidating. Female lions are also attracted to fuller, thicker manes.
Tey Once Roamed the Globe
Lions once lived in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, North America, and Northern India. Now lions primarily live in Africa, aside from a small group (about 300) Asiatic lions that live in India’s Gir Forest.
The Loudest Roar
A male lion’s roar can be heard from up to five miles away – the loudest roar of any big cat species. Their roar helps them find other lions as well as to proclaim their territory. A pride’s territory may include up to 100 square miles.
A National Symbol
Lions are associated with pride, courage, and strength, making them a perfect national symbol. Albania, Belgium, Bulgaria, England, Ethiopia, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, and Singapore all regard the lion as their national symbol.
General characteristics of the lions
1. African lions are the most social of all big cats and live together in groups or “prides.” A pride consists of about 15 lions.
2. Male lions defend the pride’s territory while females do most of the hunting. Despite this, the males eat first.
3. These majestic cats are threatened by habitat loss. The lion is listed as vulnerable on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
4. The lion was once found throughout Africa, Asia and Europe but now exists only in Africa with one exception. The last remaining Asiatic lions are found in Sasan-Gir National Park in India, which was primarily created to protect the species. Currently, there are approximately 350-400 lions in the park.
5. A lion’s roar can be heard from as far as 5 miles away.
6. A lion can run for short distances at 50 mph and leap as far as 36 feet.
7. Even though the lion is sometimes referred to as the “king of the jungle,” it actually only lives in grasslands and plains. The expression may have come from an incorrect association between Africa and jungles or may refer to a less literal meaning of the word jungle.
8. A good gauge of a male lion’s age is the darkness of his mane. The darker the mane, the older the lion.
9. A lion’s heels don’t touch the ground when it walks.
10. A lion may sleep up to 20 hours a day.