The lion is one of the largest strongest and most powerful felines in the world, second only in size to the siberian tiger. They are the largest cats on the african continent, while most big cats are solitary hunters lions are incredibly sociable animals that live together in family groups called prides. Lions have strong compact bodies and powerful forelegs teeth and jaws for pulling down and killing prey, their coats are yellow gold and adult males have shaggy manes that range in color from blonde to reddish brown to black the length and color of a lion's mane are likely determined by age, genetics and hormones.
Young lions have light spotting on their coats that disappears as they grow.
A full-grown male is about 1.8 to 2.1 meters or six to seven feet long excluding the one meter tail he stands about 1.2 meters high at the shoulder and weighs 170 to 230 kilograms or 370 to 500 pounds the female or lioness is smaller with a body length of 1.5 meters and a shoulder height of 0.9 to 1.1 meters and a weight of 120 to 180 kilograms
Historically lions would have been found throughout much of Africa and even in parts of Europe and Asia as well today, however they have been pushed into more isolated pockets of their once vast natural range, with the remaining african lion population now only found in countries in Sub-saharan Africa. There is also still a small population of Asiatic lions found inhabiting a remote part of the gear forest in India.
Despite their dwindling numbers lions are actually incredibly adaptable animals that can and will inhabit very dry climates as they get most of the moisture they need from their food. They prefer areas of open woodland scrub and long grasslands where there is not only plenty over cover but also a wide variety of prey, hey are only not found in areas of rainforest or far into deserts.
Lions are unique among cats and that they live in a group or pride the members of a pride typically spend the day in several scattered groups that may unite to hunt or share a meal. A pride consists of several generations of lionesses some of which are related , a smaller number of breeding males and their cubs. The group may consist of as few as four or as many as 37 members but about 15 is the average size, each pride has a well-defined territory consisting of a core area that is strictly defended against intruding lions and a fringe area where some overlap is tolerated
There are several competing evolutionary explanations for why lions form groups, the large body size and high density of their main prey probably make group life more efficient for females in terms of energy expenditure. Groups of females for example hunt more effectively and are better able to defend cubs against infanticidal males and their hunting territory against other females the relative importance of these factors is debated and it is not clear which was responsible for the establishment of group life and which are secondary benefits
Lions prey on a wide variety of animals ranging in size from rodents and baboons to cape buffalo and hippopotamuses but they predominantly hunt medium to large sized hoofed animals such as wildebeests, zebras and antelopes, prey preferences vary geographically as well as.
Between neighboring prides lions are known to take elephants and giraffes but only if the individual is young or especially sick they readily eat any meat they can find including carrion and fresh kills that they scavenge or forcefully steal from hyenas cheetahs or wild dogs. Lionesses living in open savannah do most of the hunting whereas males typically appropriate their meals from the female skills however male lions are also adept hunters and in some areas they hunt frequently
Pride males in scrub or wooded habitats spend less time with the females and hunt most of their own meals nomadic males must always secure their own food though a group of hunting lions is potentially nature's most formidable predatory force on land. A high proportion of their hunts fail the cats pay no attention to the wind's direction which can carry their scent to their prey and they tire after running short distances, typically they stalk prey from nearby cover and then burst forth to run it down in a short rapid rush after leaping on the prey the lion lunges at its neck and bites until the animal has been strangled other members of the pride quickly crowd around to feed on the kill usually fighting for access hunts are sometimes conducted in groups with members of a pride and circling a herd or approaching it from opposite directions then closing in for the kill and the resulting panic the cats typically gorge themselves and then rest for several days in its vicinity
An adult male can consume more than 34 kilograms or 75 pounds of meat in a single meal and rest for a week before resuming the hunt if the prey is abundant, both sexes typically spend 21 to 22 hours a day resting sleeping or sitting and hunting for only two or three hours a day the lion is the most dominant predator within its environment meaning that other animals pose little or no threat to them except for hyena packs that can cause fatal damages to lions particularly when they are on their own and food is about lions are seen as a great threat by many other species including both giraffes and elephants which are easily capable of fatally injuring a lion, to try to warn it off more than other species the significant threat to lions is other lions in south Africa's sabi sands a group of male lions formed a coalition that's believed to have killed more than 100
Lions across a territory male lions will often kill one another while attempting to seize control of prides and then will also kill cubs of prides to ensure a gene pool that's not theirs is passed on.
Can LIONS Survive in The Amazon
As everyone knows lions are extremely strong cats and have amazing qualities but can they cope in the amazon rainforest often called the lungs of the earth the amazon rainforest spans nine countries but about 60 percent lies in brazil tropical rainforests are home to the largest and the smallest the loudest and the quietest of all land animals as well as some of the most dangerous most beautiful most endearing and strangest looking animals on earth.
The amazon is home to more species of plants and animals than any other terrestrial ecosystem on the planet perhaps 30 percent of the world species are found there its biodiversity is astounding a single bush in the amazon may have more species of ants than the entire british isles while alone hector of forests may have more than 500 species of trees and a single park can have more than 1400 butterfly species. Competition for survival is fierce this may explain why over millions of years of evolution so many highly adaptable species have evolved in this biome.
Lions have famously acquired the title of king of the jungle however the title is a little misleading as lions don't actually live in jungles this is a simple case of loss in translation, the word jungle has its roots in the hindi word jingle which means forest or wasteland the latter could easily be applied to a savannah because lions are not suited to living in dense humid rain forests, they avoid them in their native range in Sub-saharan Africa preferring instead to live in savannah open plains and green or desert dry bushland this is because lions preferred prey are large hoofed animals that roam the plains and savannah such as buffalo, wildebeest and zebra and to hunt them effectively they need wide open spaces
as they pursue their prey a pride will plot out an attack strategy in formation this type of hunting would be ineffective in the dense undergrowth of a tropical rainforest because the depth of field vision required to effectively hunt.
The type of prey that lions prefer is limited and the amazon contains very few large mammalian preys that lions would prefer to hunt anyway the much heavier and bigger lions would have a difficult time catching the medium to smaller prey animals that are more common in amazon jungles as they quickly move through the undergrowth to areas where lions cannot see or reach them the rain forest isn't known to be a habitat where lions live there have been occasional sightings but such lions are believed to be passing through we don't believe that the prey animals or habitat of rainforests are conducive for permanent habitation by lions.