I Can Has Cheezburger?

Lots of Lions

  • a cute picture of a lion cub with blue eyes

    Lion cubs weigh around 2 to 3 pounds when they are born, and are quite helpless for the first few months of their lives. Fewer than 50% of lion cubs in the wild grow up to be adults, as the conditions for lion cubs are harsh. Lions are greedy eaters, and the hierarchy of the pride is seen when a fresh kill is brought to the group. Male lions are at the top of the hierarchy, followed by females, then lion cubs. Lions become independent around 30 months of age, so anytime before then is precarious for their survival. 


  • Advertisement
  • a beautiful picture of a lioness licking the head of one of her cubs
  • a majestic picture of a male lion with a large orange mane looking into the camera

    Lions are most well-known species of the cat family, and the male lion is perhaps the most recognizable. While they have the reputation of being the king of the jungle, male lions are actually very lazy - and they never live in jungles. 

  • a beautiful picture of two lionesses walking and looking at a tiny lion cub
  • Advertisement
  • a majestic picture of a lion closing its eyes and feeling the wind blowing through its mane
  • a majestic picture of a lioness looking at something while she stands in dry grass

    Lions are sociable animals, and live in groups called prides. For African lions, these groups consist of one to three males, up to a 12 females, and their offspring. Female lions are the primary hunters and catch prey in twos or threes, while the male lions protect the pride. Male lions tend to stay in a pride for 3 to 4 years, while lionesses stay together for much longer, keeping the pride together.

    Asian lions live differentlyt o this, dividing into all female or male groups, which only meet during mating season. 

  • a majestic picture of a grown male lion standing on a rock looking out with trees behind it

    Fully-grown male lions can range between 150 - 250 kilograms, more than tripling in size from birth to adulthood. 

  • Advertisement
  • a majestic picture of a lion roaring

    Lions' roars are one of the most powerful calls in the animal kingdom. Lions roar to ward off rivals from entering their territory, and to let members of its pride know where it is. Lions' roars can travel up to 8 kilometers, and can be as loud as claps of thunder during a storm. 

  • a majestic picture of two male lions mid-fight in the air
  • a beautiful picture of a male lion resting its head on a lioness who is standing in front of him
  • Advertisement
  • a majestic picture of a lioness sitting among the landscape at sunset

    Male and female lions are polygamous, and mate with different partners during the years. Lionesses in the same pride will usually give birth around the same time, so the litter of new lion cubs will be raised communally. There is a feeling of shared responsibility, and the lionesses will share babysitting duties with the other mothers, including suckling the cubs of others. 

  • a majestic picture of a lion walking through high dry grass
  • a majestic black and white profile of a female lioness roaring
  • Advertisement
  • a majestic picture of a large adult male lion with a big mane standing next to a tiny lion cub and looking at it

    Male lions reach maturity around 3 to 4 years of age, and must leave the pride where they were raised. They will either form groups with other males from the pride, or leave to roam on their own until they find a pride to take over. If a young male finds a suitable pride, he may challenge the existing male in the group to a fight, and if the newcomer wins, kill all the pride's cubs so that the females must mate with their new leader. 

  • a majestic picture of seven lionesses and nearly-adult lions drinking from a river in a row
  • a beautiful picture of a lion and lioness cuddling each other

    Lions have the most complex communication behaviorof all the cats. Their noises include roars, growls, moans, snarls, hums, woofs, meows, and even purrs (they are big cats after all). 



  • Advertisement
  • a majestic picture of an adult male lion walking among green grass
  • a majestic picture of a grown male lion with a black mane walking and looking at something to the side

    The most distinctive feature of lions is the male's mane, which exists to make the lion appear bigger to rivals, and more attractive to females. The bigger and darker a lion's mane is, the more likely he will be to find a mate (and the older he is). While African lions have large, thick manes, Asian lions usually have smaller, thinner manes

  • a majestic picture of a lion standing with the sunset light on its face
  • Advertisement
  • a cute picture of a female lioness drinking water with three lion cubs in a row at a river

    Newborn lion cubs are usually born in litters of 2 to 4. Before the lioness gives birth, she will leave to an area isolated from the rest of the pride. She stays there for 4 to 8 weeks, looking after the cubs while they are at their most vulnerable. The pride can be a dangerous place for newborn cubs if a new male takes over the group, for he will most likely kill all cubs. 

  • a cute picture of a male lion with his arm hugging a small lion cub
  • a majestic picture of a sandy colored male lion with blue eyes

    Male lions are typical patriarchs: they sleep for up to 20 hours a day, depend on the females to catch food (although if roaming alone, male lions can hunt well for themselves), and are use violence to establish themselves as the most powerful. 

  • Advertisement
  • a cute picture of a small lion cub playfully biting the end of the tail of a grown lion
  • a majestic picture of a lion with an orange mane roaring
  • a majestic picture of a male lion lying down, a female lioness standing behind him and a lion cub rubbing its head on the male lion

    Lions' diets are made up entirely of meat. Grown male lions require 7 kilograms of meat per day to survive, and females require 5 kilograms. Lions usually hunt animals such as wildebeest, zebra, giraffe, buffalo and gemsbok, refraining from targeting larger animals such as elephants - although they certainly will go for them if given the chance. Lions only successfully catch prey 30% of the time, and have no problems with stealing the kills of other animals. Once they do have food, they're greedy eaters, and have been known to gorge themselves into food comas. 

  • Advertisement
  • a majestic picture of a mature male lion with a black mane sitting on a rock with a lioness sitting behind him
  • a cute picture of a male lion lying on the grass with a small lion cub standing on it and playing

    Lions are typically nocturnal or crepuscular, which means they become active at dawn and dusk. During the day, lions spend most of their time sleeping. They can sleep for up to 20 hours each day. This is to avoid the heat of the day, to preserve energy, and the lack of prey at this time. 


  • a majestic picture of two grown male lions with big manes walking together
  • Advertisement
  • a majestic picture of a grown male lion running towards the camera

    Lions love to live in open spaces, and will live virtually anywhere except rainforests. Lions can live on savannas, in thick brush, woodlands, along watercourses and in deserts. Today, they are found in Asia and sub-Saharan Africa, although historically they were found all over the world. 


  • a majestic picture of a lion yawning while standing on grass
  • a cute picture of two bear cubs standing next to each other and one cub has its paw over the other cub's shoulder
  • Advertisement
  • a beautiful picture of a lioness carrying a small lion cub by the scruff of its neck

    During the first few weeks of the lives of lion cubs, they are transported by their mothers by being picked up gently at the scruff of their neck. Although lionesses have the ability to crush an antelope's skull in her mouth, she treats her offspring with surprising gentleness. The lion cubs cooperate by staying still and not struggling - for if they do, the consequences may be fatal. 

  • a cute picture of a fluffy lion cub with blue eyes

    Lion cubs are born with blue eyes, which change to amber and then brown around the age of three months. 

  • a majestic black and white picture of a lion resting in a tree
  • Advertisement
  • a majestic picture of a grown male lion sitting down relaxing on a rock

    African and Asian lions are usually colored tawny to sandy brown. This isn't an accident – these colors help the lions to blend into the environment around them, and go unnoticed by prey. 


  • a majestic picture of three lions and lionesses sitting under the shade of a tree
  • a cute picture of a lion cub being playful on some grass
  • Advertisement
  • a cute picture of a male lion on its back grabbing its feet with its front paws playfully

    Lions are social and playful creatures, and will play and tumble around with each other. When the pride is sleeping during the day, they tend to lie together, rubbing their heads and playing. This strengthens the bond of the pride. 


  • a cute picture of a baby lion cub
  • a majestic picture of a white lion sitting on the ground looking at the camera

    While most lions are a shade of sandy brown, white lions do exist. White lions can only be born if both parents have a recessive mutation in a gene which makes colored pigments called melanins. Lions with these genes are called leucistic, where there is partial white pigmentation, rather than albino, because there are still some areas of pigmentation (like the eyes and lips). White lions are rare, but they can survive to adulthood. 



  • Advertisement
  • a cute picture of a lion cub rubbing itself against an adult lion that is sitting next to it
  • a majestic picture of two grown lions sitting on the ground and rubbing their heads together

    While most of the big cat family are solitary, lions are sociable by nature and love to be around each other. Some brothers and sisters can stay together throughout their whole lives. 

  • a majestic picture of a lioness running through the grass with everything else blurred
  • Advertisement
  • a beautiful picture of a white male lion and a white lioness rubbing their noses together
  • a majestic picture of five lionesses walking around a male lion with their tails in the air

    All lions have a distinctive black tuft at the end of their tails. These tufts develop around 5 months of age, and hide the last vertebrae of the bones in the lion's tail. While the purpose of these tufts is not known, lions' tails play an important role in balancing the lion and helping with aerodynamics – just like domesticated house cats. 

  • a majestic picture of a grown male lion standing on a rock looking out
  • Advertisement
  • a majestic picture of a white male lion

    Lions have terrific night vision and their eyes are 6 times more sensitive to light than humans' eyes. 

  • a cute picture of a small lion cub resting its chin on its mothers back
  • a beautiful picture of a lioness sitting with her four lion cubs sitting close to her and among her legs
  • Advertisement
  • a majestic picture of two adolescent lions drinking from a river and looking at the camera

Tags

About the Author

Next on I Can Has Cheezburger?

Comments