Lions are the top cats of Africa!
1. Lions are the only social cats, living in groups called prides.
2. Male lions are the only cats with manes – a trait of which the origin and purpose has divided scientists
3. Living in prides helps lions survive in difficult times, proving particularly beneficial for the vulnerable young cubs that need protection.
4. Lion cubs have spots at birth that disappear with age.
5. In the pride, lionesses specialize in hunting whereas the big males’ function is to provide protection from outsiders.
6. Lions take down a variety of prey animals including gazelles, wildebeest, buffaloes and even elephants in certain parts of Africa (e.g. Botswana).
7. Lions do not like competition and frequently attack and kill fellow predators like leopards, hyenas and cheetahs.
8. Contrary to popular belief, recent research indicates male lions take part in 50-60% of hunts – particularly when it’s required to bring down larger prey.
9. Also there is increasing evidence that lions do scavenge and frequently attack hyenas to steal their kills.
10. Though not as notorious as tigers for man-eating, lions do at times resort to attacking people – displaying great cunning and bravery ~ as seen in the case of Tsavo man-eaters nearly a century ago.
11. A pride comprises of interrelated females and one to four adult males ~ young male lions are kicked out of the pride when they show signs of maturity.
12. These young males, known as nomads, then wander around, forming coalitions and surviving on their own until they reach enough strength and maturity to take over a pride of their own.
13. Lion is known as the king of beasts for his bravery and fighting skills!