Pictures of Lions (Panthera leo)

Pictures Of Lions (Panthera leo)

The lion (Panthera leo) is one of the 5 big cats in the genus Panthera and a family member Felidae. The typically used term African lion collectively denotes the various subspecies in Africa. Lion is the only big cat to live in family groups, called pride. 

The genus Panthera consists of lions, tigers, jaguars, leopards. Belonging to the genus Panthera and Felidae family, lions are majestic animals. Generally, the members of this genus are the only felines that have the ability to roar. Appropriately called ‘the king of the jungle.

The IUCN (The International Union for Conservation of Nature) recognizes 2 subspecies of lions – the African and the Asian lions. Lions in East and South Africa are genetically various from lions in Central and West Africa, which are more closely related to the Asian lion.

Lions live for 10 to 15 years in the wild, while in captivity they can live longer than 22 years. In the wild, males hardly ever live longer than ten years, as injuries sustained from continual fighting with rival males considerably decrease their life span. With some male lions weigh up to 250 kg (550 lbs).

The lions are living in the grasslands, scrub, and open woodlands of sub-Saharan Africa, the lion is the 2nd largest cat in the world after the tiger, which is more closely related and has a very similar body type. Female lions are the primary hunters of the group. They are more agile and smaller than males but their prey is normally faster than them, they use teamwork to bring an animal down.

If you are lucky you will see Lions on your African safari. It’s always a nice place to take pictures of lions in Africa, especially when they are feeding or hunting. Most of the time you will see a lion or lion pride on your safari. Great places to see a large lion pride is the Savuti, Chobe National Park, in northern Botswana.

Best National Park to see Lions are Moremi Game Reserve and Chobe National Park in Botswana. Also, the Central Kalahari Game Reserve is a good place for taking pictures of lions. There you can discover the rare black manned Kalahari Lion.

About 10,000 years earlier, lions were also discovered in Eurasia and America. With time, some species ended up being extinct. So when you leave on your African safari, learn about the several subspecies of lions and take a look at the pictures of lions below to make sure you know which one you will be seeing.

There are just one species the Panthera leo but there are several subspecies of lions which you might unknown about. These include:

  • The Asiatic lion (Panthera leo persica)
  • The Barbary lion (Panthera leo leo)
  • The West African lion or Senegal lion (Panthera leo senegalensis)
  • The Congo lion or Northeast Congo lion (Panthera leo azandica)
  • The Masai lion or East African lion (Panthera leo nubica)
  • The Southwest African lion or Katanga lion (Panthera leo bleyenberghi)
  • The Transvaal lion or Southeast African lion (Panthera leo krugeri)
  • The Cape Lion (Panthera leo melanochaita)
  • The Ethiopian lion or Addis Ababa lion or Abyssinian lion (Panthera leo roosevelti)
  • White lion (Panthera leo krugeri)
  • Kalahari Lion (Panthera leo vernayi)

 

Pictures of Lions in Southern Parts of Africa

  • The Transvaal Lion or Southeast African Lion (Panthera leo krugeri)

The Southeast African lion (Panthera leo krugeri), also known as the Transvaal lion or the Kalahari lion found in the southern parts of Africa with significant populations in South Africa, Kruger National Park, and Swaziland Hlane Royal National Park. It has a well-developed, full mane and is black-maned also.

The length of males ranges approximately 8.5 feet to 10.5 feet (2.6 – 3.2 meters) while females attain a length approximately 7.7 feet to 9.0 feet (2.35 – 2.75 meters). The males weigh approximately 150 to 250 kg (331 – 551 lbs), while the females weigh approximately 110 to 180 kg (242 – 397 lbs). It is also found in the Kalahari region and the Kruger National Park.

Pictures of Lions – Male Transvaal Lion (Panthera leo krugeri)

Pictures of lions - The male Transvaal Lion

Pictures of Lions – Female Transvaal Lion (Panthera leo krugeri)

Pictures of lions - Females Transvaal Lion (Panthera leo krugeri)

Pictures of Lions – Young Transvaal Lions (Panthera leo krugeri)

Pictures of lions - Young Transvaal Lions (Panthera leo krugeri)

  • White Lion (Panthera leo krugeri)

The white lion (Panthera leo krugeri) is a rare color mutation of the Timbavati area. White lions belong to the same species as the Southeast African or Transvaal lion. A normal Transvaal lioness sometimes can give birth to white lions. This appearance is due to a condition, called Leucism, which happens only in this subspecies. It typically found in South Africa.

White lions (Panthera leo krugeri) have a smaller chance of survival in the wild as they could be spotted easily by the prey. For this reason, white lions are very rare and mostly found in zoos, sanctuaries and other protected areas. Their color might range from blond to off-white to white. They are found in the Lory Park Zoo in South Africa, the Kingdom of Zion in New Zealand, the Karachi Zoo in Pakistan, the Belgrade Zoo in Serbia, and so on.

Pictures of Lions – Male White Lion (Panthera leo krugeri)

Pictures of lions - White Lion

Pictures of Lions – Female White Lion with Cubs (Panthera leo krugeri)

Pictures of lions - Female White Lion with Cubs (Panthera leo krugeri)

Pictures of Lions – Young White Lions (Panthera leo krugeri)

Pictures of lions - Young White Lions (Panthera leo krugeri)

  • The Kalahari Lion (Panthera leo vernayi)

The Kalahari lion (Panthera leo vernayi) was to be a lion subspecies native to the Kalahari Region in Southwest Africa. The Kalahari lion is known for their majestic size and beautiful black manes. 

They have a lower body weight as compared with their counterparts, and this helps them to hunt faster, making their bodies agile and swift. They are known to hunt during the night due to the cooler temperatures and availability of prey. 

It is certainly unfortunate that these strong and handsome big cats are becoming an endangered, thanks to the extensive poaching and hunting activities are undertaken by the mankind. In an attempt to protect these majestic animals from further harm and extinct, lots of organizations are taking efforts to pass legislation and enforcing the prohibition on hunting lion. 

Pictures of Lions – Male Kalahari Lions (Panthera leo vernayi)

Pictures of lions - The Male Kalahari Lion (Panthera leo vernayi)

Pictures of Lions – Male & Female Kalahari Lion (Panthera leo vernayi)

Pictures of lions - Male & Female Kalahari Lion (Panthera leo vernayi)

Pictures of Lions – Young Kalahari Lion (Panthera leo vernayi)

Pictures of lions - Young Kalahari Lion (Panthera leo vernayi)

  • The Katanga Lion or Southwest African Lion (Panthera leo bleyenberghi)

The Katanga Lion (Panthera leo bleyenberghi) was to be a lion subspecies native to Southwestern Africa. It is found in western Zambia and Zimbabwe, Angola, Zaire, and so on. It is one of the largest lion subspecies. 

The length of males ranges approximately 8.2 feet to 10.2 feet (2.5 – 3.1 meters) while females have a length approximately 7.5 feet to 8.7 feet (2.3 – 2.65 meters). Males weigh about 140 to 242 kg (308 – 534 lbs) while females weigh about 105 to 170 kg (231 – 375 lbs). The Katanga lion has lighter manes than their counterparts.

Pictures of Lions – Male Katanga Lion (Panthera leo bleyenberghi)

Pictures of lions - Katanga Lion or Southwest African Lion

Pictures of Lions – Female Katanga Lion (Panthera leo bleyenberghi)

Pictures of lions - Female Katanga Lion (Panthera leo bleyenberghi)

Pictures of Lions – Young Katanga Lion (Panthera leo bleyenberghi)

Pictures of lions - Young Katanga Lion (Panthera leo bleyenberghi)

  • The Cape Lion (Panthera leo melanochaita)

The Cape Lion (Panthera leo melanochaita) is totally extinct. It was closely related to the Kalahari lion, or a former population of Transvaal lion (Panthera leo krugeri). This lion subspecies was not the only one living in South Africa. Its stronghold was Cape Province and around Capetown. In the year 2000, some lions were found in captivity in Russia and claimed to be Cape Lion (Panthera leo melanochaita), were brought to South Africa for the purpose of planned breeding.

This black-maned lion ranged along the Cape of Africa on the southern tip of the African continent. It was thought about to be the heaviest of all lions apparently, it weighed near to 500 pounds (227 kg) and was around 10 feet (3 meters) in length. 

Pictures of Lions – Male Cape Lion (Panthera leo melanochaita)

Pictures of lions - The Male Cape Lion (Panthera leo melanochaitus)

Pictures of Lions – Female Cape Lion (Panthera leo melanochaita)

Pictures of lions - Female Cape Lion (Panthera leo melanochaita)

Cape Lion Cub (Panthera leo melanochaita)

Pictures of lions - Young Cape Lion (Panthera leo melanochaita)

Pictures of Lions in Northern Parts of Africa

  • The Barbary Lion (Panthera leo leo)

The Barbary lion (Panthera leo leo) is also known as the North African lion as well as called the Nubian lion and Atlas lion. It is thought about to be a lion subspecies native to the Atlas Mountain of North Africa, that why it is also called the Atlas lion. This subspecies previously occurred in Egypt, Algeria, Morocco, and Tunisia.

Barbary lions are the largest of the lion subspecies, with males approximately 400 to 550 lbs (181 – 250 kg) and females approximately 300 to 410 lbs (136 – 186 kg), its length (head to tail) ranged 9 to 11 feet (2.74 – 3.35 meters) in length. It is usually considered extinct in the wild since records depict that a few of the last barbary lions were killed somewhere in between the 1950s and 1960s.

Pictures of Lions – Male Barbary Lion (Panthera leo leo)

Pictures of lions - The Male barbary lion (Panthera leo leo)

Pictures of Lions – Female Barbary Lion (Panthera leo leo)

Pictures of Lions - Female barbary lion (Panthera leo leo)

Pictures of Lions – Young Barbary Lions (Panthera leo leo)

Pictures of lions - Young Barbary Lions

  • The Congo lion or Northeast Congo lion (Panthera leo azandica)

The Congo lion or Northeast Congo lion (Panthera leo azandica) also called the Uganda lion is found in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and parts of western Uganda. This lion species are protected in the Uganda’s Queen Elizabeth National Park and Virunga National Park in the DRC.

They life span for about 10 – 14 years in the wild and inhabit the grassland areas. Like many African lions, the Northeast Congo lion is also an endangered species and the reason is a loss of the habitat. These lion subspecies are presently extinct in Rwanda where it once existed.

Pictures of Lions – Male Congo lion (Panthera leo azandica)

Pictures of Lions - The Male Congo lion

Pictures of Lions – Female Congo lion (Panthera leo azandica)

Pictures of lions - Female Congo Lion (Panthera leo azandica)

Congo Lion Cubs (Panthera leo azandica)

Pictures of lions - Young Congo Lions

 

Pictures of Lions in Eastern Parts of Africa

  • The Masai lion or East African lion (Panthera leo nubica)

The Masai lion or East African lion (Panthera leo nubica) is found in East Africa where it occurs in the countries of Kenya, Tanzania, Ethiopia, and Mozambique. The Masai lion is described as being from Nubia, and has longer legs and less curvy backs than other lion species. 

The male Masai lion living in highlands above 2,600 feet (792 meters), and have heavier manes than lions in the lowland areas. Males are usually 8.2 to 9.8 feet (2.5 – 3.0 meters) long (head to tail) and have a variety of mane styles. Females are smaller with length ranging from 7.5 to 8.5 feet (2.3 – 2.6 meters). Males and females have a shoulder height of 3.0 to 3.6 feet (0.9 – 1.10 meter). In weight, males are usually 320 to 452 pounds (145 – 205 kg), and females are 220 to 364 pounds (100 – 165 kg).

Pictures of Lions – Male Masai lions (Panthera leo nubica)

Pictures of lions - The Male Masai lion (Panthera leo nubica)

Pictures of Lions – Female Masai lions (Panthera leo nubica)

Pictures of lions - Panthera leo nubica

Pictures of Lions – Young Masai lions (Panthera leo nubica)

Pictures of lions - Young Masai lions

  • The Ethiopian lion or Abyssinian lion (Panthera leo roosevelti)

The Ethiopian lion (Panthera leo roosevelti), also called the Abyssinian lion or Addis Ababa lion is a type of lion that though originally considered to be the East African lion. These lion species are classified as a separate subspecies after genotypic and phenotypic analysis on lion kept in captivity in the Addis Ababa zoo.

The Ethiopian lion is native to Ethiopia and has some characteristics various from other lions. These lion species has darker manes and smaller bodies compared with other lion subspecies, however, this can also be the result of living in captivity.

Pictures of Lions – Male Ethiopian lion (Panthera leo roosevelti)

Pictures of lions - The Male Ethiopian lion

Pictures of Lions – Male & Female Ethiopian lion (Panthera leo roosevelti)

Pictures of lions - Male & Female Ethiopian lion (Panthera leo roosevelti)

Ethiopian lion Cub (Panthera leo roosevelti)

Pictures of lions - Ethiopian lion cub (Panthera leo roosevelti)

 

Pictures of Lions in Western Africa

  • The Senegal Lion or West African Lion (Panthera leo senegalensis)

The Senegal lion (Panthera leo senegalensis) was considered a lion subspecies native to Western Africa; it is also called the West African lion. The Senegal lion is the smallest one of the sub-Saharan African lions. Their populations are small and fragmented, comprised only about 1,800 individuals in West and Central Africa and are considered to become one of the most endangered species. These Male lion subspecies have smaller manes and their skull size is also smaller compared with other subspecies.  

Pictures of Lions – Male Senegal Lion (Panthera leo senegalensis)

Pictures of lions - Male Senegal Lion

Pictures of Lions – Male & Female Senegal Lion (Panthera leo senegalensis)

Pictures of lions - Male & Female Senegal lion (Panthera leo senegalensis)

Pictures of Lions – Young Senegal Lion (Panthera leo senegalensis)

Pictures of lions - Young Senegal lion (Panthera leo senegalensis)

 

Pictures of Lions in Southwest Asia

  • The Asiatic lion (Panthera leo persica)

The Asiatic Lion (Panthera leo persica) is the closest relative to the Barbary lion and is also called as the Persian lion or Indian lion. These lion subspecies are the only surviving in Asia and it inhabits a small deciduous forest range in India’s Gujarat State.

The Asiatic lion has slightly smaller size than the African lion and has a less developed mane and their ears are always visible. Only about 523 of this lion subspecies remain in this forest. 

The Asiatic lion also exhibits less genetic variation than the African lion subspecies. The weight of adult male Asiatic lion approximately 350 to 420 pounds (159 kg – 190 kg) while that of females ranges from 242 to 265 pounds (110 – 120 kg).

A longitudinal fold of skin running along the belly is the most striking morphological character that helps in the identification of the Asiatic lion. These lion species are classified as endangered by the IUCN.  

Pictures of Lions – Male & Female Asiatic Lion (Panthera leo persica)

Pictures of lions - Male & Female Asiatic Lion

Pictures of Lions – Female Asiatic Lion (Panthera leo persica)

Pictures of lions - Female Asiatic Lion (Panthera leo persica)

Pictures of Lions – Young Asiatic Lion (Panthera leo persica)

Pictures of lions - Young Asiatic Lion (Panthera leo persica)

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