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You are here: Lions

LionsPanthera leo

Family: Felidae
Subfamily: Pantherinae
Conservation Status: Vulnerable
Habitat: Africa and Asia

The lion is the second largest of the big cats. Lions currently live primarily in sub-Saharan Africa with a small, endangered population of Asian lions live in India's Gir Forest. Lions are the most social of any cat species, they live in family groups called prides. Most of the females in a pride are related with one or sometimes several adult male lions. Lions are also the only cat that is sexually dimorphic - meaning the males and females are easy to tell apart, primarily because of the large mane of the male.

Lions are apex predators - they reside at the top of the food chain with only humans as threats. Even though lions have the strength in body and in numbers to take down large prey including even giraffes and elephants, they prefer to scavenge whenever they have the opportunity. They often will take kills away from other predators and scavengers like cheetahs, leopards, and hyenas.

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