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Lion in Masai Mara National Reserve. Javier Yanes/
'Panthera leo'
Swahili: Simba

Best parks to see it: Masai Mara

Lions live in open woods, thornbush and savannah. They are the only social cats. Their territorial prides are composed of related females and their cubs, together with some males that can be related among them, but not to the females. Young males leave their pride and become nomadic until they have their own pride, usually by ousting other males. Males live up to 12 years, and females can live 15-20 years.

During daytime, lions can be found resting at shaded places, usually near wide plains and not far from the water. They can climb to trees and vantage points like rocky outcrops or mounds. Prey killing is done mostly by females, at dusk, dawn or by night. Sometimes they will scavenge prey killed by other predators. They will rarely attack man unless to protect their cubs.
Lion in Masai Mara National Reserve. J.Y./


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