african lion

Panthera leo

Body Length:Males: 5'7"–8'2";  Females: 3'–5'9"
Tail Length:Males: 39–41"; Females: 27–39"
Height:Males: 49"; Females: 42"
Weight:Males: 330 to 550 lbs; Females: 260—400 lbs
Geographic Distribution:Southern Sahara to South Africa
Habitat:Grassy plains, savannahs, open woodlands, and scrub country
Wild Diet:Animals in the 100- to 650-pound range: wildebeests, impalas, antelope, young giraffes, buffalo, wild hogs, and zebras; they also scavenge, displacing other predators from their kills
Zoo Diet:Commercial "Nebraska Diet," plus chunk horse meat, shank bones, whole prey, and carcases as treats (guinea pigs, rats, rabbits, goats, and pigs)
Status in the Wild:Vulnerable
Location:Big Cats

African lions are sexually dimorphic (have two distinct gender forms). Males are larger and have a mane. Their fur is light tawny, with white on the belly and the inner side of the legs, while the back of their ears and their tail tip are black. The mane can be tawny to reddish-brown to black. Adult males usually have a dark mane on the head, neck, and shoulders, which offers protection to the neck during fights. Both sexes have a tuft of fur on the tip of the tail.