Species Facts: Lions

Oh, this cat doesn’t need an introduction! Let’s just set out a few basic facts, focusing on some things about Leo that you might not have heard yet. For instance, did you know that the King of the Beasts is not actually the biggest cat out there?

When Is A Lion Not A Lion?

When its fossils might be those of another big cat. This is the case with “Panthera atrox”. It used to be called the American lion, and recent genetic studies support this. However, some experts disagree. And if you take out Atrox, lions’ historical range shrinks considerably. – a huge difference for conservationists today.

Two Big-Cat Attacks

The fact that cats are dangerous seems pretty self-evident.

Yet, last summer, visitors to a drive-through zoo still got out of their car near an uncaged tiger, with predictable results. 

This summer, a Kenyan man illegally grazed his herd in Nairobi National Park at night – prime lion activity time. They found what little was left of him the next morning.

Seen more closely, though, these incidents aren’t as simple as they seem.

For one thing, each happened in a big city – Beijing and Nairobi, respectively.