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Title : Facts about Asiatic Lion Previous topic PreviousNext Next topic

Asiatic Lion, known scientifically as Panthera Leo persica, is a subspecies of the lion found only in the Indian subcontinent. Asiatic Lion, also known as the Indian Lion, is found only in the Gir National Park of India.Asian lions and African lions are subspecies of the same species. The royal animal is also known as the Indian Lion and has a population of somewhere around 350. Asiatic Lion has also been depicted on the National Emblem of India.Asiatic lions are slightly smaller than African lions.

The most striking morphological character, which is always seen in Asiatic lions, but rarely in African lions, is a longitudinal fold of skin running along its belly. The Asiatic Lion grows to a height of approximately 3.5ft(110cm), with their length ranging from 200 - 280cm. Their long and hard tails grow to an additional length of 60 - 90cm. Lions can weigh in at between 200 - 275kgs, while females weigh 110 to 120 kg (240 to 260 lb.).The record total length of a male Asiatic lion is 2.92 m (115 in) including the tail.

In the wild, male lions live about 12 years, while females live about 15. Zoo lions can live longer, into their 20s.

Their breeding season is timed along with the onset of winter in the months of October and November.Female lions mate about every two years, giving birth to one to six cubs after a three-and-half-month gestation period. The lionesses breed on an average of every two years and are ready to have their first lot of babies around the age of 30 - 36 months.Females cooperate in raising a pride's cubs.

Prides can have as many as 40 individuals, including adult females, sub-adults (about 2 to 4 years old), cubs and one or two attached male lions.

Lions, unlike the tiger, hunt in groups. They collectively stalk their prey and have been commonly seen applying strategies that would do any army commander proud. Very often some of the females pinpoint a particular individual prey and chase it in the direction of other lionesses waiting in ambush. The prey is mostly killed by a quick, powerful bite to the spine or with the help of a classic choke grip, with the strong jaws of the lion cutting off air supply to the lungs.

Male lions roam in groups, usually made up of related individuals, and search for prides to take over. Males typically only live in a pride for two to three years before being forced out by another group.

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