Etosha National Park, Namibia, Africa

Beautiful lion cub standing on a big branch focusing on its siblings. This cub is getting ready to pounce on its siblings with a large jump.

copyright Anette Mossbacher, 11 September, 2020

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This photograph was captured with a X-H1 and a lens. The following settings were used:

  • Aperture: ƒ/8
  • Exposure time: 1/1700s
  • ISO: 2500
  • Focal Length: 436.8mm

The original photograph has the following dimensions: 5525 by 3683 pixels (WxH).

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‘Lion Cub Standing On Branch’ shows the moments before the cub pounces on its brothers and sisters. The lion is predominantly on the right-hand side of the photograph. The lions’ gaze is facing to the left of the photograph, leading our eyes to that side and ultimately balancing out the composition.

The lion cub standing on the branch is a tactic to gain leverage and assert dominance over its’ siblings. When it is time for the lioness to give birth, she will go to a private, dense location and have her cubs. She will keep them hidden for 1 – 2 months until she introduces them to the rest of the pride. Generally, lion cubs weigh around 1,5 kg / 3.3 lbs once born. Lion cubs are born with brown spots. However, they fade as they get older and eventually disappear.

Interestingly, all the lactating females of the pride will let any cub suckle. Not only their offspring. That is because they want to ensure their own genes’ success bypassing her milk onto her sisters’ cubs. As you can see in ‘Lion Cub Standing On Branch’, pretend to pounce, and rough playing with siblings is a valuable life skill cubs must learn. Their hunting skills will have fully developed by the time they are two years old.

The lion, Panthera Leo, is in category vulnerable in the IUCN red list.

For more stunning African wildlife photographs, take a glance at our African portfolio.

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