Etosha National Park, Namibia, Africa

The lioness and cub are resting on green grass together on each other’s sides. Both animals, lioness, and cub, look into the sky. Something unusual must have caught their attention.

copyright Anette Mossbacher, 6 April, 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: 1/1500s
  • ISO: 4000
  • Focal Length: 560mm

The original photograph has the following dimensions: 6000 by 4000 pixels (WxH).

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Background

A lioness and cub are resting on the green grass on each other’s side. Something unusual must have caught their eyes. Both animals, lioness, and cub, look into the sky. They are lying on the edge of a small water hole. Behind the remarkable lions is a large tree trunk. One piece of this bright trunk is just above the two lion heads. Further in the back, you see the water of the waterhole, surrounded by green grass.

When the lionesses introduce their cubs to the pride, the other lionesses will nurse and care for those cubs too. It is genuinely communal care. However, if a lioness already has cubs in the pride that are three months older, another mother will not introduce her younger cubs to the members. Due to communal nursing, the older and stronger cubs will not let the smaller cubs drink milk. That behavior causes most of the time, death. Therefore, the lioness and cubs will stay away from their pride. Unfortunately, the majority of lion cubs do not make it to their first birthday.

The father does not take care of his cubs; however, he will protect them from danger. The mother is in charge of teaching her cubs how to hunt. Hunting lessons for the cubs begin when they are about three months old.

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

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