Strong Male Lion Climbing Up a Tree

Fascinating scene of strong male lion climbing up a tree.

The lion is one of the big cats in the genus Panthera and a member of the family Felidae. The commonly used term African lion collectively denotes the several subspecies in Africa. With some males exceeding 250 kg (550 lb) in weight, it is the second-largest living cat after the tiger. Wild lions currently exist in sub-Saharan Africa and in India. In ancient historic times, their range was in most of Africa, including North Africa, and across Eurasia from Greece and southeastern Europe to India. In the late Pleistocene, about 10,000 years ago, the lion was the most widespread large land mammal after humans. The lion is classified as a vulnerable species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, having seen a major population decline in its African range of 30–50% over two decades during the second half of the twentieth century. Lion populations are untenable outside designated reserves and national parks. Although the cause of the decline is not fully understood, habitat loss and conflicts with humans are the greatest causes of concern. Within Africa, the West African lion population is particularly endangered.
In the wild, males seldom live longer than 10 to 14 years, as injuries sustained from continual fighting with rival males greatly reduce their longevity. In captivity they can live more than 20 years. They typically inhabit savanna and grassland, although they may take to bush and forest.