Black-Maned Lion of the Kalahari
The black-maned lion (Panthera leo) is almost peculiar to the Kalahari area of Botswana. We were fortunate enough to come upon a pride with the male leader, 5 cubs, and 4 females. It was barely sunrise and the pride was returning from a nighttime kill of a wildebeest and feed. They were heading in for a well-earned nap. First the big male went ahead to make find a safe resting area, then he called a couple of the cubs to join him, and finally the rest of the pride came and they settled down for a nap. It was one of the most exciting things I've ever seen. At times we were within 30 feet of them in our open-topped vehicle.
The male lion sometimes exceed 550 pounds, making it the second-largest cat after the tiger.
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