How many lions are in a pride?
Staying together in groups is one distinctive feature that sets lions apart from the other big cats. This close-knit family of lions is called a pride. They hunt and stay together. But how many lions are in a pride? There is no definite answer to this question because it differs according to the lion’s geographical habitat. For instance, an Asian lion pride is usually smaller in number than its African counterparts.
A pride of African lions may have a maximum of three male lions. Among them, the eldest is the head of the pride. He leads the group for hunting. However, their tenure as the head usually lasts for very few years. Within three to four years, his position will be in threat. Soon, other younger lions from the same pride or other pride will defeat him and take his place.
In the case of the Asian lion subspecies, a pride generally has only one male lion. Sometimes, the male lion lives solitarily and joins the pride only when mating. The male doesn’t protect or watch over the pride like his African equivalent. He doesn’t bother about how many lions are in a pride.
In a lion pride, the lioness is usually more in number. In the case of African lions, a pride can even have a dozen number of lioness members. When hunting, the female lions join the male lion in strategically catching their prey. During such hunts, how many lions are in a pride can determine the type of animal they kill. For example, the collective effort of an enormous pride can even kill an elephant.
In the case of Asian female lions, they number around two to four in a pride. And as mentioned earlier, a pride can even consist of only these lionesses with their cubs. And male lions join the pride of female lions only to mate. Such is the case, mainly because the preys in the Asian countries are not large and strong like the African preys.
Therefore, the male lion doesn’t need the help of the female lions when hunting. And the male joins the pride only when he needs to mate. After which, the male lion usually departs again. On the other hand, the female lions remain together in a small pride to hunt together and help each other take care of the cubs.
The youngest members of the pride are the cubs. The number of cubs is usually around five to seven. Among them, the male cubs will usually leave the unit when they grow up. And the female cubs remain in the pride forever. However, in some cases, a pride can kick out a female lion just like how they do to their grown-up male lions.
Why do they stay in groups?
Almost all of the African animals are study and large. Nature has equipped them in such a manner.
Therefore, when lions hunt, they cannot do it on their own. It is primarily because the preys are strong, plus lions, in general, do not have such stamina. Thus, one of the significant reasons behind the need for pride formation is for the lions to hunt easily and eat their catch. Therefore, how many lions are in a pride can impact their hunting efficiency.
The other visible reason for a pride is the need for them to mate and reproduce more lions. The female lions and cubs also stay in a pride to protect the cubs from potential danger.