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Amy Attenborough


Amy worked at Londolozi from 2014 to 2017, guiding full time before moving into the media department, where her photographic and story-telling skills shone through. Her deep love of all things wild and her spiritual connection to Africa set her writing and guiding ...

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on Video: Lion Mating Behaviour Made Simple

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Great video Amy. The Matimba male is magnificent.


Who do you suppose is the Dominant Male between Hairy Belly and Ginger?!Now how does the Male Lion detect that the Lioness is ready to Mate during the by using the flehmen grimace and yet she is faking to be on heat at this immediate time for the safety of the cubs!Does the Male not realize that she is not ready for Mating?!

Hi Tim. We think that the darker-maned male is the more dominant of the two as he always seems to get mating rights first. In terms of flehmen, it seems the male is unable to detect if the female is in false oestrus or not. Ovulation is typically induced by the act of mating in cats but despite her behaviour suggesting that she is ready to mate, she is most likely not in the correct part of her oestrus cycle to actually conceive. Lionesses, like most other mammals, are not ovulating the entire time they are in oestrus so any single breeding act might not result in pregnancy if there are no eggs ready when the mating occurs. Also mating needs to be a long and continuous affair in order for ovulation to be stimulated and conception to be achieved. Research shows that the pair will mate about 160 times in a 55 hour period and mating normally lasts for about four days in order for conception to occur. If the female leaves the male after just a day or two, giving the pride a small window period to escape, chances are that she will not have been able to conceive during this time.

Hi Amy,is the tsalala female big,she seems above avarage in size

Scar, she is an average size lioness. Nothing too large.

Thank you for the time,i was just curious because she didnt seem completely dwarfed by hairy belly. Anyway how much would you have estimated hairy belly to weigh around that time? Thanks

I sadly never saw Hairy belly in his prime so it would be a guess, but he was a fairly large male and probably weighed around 220kg.

Thanks,did you ever get to see his paw tracks and how long they were,and when you saw him was it recent like 2020? Again thanks for taking the time.


clever lionesses . and thank God for them


Very smart Tsalala lionesses! Let’s hope they can keep their cubs safe. Thanks for the update Amy.


Great photos. Let’s wait and hope for healthy cubs.

Wonderful video-

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