About the Author

Nick Sims

Alumni Field Guide

Nick was a ranger at Londolozi from 2018 - 2022. He always had a love for nature. Growing up in Johannesburg, the annual family trip to the bush (particularly the Kruger Lowveld region of South Africa) became an escape from city life. When ...

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on How Old is That Lion? Part 3

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Nick, it is interesting that a male lions mane get dàrker or blacker as it age. In the Kalahari region the males have got black manes. They are also called the black maned Kalahari lions. Apparently there is not a genetic difference to the other lions in Africa. The thinking is that because it is such a harsh environment that they live and survive in, that they have got more testoterone levels, and that it is only the biggest and strongest males that survive in those conditions.

i always learn something from the blog. Tracing the growth of lion manes as the mane shows age and strength! fascinating. Thank you, Victoria

Very beautifully written and informative thank you! They truly are kings

Nick, I saved lion🤗, and I also saved the lions by the truck🤗

Very interesting read …. I have one cat, a Maine Coon, and he has a very impressive mane ….I should say “had” because I had him neutered for his own health and safety and we have a very serious number of stray cats here on Long Island … we don’t need any more for their sakes and ours …his mane lost its fullness and beauty once he was neutered. I understand now ….Lions are so spectacular….and so is my wonderful Minx….even though is Mane is not as dramatic!!!! Thanks for the article … I enjoyed reading it.

This has been a fascinating series Nick so thank you. It seems that identifying the age of male lions is much easier than that of females because of the mane development, whereas with the females, one would have to be close enough to really study their features, looking at their teeth and noses. I still think watching the antics of 8-12 weeks old cubs is the icing on the lion cake-I can’t stop smiling!!

Indeed the Ottawa male looks just magnificent. Beautiful and impressive. The Majingilane male lion looks to me like an old gentleman, past his prime, but still someone who demands respect for everything he has achieved during his life. As you write so aptly, he has left a legacy.

Nick, what happens to the older male lions once they reach the last 1-2 years of their life? Is the threat mainly from other males, hyaenas, etc?

Hi Bob and Lucie
That is correct, the biggest threat to an old male lion that has left the pride would be other male lione, hyaenas and starvation.

Thanks for this interesting 3rd part of the series on determining the age of a lion. I will never make it over to go on a safari Nick, but I do like to watch your virtual ones and read the blogs. The male lions have a tough life don’t they. Be well and stay safe to all at Londolozi.

Thanks Nick, This has been a great series!

Nick, thanks for the informative read. Is the Birmingham Males still alive and in the territory?

Senior Digital Ranger

Can you guys help the Tsalasa female and new cub, the min with food here and there she’s all alone and bringing that pride back would be great

Great series Nick, and I absolutely love your affirmed belief that “…a male lion’s mane makes him look pretty hardcore!” Lions of Londolozi ROCK!!!

Thanks Nick, that’s very informative! I loved the perspective you put on the older lion too as I would have a tendency to feel bad for them as the deteriorate but maybe now will feel like that Lion survived and lived a great life!

Very fascinating and written so well. My thanks

Senior Digital Ranger

How do you not know the purpose of give, Nick. It’s as simple as a man’s beard😄 When you don’t have it=you’re a kid. When you’re sticking out a few hairs= you’re funny. When it fills in= you’re interesting. When it grows out that you have to shave regularly= every girl wants to kiss you! But when you let she grows up without shaving her in time, ladys won’t kiss you because she stings like a cactus. And when she releases it to a length of 1m= then it serves to collect food. (! Maybe the old lions should repurpose it){It’s not a bad thing to be late reading articles. You can comment on insanity and no one will see it. Lol}

Senior Digital Ranger

*purpose of the mane..

PS they are all striking but i particularly love the old Majingilane

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