Ultimate Enemies

Ultimate Enemies

Video. A small pride of lions bands together to survive.

Grades

6 - 12

Subjects

Biology

Program
Big Cats Initiative

Animals exhibit specific physical and behavioral adaptations which increase their chances of survival. For example, lions live in family units called prides. The pride is an important community that provides its members with food, protection, and territory. Lions are the only big cats that live in social groups. Other big cats live solitary lives, except when breeding or raising cubs. A lion pride may include up to three males, a dozen females, and their young. All of a pride's female lionesses and cubs are typically related. Young males leave the pride when they are two or three years old and attempt to take over another male's pride. The social structure of the pride is based on specific roles. Lionesses are the primary hunters, while dominant males are responsible for protecting the pride's territory. Lions are fierce predators that often stalk their prey before attacking. Their attacks cause their prey to panic and disperse. Then the lions can isolate and attack a weaker or slower individual. Lion prey includes antelopes, zebras, wildebeest, buffalo, and other grassland animals. These animals are often larger and faster than an individual lion. By hunting together, lions are able to exhaust and kill their prey. Sometimes lions scavenge or steal from other predators like cheetahs or hyenas.

Media Credits

The audio, illustrations, photos, and videos are credited beneath the media asset, except for promotional images, which generally link to another page that contains the media credit. The Rights Holder for media is the person or group credited.

Writer
Angela M. Cowan, Education Specialist and Curriculum Designer
Editors
Julie Brown, National Geographic Society
Elizabeth Wolzak, National Geographic Society
Expert Reviewer
Dr. Luke Dollar, Conservation Scientist
National Geographic Program
Big Cats Initiative
Producer
Alison Michel
other
Last Updated

September 27, 2022

For information on user permissions, please read our Terms of Service. If you have questions about licensing content on this page, please contact ngimagecollection@natgeo.com for more information and to obtain a license. If you have questions about how to cite anything on our website in your project or classroom presentation, please contact your teacher. She or he will best know the preferred format. When you reach out to him or her, you will need the page title, URL, and the date you accessed the resource.

Media

If a media asset is downloadable, a download button appears in the corner of the media viewer. If no button appears, you cannot download or save the media.

Text

Text on this page is printable and can be used according to our Terms of Service.

Interactives

Any interactives on this page can only be played while you are visiting our website. You cannot download interactives.

Related Resources