Cats give birth to babies called kittens, dog babies are called puppies, and in the same way, when lions give birth to their offspring, the baby lion is called a cub. But what facts or interesting points make a cub so unique across the animal kingdom?
Lion cubs often symbolize innocence, strength, and family values. Cubs are some of the most adorable members of the animal kingdom. Whether lions, tigers, or cheetahs, cubs are universally cute and beloved by many. The bond between a mother and her cub is powerful and can be seen across all species of Panthera leo.
In this article, we’ll look at some interesting facts regarding the adorable and cute lion babies, or cubs, that you surely don’t want to miss.
- 10 Fascinating Facts About Lion Cubs
- Final Thoughts On Baby Lions
10 Fascinating Facts About Lion Cubs
Lions are the “king of the jungle,” but baby lions, or cubs, are born helpless.
The mother takes care of her young for the first few weeks until they can open their eyes and move on their own.
1. Introduction To The Family
Lion cubs are kept away from all the pride members until they can walk independently. When cubs are first born, they are typically only introduced to the pride after 6-7 weeks.
The mother will introduce her new cubs to the rest of the pride, allowing them to become familiar with each other and become accustomed to living together.
Cubs usually stay close to their mothers until they reach six months old.
2. Lion Cubs Are Born Blind
Like most feline species, lion cubs are born blind and only open their eyes around seven days after birth. During this time, the mother lion will stay by her cub’s side to protect them from predators.
Their eyesight slowly develops until they can see well enough to recognize their surroundings. Cubs start crawling a day or two after they are born.
3. Weight of New Born Cubs
When cubs are born, they are usually in a litter range of one to six, with two to four being the most common.
Each cub weighs between 1.2 and 2.1 kg (2.6-4.6 pounds). They are small, fragile, and very lightweight.
The cubs will be nursed and fed by their mother until they can feed themselves and gain most of their weight through the first few years of life.
4. A Cub’s First Hike
Cubs usually start to walk around two weeks of age. Their legs are still very wobbly at this stage, and they must learn the proper coordination of muscles and joints needed for walking.
Cubs may even take a few steps before falling as they fumble with their new-found abilities.
Over time, cubs become more confident in walking and start running by the age of 1 month.
5. The Cub’s First Feast
When cubs reach the age of three months, they are introduced to a raw meat diet.
This is the age when they start to lose their baby teeth, making it easier for them to chew and digest the tougher texture of meat.
Cubs are usually weaned off their mother’s milk around this time, so they can begin eating.
6. Learning To Hunt
After six weeks of age, Cubs start to observe their mother and how they hunt very closely. They usually begin to learn how to hunt when they are around 11 months of age.
At this stage, their mothers will start teaching them the basics of hunting, such as tracking and stalking prey, pouncing on a target, and interpreting signs from other pride members.
Cubs typically join the hunt at the age of 2 years, after which they can go with other pride members to hunt in the wild.
7. Lions Cubs Fur Spots
Baby lions have a unique feature, their beautiful fur spots. Lions cubs are born with tawny-colored fur, which is covered with darker rosettes.
These spots act as camouflage and help the cubs stay hidden from predators. The fur spots gradually fade when the cub is fully grown and has reached adulthood.
8. Cubs Day Time Activities
During their first couple of months, lion cubs will spend most of the day with their mothers and siblings, sleeping and nursing. As they grow, cubs will play and explore with their siblings.
Cubs can spend up to 20 hours a day sleeping, but they are also active during the day and will spend time playing with each other, climbing trees, chasing one another, and pouncing on their family members.
As they age and learn to hunt, they will accompany their mothers and their pride when searching for food. At night cubs will sleep in a den made by the mother as a safe spot for her young.
9. Relation of Cubs With Male Lions
Male lions usually don’t provide food to the cubs as it’s the responsibility of the lioness. The relationship between cubs and the male lions in a pride is complex.
In most cases, the male lion serves as both protector and disciplinarian to his cubs, ensuring their safety and teaching them how to survive in the wild.
The male lion will usually lead the pride when traveling and defend them against predators or other lions that may attack the pride.
10. Male Cubs Leave The Pride When They Mature
Male cubs typically leave their pride when they reach sexual maturity, usually around three years old.
At this stage, young males will often face competition from adult males who have recently joined the pride and are looking to establish themselves as the dominant male.
The older lions in the pride kick them out due to the high competition and a fear of losing the dominance of these newly matured males.
As a result, these young males wander around and try to take over other prides by fighting the dominant males.
Final Thoughts On Baby Lions
Lions cubs have to go through a series of learning processes until they are mature. Lion cubs are incredibly cute and full of energy. Though they may look small and harmless, these cubs are the future of the lion kingdom.
They quickly adapt to their environment and learn how to survive in the wild from their mothers. The male lions serve as both protectors and disciplinarians of the cubs, teaching them important skills they will need to survive in the wild.
By the time they are ready to leave their pride, lion cubs have developed all the skills needed to become independent predators. With dedication and practice, these cubs will eventually become the dominant males and females in the lion kingdom.
What Are Lion Babies Called?
Lion babies are called cubs.
How Do Lions Take Care Of Their Cubs?
Lionesses are very protective of their cubs and take responsibility for raising them. The mother lion will always keep her cubs close to her and ensure they are safe. She will hunt for food, bring it back to feed them, and teach them how to hunt when they get older.
Are Lion Cubs Born Blind?
Yes, lion cubs are born blind and cannot fully see even after they open their eyes. It takes them 3-4 weeks to fully see the surroundings and get used to their vision.