Africa Loop / Main Path
Originally suitable habitat throughout Africa; today limited to sub-Saharan Africa
On average, an adult male lion stands about 4 feet at the shoulder and is 5.6 to 6.3 feet long. Average weights vary from 330 to 550 lbs. Tail length averages 3.3 feet long. Females are considerably smaller and weigh less than 300 lbs. Adult lions usually have a plain unspotted coat, light brown to dark ochre in color. Cubs are marked with spots, which sometimes persist on the legs and belly until they are full-grown. Male lions have a brown mane, which tends to grow darker and fuller as the animal ages. The tail has a black tuft at the end. “White” lions occasionally occur in the Transvaal region of southern Africa, but these are not true albinos.