These 6 - 8-month old playmates are not siblings.
Lionesses in a pride often synchronise their reproductive cycles. In doing so, they mate and birth their cubs at about the same time.
Reproductive synchronization facilitates the communal rearing of cubs. Infants in a pride are at liberty to suckle indiscriminately from any of the pride’s nursing females. How cool is that?
It also prevents suckling cubs from being completely dominated by older cubs. Such domination can lead to malnourishment
Most importantly, same-sized cubs have about equal chances of survival in an environment in which the odds are heavily stacked against them. In Tanzania’s Serengeti where I made this photograph, mortality in cubs below 2 years may exceed 86%.
Growing up does not end their dilemmas. Lion admirers now have fresh reason to whine.
Just last month, South Africa stunned conservationists by announcing an increase in the quota of lion bones for legal export.
Without offering scientific evidence to support its decision, Pretoria’s Department of Environmental Affairs announced that 1,500 lion skeletons may now be legally exported from the country each year. The old quota was 800.
The far East - especially Laos, China and Vietnam - is the main market for lion bones. They are steeped in distilled spirits to produce herbal remedies like lion bone wine.
Traditionally, tiger bones were used in the manufacture of this concoction. With tigers becoming increasingly rare in the wild due to hunting and habitat loss, lion bones have become an acceptable substitute.
Don’t know about you but some of this stuff makes me want to slowly, but firmly bash my head against the nearest wall.
Story credits to https://www.instagram.com/dejiiam