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Addo Lioness

Addo Lioness
Photo Information
Copyright: Loot Eksteen (loot) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5524 W: 722 N: 4163] (11276)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2011-10-03
Categories: Mammals
Camera: Canon PowerShot SX30 IS, Digital ISO 400
Exposure: f/5.8, 1/25 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Mammals of Southern Africa II, A study in Mammalogy (mammals) 1, Big Cats, CeltickRanger's favorite African animal photos 3 [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2012-04-10 18:38
Viewed: 12506
Points: 46
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Lioness - Panthera leo

We were looking at a herd of buffaloes that were feeding along the Mbotyl Loop, in the Addo Elephant National Park, when suddenly a black manned lion, 2 young males and this lioness appeared on the scene. The buffaloes were quick to react and formed a cordon to protect the cows and the young. Every time any of the lions came too close then 3 or 4 big bulls would come out of the herd and simply chase the lions away. I can promise you, Mr. Lion is very cat-foot for a storming buffalo bull. This yo-yo game went on for more than 45 minutes. Every time when the lions approached then the dominant bulls came out to 'play'. Then the lions retreat and the attacking buffalos fall back in to the herd. Eventually we decided to depart as it was clear to us that the lions were not going to enjoy an early breakfast.

Note the collar she is wearing. She was the only female in the pride of 4 lions that were trying to get a nibble at the buffalos. It was quite amusing to see how the buffaloes had the better of the lions on this occasion.

PS. If you click on the link in the first sentence you can see some of the other lions & a buffalo that were also present at the scene.

Taxonomic Classification

: Animalia (animals)
PHYLUM: Chordata (animals with a shared body plan having at some stage in their lives: a notochord, a dorsal neural cord, pharyngeal slits & a post anal tail)
SUBPHYLUM: Vertebrata (fishes, amphibians, reptiles, birds & mammals)
CLASS: Mammalia (mammals)
ORDER: Carnivora (placental, mostly meat-eating animals, with; teeth, claws & binocular vision)
FAMILY: Felidae (domestic & wild cats, tigers, lions, jaguars, leopards, cougars, cheetahs, servals, lynxes, caracals & ocelots)

Length: (M) 2.5-3.3m, (F) 2.3-2.7m.
Mass: (M) 150-250kg, (F) 120-182kg.

Lions are the second largest members of the feline family in the world. Lion are tan in colour and have a slightly white under-body, with a tuft of black hair at the end of their tails.

Most cat species live a fundamentally solitary existence, but the lion is an exception. It has developed a social system based on teamwork and a division of labour within the pride, and an extended but closed family unit centres around a group of related females. The average pride consists of about 15 individuals, including five to 10 females with their young and two or three territorial males that are usually brothers or pride mates.

Lions are found in savannahs, grasslands, dense bush and woodlands. Absent from true forest.

Lions are the only 'social' cats, whereby related female lions live together and form groups called 'prides'. Lion prides are family groups with all of the females related, mothers and daughters, sisters and cousins, etc.

A pride can range from three to 30 individuals, but tend to average about fifteen members, which include male and female lions plus a number of cubs. The number of lions in a pride will vary significantly based on the number of prey animals that live or migrate through the pride's territory.

Lions are opportunists when it comes to feeding. They will scavenge from other predators that have killed an animal, or will hunt animals ranging in size from the large African buffalo to a small hare.

Cubs are born after a gestation period of 110 days, with female lions giving birth in a den site, typically located in a rock outcrop or in dense vegetation. A female will on average give birth to three cubs that are between 1-2 kg's in weight.

Most lions now live in eastern and southern Africa, and their numbers there are rapidly decreasing, with an estimated 30-50% decline over the last two decades. The cause of the decline is not well-understood, and may not be reversible. Habitat loss and conflicts with humans are considered the most significant threats to the species.

Conservation of both African and Asian lions has required the setup and maintenance of national parks and game reserves; among the best known are Etosha National Park in Namibia, Serengeti National Park in Tanzania, and Kruger National Park in South Africa. Outside these areas, the issues arising from lions' interaction with livestock and people usually results in the elimination of the former.

Threatened: Vulnerable (VU) on the IUCN 3.1 Red List.


Post Processing was done with Adobe Photoshop CS2.

CeltickRanger, goatman04, soccer, aruntp, pirate, josediogo1958, Alex99, Miss_Piggy, Mamagolo2, pegos, ellis49, Pitoncle, Hotelcalifornia has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

Hello Loot

Welcome back to TN, your last photo was longtime ago !
Excellent and beautiful portrait of the Lioness,
fine POV, great focus sharpness and details,
with a beautiful expressive glance of the Queen of all animals,



Hello Loot,

All of us were missing you. And what a terrific return you have made with this far flung gaze (the meadow reflects in the eyes) of the lioness. Very nice mood captured. Ambient light & colours with details.


  • Great 
  • kabel Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 61 W: 0 N: 95] (552)
  • [2012-04-10 19:39]

Hello, Absolutely stunning and magnificent. The colors are perfect and your technical skills are also perrrrfect.

  • Great 
  • Athila Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 335 W: 239 N: 493] (1982)
  • [2012-04-10 20:16]

Bonsoir Loot,

As we say: Long time no see (sounds amerindian). Beautifull shot very sharp and well exposed. I love the cropping and the beautifull Bokeh on the BG. The light is very soft and the color balance perfect. NIce to see your images again. TFS.


Hello Loot,

A truly outstanding portrait with such fine coloration, sharpness & details.

Very nicely done & TFS.

Best wishes


  • Great 
  • soccer Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 587 W: 0 N: 655] (2557)
  • [2012-04-10 22:37]


Welcome back, I think we have both been absent for some time and have now "re-surfaced"!
An excelent portrait of the Lioness. I like the tight composition. The sharpness and detail are superb, with a good DOF, POV and BG. I like the contrast in colour between the subject and the BG too.

hi Loot,
how are you now? welcome back :)
in a portrait, the main points of attraction are subject's eyes and the depth in it. you are successful in that. next comes the the curves/ lines of the face. you are successful in that too.
tfs this lovely photograph.

excellent closeup of the lion species. good clarity, sharpness, contrast and lighting. tfs.

Good morning Loot Eksteen! Welcome back! I hope that your health has been improved and I sincerely wish to think that your presence here will be for long :)! As a relatively new member here I came in a time when you already left Treknature, so I had a chance to read only your responses, comments and inspiring analysis which where clearly on another level in my opinion!Detailed and thoughtful ..that is how I see your scriptures. Not always brutally correct I think but, instructive and patiently considered and inspiring ! Something.. I have never managed to learn in practice... quasi !!!;)
Well, Loot...what a wonderful new entry ...a gorgeous portrait of a strenuous female lioness carefully considering her hunting strategy ... where the tension in her eyes is obvious! Great moment perfectly captured in a frame! The technical implementation of the shot is looks great ...despite the use of your tiny, but capable little camera! Bravo! I also compliment you for the fantastic PP implementation ....
George Veltchev

Hi Loot
the eyes, that's what make it an outstanding portrait

  • Great 
  • lousat Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6595 W: 89 N: 15659] (65489)
  • [2012-04-11 2:08]

Hi Loot,this is a fantastic portrait,no needs comments but only a big and long standing ovation,i dream to do the same one day...Have a nice day and thanks,Luciano

Hello Loot
Amazing portrait.Superb close composition,wonderful colors and lighting,excellent sharp details.
Thank You,
Kind regards

  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2012-04-11 3:28]

Hello Loot,
How nice to see a new photo from you. Fantastic portrait in all aspects. Impressive sharpness and details. Gorgeous natural colours with a very beautiful blurry background. The eye contact is heartbreaking. And that all in a perfect composition.

Hi Loot,

I have just one thing to say:
This is a perfect composition presenting this lioness, any technical photgraphic points are useless if the composition is this strong


  • Great 
  • Alex99 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4072 W: 133 N: 7096] (23735)
  • [2012-04-11 5:34]

Hi Loot.
I am glad that you have posted new shots here. Amazing portrait work. I am sure the lioness would be proud for such skill and touching portrait. You managed to reflect the state of mood of charming model brilliantly. Technically shot is also spot on. My congratulations and warm greetings.

Dear Loot
Welcome back! It was way too long since you spoiled us with your great images. This is an absolute stunner of a very beautiful animal. The details of this photo are of high excellence and really exceptional. You can tap yourself on the shoulder, smile broadly and push out your chest out of pride for this portrait. I am sure there will be a few photographers that will envy you, and I for sure am one. That intense stare, the big brown eyes, the perfectly shaped snout and beautiful ears does it for me. Thanks for sharing. Love.

Hello Loot.
simply a fantastic portrait with all her beauty.

Hello Loot,
Welkom terug my vriend, ek het jou gemis. Ek vertrou dat dit nou weer bietjie beter gaan met die gesondheid. Al wat ek eintik van jou foto kan sê is WOW!!! Dit is absoluut fantasties. Die oë gee my skoon hoendervleids. "Stunning" is nog 'n goeie woord om dit te beskryf. Dankie dat jy dit met ons gedeel het.
Vriendelike groete,

  • Great 
  • pegos Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 222 W: 0 N: 356] (1982)
  • [2012-04-11 14:08]

Wonderful image, Loot!
Great portrait with a fantastic eye contact! Really a beauty!
Thanks for sharing
Regards. Enrico

Fantastic portrait Loot! The pose, the composition, the colours and the sharpness are excellent!

Hallo Loot,
a great surprise to see a new post from you, old friend.
I hope that your health has been improved. I hope you will continue to post, I have really missed you.
High class picture,I expect nothing else from you.
The picture is well exposed with accurate WB so the colors are fine and natural.
Have a great weekend.
Best regards

Bonjour Loot,
Splendide portrait remarquable par l'expression qu'il dégage.
A bientôt sur TN pour de nouvelles aventures.

Hello Mr.Loot,
Useful NOTE.Beautiful picture of this Queen.Details is really excellent.Like its majestic pose with eye-contact with you.
Thanks for sharing,
Regards and have a nice time,

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