Watch A Lioness Defend Her Cubs Against An Aggressive Male Lion

Written by Kirstin Harrington
Updated: October 23, 2023
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Key Points

  • The lioness on the ledge is quickly face-to-face with the climbing male.
  • They instantly attack each other with their powerful paws and claws.
  • The male lion eventually gets the message and leaves the mother and cubs alone. 

While lions are known as the king of the jungle, they have quite a fragile ego that goes along with that title. Although these big cats have earned their place at the top, male lions fight hard for dominance, even against inexperienced cubs. 

Don’t Miss This Incredible Footage Below!

Lioness mother protecting her cubs.

Male lions will attack other adult males to become the leader of a pride. The attack often leads to the death of one of the males. A lion pride often has several females and only one male. When a new leader takes over, they’ll often kill the boy cubs to ensure no one can take their place. 

Roaring male lion

Male lions

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will attack other males for leadership of a pride.

©SteffenTravel/Shutterstock.com

A video from The All Around Project’s YouTube channel shows just how defensive mother lionesses can be. The vast majority of animal mothers are protective of their young and this mama is showing that she wears the crown in this pride. 

As the male and female lions are headed up a rocking hillside, the two are snarling at each other to tell one another that it’s time to back off. On the ledge of the cliff, we can see another female holding her place in front of a pack of adorable cubs. 

Keep Your Distance

Mother lionesses are very protective of their offspring.

©Greg Willis from Denver, CO, usa / CC BY-SA 2.0 – License

She’s telling the lion heading toward her that it’s time to turn around or she’ll do what she has to in order to keep her family safe. One of nature’s most terrifying tools must be a lion’s claws. There are 18 of them and more than 300 pounds of sheer muscle and power attached to them. They are also extremely sharp and as tough as carbon fiber.

The lioness on the ledge is quickly face-to-face with the climbing male. They instantly attack each other with their powerful paws and claws. The male lion eventually gets the message and leaves the mother and cubs alone. 

One comment on the video states, “There is nothing purer than a mother’s love for her children.” We can’t help but agree! Shortly after, we see the cubs giving their mama kisses and cuddles, thanking her for defending them. 

The photo featured at the top of this post is © Johan Swanepoel/Shutterstock.com


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About the Author

Kirstin is a writer at A-Z Animals primarily covering animals, news topics, fun places, and helpful tips. Kirstin has been writing on a variety of topics for over five years. She has her real estate license, along with an associates degree in another field. A resident of Minnesota, Kirstin treats her two cats (Spook and Finlay) like the children they are. She never misses an opportunity to explore a thrift store with a coffee in hand, especially if it’s a cold autumn day!

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