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American lion (Panthera atrox)
American lion (Panthera atrox) American lion (Panthera atrox) American lion (Panthera atrox)
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American lion (Panthera atrox)

68 reviews

American lion (Panthera atrox Leidy, 1853)

 

Order: Carnivora

Family: Felidae

Time period: late Pleistocene of North America (180 000 – 10 000 years ago)

Size: 2.5 m in length, 130 cm in height, 170-350 kg of weight.

 

The American lion — also known as the North American lion or American cave lion — is an extinct feline of the family Felidae, endemic to North America during the Pleistocene epoch. The head-body length of the American lion is estimated to have been 1.6–2.5 m  and it would have stood 1.3 metres at the shoulder. Thus it was smaller than its contemporary competitor for prey, the Giant short-faced bear , which was the largest carnivoran of North America at the time. The American lion was not as heavily built as the saber-toothed cat Smilodon Populator, which may have weighed up to 170–350 kilograms.

The features and teeth of the extinct American lion strongly resemble modern lions, but they were considerably larger. The American lion was once believed to be the largest subspecies of lion.

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