Serengeti lions: the best animal video-and-photo site of the year

This a combined article/photo/video feature at the National Geographic site about the lions of the Serengeti. And it’s fantastic. You really need to spend some time there. Now.

Before you get to the show-and-tell, first read David Quammen’s essay, “The short happy life of a Serengeti lion

Then head over to “The Serengeti Lion” site, where you’ll spend a wonderful half-hour living among the lions.  The photos are fantastic, but even better are the videos filmed with a  small robot vehicle that trundled among the cats as they played, killed, and rested.

For example, there’s a section on “Playtime“, with photos and videos of the youngsters having a high old time. Use the arrows on the screen to navigate around. (Each site begins with a video, and then you can scroll down to see photos.)

But it’s not all fun and games, for there’s the usual tooth and claw. And there’s one sad section, “Trophy hunting,” showing how they raise lions for hunting purposes, all to raise money for conservation.

The index is at the bottom left of the site, and here are all the topics:

Screen shot 2013-08-24 at 2.57.28 PM

Here’s the robot, by the way, which apparently didn’t bother the beasts:

Screen shot 2013-08-24 at 3.00.14 PM

I can’t recommend this highly enough.

Enjoy, courtesy of reader George and Professor Ceiling Cat.


  1. jesperbothpedersen1
    Posted August 24, 2013 at 1:08 pm | Permalink


    And sub…

  2. Peter Ozzie Jones
    Posted August 24, 2013 at 1:17 pm | Permalink

    & you may know of “Christian” the lion cub purchased in 1969 from Harrods, England and then returned successfully to the wild in Kenya?

    The film of when the two Ozzie lads went back for a reunion in Kenya with Christian is one to look for on the toobs, just amazing.

    And for your kids, g’kids there’s a nice book about the story.

  3. Barry Lyons
    Posted August 24, 2013 at 1:38 pm | Permalink

    Loved the one of the sleeping lion and the thunderstorm (and lightning) in the background.

  4. Posted August 24, 2013 at 1:40 pm | Permalink

    Truly awesome. Thanks.

  5. Jim Thomerson
    Posted August 24, 2013 at 2:01 pm | Permalink

    On TV about Jodie Foster. When young she was making a movie. There was a male lion involved and on break she and a familiar young male actor would play with the lion. Once the lion grabbed Jodie and put a toohh into her side. The trainer ordered “Drop It!” and the lion did. Jodie took off down a steep hill. The lion ran past her and turned sideways in front of her, which stopped her and kept her from falling. Next day they were back playing with the lion again. I wonder what all went through the lion’s mind in all that.

    • Mel
      Posted August 24, 2013 at 4:41 pm | Permalink

      Good thing he didn’t eat her; Jodie is a great actress. While her performance in The Silence of the Lambs was outstanding, I really didn’t fully appreciate how great she is until I saw her superbly psychologically detailed performance in The Accused (1988).

  6. Mel
    Posted August 24, 2013 at 4:34 pm | Permalink

    Hey, where’s the birth announcement for the new Panda cub at the National Zoo yesterday? Mei Ziang is an experienced mom; consequently, she picked her cub up immediately, always an important milestone for a cub’s survival.

  7. Mel
    Posted August 24, 2013 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

    My favorite lion video: Battle at Kruger. This is a weird standoff between a buffalo herd and lions where the buffalo win.

  8. Marella
    Posted August 24, 2013 at 5:09 pm | Permalink

    Lovely website. I loved “Golden Day” and all the rest too.

  9. Matthew Jenkins
    Posted August 24, 2013 at 6:32 pm | Permalink

    Slightly off-topic, but on Facebook there is a video showing a fishing bird clearly using a lump of bread as bait; it puts it in the water, retrieves it, repeats the action, and then finally pulls out a fish. If JC would like to post it please locate me on FB or email me.

    • Mel
      Posted August 24, 2013 at 10:46 pm | Permalink

      Yes, I’d like to see it. But, I don’t see an open email address where you could make a suggestion.

    • michaeljefisher
      Posted August 25, 2013 at 6:05 am | Permalink

      You can find Jerry’s email address inside the “Research Interests” link above & to the right of this page.

      Here’s two examples on Youtube. Perhaps it’s one of these?:-



      • Michael Fisher
        Posted August 25, 2013 at 6:07 am | Permalink

        testing login annoyance…

    • Notagod
      Posted August 25, 2013 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

      Bait using birds are cool, and Dr. Coyne has posted on them before; see here, and here for instance. Yay, the corvid gets the bigger fish.

  10. staffordgordon
    Posted August 25, 2013 at 3:20 am | Permalink


    The main piece reads like a thriller and is indeed thrilling.

    Thanks for the heads up.

  11. marksolock
    Posted August 25, 2013 at 5:39 am | Permalink

    Reblogged this on Mark Solock Blog.

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