Why Do Male Lions have Manes but Not Females and What is a Lion’s Mane Used For?

The mane of the adult male lion is unique among cats, and is one of the most unique characteristics of the species.

male lions have manes

It makes the lion appear larger, and provides a good display of intimidation when the males confront other males and competing species.

The mane makes the lion look bigger, and some say it softens the powerful blows of the other lion’s paws.

Maneless male lions have been reported in Senegal and Tsavo East National Park in Kenya, and the original male white lion from Timbavati was also maneless.

A lion’s mane may also be an indicator of health, the rule of thumb is the darker and fuller the mane, the healthier the lion.

The bad part of the ostentatious mane is that it makes it harder for the lion to successfully sneak up on prey when hunting.

Luckily, the females do the lion’s share of the hunting, anyway.