Lions, those majestic creatures that prowl the savannah, have plenty of stereotypes. They’re often labeled King of the Jungle, can be seen as beautiful and regal, or may even be viewed as fearful predators. However, what about lions being maternal and loving?
Obviously all lions have a mother, but you don’t typically get caught up in that aspect when you think of these big cats. But these pictures show how the queens of the jungle have something much more to offer than the wild manes, sharp teeth, and ferocious growls that their male counterparts are famous for: maternal love.
A photographer was fortunate enough to capture an amazing moment between a lioness and her cub during a frightful even. The cub mistakenly falls off a steep cliff near his mother, and barely catches himself on the rock face.
You can see from the picture how unstable the wall of the cliff is, looking as if a rock could easily break loose and send any creature on its surface to plummet to its death – like the poor helpless club.
The mother approaches the cliff after hearing her son desperately crying out for rescue, moments away from slipping. The lioness toes the edge of the cliff in worry, not quite sure what to do.
It doesn’t take long before 3 other lioness scramble over to help the mother rescue her cub. However, despite their well-wishes, none are brave enough to risk their own lives, unsurprisingly given that terrifying drop into the ravine below! It would just take one small wrong move and they’d be done for. With no one left to help though, the mother is on her own.
Swallowing her fear, the lioness manages to do only what a loving parent can: risks her life to save her child. She’s not fearless or naïve though, knowing what danger she’s putting herself into, and makes her way down the cliff face slowly and carefully.
Using her large, sharp claws and the strong muscles of her body, she manages to make her way down to her child, all while gripping into the crumbling cliff side.
The cub, who’s been holding on to dear life this entire time, grows tired and begins to waver. Yet, just before he’s about to fall, the mother circles underneath him and snatches him up in her big, protective jaws. She gently carries him in her mouth and climbs back up the cliff to safety.
Sitting back upon the green grass, you can see how relieved the mother is to have her son back, safe and sound. She settles him upon the ground and gives him a consoling lick, as if to reassure him that all is safe now. You can truly see the love.
The incredible and heartwarming event was captured by Jean-Francois Largot, a talented wildlife photographer, and it took place in Kenya Masai Mara wildlife reserve, near a deep river gully.
Even though you’d think that the cub would be safer in a protected reserve, that’s definitely not true and dangers can still be found anywhere! Lucky he has such a great mom to look out for him.