Thursday, May 8, 2008

Solitary Watcher

This water colour painting of a solitary male lion reminds me of the savage brutality and magnificent beauty of the African plains. Lions generally enjoy a lazy lifestyle, inactive through the heat of the African day, mostly hunting for 2 to 4 hours at night.

Young male lions are expelled from the pride after 2 years of age. Once expelled they become nomads or form coalitions with brothers to do their hunting. They remain solitary without female company until they are strong enough to challenge a dominant male of an existing pride and drive him into exile, to once more to live his life as a nomad.

This savage and sometimes fatal confrontation determines whether a new male will lead the pride. The brutal events that follow see the new dominant male expel all the young males and kill the existing cubs to rid the pride of the old gene pool and any future contenders to his throne.

The new male does this to bring the females into oestrus so that he can start mating with them immediately and ensure any new cubs carry his genes. Even though the females come into heat and mate with the new male, they do not bear any young until the new male has proved that he is capable of defending the pride against other lions challenging his leadership.

4 comments:

durano lawayan a.k.a. brad spit said...

Hi Caroline,

It's a tough life for a lion eh. Exiled when you're young, and again when you're old. I always tell my friends, "be nice to your children, someday, they will decide the home their going to put you in".

This well-crafted painting is like the Lion King, as if the newly crowned king looks over his domain, pondering his fate. Nicely executed. :-) --Durano, done!

anabellster said...

This painting is pretty interesting. I am always amazed by watercolors. I can never control them!

Marie said...

This solitary male lion looks really relaxed as he looks at the beautiful uninterrupted views before him - well captured :)

huoyangao said...

I am new here and I will come back.