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Modern Weights and Measurements of Wild Lions

United States Pckts Online
Bigcat Enthusiast
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(03-10-2022, 01:34 AM)SpinoRex Wrote:
(03-09-2022, 02:38 AM)Pckts Wrote:
(05-21-2021, 05:48 PM)LandSeaLion Wrote: ^ Nice information (although reading about big cats being shot is depressing). That little bit of information about tiger weights in Burma in that source is interesting too, namely that they are roughly the same size as African lions:

As regards measurements there seems little to choose, and provided the tape is properly used a 10-ft. tiger in Burma seems to be as great a rarity as a 10-ft. lion in Africa. Mr. Peacock believes that a large male tiger might weigh about 400 lbs, and a large female about 100 lbs less. This agrees very well with my own experiences of lions’ weights in South Africa, allowing a little in favour of the tiger.


Anyway, this information might have already been included here (this is a very long thread and I haven’t read it all), but there are some very detailed body measurements of a small sample of lions from the Central Kalahari in Botswana from a PhD thesis at Australian National University, published by Kevin MacFarlane in 2014. (I typed up the information from it out in a separate page btw - please let me know if I get any of it wrong!) 

The methodology used to standardise the lions’ measurements was the same as de Waal et al (2004). The 40-month old subadult lion of the de Waal paper, incidentally, weighed 190kg and had a total body length of 295cm (measured over the contours of the lion). The average weight of the males in MacFarlane’s thesis was listed as 209kg (n=7) and the females was 148kg (n=5):

SM009 (2009): 222kg
JM011: 200kg
PM014: 206kg
BM052: 229kg
BM060: 188kg (a subadult lion, probably not yet full-sized - see appendix 4 and also table 3.1)
MM106: 172kg (potentially another lion just shy of reaching his prime, estimated to be 4-5 years old)
SM009 (2010): 246kg

SF010: 172kg
HF012: 152kg 
MF013: 107kg (a fairly young lioness, around 3.5 years old)
PF015: 148kg
BF053: 159kg

Three additional lioness weights were mentioned but not included in the average - two of them are repeated measurements of two lionesses (MF013 & PF015) in the sample:

SF009: 183kg (an extremely big lioness!)
MF013 : 114kg
PF015: 156kg

The average head-body length (excluding the tail), chest girth and shoulder height of the males were 200cm, 122cm and 112cm respectively, and the averages of the females were 171cm, 108cm and 92cm respectively (rounded to the nearest cm). The author notes that these measurements are larger than the average Kruger lions reported by Skinner and Chimimba in 2005 (190kg and 126kg for males and females respectively), and speculates that his sample (which is quite small, after all) may simply consist of some slightly larger than average lions. 

It should be noted though that two of the weights from the n=7 male sample are actually the same male listed twice - the heaviest lion SM009, nicknamed “Scar” for the large scar on his mid-back from a past injury. There is a photo of him on page 80 of the thesis. Sadly he perished two years into the study, possibly killed by two intruding males from the north of his range (he was not part of a cohort himself). This lion had a body length of 205cm, a tail length of 85cm, a chest girth of 129cm and a peak weight of 246kg in 2010 (a sizeable gain of 24kg from a measurement taken the year before). The reason for this big fluctuation in size isn’t clear - was he in worse health in 2009, or did he just have a belly full of meat when measured in 2010? The next heaviest lion in the sample, BM052 “Marco” at 229kg, had smaller chest and body dimensions than Scar, but not by much. The paper mentions that Marco was darted after a 20-hour mating session with lioness BF053 “Cally”, so he likely hadn’t eaten recently.

Unfortunately, I could not find any mention of adjusting for stomach content in the thesis. de Waal et al (2004), which MacFarlane followed, notes that adjusting for stomach contents based on a cat’s appearance can sometimes lead to underestimating their empty weight:

Lions gorge themselves with large quantities of prey carcass in a single meal (Schaller, 1972; Bertram, 1975). The actual mass (Smuts, 1979) or estimated mass (Bertram, 1975) of stomach contents are usually sub- tracted from the body mass of lions to give more realistic values of body mass (Bertram, 1975; Smuts et al., 1980), but often body mass of lions is not corrected for stomach content (Smuts, 1976). However, this practice to correct body mass for the remains of the last meal that might still be contained in the stomach or digestive tract may be misleading and can introduce substantial error. For example, Smuts et al. (1980) reported on a 5-year-old male lion that was in excellent physical condition and weighed 225 kg. Externally the lion would have been classed as having an above average stomach fill. However, a postmortem showed that it had an empty stomach but contained large amounts of subcutaneous and intestinal fat. In the current study both the heart girth and the abdominal girth were measured. The range of repeated heart girth measurements was only 46 mm (Table 1). In comparison the range of 164 mm for repeated measurements of abdominal girth was the largest of all 43 variables analysed. The sub-adult lion had eaten more than 84 hours prior to being measured, therefore, stomach fill could not have contributed much to the variation. However, the relatively large variation in abdominal girth between successive measurements could more likely have been ascribed to physical activities, creating movement of the intestines during the process of measuring the immobilized lion. As discussed previously, during this procedure its head, neck, body, limbs and tail were moved about and extended to facilitate measuring the different parts, which may have caused physical movement and even temporary lumping of the intestine in the lower abdomen, causing changes in abdominal girth.”

Anyway, because Scar is also the heaviest lion in the sample, counting him twice skews the average upward slightly. On the other hand, there were also subadult lions included in the small sample that likely hadn’t reached their full size - I could see BM060 “Chico” weighing over 200kg in his prime if he was already 188kg as a 2-4 year old (his head-body length was 206cm, 1cm longer than Scar).

It’s all an approximation anyway though really, because the weights of these cats in the wild are never static. That’s why I like distributions, ie. 170kg-250kg for most males and 100-180kg for most females, with a positive skew resulting in averages closer to the lower end (and a few lions reaching exceptional sizes above 250kg/180kg). It’s also why the various chest and body length measurements are potentially more informative, because they don’t vary so much.

Quote:The methodology used to standardise the lions’ measurements was the same as de Waal et al (2004). The 40-month old subadult lion of the de Waal paper, incidentally, weighed 190kg and had a total body length of 295cm (measured over the contours of the lion). The average weight of the males in MacFarlane’s thesis was listed as 209kg (n=7) and the females was 148kg (n=5):
The protocols used were the ALPRU method that showed an 80mm (3'') margin for error when measuring the same lion (190kg male) 4 times. And although the tail is about 1/3rd the TL it contributed to about half of the 80mm worth of errors. The reason they estimate the amount of errors is because when measuring body part by body part, the animals spine, neck and limbs are distorted. 
This should also be noted estimating the difference between curves and straight line that you don't deduct all from the body but instead should distribute deductions almost evenly from body to tail. 

This again shows the advantage to using the between the pegs method where no such possible errors can occur since you're just measuring from nose to tail using markers. 

In regards to shoulder height, it mentions the amount of errors caused using this method as compared to the cats actual standing height which would be much less which is why they omitted them from Waal's study.



In regards to SM009 
He was an old lion, said to be 13 during one of his captures which seems to old for a wild lion but regardless the difference in weight could only be gorged v empty or error in scale. No big cat is putting on 10% body weight at that age without it being from an outside factor like a meal.

Sm009 wasnt 13 at collaring (Age at the end of the study). Also he was collared 1.5 years later.... anything possible.

Says at the capture of 2009 then was collared for almost 2 years before death.
And it wouldn’t matter if he was 11 or 13, he’s done growing by that stage. It’s pretty obvious that it’d be stomach content.
Reply

SpinoRex Offline
Banned

(03-10-2022, 02:58 AM)Pckts Wrote:
(03-10-2022, 01:34 AM)SpinoRex Wrote:
(03-09-2022, 02:38 AM)Pckts Wrote:
(05-21-2021, 05:48 PM)LandSeaLion Wrote: ^ Nice information (although reading about big cats being shot is depressing). That little bit of information about tiger weights in Burma in that source is interesting too, namely that they are roughly the same size as African lions:

As regards measurements there seems little to choose, and provided the tape is properly used a 10-ft. tiger in Burma seems to be as great a rarity as a 10-ft. lion in Africa. Mr. Peacock believes that a large male tiger might weigh about 400 lbs, and a large female about 100 lbs less. This agrees very well with my own experiences of lions’ weights in South Africa, allowing a little in favour of the tiger.


Anyway, this information might have already been included here (this is a very long thread and I haven’t read it all), but there are some very detailed body measurements of a small sample of lions from the Central Kalahari in Botswana from a PhD thesis at Australian National University, published by Kevin MacFarlane in 2014. (I typed up the information from it out in a separate page btw - please let me know if I get any of it wrong!) 

The methodology used to standardise the lions’ measurements was the same as de Waal et al (2004). The 40-month old subadult lion of the de Waal paper, incidentally, weighed 190kg and had a total body length of 295cm (measured over the contours of the lion). The average weight of the males in MacFarlane’s thesis was listed as 209kg (n=7) and the females was 148kg (n=5):

SM009 (2009): 222kg
JM011: 200kg
PM014: 206kg
BM052: 229kg
BM060: 188kg (a subadult lion, probably not yet full-sized - see appendix 4 and also table 3.1)
MM106: 172kg (potentially another lion just shy of reaching his prime, estimated to be 4-5 years old)
SM009 (2010): 246kg

SF010: 172kg
HF012: 152kg 
MF013: 107kg (a fairly young lioness, around 3.5 years old)
PF015: 148kg
BF053: 159kg

Three additional lioness weights were mentioned but not included in the average - two of them are repeated measurements of two lionesses (MF013 & PF015) in the sample:

SF009: 183kg (an extremely big lioness!)
MF013 : 114kg
PF015: 156kg

The average head-body length (excluding the tail), chest girth and shoulder height of the males were 200cm, 122cm and 112cm respectively, and the averages of the females were 171cm, 108cm and 92cm respectively (rounded to the nearest cm). The author notes that these measurements are larger than the average Kruger lions reported by Skinner and Chimimba in 2005 (190kg and 126kg for males and females respectively), and speculates that his sample (which is quite small, after all) may simply consist of some slightly larger than average lions. 

It should be noted though that two of the weights from the n=7 male sample are actually the same male listed twice - the heaviest lion SM009, nicknamed “Scar” for the large scar on his mid-back from a past injury. There is a photo of him on page 80 of the thesis. Sadly he perished two years into the study, possibly killed by two intruding males from the north of his range (he was not part of a cohort himself). This lion had a body length of 205cm, a tail length of 85cm, a chest girth of 129cm and a peak weight of 246kg in 2010 (a sizeable gain of 24kg from a measurement taken the year before). The reason for this big fluctuation in size isn’t clear - was he in worse health in 2009, or did he just have a belly full of meat when measured in 2010? The next heaviest lion in the sample, BM052 “Marco” at 229kg, had smaller chest and body dimensions than Scar, but not by much. The paper mentions that Marco was darted after a 20-hour mating session with lioness BF053 “Cally”, so he likely hadn’t eaten recently.

Unfortunately, I could not find any mention of adjusting for stomach content in the thesis. de Waal et al (2004), which MacFarlane followed, notes that adjusting for stomach contents based on a cat’s appearance can sometimes lead to underestimating their empty weight:

Lions gorge themselves with large quantities of prey carcass in a single meal (Schaller, 1972; Bertram, 1975). The actual mass (Smuts, 1979) or estimated mass (Bertram, 1975) of stomach contents are usually sub- tracted from the body mass of lions to give more realistic values of body mass (Bertram, 1975; Smuts et al., 1980), but often body mass of lions is not corrected for stomach content (Smuts, 1976). However, this practice to correct body mass for the remains of the last meal that might still be contained in the stomach or digestive tract may be misleading and can introduce substantial error. For example, Smuts et al. (1980) reported on a 5-year-old male lion that was in excellent physical condition and weighed 225 kg. Externally the lion would have been classed as having an above average stomach fill. However, a postmortem showed that it had an empty stomach but contained large amounts of subcutaneous and intestinal fat. In the current study both the heart girth and the abdominal girth were measured. The range of repeated heart girth measurements was only 46 mm (Table 1). In comparison the range of 164 mm for repeated measurements of abdominal girth was the largest of all 43 variables analysed. The sub-adult lion had eaten more than 84 hours prior to being measured, therefore, stomach fill could not have contributed much to the variation. However, the relatively large variation in abdominal girth between successive measurements could more likely have been ascribed to physical activities, creating movement of the intestines during the process of measuring the immobilized lion. As discussed previously, during this procedure its head, neck, body, limbs and tail were moved about and extended to facilitate measuring the different parts, which may have caused physical movement and even temporary lumping of the intestine in the lower abdomen, causing changes in abdominal girth.”

Anyway, because Scar is also the heaviest lion in the sample, counting him twice skews the average upward slightly. On the other hand, there were also subadult lions included in the small sample that likely hadn’t reached their full size - I could see BM060 “Chico” weighing over 200kg in his prime if he was already 188kg as a 2-4 year old (his head-body length was 206cm, 1cm longer than Scar).

It’s all an approximation anyway though really, because the weights of these cats in the wild are never static. That’s why I like distributions, ie. 170kg-250kg for most males and 100-180kg for most females, with a positive skew resulting in averages closer to the lower end (and a few lions reaching exceptional sizes above 250kg/180kg). It’s also why the various chest and body length measurements are potentially more informative, because they don’t vary so much.

Quote:The methodology used to standardise the lions’ measurements was the same as de Waal et al (2004). The 40-month old subadult lion of the de Waal paper, incidentally, weighed 190kg and had a total body length of 295cm (measured over the contours of the lion). The average weight of the males in MacFarlane’s thesis was listed as 209kg (n=7) and the females was 148kg (n=5):
The protocols used were the ALPRU method that showed an 80mm (3'') margin for error when measuring the same lion (190kg male) 4 times. And although the tail is about 1/3rd the TL it contributed to about half of the 80mm worth of errors. The reason they estimate the amount of errors is because when measuring body part by body part, the animals spine, neck and limbs are distorted. 
This should also be noted estimating the difference between curves and straight line that you don't deduct all from the body but instead should distribute deductions almost evenly from body to tail. 

This again shows the advantage to using the between the pegs method where no such possible errors can occur since you're just measuring from nose to tail using markers. 

In regards to shoulder height, it mentions the amount of errors caused using this method as compared to the cats actual standing height which would be much less which is why they omitted them from Waal's study.



In regards to SM009 
He was an old lion, said to be 13 during one of his captures which seems to old for a wild lion but regardless the difference in weight could only be gorged v empty or error in scale. No big cat is putting on 10% body weight at that age without it being from an outside factor like a meal.

Sm009 wasnt 13 at collaring (Age at the end of the study). Also he was collared 1.5 years later.... anything possible.

Says at the capture of 2009 then was collared for almost 2 years before death.
And it wouldn’t matter if he was 11 or 13, he’s done growing by that stage. It’s pretty obvious that it’d be stomach content.

He was collared in 29/07/2009 (est 6-8) and weighed 222 kg and in 28/01/2010 (est 8-9 years) he weighed 246 kg. Mcfarlane noted in the 2nd capture a noticable belly flap indicating he def gained weight in 6 months and he was around 7-8 years of age. We both were wrong about the date
Reply

United States Pckts Online
Bigcat Enthusiast
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( This post was last modified: 03-10-2022, 05:21 AM by Pckts )

(03-10-2022, 04:09 AM)SpinoRex Wrote:
(03-10-2022, 02:58 AM)Pckts Wrote:
(03-10-2022, 01:34 AM)SpinoRex Wrote:
(03-09-2022, 02:38 AM)Pckts Wrote:
(05-21-2021, 05:48 PM)LandSeaLion Wrote: ^ Nice information (although reading about big cats being shot is depressing). That little bit of information about tiger weights in Burma in that source is interesting too, namely that they are roughly the same size as African lions:

As regards measurements there seems little to choose, and provided the tape is properly used a 10-ft. tiger in Burma seems to be as great a rarity as a 10-ft. lion in Africa. Mr. Peacock believes that a large male tiger might weigh about 400 lbs, and a large female about 100 lbs less. This agrees very well with my own experiences of lions’ weights in South Africa, allowing a little in favour of the tiger.


Anyway, this information might have already been included here (this is a very long thread and I haven’t read it all), but there are some very detailed body measurements of a small sample of lions from the Central Kalahari in Botswana from a PhD thesis at Australian National University, published by Kevin MacFarlane in 2014. (I typed up the information from it out in a separate page btw - please let me know if I get any of it wrong!) 

The methodology used to standardise the lions’ measurements was the same as de Waal et al (2004). The 40-month old subadult lion of the de Waal paper, incidentally, weighed 190kg and had a total body length of 295cm (measured over the contours of the lion). The average weight of the males in MacFarlane’s thesis was listed as 209kg (n=7) and the females was 148kg (n=5):

SM009 (2009): 222kg
JM011: 200kg
PM014: 206kg
BM052: 229kg
BM060: 188kg (a subadult lion, probably not yet full-sized - see appendix 4 and also table 3.1)
MM106: 172kg (potentially another lion just shy of reaching his prime, estimated to be 4-5 years old)
SM009 (2010): 246kg

SF010: 172kg
HF012: 152kg 
MF013: 107kg (a fairly young lioness, around 3.5 years old)
PF015: 148kg
BF053: 159kg

Three additional lioness weights were mentioned but not included in the average - two of them are repeated measurements of two lionesses (MF013 & PF015) in the sample:

SF009: 183kg (an extremely big lioness!)
MF013 : 114kg
PF015: 156kg

The average head-body length (excluding the tail), chest girth and shoulder height of the males were 200cm, 122cm and 112cm respectively, and the averages of the females were 171cm, 108cm and 92cm respectively (rounded to the nearest cm). The author notes that these measurements are larger than the average Kruger lions reported by Skinner and Chimimba in 2005 (190kg and 126kg for males and females respectively), and speculates that his sample (which is quite small, after all) may simply consist of some slightly larger than average lions. 

It should be noted though that two of the weights from the n=7 male sample are actually the same male listed twice - the heaviest lion SM009, nicknamed “Scar” for the large scar on his mid-back from a past injury. There is a photo of him on page 80 of the thesis. Sadly he perished two years into the study, possibly killed by two intruding males from the north of his range (he was not part of a cohort himself). This lion had a body length of 205cm, a tail length of 85cm, a chest girth of 129cm and a peak weight of 246kg in 2010 (a sizeable gain of 24kg from a measurement taken the year before). The reason for this big fluctuation in size isn’t clear - was he in worse health in 2009, or did he just have a belly full of meat when measured in 2010? The next heaviest lion in the sample, BM052 “Marco” at 229kg, had smaller chest and body dimensions than Scar, but not by much. The paper mentions that Marco was darted after a 20-hour mating session with lioness BF053 “Cally”, so he likely hadn’t eaten recently.

Unfortunately, I could not find any mention of adjusting for stomach content in the thesis. de Waal et al (2004), which MacFarlane followed, notes that adjusting for stomach contents based on a cat’s appearance can sometimes lead to underestimating their empty weight:

Lions gorge themselves with large quantities of prey carcass in a single meal (Schaller, 1972; Bertram, 1975). The actual mass (Smuts, 1979) or estimated mass (Bertram, 1975) of stomach contents are usually sub- tracted from the body mass of lions to give more realistic values of body mass (Bertram, 1975; Smuts et al., 1980), but often body mass of lions is not corrected for stomach content (Smuts, 1976). However, this practice to correct body mass for the remains of the last meal that might still be contained in the stomach or digestive tract may be misleading and can introduce substantial error. For example, Smuts et al. (1980) reported on a 5-year-old male lion that was in excellent physical condition and weighed 225 kg. Externally the lion would have been classed as having an above average stomach fill. However, a postmortem showed that it had an empty stomach but contained large amounts of subcutaneous and intestinal fat. In the current study both the heart girth and the abdominal girth were measured. The range of repeated heart girth measurements was only 46 mm (Table 1). In comparison the range of 164 mm for repeated measurements of abdominal girth was the largest of all 43 variables analysed. The sub-adult lion had eaten more than 84 hours prior to being measured, therefore, stomach fill could not have contributed much to the variation. However, the relatively large variation in abdominal girth between successive measurements could more likely have been ascribed to physical activities, creating movement of the intestines during the process of measuring the immobilized lion. As discussed previously, during this procedure its head, neck, body, limbs and tail were moved about and extended to facilitate measuring the different parts, which may have caused physical movement and even temporary lumping of the intestine in the lower abdomen, causing changes in abdominal girth.”

Anyway, because Scar is also the heaviest lion in the sample, counting him twice skews the average upward slightly. On the other hand, there were also subadult lions included in the small sample that likely hadn’t reached their full size - I could see BM060 “Chico” weighing over 200kg in his prime if he was already 188kg as a 2-4 year old (his head-body length was 206cm, 1cm longer than Scar).

It’s all an approximation anyway though really, because the weights of these cats in the wild are never static. That’s why I like distributions, ie. 170kg-250kg for most males and 100-180kg for most females, with a positive skew resulting in averages closer to the lower end (and a few lions reaching exceptional sizes above 250kg/180kg). It’s also why the various chest and body length measurements are potentially more informative, because they don’t vary so much.

Quote:The methodology used to standardise the lions’ measurements was the same as de Waal et al (2004). The 40-month old subadult lion of the de Waal paper, incidentally, weighed 190kg and had a total body length of 295cm (measured over the contours of the lion). The average weight of the males in MacFarlane’s thesis was listed as 209kg (n=7) and the females was 148kg (n=5):
The protocols used were the ALPRU method that showed an 80mm (3'') margin for error when measuring the same lion (190kg male) 4 times. And although the tail is about 1/3rd the TL it contributed to about half of the 80mm worth of errors. The reason they estimate the amount of errors is because when measuring body part by body part, the animals spine, neck and limbs are distorted. 
This should also be noted estimating the difference between curves and straight line that you don't deduct all from the body but instead should distribute deductions almost evenly from body to tail. 

This again shows the advantage to using the between the pegs method where no such possible errors can occur since you're just measuring from nose to tail using markers. 

In regards to shoulder height, it mentions the amount of errors caused using this method as compared to the cats actual standing height which would be much less which is why they omitted them from Waal's study.



In regards to SM009 
He was an old lion, said to be 13 during one of his captures which seems to old for a wild lion but regardless the difference in weight could only be gorged v empty or error in scale. No big cat is putting on 10% body weight at that age without it being from an outside factor like a meal.

Sm009 wasnt 13 at collaring (Age at the end of the study). Also he was collared 1.5 years later.... anything possible.

Says at the capture of 2009 then was collared for almost 2 years before death.
And it wouldn’t matter if he was 11 or 13, he’s done growing by that stage. It’s pretty obvious that it’d be stomach content.

He was collared in 29/07/2009 (est 6-8) and weighed 222 kg and in 28/01/2010 (est 8-9 years) he weighed 246 kg. Mcfarlane noted in the 2nd capture a noticable belly flap indicating he def gained weight in 6 months and he was around 7-8 years of age. We both were wrong about the date

Where are you getting that? He’s specifically mentioned as 13 years old during his capture in the study. And a noticeable belly flap is fat and nothing to do with gaining actual muscle mass that comes with maturing.

*This image is copyright of its original author
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United States Khan85 Offline
Animal admirer & Vegan
***

(03-10-2022, 05:00 AM)Pckts Wrote:
(03-10-2022, 04:09 AM)SpinoRex Wrote:
(03-10-2022, 02:58 AM)Pckts Wrote:
(03-10-2022, 01:34 AM)SpinoRex Wrote:
(03-09-2022, 02:38 AM)Pckts Wrote:
(05-21-2021, 05:48 PM)LandSeaLion Wrote: ^ Nice information (although reading about big cats being shot is depressing). That little bit of information about tiger weights in Burma in that source is interesting too, namely that they are roughly the same size as African lions:

As regards measurements there seems little to choose, and provided the tape is properly used a 10-ft. tiger in Burma seems to be as great a rarity as a 10-ft. lion in Africa. Mr. Peacock believes that a large male tiger might weigh about 400 lbs, and a large female about 100 lbs less. This agrees very well with my own experiences of lions’ weights in South Africa, allowing a little in favour of the tiger.


Anyway, this information might have already been included here (this is a very long thread and I haven’t read it all), but there are some very detailed body measurements of a small sample of lions from the Central Kalahari in Botswana from a PhD thesis at Australian National University, published by Kevin MacFarlane in 2014. (I typed up the information from it out in a separate page btw - please let me know if I get any of it wrong!) 

The methodology used to standardise the lions’ measurements was the same as de Waal et al (2004). The 40-month old subadult lion of the de Waal paper, incidentally, weighed 190kg and had a total body length of 295cm (measured over the contours of the lion). The average weight of the males in MacFarlane’s thesis was listed as 209kg (n=7) and the females was 148kg (n=5):

SM009 (2009): 222kg
JM011: 200kg
PM014: 206kg
BM052: 229kg
BM060: 188kg (a subadult lion, probably not yet full-sized - see appendix 4 and also table 3.1)
MM106: 172kg (potentially another lion just shy of reaching his prime, estimated to be 4-5 years old)
SM009 (2010): 246kg

SF010: 172kg
HF012: 152kg 
MF013: 107kg (a fairly young lioness, around 3.5 years old)
PF015: 148kg
BF053: 159kg

Three additional lioness weights were mentioned but not included in the average - two of them are repeated measurements of two lionesses (MF013 & PF015) in the sample:

SF009: 183kg (an extremely big lioness!)
MF013 : 114kg
PF015: 156kg

The average head-body length (excluding the tail), chest girth and shoulder height of the males were 200cm, 122cm and 112cm respectively, and the averages of the females were 171cm, 108cm and 92cm respectively (rounded to the nearest cm). The author notes that these measurements are larger than the average Kruger lions reported by Skinner and Chimimba in 2005 (190kg and 126kg for males and females respectively), and speculates that his sample (which is quite small, after all) may simply consist of some slightly larger than average lions. 

It should be noted though that two of the weights from the n=7 male sample are actually the same male listed twice - the heaviest lion SM009, nicknamed “Scar” for the large scar on his mid-back from a past injury. There is a photo of him on page 80 of the thesis. Sadly he perished two years into the study, possibly killed by two intruding males from the north of his range (he was not part of a cohort himself). This lion had a body length of 205cm, a tail length of 85cm, a chest girth of 129cm and a peak weight of 246kg in 2010 (a sizeable gain of 24kg from a measurement taken the year before). The reason for this big fluctuation in size isn’t clear - was he in worse health in 2009, or did he just have a belly full of meat when measured in 2010? The next heaviest lion in the sample, BM052 “Marco” at 229kg, had smaller chest and body dimensions than Scar, but not by much. The paper mentions that Marco was darted after a 20-hour mating session with lioness BF053 “Cally”, so he likely hadn’t eaten recently.

Unfortunately, I could not find any mention of adjusting for stomach content in the thesis. de Waal et al (2004), which MacFarlane followed, notes that adjusting for stomach contents based on a cat’s appearance can sometimes lead to underestimating their empty weight:

Lions gorge themselves with large quantities of prey carcass in a single meal (Schaller, 1972; Bertram, 1975). The actual mass (Smuts, 1979) or estimated mass (Bertram, 1975) of stomach contents are usually sub- tracted from the body mass of lions to give more realistic values of body mass (Bertram, 1975; Smuts et al., 1980), but often body mass of lions is not corrected for stomach content (Smuts, 1976). However, this practice to correct body mass for the remains of the last meal that might still be contained in the stomach or digestive tract may be misleading and can introduce substantial error. For example, Smuts et al. (1980) reported on a 5-year-old male lion that was in excellent physical condition and weighed 225 kg. Externally the lion would have been classed as having an above average stomach fill. However, a postmortem showed that it had an empty stomach but contained large amounts of subcutaneous and intestinal fat. In the current study both the heart girth and the abdominal girth were measured. The range of repeated heart girth measurements was only 46 mm (Table 1). In comparison the range of 164 mm for repeated measurements of abdominal girth was the largest of all 43 variables analysed. The sub-adult lion had eaten more than 84 hours prior to being measured, therefore, stomach fill could not have contributed much to the variation. However, the relatively large variation in abdominal girth between successive measurements could more likely have been ascribed to physical activities, creating movement of the intestines during the process of measuring the immobilized lion. As discussed previously, during this procedure its head, neck, body, limbs and tail were moved about and extended to facilitate measuring the different parts, which may have caused physical movement and even temporary lumping of the intestine in the lower abdomen, causing changes in abdominal girth.”

Anyway, because Scar is also the heaviest lion in the sample, counting him twice skews the average upward slightly. On the other hand, there were also subadult lions included in the small sample that likely hadn’t reached their full size - I could see BM060 “Chico” weighing over 200kg in his prime if he was already 188kg as a 2-4 year old (his head-body length was 206cm, 1cm longer than Scar).

It’s all an approximation anyway though really, because the weights of these cats in the wild are never static. That’s why I like distributions, ie. 170kg-250kg for most males and 100-180kg for most females, with a positive skew resulting in averages closer to the lower end (and a few lions reaching exceptional sizes above 250kg/180kg). It’s also why the various chest and body length measurements are potentially more informative, because they don’t vary so much.

Quote:The methodology used to standardise the lions’ measurements was the same as de Waal et al (2004). The 40-month old subadult lion of the de Waal paper, incidentally, weighed 190kg and had a total body length of 295cm (measured over the contours of the lion). The average weight of the males in MacFarlane’s thesis was listed as 209kg (n=7) and the females was 148kg (n=5):
The protocols used were the ALPRU method that showed an 80mm (3'') margin for error when measuring the same lion (190kg male) 4 times. And although the tail is about 1/3rd the TL it contributed to about half of the 80mm worth of errors. The reason they estimate the amount of errors is because when measuring body part by body part, the animals spine, neck and limbs are distorted. 
This should also be noted estimating the difference between curves and straight line that you don't deduct all from the body but instead should distribute deductions almost evenly from body to tail. 

This again shows the advantage to using the between the pegs method where no such possible errors can occur since you're just measuring from nose to tail using markers. 

In regards to shoulder height, it mentions the amount of errors caused using this method as compared to the cats actual standing height which would be much less which is why they omitted them from Waal's study.



In regards to SM009 
He was an old lion, said to be 13 during one of his captures which seems to old for a wild lion but regardless the difference in weight could only be gorged v empty or error in scale. No big cat is putting on 10% body weight at that age without it being from an outside factor like a meal.

Sm009 wasnt 13 at collaring (Age at the end of the study). Also he was collared 1.5 years later.... anything possible.

Says at the capture of 2009 then was collared for almost 2 years before death.
And it wouldn’t matter if he was 11 or 13, he’s done growing by that stage. It’s pretty obvious that it’d be stomach content.

He was collared in 29/07/2009 (est 6-8) and weighed 222 kg and in 28/01/2010 (est 8-9 years) he weighed 246 kg. Mcfarlane noted in the 2nd capture a noticable belly flap indicating he def gained weight in 6 months and he was around 7-8 years of age. We both were wrong about the date

Where are you getting that? He’s specifically mentioned as 13 years old during his capture in the study. And a noticeable belly flap is fat and nothing to do with gaining actual muscle mass that comes with maturing.

*This image is copyright of its original author

13 yrs was his age at the time of his death
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United States Pckts Online
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(03-10-2022, 05:43 AM)Khan85 Wrote:
(03-10-2022, 05:00 AM)Pckts Wrote:
(03-10-2022, 04:09 AM)SpinoRex Wrote:
(03-10-2022, 02:58 AM)Pckts Wrote:
(03-10-2022, 01:34 AM)SpinoRex Wrote:
(03-09-2022, 02:38 AM)Pckts Wrote:
(05-21-2021, 05:48 PM)LandSeaLion Wrote: ^ Nice information (although reading about big cats being shot is depressing). That little bit of information about tiger weights in Burma in that source is interesting too, namely that they are roughly the same size as African lions:

As regards measurements there seems little to choose, and provided the tape is properly used a 10-ft. tiger in Burma seems to be as great a rarity as a 10-ft. lion in Africa. Mr. Peacock believes that a large male tiger might weigh about 400 lbs, and a large female about 100 lbs less. This agrees very well with my own experiences of lions’ weights in South Africa, allowing a little in favour of the tiger.


Anyway, this information might have already been included here (this is a very long thread and I haven’t read it all), but there are some very detailed body measurements of a small sample of lions from the Central Kalahari in Botswana from a PhD thesis at Australian National University, published by Kevin MacFarlane in 2014. (I typed up the information from it out in a separate page btw - please let me know if I get any of it wrong!) 

The methodology used to standardise the lions’ measurements was the same as de Waal et al (2004). The 40-month old subadult lion of the de Waal paper, incidentally, weighed 190kg and had a total body length of 295cm (measured over the contours of the lion). The average weight of the males in MacFarlane’s thesis was listed as 209kg (n=7) and the females was 148kg (n=5):

SM009 (2009): 222kg
JM011: 200kg
PM014: 206kg
BM052: 229kg
BM060: 188kg (a subadult lion, probably not yet full-sized - see appendix 4 and also table 3.1)
MM106: 172kg (potentially another lion just shy of reaching his prime, estimated to be 4-5 years old)
SM009 (2010): 246kg

SF010: 172kg
HF012: 152kg 
MF013: 107kg (a fairly young lioness, around 3.5 years old)
PF015: 148kg
BF053: 159kg

Three additional lioness weights were mentioned but not included in the average - two of them are repeated measurements of two lionesses (MF013 & PF015) in the sample:

SF009: 183kg (an extremely big lioness!)
MF013 : 114kg
PF015: 156kg

The average head-body length (excluding the tail), chest girth and shoulder height of the males were 200cm, 122cm and 112cm respectively, and the averages of the females were 171cm, 108cm and 92cm respectively (rounded to the nearest cm). The author notes that these measurements are larger than the average Kruger lions reported by Skinner and Chimimba in 2005 (190kg and 126kg for males and females respectively), and speculates that his sample (which is quite small, after all) may simply consist of some slightly larger than average lions. 

It should be noted though that two of the weights from the n=7 male sample are actually the same male listed twice - the heaviest lion SM009, nicknamed “Scar” for the large scar on his mid-back from a past injury. There is a photo of him on page 80 of the thesis. Sadly he perished two years into the study, possibly killed by two intruding males from the north of his range (he was not part of a cohort himself). This lion had a body length of 205cm, a tail length of 85cm, a chest girth of 129cm and a peak weight of 246kg in 2010 (a sizeable gain of 24kg from a measurement taken the year before). The reason for this big fluctuation in size isn’t clear - was he in worse health in 2009, or did he just have a belly full of meat when measured in 2010? The next heaviest lion in the sample, BM052 “Marco” at 229kg, had smaller chest and body dimensions than Scar, but not by much. The paper mentions that Marco was darted after a 20-hour mating session with lioness BF053 “Cally”, so he likely hadn’t eaten recently.

Unfortunately, I could not find any mention of adjusting for stomach content in the thesis. de Waal et al (2004), which MacFarlane followed, notes that adjusting for stomach contents based on a cat’s appearance can sometimes lead to underestimating their empty weight:

Lions gorge themselves with large quantities of prey carcass in a single meal (Schaller, 1972; Bertram, 1975). The actual mass (Smuts, 1979) or estimated mass (Bertram, 1975) of stomach contents are usually sub- tracted from the body mass of lions to give more realistic values of body mass (Bertram, 1975; Smuts et al., 1980), but often body mass of lions is not corrected for stomach content (Smuts, 1976). However, this practice to correct body mass for the remains of the last meal that might still be contained in the stomach or digestive tract may be misleading and can introduce substantial error. For example, Smuts et al. (1980) reported on a 5-year-old male lion that was in excellent physical condition and weighed 225 kg. Externally the lion would have been classed as having an above average stomach fill. However, a postmortem showed that it had an empty stomach but contained large amounts of subcutaneous and intestinal fat. In the current study both the heart girth and the abdominal girth were measured. The range of repeated heart girth measurements was only 46 mm (Table 1). In comparison the range of 164 mm for repeated measurements of abdominal girth was the largest of all 43 variables analysed. The sub-adult lion had eaten more than 84 hours prior to being measured, therefore, stomach fill could not have contributed much to the variation. However, the relatively large variation in abdominal girth between successive measurements could more likely have been ascribed to physical activities, creating movement of the intestines during the process of measuring the immobilized lion. As discussed previously, during this procedure its head, neck, body, limbs and tail were moved about and extended to facilitate measuring the different parts, which may have caused physical movement and even temporary lumping of the intestine in the lower abdomen, causing changes in abdominal girth.”

Anyway, because Scar is also the heaviest lion in the sample, counting him twice skews the average upward slightly. On the other hand, there were also subadult lions included in the small sample that likely hadn’t reached their full size - I could see BM060 “Chico” weighing over 200kg in his prime if he was already 188kg as a 2-4 year old (his head-body length was 206cm, 1cm longer than Scar).

It’s all an approximation anyway though really, because the weights of these cats in the wild are never static. That’s why I like distributions, ie. 170kg-250kg for most males and 100-180kg for most females, with a positive skew resulting in averages closer to the lower end (and a few lions reaching exceptional sizes above 250kg/180kg). It’s also why the various chest and body length measurements are potentially more informative, because they don’t vary so much.

Quote:The methodology used to standardise the lions’ measurements was the same as de Waal et al (2004). The 40-month old subadult lion of the de Waal paper, incidentally, weighed 190kg and had a total body length of 295cm (measured over the contours of the lion). The average weight of the males in MacFarlane’s thesis was listed as 209kg (n=7) and the females was 148kg (n=5):
The protocols used were the ALPRU method that showed an 80mm (3'') margin for error when measuring the same lion (190kg male) 4 times. And although the tail is about 1/3rd the TL it contributed to about half of the 80mm worth of errors. The reason they estimate the amount of errors is because when measuring body part by body part, the animals spine, neck and limbs are distorted. 
This should also be noted estimating the difference between curves and straight line that you don't deduct all from the body but instead should distribute deductions almost evenly from body to tail. 

This again shows the advantage to using the between the pegs method where no such possible errors can occur since you're just measuring from nose to tail using markers. 

In regards to shoulder height, it mentions the amount of errors caused using this method as compared to the cats actual standing height which would be much less which is why they omitted them from Waal's study.



In regards to SM009 
He was an old lion, said to be 13 during one of his captures which seems to old for a wild lion but regardless the difference in weight could only be gorged v empty or error in scale. No big cat is putting on 10% body weight at that age without it being from an outside factor like a meal.

Sm009 wasnt 13 at collaring (Age at the end of the study). Also he was collared 1.5 years later.... anything possible.

Says at the capture of 2009 then was collared for almost 2 years before death.
And it wouldn’t matter if he was 11 or 13, he’s done growing by that stage. It’s pretty obvious that it’d be stomach content.

He was collared in 29/07/2009 (est 6-8) and weighed 222 kg and in 28/01/2010 (est 8-9 years) he weighed 246 kg. Mcfarlane noted in the 2nd capture a noticable belly flap indicating he def gained weight in 6 months and he was around 7-8 years of age. We both were wrong about the date

Where are you getting that? He’s specifically mentioned as 13 years old during his capture in the study. And a noticeable belly flap is fat and nothing to do with gaining actual muscle mass that comes with maturing.

*This image is copyright of its original author

13 yrs was his age at the time of his death
Which would make him 11/12 at the time of capture.  Too old to put on any frame size.
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( This post was last modified: 03-10-2022, 06:22 AM by GuateGojira )

(03-10-2022, 02:14 AM)SpinoRex Wrote: Guate,

That isnt an good attempt to discard a heavy lion. The scientist was rather exact and i dont need to quote him again. The smallest male was 222 kg and the biggest 237 kg and the other one... he didnt knew the exact number but it was around 230 kg. Wait.... as i know didnt Punchkatta brake the scale instead of bottoming it?

I am not attempting anything, is a fact that the figure is an estimate, the same guy say it in the email, he says that is not sure and provide an estimation. How you can use an estimate as a real weight is beyond my reach, but like I told you before, "about 230 kg" means that it was not EXACTLY that weight, it could be 233 kg or could be 227 kg, who knows, and that is the point. If you start using estimates the reliability of the records are going to drop drastically.

Also, who says that Punchkatta bottomed the scale? Read my post again, read it twice if necesary.
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( This post was last modified: 03-10-2022, 06:40 AM by Pckts )

(03-10-2022, 06:20 AM)GuateGojira Wrote:
(03-10-2022, 02:14 AM)SpinoRex Wrote: Guate,

That isnt an good attempt to discard a heavy lion. The scientist was rather exact and i dont need to quote him again. The smallest male was 222 kg and the biggest 237 kg and the other one... he didnt knew the exact number but it was around 230 kg. Wait.... as i know didnt Punchkatta brake the scale instead of bottoming it?

I am not attempting anything, is a fact that the figure is an estimate, the same guy say it in the email, he says that is not sure and provide an estimation. How you can use an estimate as a real weight is beyond my reach, but like I told you before, "about 230 kg" means that it was not EXACTLY that weight, it could be 233 kg or could be 227 kg, who knows, and that is the point. If you start using estimates the reliability of the records are going to drop drastically.

Also, who says that Punchkatta bottomed the scale? Read my post again, read it twice if necesary.

He did bottom the scale, he’s only using the verbiage of “broken off” to imply that the maximum was 225kg.

*This image is copyright of its original author
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(03-09-2022, 02:38 AM)Pckts Wrote: In regards to SM009 
He was an old lion, said to be 13 during one of his captures which seems to old for a wild lion but regardless the difference in weight could only be gorged v empty or error in scale. No big cat is putting on 10% body weight at that age without it being from an outside factor like a meal.

Yes, of course. Is this in response to me? I thought that the difference in weight would be explained by him having a belly full of meat at the second weigh-in, or by him being in poor health at the time of the first weigh-in (or a combination of both). I didn’t think that it would be due to him maturing.

It tied into my bigger point that even individual big cat weights fluctuate a lot naturally, and don’t stay static. That’s why I prefer ranges to singular averages.

(I was quite confused for a split-second when I saw my username being quoted, before remembering that was a post made by me about ten months ago lol!)
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( This post was last modified: 03-10-2022, 07:40 AM by Pckts )

(03-10-2022, 07:06 AM)LandSeaLion Wrote:
(03-09-2022, 02:38 AM)Pckts Wrote: In regards to SM009 
He was an old lion, said to be 13 during one of his captures which seems to old for a wild lion but regardless the difference in weight could only be gorged v empty or error in scale. No big cat is putting on 10% body weight at that age without it being from an outside factor like a meal.

Yes, of course. Is this in response to me? I thought that the difference in weight would be explained by him having a belly full of meat at the second weigh-in, or by him being in poor health at the time of the first weigh-in (or a combination of both). I didn’t think that it would be due to him maturing.

It tied into my bigger point that even individual big cat weights fluctuate a lot naturally, and don’t stay static. That’s why I prefer ranges to singular averages.

(I was quite confused for a split-second when I saw my username being quoted, before remembering that was a post made by me about ten months ago lol!)
Sorry, it wasn’t intended as a direct response to you but to the ongoing discussion with Spino
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( This post was last modified: 03-28-2022, 03:28 AM by AndresVida )

@GuateGojira

I'm interested on your point of view on this, I was scrolling back on a weight collection channel of a discord animal forum and I've found a table regarding African lion weights made by a deleted user.

Quote :

"Please note that this is the data gathered from "single weight reports" or from very small sample records. This table is only based to this. I wanted to analyze how reliable it is compared to large sampled datas. Hunting records are excluded as it may be based to larger males although I have no idea. Will certainly do with the reliable hunting records in future"


*This image is copyright of its original author


*This image is copyright of its original author



*This image is copyright of its original author
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(03-28-2022, 03:24 AM)LoveAnimals Wrote: @GuateGojira

I'm interested on your point of view on this, I was scrolling back on a weight collection channel of a discord animal forum and I've found a table regarding African lion weights made by a deleted user.

Quote :

"Please note that this is the data gathered from "single weight reports" or from very small sample records. This table is only based to this. I wanted to analyze how reliable it is compared to large sampled datas. Hunting records are excluded as it may be based to larger males although I have no idea. Will certainly do with the reliable hunting records in future"


*This image is copyright of its original author


*This image is copyright of its original author



*This image is copyright of its original author

Seems interesting but cant see the 3rd picture.
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( This post was last modified: 03-28-2022, 03:49 AM by AndresVida )

(03-28-2022, 03:38 AM)SpinoRex Wrote: Seems interesting but cant see the 3rd picture.
Oh no hold on
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*This image is copyright of its original author


@SpinoRex here the better quality
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Guatemala GuateGojira Offline
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(03-28-2022, 03:24 AM)LoveAnimals Wrote: @GuateGojira

I'm interested on your point of view on this, I was scrolling back on a weight collection channel of a discord animal forum and I've found a table regarding African lion weights made by a deleted user.

Quote :

"Please note that this is the data gathered from "single weight reports" or from very small sample records. This table is only based to this. I wanted to analyze how reliable it is compared to large sampled datas. Hunting records are excluded as it may be based to larger males although I have no idea. Will certainly do with the reliable hunting records in future"


*This image is copyright of its original author

*This image is copyright of its original author

*This image is copyright of its original author

*This image is copyright of its original author


*This image is copyright of its original author

*This image is copyright of its original author

I will check them, as I understand that this person is trying to creat an average only of modern records mixing countries, but I don't see the figures from Smuts in any part, which is incorrect. Appart from that, I see other errors that affect the results.
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(03-28-2022, 09:21 PM)GuateGojira Wrote: I will check them, as I understand that this person is trying to creat an average only of modern records mixing countries, but I don't see the figures from Smuts in any part, which is incorrect. Appart from that, I see other errors that affect the results.
A very good analysis from you about it will be totally welcomed, take all your time
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