Extinct American Lion (Panthera atrox) Fun Facts

Yes its interesting to read about the extinct species like American Lion. In ancient days, lions lived in Asia, North America, Europe, and Africa. “The lions that lived in North America were known as American lions.”

Here read all about American lions. 


“Panthera atrox” was the scientific name of the American lion. The difference between American and modern lions is disputed by its innovation. However, recent research has shown that these lions are closely related to cave lions. American lions have governed the North American lions. So they have been extinct for 10,000 years. 

Evaluation American Lions:

Recent genetic studies revealed that American lions developed from Eurasian cave lions who crossed the Beringia Bridge and entered North Africa.

The American lion lived during the Pleistocene. It is said that American lions adapted to the new environment when they entered the Beringia. 

Physical Appearance:

Males modeled thick hairs that lengthened from their heads down their necks onto their chests. Females and immature lions had considerably shorter hairs. 

Their hair was generally a light golden, though some may hold darker. They owned black marks on their shanks and belly, the same as different lion species.

Despite their huge length, American Lions were elegant and fast, running speeds of 40 miles per hour.

Size American Lion:

The length of the American lion was about 5.3 to 8.2 feet. The weight of the American lion is about 564 to 930 pounds. The American lion was greater than today’s but smaller than its other extinct species, like the “Smilodon populator,” which was likely the quickest contestant for food.

It is believed that this lion may have red-colored skin. This guess is based on the skin remains of the American lions. 

Diet What did the American lion eat?

The American lions’ diet is the same as that of modern lions. They may feed on deer, wild horses, mammoths, and other hoofed mammals. 

Paleontologists once discovered a bison’s fossils in Alaska. They noted that the American lions’ bite and claw spots are on the bison’s skin. It confirmed that they preyed on bison. 

Habitat When and where American lions lived?

Panthera atrox, a species of lion, wandered the grasslands and savannas of North America during the Pleistocene Epoch. Fossil remains of this glorious animal have been discovered in different regions ranging from Alaska to Peru. However, experimenters have yet to discover proof of their existence in northeastern Canada and southern Florida.

The American lion probably made its home in regions resembling lions’ current habitats, such as grasslands and savannas. As some regions in their usual range experienced severe and cold climates, these lions likely sought shelter in caves to save themselves from the elements.

Further, experts guess they may have striped their shelters with leaves or grass, similar to how Siberian tigers make their caves.

Extinction When did the American lion die out?

The earlier American lions became extinct about 11,000 years earlier. This occurred in the course of the Holocene Epoch. During this period, a great extinction appeared that eliminated the mammoths and many other extensive mammals present. The American lions are one of the species influenced by this occurrence. Scientists also believe human activities are the major cause of the extinction of American lion species. You can also read about the other extinct tiger species like Caspian tiger, sabre tooth tiger and Tasmanian tiger.


After studying the charming world of the American lion, it is obvious that this prehistoric predator was a power to be imagined with. Its size, power, and agility made it one of the multiple formidable predators of its period, and its effect on the ecosystem cannot be understated.

The American lion remains a stunning subject of study for scientists. Its legacy helps as a reminder of the strength and complexity of the natural world and the significance of understanding and conserving it for future generations.