lionsare like transgendering lol
Game over, Republicans
Oh!!!! I got to see the first one in person, actually! She’s Mmamoriri from Mombo in Botswana! She was beautiful! And her pride is the group of lions often featured in nature documentaries since their main prey is cape buffalo, a huge and incredibly dangerous animal, resulting in some truly incredible battles between the species.
According to my guide, it was likely she had internal testes along with her external female genitalia, resulting in an increased testosterone level! It’s especially interesting just how dark her mane is, as black manes tend to only present in males with high testosterone. Fascinatingly, it presents not just as a mix of male and female physical traits, but also behaviors!
Here’s a picture I took of Mmamoriri (left) with a male from her pride. As you can see, she’s got the full striking mane, but her face and body are much smaller than the male’s.
Apparently this mix of traits has made her EXTREMELY popular within the pride. She hunts and cares for the young with the lionesses, which helps greatly since her larger stature is a major asset in taking down the formidable buffalo they feed on, but also roars and has a mane, and is therefore able to chase off hyenas (which tend to be stronger than female lions and harass them/steal food/kill cubs) with the males. Mmamoriri has fully diversified her portfolio!
So she’s a kickass intersex lion who says fuck no to gender roles and in doing so has become a major asset to her pride!
It is, unfortunately, probably the result of inbreeding in her pride, which is cut off from wider populations by virtue of living on an island in the Okavango. She is infertile, like the previous maned lioness in the pride, Martina.
Just to try and avoid intersex erasure, for emphasis, this is an intersex lioness.