How Do Lions Mate?
The Lion Lamb explains that lions mate by growling, pawing and biting first. Once the female is in the mood to mate, she lies down and waits for the male to mount her. After copulation, which takes six to 10 seconds, the male lion gently bites the female’s neck.
The Lion Lamb details that after mating, the female turns to the male and bares her teeth. This comprises the mating cycle, which repeats itself almost every 20 minutes. Lions are capable of mating up to 40 times daily. A female lion sometimes mates with multiple partners during her estrus. This results in cubs with different fathers. Female lions also have the ability to breed synchronously, particularly when a new set of males has taken over a pride and killed the cubs. In this situation, the females come into heat simultaneously, thereby shortening the reproductive cycle for the first generation of new cubs.
The Lion Alert states that lions do not have a specific breeding season, and they often breed synchronously. Male lions typically become ready for mating at 26 months old, although they are not likely to breed before 4 or 5 years old. Reproduction generally starts to decline at 11 years, but female lions are capable of breeding until they are 15 years old.