The title of this one is a bit of a poignant play on words between Atlas, the Titan of Greek mythology condemned to burden the weight of the sky on his shoulders at the western edge of the earth, and the Atlas Mountain range of Northern African, which once supported the largest of Africa’s felines, the Barbary Lion (aka the Atlas Lion), a sub-specie of lion now regrettably extinct in the wild.
The Barbary Lion is not the only animal to have become extinct (EX) along the Atlas Mountain range, so too has the Atlas Bear(none in captivity either), the North African Elephant, and the African Aurochs - a type of large wild cattle. In addition to which, the Barbary Macaque and Cuvier's Gazelle are endangered (EN), while the Barbary Leopard and the Northern Bald Ibis are critically endangered (CR).
I was able to observe and photograph this dashingly handsome male Barbary Lion on one of three very enjoyable days out I recently had with my good friend and fellow wildlife photographer Sue Demetriou at Port Lympne Wildlife Park (Kent, UK) - many thanks again Sue :^)
Thanks for your time and attention and wishing you a wonderful week ahead!