The lioness, is the second largest feline after the tiger. With powerful legs, a strong jaw, and long canine teeth, the lion can bring down and kill large prey.

Average listed weights for the lions are between 120–150 kg (260–330 lb) for females. Head and body length is 140–175 cm (4 ft 7 in–5 ft 9 in) in females with a shoulder height about 100 cm (3 ft 3 in) in females. The tail length is 70–100 cm (2 ft 3 in–3 ft 3 in). The tail ends in a hairy tuft. The tuft conceals a spine, approximately 5 mm long, formed of the final sections of tail bone fused together. The lion and lioness is the only felid to have a tufted tail and the function of the tuft and spine are unknown. Absent at birth, the tuft develops around 51⁄2 months of age and readily identifiable at 7 months.