Farewell to the ‘King of the Serengeti’: The fearsome lion, named after reggae singer Bob Marley, is killed by younger rivals after ruling the group for seven years.

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The impressive head of a pride of lions was killed in a vicious attack by younger rivals.

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Bob Junior – named after the legendary reggae singer Bob Marley – was an incredibly photogenic big cat and a favorite among tour operators and visitors who pay tribute to him online.

Together with his brother Tryggve, the coolest cat in the Serengeti National Park ruled his pride for more than seven years.

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The lion, also known as Snyggve and who some say enjoys his celebrity status, offered no resistance as he was mauled by younger rivals on Saturday.

Tryggve is also believed to have died in another attack and conservationists are planning a special funeral for the brothers.

Circle of Life: The fearsome big cat lived at the height of her pride for seven years before younger rivals decided it was time for a bloody coup

With his brother Tryggve, the Serengeti's 'coolest cat', Bob Junior made the most of his fame - and always knew when there was a camera

With his brother Tryggve, the Serengeti’s ‘coolest cat’, Bob Junior made the most of his fame – and always knew when there was a camera

Fredy Shirima, the Serengeti’s conservation officer, told the BBC that the younger rivals are apparently planning to oust their leader.

“These incidents usually happen when the leader of a pride is getting old, or sometimes when the other male lions are unhappy with his control over a large area.”

Mr Shirima said environmental workers were trying to find out exactly what happened to Tryggve, as the attacks that killed the brothers were not related.

The Serengeti is home to around 3,000 lions, and in the wild, an adult male lion has a lifespan of eight to 10 years.

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