Guests Witness Lion Kill
Yesterday morning, guests of Tanda Tula Safari Camp were treated to one of those rare sightings that game drive dreams are made of!
Two of our experienced rangers, Formen and Scotch, were both on their way back to bush breakfast when they witnessed three lionesses bringing down a fully grown female buffalo, right in front of the vehicles. It was fairly late in the morning, and not normally the time that one would expect to witness a big five hunt. Most vehicles had already closed down for the morning and our rangers were also returning home after viewing a large herd of buffalo.
Before reaching our bush breakfast site, they noticed three lionesses purposefully following the buffalo herd and decided to follow them to see if anything would happen. The lionesses used a clever strategy of coming in between the herd and one straggling female, before chasing their prey down into the middle of a riverbed. In the riverbed, the lionesses pounced on the buffalo and by holding on to the front and back, worked together to bring the buffalo down.
The lioness in the front, attacking from the most dangerous position with the buffalo’s horns flaying from side to side, took a firm grip over the buffalo’s snout, and managed to suffocate her prey. The three lionesses had to rest for some time after making the kill, a clear indication of how much energy and power goes into bringing down an adult buffalo.
On reflection, all of the guests were surprised as to how quietly and relatively quickly these lionesses had dispatched their prey. Needless to say, it is an emotional struggle when witnessing such an event as the excitement and support for the hunting lions, is always mixed with empathy and fear for the flagging prey. It is a rare occasion to see the full process of a hunt, and all of our guests agreed that the privilege of witnessing one of the nature’s most primal activities is something they will never forget.
The photos that we have attached to this story were kindly provided by Patrick Ryan, one of the lucky guests on Formen’s vehicle.