We drove out to the northwest at sunrise....
We were looking for a coalition of five brother lions who controlled the Kwara area. We had been on drives all day,
and later in the afternoon, we happened upon two large male lions. We referred to them as "the boys." They were situated on a small knoll overlooking a large plain area. We took pictures of them against the setting sun. The next morning, after our adventure with a pair of Leopards, in the midst of a rain storm,we found the "brothers" again....continued below
They were on a hill, watching out over a water filled plain area...
that was next to a large woods. We followed them for a while, but returned to the woods where we had found the Leopards and chased the male Leopard through a thick wooded area as the storm rained off and on. Finally, the storm broke hard over the delta and we returned to camp. In the afternoon, we heard the "brothers" were out on a large plain area, hiding in a bush, waiting for a family of Giraffes coming out of the west, traveling to the east. We found the lions-the brothers.
They were about 4 or five years old. They had formed a "coalition" since they did
not have a pride. When male lions form a coalition,
they become as Roy says, "Murderers..."
They're not as fast or sophisticated of hunters as female lions...
However, they are large (450-500 lbs), and they tend to stalk their prey, picking on younger, smaller buffalo, giraffe, zebra, and different antelope species. They'll even kill small, younger elephants.
On this sunny, post storm afternoon, they were hiding in a bush, waiting patiently for a
family of five giraffes. Two adolescent giraffes were in the front,
feeding from the tops of Eucalyptus and other trees.
Behind them was a mother and her 6 to 7 month old baby...
The baby was still feeding from her mother. In the background, was a large male giraffe. As the group of giraffes got closer and closer to the lions; the lions would peek up, and watch the baby intensely . It became quite evident who their target was. We were about 50 yards off to the north
of the lions. We had just changed trucks when the adolescent giraffes, eating from the
top of trees about 30 yards from the lions
, spotted the "brothers" hiding in the bush
The adolescent giraffes weren't quite sure of what they were seeing at first....
but when they recognized what they saw were two large lions-they turned and broke back
westward toward the large marsh. The mother and baby also turned and broke toward that marsh. That same moment, the 'brothers" burst out of the bush and charged as fast as they could toward
the giraffes. Our driver "hit it" and we drove as fast as we could along side, about 50 yards off to
the side of the charging lions. We were all amazed when the lions ran right passed an adolescent female
and focused their charge on the baby.
The mother and the baby made it into the marsh...
where the bog and high grass protected them. The Lions stopped on the edge of the marsh,
and tried to peek up over the grass to see where the giraffe had gone. At the same time, the giraffe, had stopped running and had turned, straining to see where the lions had gone. When the giraffe spotted the lions, they turned again and ran off a half a mile or so away, where the road cut
through the marsh. The lions disappeared slowly into the marsh, coming out, slowly on the other
side. You are presented here with a series of pictures I shot on the run, chasing along the side lions
as they charged the giraffes. We stayed with the lions into the night, searching for them with spot lights,
as they waited to ambush a herd of Zebra coming out of the west, but it became too late, and
we had to return to the lodge. -Greg (the ghostbear)
Website Copyright Alannah KAshlie 2011