Being able to watch the natural cycle of life play out is something that we, at Jacis Lodges, are incredibly privileged to witness on a daily basis. We had noticed a very old and thin female buffalo on her own around the Terrapin Hide and then moved south towards the drainage line just outside the fence. By 10am Saturday Morning, she had died, but with her death came a free meal for all the predators in the area.
We waited around, permanently watching the carcass, and nothing arrived. At 2am on Sunday morning, a Brown Hyena stumbled onto the carcass, which it fed on for about an hour, and then there was nothing for the rest of the day. At about 7pm last night, the Brown Hyena returned, and spent some more time feeding, before heading off.
This morning we were woken by the constant alarming of our resident bushbucks and a troop of vervet monkeys, and on closer inspection, we saw a lone lioness resting about 20m from the buffalo carcass. We recognised this female as one who we now believe has cubs stashed somewhere nearby, and she had most definitely eaten her fair share, looking quite heavy.
Most opportunities for hunting area created, and don’t walk towards the predator, but a warthog didn’t spot the resting lioness. Everything else in the bush was alarming, but the warthog just kept walking straight towards this large predator. She saw the opportunity, and although she has a free meal, she wasn’t going to look a gift horse in the mouth. Within an instant she was crouching, now fixated on the unweary approaching warthog.
The warthog approached to about 7m from the lioness, and in an instant the chase was on. The warthog had turned tail and was sprinting away, with the lioness in hot pursuit. This was the warthogs lucky day – it managed to evade the lioness and lived to fight another day.
The lioness is still in the area, but is currently (as I type this at 08:06 on Monday 09.11) trailing a herd of buffalo to the Terrapin Hide waterhole. Watch this space, as we will keep you updated with what happens.