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Always expect the unexpected.


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We were watching a pride of Lions feeding on a Zebra kill, and we noticed a pair of Oribi acting strangely a short distance away. The way they were acting made us curious so we went to have a look. We stopped a respectful distance away so as not to cause them any unnecessary distress, and started scanning the area for signs of anything unusual. Nothing had changed around the kill, but scanning in front of the Oribi we noticed a movement in the grass ahead of the them. Concentrating hard on that area we saw the movement again and realised there was a young Oribi lying there.

One of the female lion’s, who was laying a little way off from the kill, under a bush, had also been watching the Oribi and we are sure she saw the movement too. She half rose staring intently towards the Oribi. Suddenly the young Oribi stood up, its parents snorting that it should not, and that was the signal for the lioness to launch an attack. The two adult Oribi fled in slightly different directions expecting the youngster to follow one of them, but it dropped back down in to the grass. This action actually confused the Lioness and she stopped, staring ahead not sure where the young Oribi had gone. The Lioness stared towards the two adult Oribi, now standing on the crest of a hill, trying to work out what happened, when suddenly the young Oribi broke cover and ran for its life. The Lioness was after it in an instant but the young Oribi was pretty fast and after a few moments the Lioness gave up. She had obviously fed well from the Zebra kill, and was not going to over exert herself for what would have been no more than dessert.

There was a controlled cheer from us as the young Oribi circled round to meet up with its parents, but, just as we were congratulating the youngOribi on a nice flanking movement, another lioness, which we had not noticed, launched herself from behind a small mound. She must have been watching what had been happening and made the most of the situation as she caught the Young Oribi and brought it down . A loud cry of, Oh no! Echoed from our vehicle but, the Lioness did not kill the young Oribi there and then, no; she carried it back to where there were young Lion cubs playing near to the kill. She dropped it in front of them; the Oribi froze for a second and then ran. The cubs were after it in a flash and soon brought it down. After some playing with it they let it go and chased it again. The young Lions had obviously paid attention when Mum was hunting and they dispatched the young Oribi quickly.

It was somewhat like watching a football match. One minute we were 1-0 up, and then the opposition drew level, 1-1, and then they scored the winner in extra time 1-2. AJ.

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Excellent story and what a rollercoaster!

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