The lions weren’t wasting any time in getting on the move in the evening and had me searching for some time looking for them.
I’d expected them to continue heading north west as they were in the morning but found them heading north east back onto the burn.
There didn’t seem to be much game around and with little cover, because of the area being burnt, the lions lost out quickly when stalking a herd of impala.
Some time later they encountered a herd of Lichtenstein’s Hartebeest. The herd were feeding on the fresh green flush.
Seeing them the lions split up to circle the herd but they didn’t go all the way round. 2 lionesses that circled then lay down seeming to give up. Not being able to see any of the other lions I thought it was all over.
But little did I know they had their strategy all planned.
I wasn’t aware the boundary fence was right there, just behind the hartebeest.
The lionesses lying down were waiting for the charge from the rest of the pride and then as the hartebeest fled they cut them off against the fence, catching this big bull.
Even with 9 lions on it, it took about 8 minutes to die as a lioness tried suffocating it by smothering its mouth. And even trying to get through the bull’s tough skin was hard work, especially with the bull thrashing around all the time he was still alive.
(When looked at in monetary terms, this was a hugely expensive meal the lions had. Lichtenstein’s Hartebeest today will sell for about $10,000 on game auctions in southern Africa. A quick thousand dollars a head for dinner for the Nduna pride.)
About 3 hours later all that was left were a few bones and the skull and the lions marched on to Bandama pan to drink.
Manyari had stayed behind with her 2 cubs and another young male. Where was her 3rd cub? Her female cub was calling constantly for a couple of hours, presumably calling her sibling, but she never came. Again she’s probably headed off with the rest of the pride.