Villiers Reports from Elephant Plains: Birmingham Male Lions Create Chaos
Our guests from Holland, America, Australia and South Africa all arrived at Elephant Plains in time for a scrumptious lunch, after which we were more than ready to set out for our first game drive. We had heard that Salayexe and her cub had recently been spotted in the area, and our cameras were ready for that first glimpse.
But as we left the Lodge we first spotted a huge kudu bull with enormous symmetrical horns. I don’t think anyone has ever seen a larger kudu, and we simply had to stop for some photographs.
The area is looking lush and green after the recent rains, and we were still marveling at the freshness and the newly sprouting vibrant colors when we found a young male lion in a riverbed.
And this was all within five minutes after leaving the Lodge.
The young lion had killed a buffalo which was lying close by. Although he wasn’t eating, he was very alert and aware of each sound as he rolled in the sand.
We used a spotlight to photograph him because the day was a little dull.
We moved on and did a large loop around the camp, hoping to find Salayexe and her cub – but not today!
Then we heard impalas alarm calling and quickly followed the sound. There we found a young lioness, one of the Nkuhuma pride. She was a little agitated as she continually contact called and called – and called. Now, the reason for her anxiety was because the five Birmingham Males had moved into the territory and are creating chaos … they have already killed six lions on their destructive pathway as they aim to take over and dominate the area.
Eventually the lioness managed to catch up with the young male we had seen earlier, and it was quite sweet to see the touching reunion between the two. However, the sweetness between the two didn’t last. As the lioness approached the buffalo carcass, the male took exception and sent her scurrying away …
By now it was well past time to get back to the camp – luckily we were just minutes away, and arrived back in time for dinner.
Tomorrow we plan to start with a thorough search for Salayexe’s tracks …
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