This pride of lions is too big to hunt only buck, so they turn to hunting anything and everything, even massive crocodiles!
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This extraordinary sighting was captured on camera by Newton Mulenga, a seasoned guide, during a safari in the Busanga Plains within Kafue National Park, Zambia. Newton shared this incredible story of survival with LatestSightings.com.
Busanga Plains is a unique ecosystem in the northern part of Kafue National Park. Known for its swampy terrain that floods during the rainy season, this area becomes a hub of wildlife activity. Among the inhabitants, thousands of lechwe antelopes and large herds of sable and roan antelopes thrive, providing an opportunity for nature lovers to view these very rare antelope.
On this particular day, Newton’s attention was drawn to the resident pride of lions, renowned in the area for their hunting prowess. This pride, led by two lionesses known as ‘Killing Machine’ and ‘Princess’, is a formidable force in Busanga Plains. Princess, easily identified by her collar, and her sister, Killing Machine, patrol the area with an eye out for anything that will feed their pride. Their pride consists 13 lions including cubs of various ages.
This pride primarily preys on lechwe. However, with thirteen hungry mouths to feed, including growing cubs, a single lechwe is rarely sufficient. Their increasing hunger drives them to target larger and more rewarding prey.
The lion pride, in their relentless search for food, cornered a massive Nile crocodile. Stranded in a small swampy area and too far from the safety of deeper waters, the crocodile was vulnerable. Despite its attempts to defend itself by snapping aggressively at the lions, it couldn’t match the lions’ strategic approach.
The turning point came when Princess, the collared lioness, made a daring move. She leaped onto the crocodile’s back, biting down on its neck with her large canines. The combined weight and force of the lions overwhelmed the crocodile, which, after a desperate struggle, succumbed to the pride.
While lions generally do not hunt crocodiles due to the risks involved, it’s important to remember that they are opportunistic predators. In the wild, survival often depends on seizing every available chance for a meal. When faced with the pressing needs of their pride, especially with many mouths to feed, lions can display incredible adaptability and courage.