After a hunt went wrong for the Nkuhuma lion pride, there was drama as a herd of buffaloes trample one of the old Northern Avoca Male Lions and leave him battered and bruised.
24-year-old field guide Deon Kelbrick was witness to the potential fall of an empire when he and guests from Nkorho Bush lodge were out on a morning safari in the Sabi Sands Game Reserve. Deon tinged and shared this heartbreaking sighting with LatestSightings.com.
“In the early hours of Wednesday morning, my guests and I set out in search of Africa’s iconic lions. Soon after leaving the comfort of the lodge, we were on the trail of the sub-adults of the Nkuhuma lion pride. They were hungry and determined and were trailing a large herd of Buffaloes.”
Lions have adapted incredibly to hunting large prey. This is because they are the only big cats in Africa that live in social structures known as a pride. Essentially, hunting big prey is the best way to feed 7 hungry bellies.
“Having hunted many buffalo over the years, the Nkuhumas were no strangers to singling out the weakest link and capitalizing on it. On this occasion, one of the buffaloes found herself cornered by claws and canines – surely this was the end.”
“At this point, we thought it was all over, but the distress call of this lone buffalo echoed across the bush, and to her relief, a stampeding herd of Buffalo responded to the call.”
“Unfortunately for the lions. The infamous Dark Maned Avoca male lion was now entrapped. Stampeding hooves of hundreds of angry and agitated buffaloes surrounded him!”
Buffaloes are one of the few animals in Africa that can put a lion in its place. Their large horns and incredible body mass make them formidable opponents. All things considered, lions put aside the risk factor for a couple of hundred pounds of buffalo steaks.
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“Dark Mane Avoca, one of the pride males, with nowhere to go and engulfed with fear, trembled. Eventually, he scurried to the safety of some nearby bushes, however, the hatred of the buffaloes made this herd persist. The lion was being tossed through the air like a rag doll, gorged by horns and trampled by hooves.”
“The ordeal continued for 15 minutes. It was now clear the male lion had come out second-best. Luckily for him, his deep bellowing calls for help caught the attention of his pride, and they returned, scaring the buffaloes off.”
“Stunned and left with a mix of emotions, my guests and I returned to camp to process the morning’s events. In the end, when we returned to the crime scene later that day, we found the Nkuhuma Pride along with Dark Mane Avoca. He was clearly in a dire state, licking his wounds.”