A romantic breakfast for one

25 09 2011

The lions were dotted around water pan 2 this morning (24th Sep). While most of the pride lay resting in the tall grass (very well camouflaged) Kela and Kwandi were soaking in the sun together out in the open, while we could only get a signal for Leya coming from the Acacia boundary.


On our way to their location earlier, we’d passed some wildebeest grazing on Puku Dambo – while their behaviour seemed relaxed as we drove by, the Ks’ stomach sizes suggested that perhaps the night hadn’t been quite the same scene of peace of tranquillity for them. As the morning wore on Bateleur eagles, hooded vultures and an African Harrier Hawk started to crowd the sky a little south of the lions’ location.


Rusha eventually emerged from the grass and after a quick drink settled down with the Ks. Kwandi had shown some mild signs yesterday that she was following in Kela’s footsteps and coming into oestrus. A greeting from Rusha had been the trigger for this behaviour; and this morning as Rusha greeted Kwandi she was again immediately up on her feet, lifting her tail in the air and running a circle around Rusha.


Not long afterwards, Rusha and Kwandi made a move South.  Leaving the others at water pan two we caught up to them on Lusaka Road. On the right side of the track were the remains of a very recent wildebeest kill, on the left Rusha watched as Kwandi gnawed away on the wildebeest’s head in the tall grass. Despite being the primary object of Kwandi’s affection at present, all the love was gone – there was no chance of a meal for two. Rusha eventually took the hint and moved back in the direction from which they’d arrived.


Later in the day and Kela, Temi and Loma were resting around an anthill mid-way between pan 2 and the kill site, Kwandi was keeping an eye on some puku between this trio and the water pan while Rusha and Leya’s signals were coming from the Acacia boundary.


We’d seen all the lions except Leya at some point during the morning – but her as much as we scanned the boundary we just couldn’t locate her. Then finally as we were about to leave for the day we caught a glimpse of her in the treeline looking rather content with her lot.






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