News and updates from our Safari Hosts!
Duba Plains: Another phenomenal day of Lion and Buffalo Interactions
Leaving as always in the dark pre-dawn, the ODP Safari group headed straight to the area where they had left the lions yesterday, knowing that both lion prides were left hungry and close to the territory boundaries. Action? And how!
Were they in for a phenomenal day of action, sightings and more and more amazing photography.
It was a foggy morning and very soon after leaving camp, a large apparition appeared like a specter out of the mist. The huge, dominant male lion from the area stood there, surrounded by mist, and creating a scene that had cameras clicking away furiously.
As he stood there, the sun peeped above the horizon and a shaft of light fell directly on the lion. What a magnificent sight - the huge king of the beasts, just emerging from the mist and with a single shaft lighting him in an ethereal way, and creating an iridescent golden glow around him.
Two lionesses arrived while the cameras were still clicking away, capturing this exceptionally beautiful sight.
The greetings, rubbing, and subsequent interactions between the lions made for even more special images.
Then the male began to roar. Roar after roar seemed to shake the surroundings as he announced his presence to the world. With each roar, puffs of steamy breath billowed out of his mouth to join the surrounding mist. Awesome!
He and the two lionesses then settled down for a rest and the ODP Safari group moved on in search of the pride from yesterday. This did not take long. The trackers are expert and took the group straight to the pride, who were still not thinking about stirring.
A short break for the Safari Group with coffee and snacks - and then back to the lions.
They were waking up, and heading toward the nearby buffalo.
Without finesse or hesitation, they attacked en masse. They isolated and chased a buffalo cow, and succeeded in getting her to the ground.
Before they were able to achieve a kill, a group of male buffalo charged, and the lions scampered away.
Undaunted, and very hungry, the lions attacked again. They went for the same cow, and again brought her down. Again they were driven off by the charging bulls.
A third try. The same cow yet again. And yet again the bulls drove them away.
The next hour was spent with lions chasing buffalo, only to be chased by the buffalo ... On and on, again and again.
By now, the buffalo had reached a stream, which they proceeded to cross. This slows them down and is frequently a tactic for the lions to bring down one of the herd. But this time, they crossed safely, where they rested, the lions still close by.
Lunch was served in the bush, and the group enjoyed a short break, eager to get back to the potential action.
And yes, the lions were getting up after their rest, and immediately attacked again.
And again. And again. And again.
The afternoon was spent watching the fascinating interactions between the animals ... chasing each other back and forth.
By sunset, the lions still had no success, and the ODP Safari group reluctantly returned to the camp.
On the way home, the three lions from this morning were spotted again, drinking froma clear stream, with the colours of the sunset behind them.
All the lions in the area have eaten very little for a week - other than the buffalo calf yesterday.
98% of buffalo hunts take place in the daylight, but hunger could change the pattern. For sure, there will be an early start yet again tomorrow ...