A lion that escaped from a private game reserve has been terrorising residents of the small northern town of Makhado for a week.

Makhado - Limpopo police said on Thursday they were not aware of a lion on the loose in Makhado.

“We have been receiving inquiries about a lion. I have checked with (Makhado police spokesman) Maano Sedike. We are not aware of a lion,” Brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi said.

Agence France Presse reported that a lion that escaped from a private game reserve had been terrorising Makhado residents for a week.

“We have been informed that a male lion escaped from Safari Lodge outside Makhado last week,” AFP quoted police spokesman Nechindamatsi Marubeni as saying.

“It was last sighted yesterday (Wednesday) and our search party has so far not managed to capture it.”

He said it was a “grown male with a big head”. - Sapa