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LOOK: Lioness 'fights' to get her cubs to safety at Pilanesberg National Park

In a rare and moving moment, delegates on a game drive at Pilanesberg National Park witnessed a lioness relocating her cubs for protection. Picture: Mankwe GAMETRACKERS.

In a rare and moving moment, delegates on a game drive at Pilanesberg National Park witnessed a lioness relocating her cubs for protection. Picture: Mankwe GAMETRACKERS.

Published Nov 8, 2021

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The wild is a special place. Animals are fighting for their survival.

While lions are dubbed the 'king of the jungle', they have to work just as hard to ensure that they protect their cubs and themselves.

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In a rare and moving moment, delegates on a game drive at Pilanesberg National Park witnessed a lioness relocating her cubs for protection.

The delegates who took a break from their conference at Sun City were in awe, savouring every moment with keen eyes. Mankwe GAMETRACKERS field guide Tarryn Rae said all game drives are different.

"You never know what you are going to see."

When Rae went out with the delegates, she didn't know what to expect.

Pictures: Tarryn Rae and Gregory Esterhuysen.

“This particular morning, we were in the park in three safari trucks. We had just passed a low water bridge when we received a call on the radio saying we should return to the spot.

"A lioness had emerged from the thicket with two tiny cubs. We estimated the cubs were less than eight weeks old. When they are this small, mom constantly relocates them to different places to hide them from danger. We found that this lioness had a hard time moving these little guys.

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“She would carry one across the road, put it down and head back for the second cub. As she went back to the other crying cub, the first one would follow her back across the road again. This happened three times before she finally managed to get them both on the side of the road she wanted them to be on," Rae told IOL Travel.

Pictures: Tarryn Rae and Gregory Esterhuysen.

She said the mom and her cubs headed to their next hiding spot.

"It was so special to see such small cubs. Tiny cubs are normally kept well hidden in the early days, so this is not something we see often. We just happened to be at the right place at the right time.

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Pictures: Tarryn Rae and Gregory Esterhuysen.

"Lions, like all other predators, come into season several times. Unlike herbivores, which generally give birth in the summer, lions breed and give birth throughout the year. Cubs are targeted by other predators, so lions need to ensure there is a steady population of young lions at all times to guarantee their survival and to keep their population constant," she explained.

Related Topics:

AnimalsBush break

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