We Pride ourselves in being First Yet Again. (Excuse the Pun)

Posted on April 3, 2009

Gary came up trumps for Leopard Hills on this mornings Game Drive, great tracking and what a find, there is “New Life” out there in the Bush.

We have been seeing one of the Ximungwe Lionesses out on her own for a while now, a sure sign she has been looking for a place to have her Cubs.

She has been frequenting an area of thick bush along one of the dry river beds not too far from Leopard Hills. In typical fashion, she has chosen her place well, difficult terrain with very little access, we respect that, and have left her alone, getting the odd sighting as she has gone out on the hunt but leaving her be when she has returned to her “hideaway”.

Gary found her tracks early this morning and he and Ronald followed up, the tracks were moving away from the area we thought she might have her cubs stashed away. Imagine the surprise when he walked straight into her with three little ones in tow, not quite what was expected. The Lioness showed no aggression as Gary and Ronald backed away and returned to their vehicle. Driving back in with his Guests, the Lioness and Cubs showed no sign of nervousness towards the vehicle and as can be seen from Gary’s pictures below, what an amazing sighting they had, the first Ranger and Guests to have seen the next generation of the Ximungwe Pride.

As most of you will know it has been a tumultuous time of late on the Lion front, and to see these cubs has boosted our morale hugely, not a replacement for the Sand River Pride in any way, but the Lion population is on the increase again, and vacant territories are being taken up by other Prides from the East, nature and its resilience never ceases to amaze me.

Well done Gary and Ronald.

0 thoughts on “We Pride ourselves in being First Yet Again. (Excuse the Pun)

  1. This is great news indeed. How beautiful to see new life especially after the sad news about the Sand River Pride.

  2. Absolutely Wonderful Duncan, it is so heartening to receive positive news on any front these days,our congratulations to Gary and Ronald, – pity that Marius wasn’t there to photo their faces when they stumbled across her, to meet a Lioness on foot in the bush must be adreneline enough for anybody, but one with three cubs in tow……that must have been a heartstopping moment.

    You have Brightened our day, and we look forward to making their acquaintance.

  3. How beautiful is that..I wish them safety & a long life!!

    However I think I will forever be reminded of the Sand River Pride, as out of my thousands of bush photos, without fail every morning I am greeted by one of the pictures of them on my screen saver.

  4. fantastic photos gary you have a talent behind the lens ! glad on our bush walk i missed bumping into those guys though ….forget the heavy breathing down your neck you would defineatly had a guest on your back !!!

  5. Gary, Fabulous pictures and what a rush for you I’m sure. Wish I’d been there.
    Jill Bookwalter

  6. Hi all,

    Thanks for all your comments, it sure was a rush walking into them.

    I estimate the cubs to be about 2 months old, certainly the youngest cubs i have ever seen.

  7. What an amazing sighting. We had the priviledge of seeing the cubs straight after Gary spotted them that morning and it was truely awesome watching the three cubs come out from the bush when Mom called for them after her morning nap. Well done guys!

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