Our day at Mhondoro Safari Lodge & Villa started like any other morning. Wake-up at 06:00, coffee at 06:15, depart at 06:30. My guests and I were not sure if we would locate anything we haven’t seen yet, the lioness. We decided to causally drive in search for the cheetah and her three cubs. She was our favourite sighting thus far!

After some general game I decided to go to the southern section of the reserve for a coffee break. Shortly after we continued the search for our cheetah mother.

Just as I was announcing my game plan to find the mother cheetah and cubs I was forced to stop my radio transmission halfway… For we had set our eyes on a very stressed blue wildebeest in the middle of the road!

I immediately wondered to myself while my guests were taking photographs whether this animal had saw a cheetah or a leopard? I suddenly realised that it was avoiding going forward on the open piece of road. I took note that there was something behind it but I could not make it out?

We stopped our vehicle and to our surprise the wildebeest jumped over some large rocks and almost broke its back in that process! Then, right in-front of us we saw a lioness and a second half dead wildebeest calling out as if desperately asking its friends to come and help…

At this moment our presence was noticed and the lioness let the half dead wildebeest go! She stared at us for only a few seconds which seemed much longer at the time. While all this was happening the half dead wildebeest got up. It was clearly dazed and in a last effort of desperation it looked the lioness right in the eyes… We knew its fate would surely soon be sealed… The wildebeest stumbled away and the Lion swiftly finished it off with a classic bite to the neck…

Another remarkable morning not to be forgotten soon!!

Telling of the tale done by Sibusiso H Nzima (Mhondoro Field Guide)

Image credit: Ms. Anna Steenstra

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