Written and photographed by: Anja Riise.
In the southern part of Madikwe Game Reserve, one of the lionesses has recently been seen spending time with her two young cubs. One morning while out on a game drive with Jaci’s Lodges, we were among the few vehicles in the area, and went in search of her where she had last been seen the night before. Fortunately we soon got lucky and since it was a quiet morning, we had the privilege of spending the better part of it with her and the rest of the pride.
The two little cubs were crawling all over one of the two males, having great fun. He was very patient and never once growled at them. As the sun kept rising, the shade grew smaller and eventually they all moved closer together under one of the larger bushes in search of some reprieve.
However when one lion tried to squeeze in between the others, to also get some shade, patience had worn thin. In a blur, with teeth, claws and growling on all ends, the three lions were tumbling around in a furry ball of fury.
The dispute was quickly settled though and the latecomer reluctantly went for a rest in a patch a bit sunnier than he would have preferred – at least for a little while. Normally lions don’t hold grudges, and soon the lions would be the best of friends again. The two cubs got the fright of their lives however and had gone scurrying off, to not accidentally get caught between the combatants.
Eventually the cubs carefully made their way back to the rest of the pride and, with some reassurance from the shade-winning male, peace was restored once more to the family.