Survival in the wild is tough, especially for prey species. This series of photographs show a bushbuck fleeing from a pack of wild dogs, seeking refuge in the water, only to have run straight into the territory of another deadly predator.
The photographs sequences were taken by Ben Grobler and Sam Mukankaulwa from Chongwe Safaris, our sister company, on two separate occasions in the last month.
Sam came across three wild dogs on the banks of the Chongwe River in the Lower Zambezi National Park, Zambia. As the female bushbuck tried to flee the pursuing dogs, it ran into the Chongwe River to escape; only to run straight into the jaws of a giant crocodile – a horrible tug of war ensued with the bushbuck being taken by the wild dogs and consumed within minutes.
The second chase happened in a similar location, this time Ben spotted four wild dogs that had driven a male bushbuck into a drying pool of water. This group was made up of the alpha male and three younger adults; we suspect the alpha female has denned recently as she hasn’t been seen for a while.
A bushbuck sat very still with the dogs surrounding it on two sides; they appeared weary of entering the water due to the risk of a crocodile bite. After about 15 minutes the standoff was broken when the alpha male risked the water to flush the buck. The bushbuck was killed in seconds and within 15 minutes the whole carcass was consumed.
“The African wild dog is a highly endangered species and is faced with a number of threats including shrinking habitats in their African home, diseases and wire snares. We are so lucky to have been seeing these beautiful animals more frequently on our doorstep and we hope that their population thrives even further with future protection and conservation plans in the area.” says Conservation Lower Zambezi, who do a fabulous job of conserving the Lower Zambezi Valley area and its inhabitants.