Moonlight Hunt

Tonight was one of those blissfully warm starry nights! As my guests and I were making our way to view the big male Lion, my Tracker noticed some eyes up ahead on the road. As we approached closer we saw a large Lioness and her two sub-adults, a male and female. But just as we stopped to view them they ran into a mitre drain and were dully chased out by a large bull Elephant. After a few tense moments, the Elephant meandered off, but not before giving the young male Lion a good chase, and my guests and I proceeded to follow the three Lions down the road.

Again, far ahead of the Lions, my Tracker pointed out that there were some Giraffe in the road. So we shut off all the lights and followed the three in the moonlight. The moon this night was waxing and almost full, so we were able to see the Lions quite clearly. Shortly, they came to a stand still and we stopped the car. We were very careful to not make a sound and a few seconds later one and then two Giraffe came back towards the road from the bushes. The wind was blowing the Lion’s scent away from the Giraffe. Slowly and stealthily one of the Lionesses made her way towards an Acacia tree just in front of the foremost Giraffe and after a few more seconds the chase was on. In the moonlight we could see the other two Lions crouched low and hear the thunderous sounds of the hooves as the Giraffe raced away for its life and then there was nothing. Just silence.

The other two Lions stopped crouching and posed nicely for mug shots as the last Lioness came panting past the game viewer. The Lioness had missed but it was an awe-inspiring rush to watch and listen as these big cats tried to catch their late night dinner.

By: Noelle DiLorenzo – River Lodge Ranger



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