- An elephant calf was hunted down and eaten by lions near a watering hole in Zimbabwe
- The photograher explains in detail how the ordeal went
- He believes this is a new phenomenon and is caused by the large number gathered at the watering hole
These images were captured at a watering hole at the Makalolo pan in Zimbabwe Hwanga National park.
This should be a good lesson why it’s bad for children to walk far from their parents, far from their supervision.
The photographer, Brent Stapelkemp, has been photographing lions for the past decade and he caught the following images.
“It does tug at the heart strings but this is a result of man’s artificial management of nature and the lions are seizing on a survival opportunity too,” said the photographer.
“It was the very height of the dry season and so the lions just had to sit at the waterhole and wait for the desperate animals to come and drink. We saw two kills, a buffalo and a warthog, as well as several attempts on giraffes and buffaloes,” Brent added.
Brent tells: “Then this lone elephant calf left the waterhole and the young male lion took the opportunity.”
Brent recollects the incidents of that day: “I was at ground level standing behind my open door of my cruiser. The elephant realised something was up and tried to chase the lion before turning and fleeing. The lion caught him and brought him down before a lioness came to help,”
“These lions were very young and perhaps this was their first day as independent hunters without their mothers to help,” the photographer explains.
Brent believes that what he witnessed is a fairly new phenomenon, which began as a result of a large numbers of elephants gathering around waterholes. It is not uncommon for an elephant calf to become lost amidst such a crowd, and becomes easy prey for eager predators.