About the Author

James Tyrrell

Photographic Guide/Media Team

James had hardly touched a camera when he came to Londolozi, but his writing skills were well developed, and he was quickly snapped up by the Londolozi blog team as a result. An environment rich in photographers helped him develop the photographic skills ...

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16 Comments

on Sparta Pride On the Brink

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Mike Ryan
Member
Guest

Thanks James for the updates. I am a real fan of your maps. Looking back on my notes we have not seen the Spata since 2012. Where do the Mhangeni fit in now. The Ntsevu pride are the Mhangeni breakaway who were originally a Tsalala breakaway?

Mishal
Member
Guest

Is the other adult lioness daughter of this lead lioness and her sister or of thier deceased cousin

James Tyrrell
Photographic Guide/Media Team

Mishal she’s the daughter of the deceased lioness as far as I know. I’ll double check for you.

Jill Larone
Member
Guest

It’s sad seeing this happen to the Sparta pride – once such a large, dominant pride, now split up and being forced out. I hope they will be able to persist through these difficult times and come out strong once again.

Beau and Kathlyn Bethune
Member
Guest

I still have a photograph on my wall of the Sparta pride circa 2013, whilst they were at least nine, if not ten or eleven, strong. They had at least four small cubs. I have a photo of two of the sub-adults sitting on a tree limb in profile together in a line like someone posed them. The entire pride walked right past the Rover within about 3 feet, stopped, took a sniff, gave a look, and continued on their way. Later that day, we saw a female cheetah, her two cubs, and a pissed off male intent on hurting the cubs, followed by a huge male leopard going head first, arse up with his back legs off the ground, and pulling a huge warthog out of its hole. It was an interesting day to say the least. In the end, it all ebbs and flows, but hate to see this happen to such a dominant and historic pride. Elmon and Dean were the best. And to make things better, Talley jumped in for the ride for a few days. We miss your place terribly, but the writers of the Blog (kudos to James and Amy at the helm these days) do a wonderful job making sure that we feel like we are still there. If any of your crew ever get to New Orleans, please know that you have friends here. Beau and Kat, New Orleans, Louisiana.

James Tyrrell
Photographic Guide/Media Team

Thanks for the kind words Beau and Kat!!!

Lea
Member
Guest

The lion dynamics are truly interesting. Sad that the cubs and adults lose their lives to the takeovers. We can only hope that the Sparta pride will survive all the turmoil and increase their numbers. Thanks for the interesting blog James.

Chris
Member
Guest

Where are the matimbas are they with the tsala pride?

Amy Attenborough
Media Team

No Chris, the Matimba males haven’t been seen on Londolozi in many months. They were last seen heading north around the Orpen section of Kruger. Thanks, Amy

MJ Bradley
Member
Guest

Last I heard the Matimbas Hairy Belly & Ginger are in the Mluwati.

Judy Hayden (Corpus Christi, Texas)
Member
Guest

I pray that the Sparta pride be save and continue to produce babies and grow. Nature is not always nice.
Thank you explaining the dynamics between these prides so well. You are educating me.

Abbaas
Member
Guest

The Mhangeni pride doesn’t live on Londolozi anymore, they were forced to flee west from the Majingilane when they arrived in 2010.

Amy Attenborough
Media Team

Hi. Thanks for your message. This was true back in 2010 when they were named the Tsalala Breakaways. Since then though they reached sexual maturity, established their territory within the Majingilane’s, mated with those males and have since sired over twenty cubs with them. They are no longer fleeing from the Majingilane. Many thanks, Amy

Rich Laburn
Head of Digital

James the resilience of this pride will endure as they have proven time and time again over the past twenty years. My prediction is that once a dominant coalition of males begin controlling their territory, the pride will rapidly flourish again.

Callum Evans
Guest contributor

I don’t hear too much about this pride, what with the Tsalala and the Tsalala Breakaways stealing the show. Are they still hanging on or have they officially dispersed?

Marinda Drake
Master Tracker

The Sparta pride was the first pride we viewed at Londolozi. We saw them several times. I see two lionesses are still in the south of the Sabi Sands and seem to be doing well.

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