About the Author

Rich Laburn

Head of Digital

Rich is the driving force behind Londolozi’s online storytelling and the Londolozi blog. His passions of digital media, film and photography, combined with his field-guiding background, have seen him take the Londolozi blog to new heights since he began it in 2009. Rich ...

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23 Comments

on A Moment of Sadness?

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Jennifer Fenster
Member
Guest

How very sad. I have literally hundreds of pictures of these 2 male lions from our trip there. They will be missed………While it is sad, this is easier to grip as it is the way of nature and no-humans have interfered. I just read a disturbing article about the hunting of lions in SA during the Cup, that is what makes me furious, breeding these beautiful animals and keeping them in terrible confinement just for sport hunting is just heartbreaking!!!
Best Wishes to all those doing wonderful things at Londolozi!

Rebecca
Member
Guest

Poor Kinky Tail. He was beautiful lion. It’s a tough life for the males in the pride.

Karen Gilliam
Member
Guest

Great write up once again Tom. Thank you.
Very true statements, only time will tell what plays out next in the lion world of Sabi Sands.
Sad to see Kinky Tail will not be seen any more and also sad to see the one younger male is not going to be around any more either.
Nature is definitely not always going to paint a pretty picture.

Karen Gilliam
Member
Guest

Thanks also goes out to Adam and Rich for the photos and video

emer howard
Member
Guest

Beautifully written account Tom! I was in SS last october, and have many photos of these two males. Very sad, but that’s nature!

Ravi
Member
Guest

Can anybody share the video of the battle that took place between Mapogos and Southern Coalition,I think that Satan may actually be heading to the safety of his remaining 4 brothers because its very possible that the coalition is still intact because last month there had been reports that Five members of the mapogo coalition had been seen togetherand it may also be possible that the other 4 mapogos are not aware of the demise of their brother kinky tail and when they become aware of this it may be that all Five Mapogos may actually march eastwards and like old days take revenge by killing members of this new southern coalition we shall have to wait and see what happens,please do keep us updated on the condition and whereabouts of Satan/Mr T.

Jan
Member
Guest

Beautifully written, Tom. Thank you. Certainly there has been much pause for thought over the events of the last week.

Regarding your ‘footnote’ – From the comfort of my chair, thousands of miles from both the absolute beauty and harsh reality that surrounds you…never would this reader presume that you have anything less than the highest respect for all of nature. No matter how seemingly cruel. Your words offer an insight into a world that so very many of us will never experience.

I look forward to hearing more of this “shift” of which you speak with much anticipation…and apprehension!

Again…Thank You.

Francois Goosen
Member

Tom,
It was special watching Satan and Kinky Tail 2 weekends ago, hearing that they’re under threat and to read that it’s now actually happened. We have afew beautiful photographs of them, and will treasure those as we do our fond memories of that special trip.

Best regards,

Francois

Morty
Member
Guest

Question.

You say that Kinky Tail was killed AND eaten. Another blog just says he was killed. From my limited knowledge of lions, they usually don’t eat others. Can you explain? Thanks.

richard
Member

Hi Morty,

It is more than likely that Kinky Tail was partially eaten after he was killed. This is not to say that he was fully eaten much like a lion would an antelope, rather bits of him may have been chewed upon, spat out or even digested. Your understanding of lions is correct as they are not known to eat members of their own species let alone other carnivorous animals, however in the wilderness and in nature there are no absolutes. I know of multiple stories from around Africa of lions killing and eating other cubs, each other and even hyenas. There are stories of leopards eating their own deceased young as well.

The lions that killed Kinky Tail would have probably chewed upon a small portion of his body once he was dead to assert their dominance. Let me know if this sits well with you and if you have any other questions. Thanks for your input.

Rich

Morty
Member
Guest

Rich,

Thanks for the reply.

There is a video on youtube that I find disturbing, and would like you to comment on. The documentary is on leopards, but in part 3 it shows a female lion who has a broken leg. She roars for her pride and then is viciously and immediately killed by 2 rogue males. Here is the link. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-eW4CymRlnI
(It’s called A Leopards Story)

I am very interested to know why she was attacked so suddenly and without hesitation. Thanks!

richard
Member

As the narrator says, “This behaviour is highly unusual but no less savage. Their killer instinct is so strong, the urge to attack an injured animal so powerful that they seemingly cannot stop.” Rogue male lions are often fighting a battle for their own survival as well as for territory. There are no hard and fast rules in nature, however in this instance the two males were probably testosterone fueled; saw an injured lioness by herself and thus felt the need to react with aggression.

There are no clear cut answers for many of the questions that occur contrary to the textbook. Always remember that ‘typical behaviour’ is just a guideline for understanding the day to day behaviour of each animal. With so many different species there are many different vectors for change in the environment. The end result is that many different things could happen. Whilst these two males killed the lioness, two other males may have left her alone.

Have you spent time recently in the wild observing any cats behaviour?

Morty
Member
Guest

I haven’t spent any time in the wild observing, but over the years I have been addicted to Big Cat Diary on Animal Planet, as well as watching youtube documentaries. I find lion society so complex and so harsh that I am sometimes just exasperated at what I have seen. I’ve spent hours looking up details on infanticide. I tell myself to forget about the Lions, but the next day I’m on youtube seeing what I can find.

As to the video, I just thought that the narrator did not give any good information, other than to say that boys will be boys. I guess I just saw it as, hey, this lioness is immobile anyway so why would it be a threat? Of course they males didn’t know that.

I think if I had more time and much more money, I would come out to Africa for quite a long time and observe. I appreciate your replies, as I was about to call the Bronx Zoo in New York and ask a cat expert there to comment on that video.

richard
Member

Its good to hear you are so interested in big cats, they are some of the most interesting and fascinating creatures in the natural world.

I wouldn’t get too exasperate with the lion society that you see as it is important to remember that this is how the natural world has functioned for many thousands of years before we came along with our own perceptions. What is exasperating is to see our humanity destroying natural populations in lion species as well as many others throughout Africa and the rest of the world.

Narrators typically read an esoteric script that mixes storytelling with light bits of fact. As wonderful as documentaries are, they can only give but a glimpse into a wildlife system.

Owing to your obvious passion for these animals, I think it is hugely important for yourself to come to South Africa and be able to experience the lion, leopard and cheetah, which you see on the blog, in reality. Spending a few days with these animals will massively broaden your awareness, understanding, passion and interest around them. Where are you currently based?

Morty
Member
Guest

I’m from Dallas, Texas but now live in a jungle. New York City.

I’m also interested in polar bears, it being the largest land carnivore, and am thinking about a trip sometime to Churchill, Canada in October when they congregate and wait for the ice to form on Hudson Bay so they can go seal hunting. As for South Africa, I would love to come….and also have to remind myself that I might see some things that I would not like to see.

It’s illegal to hunt Lions by the way, correct? There is a woman name Rebecca Francis who has a video on youtube where she shoots a big male. It makes me sick. And I do wish ill for her. She claims it’s legal. What can we do to stop this I’m wondering? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gdKPEmGwbgM

Phantasmos
Member
Guest

As long as there is no Human Interference, as sad as it seems, we can say that nature is taking its course. I happened to stumble on this videos, yet have always been fascinated by lion prides. Don’t know what it is, yet it is. The videos Londolozi have uploaded are fantastic.
Can’t wait for Londolozi to put this in a documentary, I have several from Nat GEO, Etc, yet this would be Grrreat.
Other than that, Keep Up the Good Work!!

claromizadores
Member
Guest

Excellent post. I definitely appreciate this website.
Keep writing!

Roshan Almeida
Explorer

I just saw the documentary on kinky tail on animal planet. When I searched for it on the internet it lead me to your blog. I am glad I found it. I really envy your job but at the same time I know its not an easy one at that. I must say that you are doing a great job. I felt a personal loss seeing the brutal killing of kinky tail, but I guess that is a part of the journey.

Tina Gutierrez
Explorer

I’m addicted to the big cats. I researched a lot by myself, but looking so forward finding out more.

Tina Gutierrez
Explorer

RIP Kinky tail and your brother T. You were awesome warriors……

Tina Gutierrez
Explorer

So sad, I just wish Mr T could have been there from the beginning of the attack to help his brother more. We all know if all the Mapogos had been there it would have been a very different ending! RIP Kinky Tail!

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