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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16 Comments

on The Original Tsalala Four

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John Holley
Member
Guest

Finally we managed to find the 4 cubs again this morning.

Its been almost a week since we had them seperately from the new born cubs.

Awesome sighting in and around Shimpalapala.

Sheena
Member
Guest

You are so lucky to see such gorgeous creatures on a daily basis – believe me housework does not have the same appeal !!! Fabulous photos, thank-you. I am sure the new Mum will present her cubs in good time and, cameras at the ready, we will all be able to witness another little miracle.

Rich
Member

Too true Sheena, glad that you enjoyed the pictures. Thanks for your comments.

Penny Parker
Member
Guest

Such lovely pictures. So nice to be able to remotely see these cubs growing up well! and this blog is so scarily true. There is always a trend towards wanting the new and the exciting – a quest for the big 5 always top of mind – but the bush is filled with animals, birds, trees alike that are just as sensational day after day. I hope people start to truly love and appreciate the little things too. thanks for the post 🙂 really hit home with me.

Vince
Member
Guest

How is the cub with the hip that was out of whack…has it straightened out or is he going to have problems with it in the future?

Rich
Member

@Vince, it seems as though the hip has straightened out. We frequently see the cubs running around and playing rough and tumble all together so for the moment it looks encouraging. Thanks for your interest. Rich

Kk
Member
Guest

Very beautiful pictures. What has become of the old tailless lioness and older female cubs? Are they still around?

Rich
Member

@Kk, at the moment we haven’t seen them for about 2 months. They headed west in Ottowa at the end of March and are keeping, it seems, a low profile away from the Majingilane Coalition. Glad you enjoyed the pictures, thanks for the comments.

Bader
Member
Guest

What is the sex of those 4 cubs?

Rich
Member

@Bader, the sexing of the cubs three females and one male.

James T
Member
Guest

A well written piece Rich, with some great photos by John.
It is often exactly how you say it is, with everyone excited about the ‘next big thing’ in the bush; who will be having cubs next, which pride will make a kill nearby? etc… and in so doing we do sometimes need to be reminded to appreciate what we have in front of us.
These four Tsalala cubs have been delighting guests and rangers alike for the last 5 months, and as they continue to grow, are sure to provide endless hours of viewing pleasure as they mature into formidable young hunters. They are already at that stage where they are starting to lose some of their cub cuteness and are starting to look like actual lions, and in the next few months we should begin to see them honing their stalking and fighting skills that they pracitce so readily on each other, in anticipation of one day beginning to catch their own prey.
Because the area they are currently inhabiting has a smaller population of hyenas than south of the Sand River, allied with the fact that the only other group of lions they are likely to encounter with any kind of regularity is the Majingilane coalition (who sired them, and as a result should not be a real danger), the threats they face from other large predators is significantly smaller than cubs in other parts of the reserve. Although lion cub mortality is traditionally quite high (between 50-60% do not reach the age of 1 yr), the current Tsalala youngsters are thriving. Their mother and aunt are very successful hunters, and they are currently residing on some of Londolozi’s prime real estate for cubs.
Let us hope that they continue to do as well, and their newly born cousins with them…

Rich
Member

James, thanks for your comments and insights. It is truly helpful in helping followers of this pride in better understanding the different dynamics at play out here in the wilderness.

Sheena
Member
Guest

Rich, this is for you rather than the blog. Does Londolozi publish a calendar? The photos you have from the Rangers are such good quality (the ones of the cubs that John Holley took are stunning, the light is wonderful) has the management ever thought of raising funds for a charity through a calender – I seem to remember you support an education scheme or such like – it is common practice in Europe and brings excellent rewards for both the issuer and the beneficiary. Perhaps they already do this, so forgive me if I am being presumptuous.

Rich
Member

Hi Sheena, at the moment we do not publish a calendar, rather we sell the great images in our Living Shop. It is a nice idea, however the big challenge is finding efficient and streamline distribution channels for everybody who would like to purchase the calendars overseas. Any ideas?

As for our education project, the Good Work Foundation is the organisation which Londolozi supports. This organisation is indeed focused on literacy in rural areas and we are continually looking for ways in which to raise money for the GWF’s education projects.

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