It was as if they were gladiators fighting in an arena. A moment of raw African Magic happening right in front of us! The spectators sat transfixed; from start to finish they starred, a medley of emotions… joy, shock, horror, awe, love and hate. The whole event will remain embedded in the memories of those fortunate few who got to witness the battle.
The two Sparta lionesses started harassing the buffalo bull minutes before the sun rose on a cold Winter’s morning in the African bush. Initially guests, rangers and trackers were vying for action; hoping to capture footage of a real-time kill and see the completion of the great circle of life. A swift attack by the buffalo saw one lioness go flying through the air and it looked like the showdown would swing the way of the buffalo. Slowly however, the lionesses fought back and allegiances started shifting as the big buffalo bull began was dragged down putting up a desperate fight for his life.
The epic battle lasted for a good six hours. The inexperience of the 2 Sparta Lionesses became all the more obvious as the story unfolded. They did exceptionally well to get the massive buffalo onto the ground but simply could not complete the hunt and kill their prey.
As the hours drew on, both sides tiring from the ordeal, the predator-prey interface became its most severe. I couldn’t help but think that what we were watching was a stale mate brought about by thousands of years of natural selection. The evolutionary arms race was playing out – This was truly the survival of the fittest! After 6 long hours the buffalo miraculously managed to stand up, shake of the lionesses and make a run for it! Torn to pieces; claw and teeth marks scarred his bloody body yet he had escaped death and survived to live another day and give us observers another stirring sighting in the wilderness of Londolozi
We have seen a lion/buffalo battle like this before, but what do you make of this epic battle? Are you relieved that the buffalo survived or disappointed that the Sparta lionesses were not able to make the kill? Leave your thoughts in the comments section below.
Filmed and photographed by Rex Miller and Tom Imrie
Written by Adam Bannister