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James Tyrrell

Photographic Guide/Media Team

James had hardly touched a camera when he came to Londolozi, but his writing skills that complemented his Honours degree in Zoology meant that he was quickly snapped up by the Londolozi blog team. An environment rich in photographers helped him develop the ...

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18 Comments

on Lion Update: Tsalala Young Males in Trouble

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marinda drake
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Interesting lion dynamics. Apparently the Birmingham males are also wreaking havoc in the nothren section of the Sabi Sand. Just hope they dont come further south.

James Tyrrell
Photographic Guide/Media Team

Hi Marinda,

The Birminghams are indeed causing chaos by the sounds of things. Apparently they killed one of the Styx lionesses a couple of days ago. The Majingilane accompany the Mhangeni pride into the north every now and then and I’m sure are still strong enough to ward off any Birmingham threat for now…

James

Blair S
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To be honest I dont see the Styx being dominant anywhere in the Sands one of the Fourways males is a Majingi son and can spread their genes in the south but Majingi genes run strong in many lions in the central Sands and although lions can inbreed a few generation without any huge effects in a huge open system like this I just dont see why it would be benefical from a breeding standpoint for the Styx too bred with related lions like their half sister the young Tsalala lioness when they could go spred their strong genes in the Manyeleti or Kruger and their are other coalitions around that are unrelated and larger and could provide more stability and fresher genes the Birminghams in my opinion are the future kings of both the northern and central Sabi Sands but like you said James these things are seldom easy too predict accuratley. Another awesome right up

James Tyrrell
Photographic Guide/Media Team

Hi Blair,

Thanks for the insights. I too doubt the Styx males will ever be dominant over a pride/area, yet as a large male lion, you don’t necessarily have to be dominant to be a threat to other young males.
The Birminghams are certainly possible contenders for the throne. They still have a year or two to go until they reach full size, and whether they expand their area once that happens will be interesting to see, as they certainly may start encroaching into Tsalala territory.

James

Misba
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I love STYX male , he is so handsome.

Jo
Member
Guest

Great blog!
Personally, I don’t think the Styx males would be a big threat to these handsome sub-adults, at least not now. The two boys move between the Elephant Plains and Londolozi, not deciding on where to settle in. They stole food from Mhangeni Pride sometimes, without hurting the sub-adults or attempting to mate with the lionesses (the Majingilanes were not present, of course).
The Fourways Male are content with the Southern Pride now, so yeah.
Talking about the real threat, the Matshipiri would be one. However, I think the two may target at the remaining Sparta females first.
Also, Matimba are moving from the North to South. Will they decide to rob another pride for themselves in Londolozi? This is a question.
Judging from Majingilanes’ reactions towards Matshipiri (going back to Londolozi again a few days later), they may not be so tolerate as we think.

James Tyrrell
Photographic Guide/Media Team

Hi Jo,

Thanks for the comments.
The Styx males did infact chase the Tsalala pride and the young males a couple of days ago. We will be releasing the footage and write-up in the next couple of days.
We have yet to see the Matimba males on Londolozi. The Birmingham male seem to be causing a lot of trouble up North. Once they reach full size it will be interesting to see what they do…

James

Jo
Member
Guest

Hey James,
Thanks for the important info! I think the Styx males are still trying to find a position of their own. Hopefully the young brothers will figure it out as they grow up. Hope the sub-adults stay safe, too.
Many people have great hope for B-boys. They could be great as the Majingilane or even the Mapogo. But people had hope in some other lions who did not end up well, too. So let’s wait and see.
Very look forward to the upcoming blog and footage!

jon
Member
Guest

James, Matimbas have been spending most of their time recently on Hoffmans and N. MM whether that from being pushed south by the Birmingham’s or just following the Styx girls we do not know. It does seem they’re staying away from the northern areas of their territory ie: Djuma/Ararthusa/Buffelshoek recently.

James Tyrrell
Photographic Guide/Media Team

Hi Jon,

Your comment is well-timed, as last night two of us bumped into what we think was one of the Matimba males, scent-marking south of the river and only a kilometre or so east of camp. As far as I know this is the first time one of these males has actually been viewed on Londolozi, although we know they have been through before.
He certainly had one of the biggest manes I’ve ever seen.
Was his presence a sign of things to come? What do you think?

James

Blair S
Member
Guest

Hi James Im not sure if you know what the 2 Matimbas look like so their is one with a more Ginger coloured mane and one with a Dark mane the Ginger one has a very distinctive scar on his right paw and the other one has dark belly hair.

Jill Grady
Member
Guest

Lots of interesting Lion dynamics going on James! It would be good if the Majingilane would return to protect their Tsalala sons and give them more time to grow stronger. I saw them first when they were young cubs and it would be so heartbreaking to lose any of them. I am surprised that the Styx males are challenging the Majingilane, since there are only two of them to the 4 Majingilane. Thanks for the great update James…keep us posted.

James Tyrrell
Photographic Guide/Media Team

Hi Jill,

Thanks for the comments. I don’t think it’s that the Styx males are challenging the Majingilane, more that they are moving to a vacant area that the Majingilane have ostensibly left up for grabs.

James

Jill Grady
Member
Guest

Hi James,
Thanks for your response. I am hoping that the tense situation improves for the Tsalala young males and they stay safe. I’m looking forward to your next blog to hear what happens next!

Mike C
Member
Guest

Thanks for keeping us in the loop James! I am sure the tailless lioness will find a way to keep these young guys alive. Did you ever say which young male was hanging with the Tsalalas and is he still with them? The Tsalalas are really on the fringe of all the lions territories- Majingi west, Matshapiri south, Matimba north/east, it will be interesting to see if they can stay out of the war path.

Loretta Z
Member
Guest

I’m hoping with such a good pride behind them the boys are able to stay one step ahead of the many males seeking to claim Londolozi for themselves. I worry that once they’re kicked out, that’s where they may get themselves into trouble. Those Birmingham boys seem a bit ruthless already so I hope the Tsalala boys stay away from the north.

Mike D
Member
Guest

I hope the young Tsalala males make it long enough to survive on their own. perhaps the young Spara male will join them giving them some added experience and strength. no doubt this is a tough time for these guys. I hope they hang in there. please keep us updated.

Lizeka Masilela
Member
Guest

Hope the young make it through against all odds.

Lizeka

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