About the Author

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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25 Comments

on Is There Honour Between Lions?

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Vaseem Baig
Member
Guest

James, your blog is extremely interesting especially the part of Avoca boys interacting with the injured Matshipri. This lion dynamics again puts doubts in anyone’s mind about lion behavior and shatters the stereotype thinking!! I am grateful to Londolozia and you to bring such information about lions in a beautiful manner that makes my day.

Dipti Pandey
Member
Guest

How old are the Avoca males? Are they similar in age to the Tsalala breakaway males? If yes, then the behavior of the two Avoca males vs the three Tasala breakaway males is so interesting..the two clearly feel confident enough to try to establish territory vs the three who are living a nomadic existence constantly having to evade bigger lions.

James Tyrrell
Photographic Guide/Media Team

Hi Dipti,
As I understand it, they are around 4 years old, born in early 2013, which makes them a few months older than the Tsalala young males…
It’s very interesting to see the difference in lifestyles/approaches between the two coalitions. hHo knows what the Tsalala young males will be doing in the next year or so?
Regards

Norberto Dellê
Member
Guest

That was an amazing report on the events that I heard about a few days ago. Thank you James. Keep the good work.

Lynne
Member
Guest

Oh dear what drama ! So exciting but also a bit sad ! Thanks for the interesting saga so far.

Claire
Member
Guest

Oh my gosh, what a breath-taking situation to witness. I’ve been enthralled by the lion dynamics of late! Thank you for sharing the story with us! I’ve been to Londolozi twice, and hope to return again in 2018. I will bring my son this time. I shared the “How Trees Heal People” article with my son, as he is an avid tree-climber and lover of all things wild. Your love of the ways of the Earth create others like you, so thank you for continuing to share your experiences.

Murtaza S
Member
Guest

As always, great article James!

Cam
Member
Guest

Any idea of where the matimba boys are

James Tyrrell
Photographic Guide/Media Team

Hi Cam,
No idea, unfortunately.
Regards

Mike D
Member
Guest

I guess these two young males have not developed that killer instinct that comes with age and experience from a hard life wandering the bush. Thankfully they did not attack the injured lion but it seems they got their point across to him. With so many powerful coalitions in the area it seems the rumble in the jungle is inevitable. Get your popcorn ready. Can’t wait for the follow ups.

Mike ryan
Member
Guest

Great blog James Matimbas last seen at Tintswalo Safari Lodge at the end of May

Pete Thorpe
Field Guide

Thanks for the update Mike!

Anbarasan
Member
Guest

sad for the coalition which has sent both majingis and matimbas packing.
but how did the injury happen in the first place to that male…?

Pete Thorpe
Field Guide

Hi Anbarasan,
We aren’t sure. Most likely he caught it in a hole while running, as it’s the kind of injury that looks like it resulted from a severe twist. There didn’t look to be any surface injuries that might have indicated a kick from a large animal like a giraffe, but it’s impossible to say for sure!
Regards

Cam
Member
Guest

James
Do you think that the Birmingham boys will push further south to claim more territory or are they happy with what they have at the moment surely they will run SABI in the near future

Nelson Simpson
Member
Guest

James,, The two Matimba Males are dominant over Mothlawareng and red road pride in the North. I doubt now they will come back to Londolozi.

Pete Thorpe
Field Guide

Thanks Nelson,
Can you confirm these are the same to Matimba males; the one with the ginger mane and the dark-maned male with the Hair on his belly?

Dipti Pandey
Member
Guest

Thanks James,
I would love nothing more than to see the three Tsalala in their prime. I have followed that breakaway pride for a while now and they have a special place in my heart..not to say several of their pictures that hang in my house. Though it is the bush so no matter what I wish like you said we never know 🙂

Denine Mishoe
Member
Guest

I assume, hopefully correct, that you photograph, follow and blog about these lions because you also care about wildlife (big cats)? Do you ever do the humane thing and, every once in awhile, help them? I’m specifically referring to the lion with the broken leg. Since you stated that you knew where he was hiding for days and when he’d last eaten (…With that having been his only decent meal in goodness-knows how long, he was in a badly emaciated condition) do you ever have compassion and lend a helping hand to those in need? I’m not saying tranquilize him and rush the lion to the exotic animal vet to reset his leg (which is what my heart would have screamed that I do), but do you think to even help by providing him with sustenance while he recovers (if he ever does) the use of his leg? Please don’t come back with… I don’t want to upset the balance of nature or survivor of the fittest and such… because helping an animal in need occasionally is never going to upset the balance of anything. It’s just called being a good and caring steward of this Earth and doing go towards other species when possible. I found your article interesting but I don’t want to continue to read your blogs if I know now that you don’t ever help these magnificent creatures when you can.

Pete Thorpe
Field Guide

Hi Denine,
Thanks you for your comments.
Almost every caring and responsible wildlife lodge has a non-intervention policy, as one can never be sure what the repercussions will be should we take some sort of action. Should we take immediate steps to save this lion, he could kill the Nkoveni female leopard next week, which would result in the death of her still-dependent cubs. We can’t predict what knock-on effects our actions might bring about.
What if one of the Avoca males also now became injured? Should we aid his recovery, only so that the two males can fight it out again at a later date?
As difficult as it can be to observe Nature at its most raw, as neutral observers that is what we are obliged to do; remain neutral. What we, as well as the many other conservation organisations that comprise this great wilderness strive to do is to preserve the ecosystem in as natural a state as possible, so that the systems and processes that have been in place for millenia can continue to run their course as though we are not here, nor ever were.
The death or indeed suffering of a magnificent animal saddens us too, but as true conservationists, we have to let the ecosystem govern itself.
We will continue to observe this male’s condition and report on it, but you are welcome to discontinue your following of the blog if upsets you.
Kind regards

Chris
Member
Guest

Where are the Matimbas?

James Tyrrell
Photographic Guide/Media Team

Hi Chris,
Don’t know. Lots of conflicting reports.
Regards

Kenneth Tobin
Member
Guest

WHY DO PEOPLE THINK THE MATIMBAS CONTROL 2 PRIDES UP NORTH ? THEY ARE NOAMADS. I HAVE NOT READ A SINGLE THING SAYING THEY TOOK OVER PRIDES AFTER LEAVING SABI SANDS. NOMADS

Callum Evans
Guest contributor

Now that’s an encounter I would have loved to see!!

Tina Gutierrez
Explorer

Thanks so much for detailed descriptions! One could almost envision how things looked through your eyes! KUDOS!

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