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James Tyrrell


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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on Living Dangerously: The Ottawa Male Lion Flirts With Disaster

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I think that the Ottawa male will be a magnificent male in his prime, if he survives in this period.

Hi Gabriele,
Agreed. He’s already magnificent, despite his youth!

Master Tracker

I think he needs to relocate or better still find another solitary male to team up .

Your descriptions, along with the other Rangers, makes all this so real for those of us who only get to Londolozi once a year. Thank you.

Thanks for the comments Jeff,
You’re welcome. Glad you’re staying connected!
Best regards

From your writing, it seems the Ottawa male is lonely, not having a pride to call his own, and so he’s tagging after the Mhageni ladies. With the Birmingham coalition mating and patrolling the property, the Ottawa male could be living on borrowed time. If he’s not more careful there could be an ugly encounter. Of course I’m applying my own human take based on your reports, and without hearing and understanding lionese talk, who knows what will happen.
Have these two Mhagene lionesses recently given birth ?

Hi Denise,
Yes a couple have given birth. Neither that we saw were displaying suckle marks however which was slightly confusing as the cubs should still be very young. We hope they are still alright.
Best regards

Seems like the Ottawa male might have a plan but outmatched at this moment. Just curious here. Is it possible the Ottawa male is trying to become familiar enough to the females so that when he gets larger he can move on them in in a dominant and acceptable way. Or do Lions not think that far ahead.

Hmmm, foresight and lions. A question often debated. I don’t believe they do think far ahead like that. I think it’s far more a case of current stimulus and response. More than likely it’s just his urge to reproduce, as he is approaching sexual maturity, but just not big enough to compete with more dominant males yet.

James, any word at all on the missing BBoy, Mfumo? What are your thoughts on where he is or what happened to him? Thanks

Hi Len,

No word that I’ve heard. I heard vague reports that he was seen in Kruger a while back, but nothing concrete. I’ll let you know if we hear something.


There is never a dull moment in the bush! I had to smile though since all the interaction and possibilities reminded me of an American soap opera. The tension mounts….stayed tuned!

Digital Ranger

A wonderful specimen of a lion.
He reminds me of the Nkuhuma male. Unfortunately Nkuhuma lion died of injuries in November 2017.

A wonderful specimen of a lion.
He reminds me of the Nkuhuma male. Unfortunately Nkuhuma lion died of injuries in November 2017.
This is a beautiful specimen of a lion. ♥
She reminds me of the male Nkuhuma, who, unfortunately, died of injuries in November 2017.

Digital Ranger

Sorry 🙂 🙂 ♥

I may be asking an obvious questions for most on here. Besides male lions dominating the females and cubs because of a territorial take over, would the males me able to tell if the females may have mated with a stranger other than him? Is scent how they tell? Also does scent have anything to do with knowing they are or are not the father of cubs if the males were gone from the female when they gave birth?

Hi Tina,
I think the males could tell. I remember some inteersting interactions between the Matimba males and the Ntsevu females at the start of last year in which the lionesses were being chased by males that should have been a bit more well-disposed towards them
We suspect it was because the females had been mating with the Matshipiri males: https://blog.londolozi.com/2017/01/09/matimba-males-chase-mhangeni-breakaways/

Fascinating chess move events! What will be next?

Hi Gawie; anyone’s guess!

Be interesting to see what happens if the Birminghams catch him in their territory!

Is it possible that the young Ottawa male and Tsalala lioness will stay together as they are both single, if the Birminhams don’t kill him?

I hope he makes it , I love this guy, do u know if his cub siblings are still alive?

Hi Tim,

I don’t think so unfortunately.

Yes. He has a sister- liter mate that has just given birth in the West. He also has 3 non liter mate brothers who are still small cubs (the last of the Majingilane offspring) in the West who have been tolerated and by all accounts ‘adopted’ by the matimba.

There’s a unique beauty in the outdoors. It’s something makes you stand out from another photographer. Natural light is perfect!

Are there any updates? How is Ottawa doing in July 2019?

Hi Kamila, He is very well and still with the Mhangeni pride.

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