I was once sitting with a male lion that saw vultures dropping in the distance;, he sat up, looked more intently and suddenly ran towards that spot. There there was a dead impala for him to feed on.
When many vultures are landing in one specific area, this is usually the case; there is a carcass there.
So on a recent morning drive I saw vultures landing and decided to do just as that lion had done. What we found was even more dramatic than we expected!
As I turned the corner towards the tree where the vultures had been congregating, we saw hyenas feeding on the remains of a waterbuck in the middle of a dry pan; where they were feeding was clearly still reasonable wet under the cracked surface as they struggled to walk without sinking into the mud.
The scene was eery from the get-go, but as vultures slowly started to drop in to try get what scraps they could, the hyenas constantly chased them away We had been there for about 30 minutes when out the corner of my eye I spotted a leopard, the Ximungwe Young male, lying nearby and watching the action.
He would have probably done exactly what I had; seen the vultures and come to investigate. With three hyenas around he sat waiting to see if an opportunity for him to grab the waterbuck remains was possible. None was forthcoming and he retreated to the shade in the distance but was still fixated on the scenes in front of him.
Two of the hyenas moved off, leaving one feeding. This gave all the white-backed vultures and some hooded vultures the perfect opportunity to swoop in. Eventually after not being able to fight them off the single remaining hyena managed to drag the remaining part of the waterbuck to a bush, where it finished it off. Unfortunately the young leopard didn’t get anything l but was merely an observer, much like our vehicle. At least he found some shade though. We weren’t as lucky.
We sat there for about an hour and a half, which really felt like ten minutes as so much unfolded.