About the Author

Dean de la Rey

Alumni Ranger

Dean was a guide at Londolozi from 2018 to 2022. He grew up in Johannesburg and it was from his very first trip to the bush at the age of two that he was captivated by this environment (he claims he can remember ...

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on The Male Lion Dynamics of Londolozi

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Fascinating stuff indeed. Waiting on baited breath for the next instalment …… I have a feeling the four boys from the south are going to make an impression…. strength in numbers plus maturity.

Digital Ranger

Hi Dean, thank you so much for analyzing the lion dynamics of sabisands. having followed very keenly all these lions that you have mentioned, the inevitable of a battle and takeover is sooner than later. even i too have rooted for the young Ndhzenga males as they, very intelligently and slowly have established in southern sabisands without losing a partner. when i look at their bulky physic and confidence, they look like an ideal coalition who can bring change and an healthy gene pool in central sabisands. fingers crossed i hope there is little bloodshed, as all the males lions that have established territories in sabisands are my favourites. once again thanks and continue the wonderful work of writing lovely blogs for lions lovers like me.


Senior Digital Ranger

I’d like to know if anyone knows what has happened to that last female with a young daughter the last of her pride, they were both in your area and I haven’t heard anything about them for quite awhile. Hope there doing well, please let us know. Thank you

Digital Ranger

Hi Tammy,
They both are doing fine and are in western sabisands, Singita. She mated with one of the Tumbela coalition brothers and may expect her cubs soon. To know more about them you need to check postings from Noor Abdu on facbook.

The Noor Abdu I found on FB can not be followed, is there anywhere else we can look for the Tsalala female and her cub? Thank you

Dean I seem to agree with you about 4 Ndhzenga Males or the 3 Avoca Males to take over the coalitions from the Birmingham male lions. The Birmingham lions might be old, but they are a force to be reconed with. For me the Plains Camp males and the Nkuhuma male lion are not as big as the Birmingham Males and you said yourself their roar is immense. They are still ruling for now, but I’m sure soon there will be a fight. I was so distraught to hear about the Othawa male, that was killed. He was such a majestic male, so sad he does not live anymore. But we are waiting in anticipation for the news , on which male lions are going to be ruling Londolozi.

This is a great article. My heart is with the Birmingham Males. I know they are older and that age does change your body whether you are a human or a lion. I, myself, don’t think I could see the downfall of them!

Hi Dean, the last Blogs have been super, this one really exciting! Although it is sad not to see legendary lions any longer this is a necessary natural process. I was shocked by the sudden loss of the Othawa male as he was so perfect. But the Birmingham seem to gain new strength every time like the Majingilane or Mapogo in the past… they will surely succumb to another coalition but up to now they are imposing. Who are the two of the first picture? Impressive

Super interesting developments with all these younger males starting to voice their opinion Dean..I must say those Ndhzenga males certainly looked liked they meant business the other day as they trotted, with great purpose, past the landi. What ever the outcome, I do hope that the Birmingham males are just driven off to enjoy of the last of their years in peace…though they will miss their pride for hunting.

Great story! My gut tells me that strength lies in numbers hence the 4 Ndhzenga group would seem the most formidable. Whoever takes over will certainly be a strong and formidable group.

Long live the BIRMINGHAM MALES:)

Great reporting on the male lions in general, and especially those who could look to unseat the Birmingham males. I’m rather fond of the latter but know at their age, their reign of power will come to an end. But who will take them down?! The N’wawishaka males are impressive and have strength in numbers although they are overseeing the Southern Pride and Styx prides. The injured Avoca could be a liability to his brothers, and the others-who knows. Exciting times ahead!!

Senior Digital Ranger

Returning to Londolozi in 2023 for our 50th Anniversary–with the entire family this time! Maybe you can give us the tour again Dean, and by then a new Coalition of Lions will have established???

Senior Digital Ranger

Thank you for the update of the lion dynamics. I always cheer for the Birmingham males , but we all know time is not their friend at this point in their lives. The only constant in this world in change..

Nice recap and we can only imagine the excitement in camp when all that roaring begins, rangers and trackers running for their vehicles in the middle of the night, headlights beaming, cameras being prepped whilst driving at breakneck speeds towards the ruckus … wish we could be there too!

Really interesting these coalitions and fights of the different male lions.
I wonder who will be the next strong guy/ or guys to rule over Londolozi’s lions and lionesses.

It’s fascinating to watch – and to speculate! My heart is still with the Majingilane, though. Seeing those 4 brothers together was a highlight of all my safaris!

That header photo is amazing!

Fascinating movements all around. We definitely saw the young Nwalungu coalition in the southern reaches of Singita/Londolozi in early July, but they were nervous and jumpy. Of course, the Nkuhuma male is a son of the Birminghams, so their bloodline is well represented in the Sabi Sands. The Plains Camp boys are a real force and looking for more territory and females, for sure. Wish that Nkuhuma could team up with them.

The lion shot with 18 drinking and 2 walking in is one of the greatest lion shots I’ve seen and I know or follow some of the biggest names in African Wildlife photography. I took a shot of 11 of the Nkuhuma drinking and this Lodo shot is something else. I’ve spent time with the Birminghams back when there where four and have a tattoo of Nhenha(warrior), on my left forearm.

Digital Ranger

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