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Tayla Brown


Tayla grew up largely on a farm in the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands, where she developed her love for nature. After completing school she spent time in Botswana before studying EcoTourism management in Pretoria, which served as a springboard into a guiding career at Phinda ...

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on The Most Incredible Demonstration of the Will to Survive: Two Baby Porcupine Fend off Six Lions

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After we left Londolozi in 2019, we went to Tswalu Kalahari which includes a reserach center on porcupines–which were everywhere. They are incredibly interesting animals to observe. We can tell you from personal experience that their quills are very sharp. (The landscape is covered with quills.)

What a unique sighting. Thanks for sharing Tayla.

Exhilarating! I didn’t know they are called porcupettes, so nice. I guess lions don’t usually hunt porcupines… unless they are young and unexperienced? Like honey badgers these animals are quite a hard prey! I’m glad for the happy end

Porcupines seem like much too great a risk for being what amounts to a small snack for one lion, let alone five. Glad they escaped!

Wow, incredible! These porcupines are really something…….

They really are.

What a brave little soul. However it appears the lions were more curious than anything. I guess the young ones don’t throw their quills??

Hi Leonie, yes porcupines don’t throw their quills, they back up into the treat with their quills.

What an amazing story and video, Tayla! Those little porcupettes were so brave. Maybe their naïveté helped them keep up the fight as well as instinct to clump together. Fascinating!

Thank you Mary Beth.

What an astonishing sighting for you and your guests, Tayla. If the lions do get any quills stuck in them, how do they get them out with those barbs?

Hi Suzanne. They will pull them out with their teeth and eventually they will come out.

Tayla the porcupines are quite ferocious animals and determined to stand together to get out of trouble. Well it paid off for them and the lions had some pretty sore faces and paws full of quills.

What an amazing sighting. I am relieved that the two little ones made it to safety and the lions left them finally alone.
But how exciting to be able to see these animals at all.

Thanks Christa. I was relieved too when they managed to escape.

What a wonderful adventure to see the porcupines succeed! 2Davids and several Goliaths!! Victoria

Poor babies!!! How stressful 😣 How long did those silly kitties pester them? And where were mom and dad? None of the lions got stuck?

Hi Anita. We were there for at least 30min, not too sure how long it was going on before we got there. I think the adults must have managed to escape into the ticker bush while the lions were distracted by the youngsters.

Tayla, that was amazing to watch and your commentary told the story perfectly. It was fascinating to see those two young porcupettes hold their own against the lions, after the parents scurried off to safety. That surely ranks as an unforgettable sighting and possibly a once in a lifetime experience. Thank you for documenting this sighting!!

Thank you Denise, it really was incredible to witness.

Senior Digital Ranger

Can they ever use up there quills during a attact

Master Tracker

Amazing sighting

What an amazing encounter…..and yes I am very happy that the porcupine family were able to escape successfully from the lions!!

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