In nature’s harsh classroom, a lioness imparts survival lessons, showing her cubs the art of hunting and slaying a wildebeest

This was one such class in Kenya’s Maasai Mara National Park, where a lioness taught her cubs how to hunt and kill a wildebeest to stay alive.

Captured by South African photographer Mark Dumbleton, the lioness began by circling her prey before her cubs joined the hunt.

The animal fought back – but outnumbered and separated from the herd, it was only a matter of time before it was overpowered.

Red in tooth and claw: Deep in the Maasai Mara, a lioness prepares to teach her children how to hunt

Circling: Captured frame by frame, the animals close in on a wildebeest separated from its herd

Chase: Weighing more than 500lbs when fully-grown, the wildebeest initially managed to evade capture

Running: The lion cubs pick up on tips they have been taught by their mother and attack from both sides

Fear: As the rapid-fire sequence unfolds, the wildebeest kicks up dust in its frantic bid to escape

Weakening: The wildebeest then begins to slow, coming face to face with the animal which wants to take its life

Teamwork: Lionesses hunt in prides, rarely alone, and here the mother closed in to help her cubs

Overpowered: Outnumbered and tired, this was the moment the wildebeest could no longer put up a fight

Eyeing its prey: The family unit take a look before one of the animals sinks its jaws into the stricken beast

Killed: Lit by the golden evening sun, the wildebeest is dealt a fatal blow by the victorious hunters

Dinner: Wildebeest are strong and fast, but are vulnerable as soon as they are separated from the heard

Beaten down: South African photographer Mark Dumbleton said the hunt was over within minutes

‘I couldn’t believe the animal instinct they had,’ he said. ‘They knew exactly how to take [the animal] down’


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