We call lots of things once in a lifetime, but this actually may be a once in a lifetime sight for these safari goers and guides alike.
Kruger National Park is one of the premier places on the planet to see truly spectacular wildlife scenes play out in front of you. It’s home to all sorts of creatures such as leopards, buffalo, cheetahs, rhinos, elephants, and much more, but undoubtedly one of the animals that everyone wants to spot are the lions.
The King of the Jungle is one of the top predators on the South African plains, but that doesn’t mean life is a cakewalk for the large feline. They’re forced to hunt down animals that are very aware of them and will do anything to escape, although they are capable of running off other predators from their kills to feed, like these males did to a leopard. But sometimes things get desperate and the pride needs to turn its focus onto other sources of food, including the top predators of the water.
Nile crocodiles are pretty much the most fearsome thing that can be imagined. Weighing up to 1,700 pounds and growing to 14 feet in length, these creatures have crazy powerful jaws and a mean streak that they use to defend their territory, so for the most part nothing preys on them, but one found itself in a bad situation when a bunch of lions surrounded it while in a small swampy area far away from the safety of deep waters.
Latest Sightings, the account that posted the video did a great job explaining the context, so let’s read it from them:
“This extraordinary sighting was captured on camera by Newton Mulenga, a seasoned guide, during a safari in the Busanga Plains within Kafue National Park, Zambia.
On this particular day, Newton’s attention was drawn to the resident pride of lions, renowned in the area for their hunting prowess. This pride, led by two lionesses known as ‘Killing Machine’ and ‘Princess’, is a formidable force in Busanga Plains. Princess, easily identified by her collar, and her sister, Killing Machine, patrol the area with an eye out for anything that will feed their pride. Their pride consists 13 lions including cubs of various ages.
In their relentless search for food, the lion pride cornered a massive Nile crocodile. Stranded in a small swampy area and too far from the safety of deeper waters, the crocodile was vulnerable. Despite its attempts to defend itself by snapping aggressively at the lions, it couldn’t match the lions’ strategic approach.
The turning point came when Princess, the collared lioness, made a daring move. She leaped onto the crocodile’s back, biting its neck with her large canines. The combined weight and force of the lions overwhelmed the crocodile, which, after a desperate struggle, succumbed to the pride.
While lions generally do not hunt crocodiles due to the risks involved, it’s important to remember that they are opportunistic predators. In the wild, survival often depends on seizing every available chance for a meal. When faced with the pressing needs of their pride, especially with many mouths to feed, lions can display incredible adaptability and courage.”
The croc probably didn’t know what hit it, going from top of the food chain to food itself in just a few short moments, but the way this battle played out, with one lion really taking the lead, shows just how dangerous wild cats can be.
I’d love to get to Kruger for a safari someday, but man am I going to be nervous about getting too close to these monsters…