This was a risky hunt for these lions.
The lion may be the king of the jungle, but in Africa, every day is a struggle for survival. Even an apex predator like the lion is not immune from danger, especially when it comes to hunting. Lions are normally opportunistic when it comes to their choice of meals. However, sometimes they are willing to take risks for a larger prey item.
Case in point is this hunt from South Africa's Kruger National Park. Tourists watch from their vehicle as a herd of cape buffalo crosses a river. Unknown to the buffalo, a pride of lions is watching their every move.
Once they pick their target, a young buffalo calf, they spring into action. The lions chase the buffalo across the river and just when it looks like they have dinner, the rest of the herd goes on the counter offensive.
The cape buffalo has the nickname "the black death," and watching something like this, it is easy to see why. Not many animals can turn around a lion attack like these buffalo did.
Targeting cape buffalo is a risky proposition for any lion. While they do sometimes take down adults, they usually do what you saw here and target vulnerable youngsters. This was one of the rare instances where you will see the males and females hunting together. They need all their strength to bring one of these animals down.
The buffalos win this round. The numbers were simply stacked too greatly in the buffalo's favor. These lions were in no mood to tangle with the adults. To do so would be a great risk to life and limb. Adult cape buffalos have been known to kill lions on occasion. In this case, this herd was a little too large for a successful kill. As soon as those large bulls turned around and started to counterattack, this hunt was all over.
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