There is only one word to describe the last few days of 2014 and that word would be ‘washout’! The rain had been making an appearance almost every day and, by the 31st of December, it had finally taken its toll on the release site; resulting in limited access along the waterlogged roads and poor visuals of the lions. That morning, Milo was located resting alone in the Amboseli area whilst the rest of the pride was a distance away- huddled together in Treetops. Unfortunately, by midday they had all disappeared; the rain most likely sparking activity and causing them to move on. The team drove around the site in vain unable to locate any member of the elusive pride.
However, the arrival of the New Year in Ngamo saw the wet weather begin to subside a little; and by the 4th of January the cloud had broken and the sun came shining through. The lions were taking advantage of the warmer weather and were relaxing contently in Camp, under the shade of trees. It was shortly after midday when the team noticed AT1 quickly sitting upright. She had been alerted to the impala herd passing nearby and she and KE4 were soon up on their paws and prowling directly towards them. Nala, a seasoned hunter, was joined by KE3 and they both flanked far to the right, providing greater presence across the area to increase their chances. A few moments later, AS4 and AS5 had joined the pursuit. As AS5 continued on a direct route towards the antelope, AS4 flanked towards the left. Gradually, the lions disappeared from view and the research team had no option but to await the outcome.
Suddenly, a ‘bleating’ noise was heard from within the shrubs and KE4 spun around quickly, vigilant to the unmistakable sound of an animal in distress. The team made their way as quickly as they could to investigate but unfortunately the vegetation was thick and severely limited their view. Moments later, Milo’s distinctive growls were heard and the team had their suspicions as to what had just taken place.
As they headed towards the growls, they were met by Kwali travelling towards Phyre, Kenge and Ashanti- all of who had refrained from taking part in the hunt. However, trotting along a little further behind was KE3- her blood-stained appearance completing the version of events. It seemed that it had been KE3 who had successfully caught and killed the impala, and it seemed even more likely that dad Milo had attempted to claim it for himself.
into a A little further on, the team finally encountered Milo tucking juvenile impala; confirming their suspicions that he had once again barged in and snatched his daughter’s reward for himself- a typical day in the life of a dominant pride male.