March 2021

The feud rages on

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The feud rages on

Tyme Mutema
By Tyme Mutema
Field Guide

What a pleasure to be back again in the bush after a year of being absent due to the COVID-19 pandemic! 

During March I was privileged to be in the company of mentor Alan Yeowart, Brad Fouché and my guiding colleagues for some training and team building before we welcomed our first guests back.

We went for a morning drive through the open plains of Banyini and the vultures gave us the first signal of a possible sighting as they landed in the Vachellia tortilis trees. We all became very inquisitive and made our way south of the main pan towards the area where the vultures were landing. From the corner of my eye I saw two adult male lions running and looking very nervous, heading towards the tree line. In front of us were a clan of eight spotted hyenas feasting on not one, but two Cape buffalo – a cow and a calf. 

From experience and observation it appeared that a herd of buffalo came through the plains towards the pan and, due to good rains and thick cover, the lions took advantage and killed two buffalo but were later overpowered by the hyenas. Hyenas and lions are age-old enemies, and it takes a formidable force to scare off two male lions, but this particular clan of hyenas has been dominating this central area for a couple of years now.

Story and photos by Tyme Matuma.