It's true that some must die for others to live on the Serengeti Plain. One day we came across a lioness eating her fresh kill – a young wildebeest. It was in the distance, so we had to use our binoculars and the telephoto lens on the cameras. It was gross to watch. At first I looked away, but moments later I was looking through the binoculars again. It was fascinating. I couldn't look, but I couldn't NOT look! I kept reminding myself that it was the natural order of the animal kingdom. Mother Nature can really be brutal sometimes!
Thankfully, the wildebeest was already dead when we arrived. The lioness (Let's just call her Gertrude) was tearing into its stomach. She ate quickly. She knew the laughing hyenas had already spotted her.
As Gertrude continued to eat – and watch – the hyenas continued to pester her. They would have to wear her down. Also, they knew help was coming.
Gertrude also realized the situation. She could hear and see the others coming now. She continued to eat quickly, hungrily, but had to keep raising her head from inside the wildebeest to keep an eye on the hyenas. This was not a peaceful meal!
She must think of a strategy. She decided to compromise. She let the hyenas join in the feast at the other end of the wildebeest.
More hyenas arrived. Gertrude snarled at them, but she knew she was severely outnumbered now. They wanted her wildebeest. They wanted ALL of it. It was too risky to stay and fight. She was alone. There were too many of them coming.
All the noise of the laughing hyenas had alerted others to the fresh kill. Jackals and vultures moved in on the hyenas. They too were hungry. Fighting broke out among the hyenas, and between the hyenas and the other animals.
We could hear the loud snarls, growls and barks. Some animals backed off after a vicious bite, but would cautiously make their way back to the wildebeest, trying not to be noticed. It was risky, but they too must eat to live…..
until it becomes their turn to be food for others on the Serengeti.